Dating Diversity - a comparison of Russian and American dating traditions

What you need to know, and trends you might have noticed.

Love makes the world go 'round, or so they say. And the world has certainly become a smaller place with people consistently migrating to America; these situations usually provide an increased opportunity to meet a wide range of people from all cultures. Even though this is exciting and refreshing, in the same breath, it can make dating a complicated affair (if it wasn't already).

For women who are accustomed to their own cultural dating traditions, the American dating experience can be a shock. And really, the old world is definitely different from the Western world's ideal date. Using the Russian and American cultures as an example, we know that women play different roles in Russian society than that of their female American counterparts. But how much do our dating practices differ?

American Dating

Dating in America is just that-dating. You're probably asking, 'Well, what else would it be?' American culture doesn't see dating as finding a marriage partner, especially considering American women are very career oriented and independent. Dating is about finding someone to connect with and have fun with; going to movies, a date for your cousin's wedding, going to dinner -this is all part of the American dating culture. The focus isn't on whether or not you will be walking down the aisle next year, but what you will be doing for the second, third and fourth date, eventually reaching that point of a further commitment.

Russian Dating

Steeped in tradition, dating in Russia is basically task oriented, meaning the dating goal for Russian women is to find a groom. In the States, women don't discuss how they found a husband last night at the bar-but Russian women do. Russian women's focus is on becoming a wife and building a family, rather than on a career. You can imagine, then, that the dating experience is right out of an old time movie where a couple dons something other than jeans and a t-shirt, and where the man arrives with flowers. Although Russian dating does include heading to the bars to meet men, restaurants and coffee houses are also a hot spot for finding a potential husband-obviously, not your typical American pick up place.

Because of online dating and many Russian women traveling to North America, the chances of dating a Russian woman are good. Quite possibly you have already met someone from this culture. Whatever the case may be, below are some tips to make the date a successful one.

Tips for a Russian First Date

  1. Be respectful. Many women just want to be respected. But, because these women are from another culture, try to value where they came from and who they are. Some of them still want to follow their traditions.
  2. Find out about their culture before hand. The more you know, the more attractive you will be to her.
  3. Be courteous and considerate. This one is a given. Make sure to continue the behavior well into the relationship.
  4. Be yourself. Although you want to respect the customs of your date, be who you are; it will eliminate confusion as the relationship blossoms.
  5. Be open and genuine. Bottom line-she likes you for you.
  6. Look nice. Yes, first impressions do mean a lot, so make it count, especially if she is familiar with the standard Russian first date.

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