We have gone camping together and to the beach and done lunch during the work week. We have learned a lot about each other throughout it all. He wears Calvin Klein cologne and uses Redken shampoo. I have also learned that in Iran, you eat rice with a spoon.
Iranian men will always, always hold the door for a woman. They will also likely be late for everything; Iranian culture approaches time differently than the American world does. I have learned all of these things because I am American, and my boyfriend is Persian and American.
He moved to the United States when he was 17 and is now a dual citizen. In the United States, it is not uncommon to date someone from another country. Intercultural dating is a beautiful, transformative modern norm. There are a lot of things to expect when entering a relationship like this.
In fact, there are far too many for just one article. I was unprepared for every single challenge that comes with intercultural dating. For all the women out there who are a with a partner from another world, I have picked what I feel are important expectations you should have.
People will make rude jokes. Stereotypes are untrue, frustrating, and in poor taste. Only by educating will the world eliminate ignorance. You might not be able to pronounce their name. But there are plenty of Persian names that I cannot pronounce. Just be ready to practice and understand that you will never say it the way that the native speakers say it, no matter what language they speak.
Your partner will have different values. The example I will use for this one is the Persian perception of time. If a Persian dinner party starts at 7: Because of this, I consider my boyfriend to be chronically late.
He considers me to be chronically early. Of course, it is important to meet halfway with these things. But always remember that something that means a lot to your culture might not mean much to another one.
You might start to feel like the foreigner. Part of being in a relationship is going all in. I have been to parties where people approach me speaking Farsi, and I have to respond awkwardly and in English. I still eat rice with a fork, an American habit I will never break, and I am often the only one at the table doing that. One time my boyfriend gave me half of his sandwich. I ate it and thought it was chicken, only to discover that it was sheep brain.
Okay, I will admit I did not respond well to that one. But the point is to respond. Remember that, and you will have no problem finding the unique joys that come with intercultural dating. When I started dating a person who does not share all of my cultural values, I discovered that my customs are not the only ones that I want to have in my life. Suddenly, the relationship is teaching you about a whole lot more than little things about the person you are with; you are becoming globally educated.