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Peter lived for nearly a half-decade in China, including two as a Peace Corps volunteer, and is the author of Socrates in Sichuan: Chinese Students Search for Truth, Justice and the (Chinese) Way. It is the intention of his blog to foster the sort of intercultural understanding necessary for long term relationships.
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What Women Want    

By Peter V
4505 Views | 12 Comments | 7/18/2014 3:39:03 PM

I received the following email the other day on CLM from a 28 yo Chinese female.

 

“Hey nice guy, I want to ask you: most western women don’t care about wealth of male, so why do you seek a Chinese woman?”

 

One of the great features of the blogs is that it is a forum by which we can address misconceptions we have with each other’s culture. Most often, we are dealing with misconceptions that Western males have about Chinese females or that Chinese women have about Western men.  These are obviously the most important ones when it comes to this website. But this letter made me realize that there are many misconceptions that Chinese women have about Western women. These misunderstandings are relevant to this dating site because, I would argue, in order to have a successful relationship with a Western male, it is important for a Chinese woman to understand Western culture (and a Western man to understand Chinese culture) and that if you are walking around believing something that is stunningly false about Western women, then you probably have a lot of other misconceptions about Western culture running through your brain.

 

I have heard the misconception many times, that Western women care more about romance than they care about practical financial matters and in this way are different than Chinese women. Recently, a female Chinese friend was telling me about an episode of the Chinese dating show called “If you are the one” (an admittedly poor translation of the Chinese, 非诚勿扰), a show where a panel of Chinese women interview a variety of possible partners. A good looking Western guy, a musician, was among the contestants. And although he was young, handsome, fun-loving, easygoing, smooth talking and romantic, he was not chosen to advance to the next round primarily because of his poor financial prospects. My Chinese friend said to me, “this is the difference between America and China. American women would all choose this young guy.”

 

My response was: no sane Western woman over the age of 25 would choose this guy a serious potential partner for the simple reason that the financial prospects for musicians in America are about the same as in China. Western women, like Chinese women, like women all over the world, expect the man they settle down with to be a good provider and protector. This has nothing whatsoever to do with culture and everything to do with evolutionary biology.

 

Our goal as a species is to pass on our genes. This is the explanation for such things as why men want to screw everything that moves to why men want younger women. It also explains why women (Chinese, American, Russian, German, Japanese, Mexican) want men who can be providers and protectors. Evolutionarily speaking, the best way for the woman to make sure her genes that are in the child continue is to have a man as protector and provider for the family unit. Western women expect this in a male just as much as Chinese women do.

 

I think the reason for this misconception about Western women, that they follow their heart rather than their head, comes from watching too many romantic movies. Titanic is probably the worst offender here in presenting a situation where romance is seen to win out over financial stability. But it is important to remember first, that the Titanic is just a movie and second, that Leonardo Dicaprio dies in the movie. This is the dramatic recognition of the fact that the relationship between Rose and Jack could never last. A settled down Jack is not the character that Rose fell in love with. If Jack remains Jack he will be a lousy husband and if he changes Rose will no longer love him. So he must die.

 

If you want more fact and less fiction about Western women,  watch The Bachelorette, a correctly dubbed reality TV show where a single woman must choose a  partner from a houseful of young, eligible bachelors. Invariably, the young men’s finances are as much a part of her calculation as anything (or so my sister tells me).

 

And this is how it should be. Every western male I know was raised with the expectation that he would be the breadwinner for his family and the provider of his household. It is what we men expect of ourselves and what we expect others to expect of us. So, Chinese women, while there are many ways in which (thankfully) you are in fact different than Western women, ways that in part explain what Western men are doing here, the desire that the man be a solid provider for the household is not one of those ways.

Copyright owned jointly by Author and CyberCupid Co., Ltd. Breach of copyright will be prosecuted.
Comments
(Showing 1 to 10 of 12) 1 2 More...
#2014-07-18 15:55:25 by reremy @reremy

just want catch one's heart,never be apart.

#2014-07-18 16:04:12 by JohnAbbot @JohnAbbot

Peter, I agree with everything you've said here, and I mean that, BUT (I hate saying BUT to something I agree with BUT), I think you've left something out that is of paramount importance to the discussion.

I suggest the important difference between Chinese women and Western women in all of this is that in the search for the perfect husband, which for all women does include that he can offer financial security, the Chinese women generally will deign to have sex with those men she decides may make a great husband, but will refuse all others. The Western woman, on the other hand, will seek out and bed an endless array of men she knows do not in anyway qualify to her as husband material, and will sexually reject only the men who she might be willing to marry, to whom she will pretend to be a near virginal flower, saving herself only for him alone.

I suggest that this reflects the important difference between two cultures in "What Women Want".

Having said that, let me say that I am ecstatic to have found your new blog here. Damn, I have missed opening the blog queue and finding one of your super well written and always intelligent blogs waiting for publication. It's a treat to have you back.

#2014-07-18 19:56:58 by zqy2014 @zqy2014

Good article, so it make sense that the man would have the same expectation from the woman at least she can't be burdened by some debts or have some kind of continuous working ability.

@JohnAbbot
John,I completely agree with your 2nd paragraph on biggest difference on their attitude to sex between Chinese woman and western woman. Thanks for your affirmation given to Chinese woman. It is exactly correct as the real situation with us. Maybe western woman take sex enjoyment as the very big part and thus they can't stick or insist the relationship or marriage when lack sex enjoyment. Here we take love, emotion and routing life for a big part. Divorce means very hard for us to make the decision. Seldom of us will choose divorce only due to vacant or failed or a unsatisfied sex. Basing on this point, we are very tolerant and more devoted than western woman.

Thanks for your sharing....

#2014-07-19 08:29:58 by anonymous11085 @anonymous11085

@John - you wrote "The Western woman, on the other hand, will seek out and bed an endless array of men she knows do not in anyway qualify to her as husband material".

That is putting it mildly!

#2014-07-19 12:43:12 by panda2009 @panda2009

Why Animals Only Mate, Humans are Going to Get Married?

I did explain the issue from evolution in this blog before that women used to really need a provider for her family. In their long pregnancy and lactation period, they have to be forced to quit(歇菜)from working, and their children need mother's lots of caring before 15 year old, so those men who are willing to invest parental care whose children will own more likely to survive.

As a man, of course he is more willing to provide a young girl who will take him more reproductive dividend. Without this reason, I think that women shouldn't find a provider, and squander large quantities of men's funds.

You are right, in this issue of your blog, "What Women Want" that is not really relevant to nationality and races.

#2014-07-19 23:20:29 by woaizhongguo @woaizhongguo

@John - you wrote "The Western woman, on the other hand, will seek out and bed an endless array of men she knows do not in anyway qualify to her as husband material".

True that. But I would add that in this way she behaves just like her Western male counterparts. And a lot like Chinese men, who seem rather to wait until after marriage to start screwing women they have no intention of marrying. But more of this in a future blog.

#2014-07-20 20:31:04 by sandy339 @sandy339

@woaizhongguo
"Our goal as a species is to pass on our genes." really? that is too animal...
I think the expectation of good provider has been changing, sure, the better financially the better. But what if you lose your freedom and further development with a good provider, this kind of life is not worthwhile for me. I remember one man even said Japanease women are very happy because they only need to do housechores (of cause now it is being changed by Shinzou Abe.)But as a woman, I feel it is dangerous. What if the divorce, or some accidence, I think our happiness could be only based on our ability to live. This is my mindset...

@JohnAbbot
"The Western woman, on the other hand, will seek out and bed an endless array of men she knows do not in anyway qualify to her as husband material, and will sexually reject only the men who she might be willing to marry, to whom she will pretend to be a near virginal flower, saving herself only for him alone."

haha, really, it is good to know that: it is cool and funny to me:)

#2014-07-21 15:02:23 by JohnAbbot @JohnAbbot

@woaizhongguo - you wrote "But I would add that in this way she behaves just like her Western male counterparts."

That is also likely true, but that's cold comfort for the large minority of Western males who do not behave like that and are looking for a woman who doesn't either. And for the most part those are the men who we find here on CLM, with, unfortunately, oft noted exceptions.

#2014-08-08 17:13:01 by Joewood @Joewood

Coming from a different point of view, and never sugar coated from my coming up as a biker, construction type background, you ladies might want to take a seat before you read this. America is in a financial downturn, many people are lucky if the have a job while the other people suck off the government tit. Some of the American men on this site, myself included, coming out of a divorce, or a second one, or third or so on, are not looking to be your ATM card after losing whatever they worked hard for to another woman. Some are embittered by the financial loss they took, and the ongoing bills of child support, alimony house payments for a house they no longer get to enjoy, and having the added expenses of college for the kids, and so on and so on.
So if you are looking for a rich guy to support your habits of driving a mercedes, wearing 400 dollar shoes, and giving you the life of luxury you think is available to you by marrying a western man, all I have to say is good friggin luck! you will be harder pressed at this point in time to find it with a western man.


I read a story, maybe from here, or from a woman friend on QQ who may have sent me the story as an version about a woman who cried about what she wanted to her husband. The woman wanted all of the finer things in life, spoiled the children and squandered his hard earned money. He had to go to another city to work, and all he did was work to give her the money. He was separated by the distance, and she never really cared to even visit him while she just kept up her lavish spending. She never saved anything, but treated him like an open credit card with no limit. Then after a time the money didn't come as much and she decided to visit him. She found out that he neglected himself to give her everything she wanted, and was dying. He worked himself to death.

This is a Chinese Parable, not a Western one, and I think some of you might want to take a good look at who and what you are getting yourself into.
You could be a wife to a man you hardly see because he works all the time, and your benefitting him with sex or intimacy for money or financial security makes a lot of you sound like gold diggers, and divorced men who have lost it all to a divorce WILL look at it that way, unless they are well to do and rich enough not to be worried about the money. And like I said good luck finding it, because A lot of Western men will associate themselves with other well to do Western women because of the networking in similar business atmospheres.

Right now it is really selfish and ridiculous for any women on here to think you are going to find life that easy here, and your partnering is going to be SERIOUSLY minimized. Are you here looking for a good man or an ATM?

There are other means of security in life, and what qualities of life you will have in your relationship.
I am telling you this to open your eyes to the western world of today, and if you are going to bring in the traditional man being the one to do all the work while you go get your nails and hair done, you are in for a rude awakening, it doesn't work too well here, and you will build one thing in the relationship you don't want, and that is resentment. What are you bringing into the relationship besides yourself? You are willing to find a man from the west because you are tired of the things you had to deal with in the east, so what else are you bringing?
If a man gives you a home to live in, and you have kids that don't belong to him and he is willing to accept them as well as you as a package deal, If the man doesn't cheat on you, and is faithful only to you, what is that worth in your mind? to your mental and emotional well being? If you have good healthy food on the table (which I have read on many occasions is not the case in China), your house is warm when it's freezing outside, cooled off when it's too hot to be outside, ( as I sit with the air conditioner running) what is that worth to you? What do you give him in return? When you find that you are comfortable (and not complacent) in the relationship and have Really learned that you have trust, open communication, and real love going on there from someone who has taken you into the deepest part of their being, are you going to squander that mans life, what he wanted to have and to be with you? If you want to have a good relationship, and a healthier marriage you ladies need to get your priorities of being married to a western man set straight, and I'm telling you the straight story.

I met a Chinese woman who runs a smoke shop here, and she said it very quickly, and to the point when I asked her what do Chinese women want........Money, it came out as fast as I asked her. Money.

Western men, especially at middle age, we have done what we have done, we are not looking to have children (at least for the most of us) we are tired of a lot of the BS out here, don't want to play games, and for a lot of us divorcees, are not looking to be a sugar daddy. We are looking for a partner in life to share what time we have left on this rock. Are you ladies looking for a husband or a life partner, someone who with the way things are here in the states may very well have to continue to work and be his partner? Would you help him run a business, start a new one, be a part of it? A lot of men would like it that way, America was built with a lot of mom-and-pop businesses, and those families who have done this are a big part of many small towns fabric of our society.

@ John Abbot , I sometimes wonder if you and some of the others are not in touch with some of the things going on here in the states, because some of the things I see posted are a little misguided for a lot of us regular folks. The majority of what is left of the working class looking for a cross-national, cross-cultural relationship, the ones who are divorced, wanting to start over, and be with a special woman may not see things through your rose colored glasses.

But I would end with this, and I hope you ladies may take heed to this, especially to you middle aged and up who are looking to be with a good man for the rest of your life. Don't put a dollar sign on the men you look into, look into the man himself, his character, his actions, and you may find the right one. And from having met and dealt with some very rich people myself, Some of them are the worst, nastiest, condescending, assholes you will ever meet, they don't have a good character. Do you want to be treated like a self polishing trophy, or do you want to be treated like a mans wife and life partner? I think you may want to ask yourself some important questions about a relationship with a western man, and if you are informed enough to fully assimilate into Western cultures.

#2014-08-10 04:01:37 by woaizhongguo @woaizhongguo

@JoeWood: I don't really see anything I disagree with in what you have written, but I think you have to be careful in interpreting the claim that Chinese women all want money. I don't even disagree with this but I think you have to be careful how you interpret this claim. If a woman is concerned about your finances, that does not necessarily mean she is a gold digger (though it might). It may just mean she wants to assure there is enough income to live a decent, not extravagant, life. There seems nothing wrong in expecting a man to assure a certain standard of living, especially if he is asking her to move somewhere where she may not get a job. However, as you point out, there are some golddiggers out there, in china and around the world, and you have to be careful not to fall into the arms, or any body part, of one of these. Western men should not misconstrue a concern about finances for golddigging is the main point I want to get across, although they do need to be on the lookout for being taken advantage of. As Ronald Reagan used to say: trust but verify. In general, Chinese women are more practical on financial matters than Western women and worry about these things more. It is when the worry gets excessive, when the desire gets greedy, that you need to get the hell out.

Regarding your comment about John seeing the world through rose colored glasses or being misguided, I am not sure what exactly you are talking about, since you don't provide any specificss. If you could provide some illustration, it might be helpful. I have always found his comments grounded in the reality of China and Chinese women and based on a helluva lot of experience.

Anyway thanks for the taking the time to reply.

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