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The Curse of Being Awesome: Mail Order Bride Shaming

Many of the wives and children grow to hate the jokes and questions that they constantly get.  Some are attempts at good natured humor and others are not, but it is fair to say that couples that meet on international dating sites are one of the last groups in American society that people believe it is fair to ridicule.

Dr. Julia Meszaros, who edits the Scholarly Research section, here at ILS has written about mail order bride shaming and it is a very real problem.  Because it is an absolute fact that these marriages work as well or better than other marriages, so these couples and their children have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. 

Mom Was A Mail Order Bride

The article entitled My Mother Was a Mail Order Bride written by the daughter of a Russian mail order bride makes a lot of the same points that I have tried to explain dozens and dozens of times over the years.  First, she explains her personal annoyance at being asked if she is a mail order bride explaining that, People often ask me how I came to the United States.

She explains how uncomfortable this is for her, because...

"Sometimes they give me an unpleasant smirk, wink at Beaker, my American husband, and say nothing but imply a lot. This is just annoying, but, Sometimes they go as far as measure me up and down, and blatantly ask me if I was a mail-order bride. In response, I always force myself to smile and politely say that no, I was not a mail-order bride. Most of the time I suppress a really strong urge to say something mean and nasty."

The author admits there is an economic component to international dating, but...

"…all these women do hope to meet their own Price Charming. It is our human nature to believe that true love exists, and one day a Prince Charming will sail into our lives and sweep us off our feet. For some it works out. For some it never does. But the hope is always there."

In the case of this woman’s mother it was not easy.  She signed up with a company and made very little progress initially.  She did not enjoy the process and the author, a teenager at the time, was not much help.  The whole thing seemed like a complete flop.  The author explains that...

"…my mother gave up on the whole mail-order bride idea. My grandfather, still trying to be very optimistic, asked her to give one more chance to a man who sounded down-to Earth in his letters. My mother agreed with a condition that it was going to be the last American she wanted to see. Ever."

It is a beautiful story and I can’t do it justice.  Go read it if you want a good smile. 

Here is another really good article from Australia on the subject.  It has one of the crazy long titles favored in Australian newspapers: This Is What Life Is Like When People Think You’re The Child Of A Mail-Order Bride: When your mother is Asian and your father isn’t, it’s automatically assumed that you’re the daughter of a gold-digger.

She makes some really good points and show the very real pain that jokes about being a Gold Digger have caused her over the years.   She explains that the nasty judgmental tone is second nature to many Australians.  She notes that...

"People don’t seem to be aware they’re doing it. It’s the kind of reaction that Australians make without thinking – if your mother is Filipino and is married to an Australian, their marriage is a sham. It comes as naturally as learning to walk and talk."

And of course, what is truly sad is apparently her parents are very happy together, but apparently so traumatized from the taunts and ridicule that they had never told their daughter the story of their courtship.  So, being a journalist one day she sat her family down in the den to get some answers.

And this is another story I cannot do justice to just go read it.

Seeing The Humor In The Situation

Most of these judgements are occurring because these are HOT, SEXY, WOMEN.  You need to ponder this for a moment.  Click on the link at the end of this sentence and look at all of these incredible Latin women!

Now, can you take the heat of repeatedly being told your wife is too hot for you?

This is going to happen a LOT.  You will go back to your class reunion and heads will turn.  Can you handle the old high school quarterback gushing about your hot wife?

And if the age gap is more than twenty years, which is very common in international dating, will you lose your temper every time someone is confused and thinks your wife is your daughter? 

Will, you be able to stand the scorn and snide remarks from ex-wives and old girlfriends. 

And you have to remember, a lot of the Eastern European women, are extremely well educated. Will you be able to stand it if your sexy Ukrainian wife makes more money than you at some point down the road?  Or does the concept of your wife earning mid-six figures scare you – make you feel emasculated?

LOL!

Man, it should make you feel incredibly lucky if you have put the right emotional capital into the relationship. 

If you can adopt this sort of a positive attitude it will really help you in the end. 

Sure, having really smart driven children because you wife is a driven immigrant woman who understands the importance of hard work and education, because she knows something about poverty and oppression.  But… things could be worse!