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Q: What type of relationship is this?

I was recently in China on a work assignment, and while I was there, I met a Chinese girl with whom I believe I have become quite close. (We've known each other for about two months now.) Now that I am back home, we communicate almost daily using QQ, but I am still unsure as to the nature of our relationship and future prospects. We clearly have some great affection for each other, but beyond that? The advice given on sites about dating in China points in certain directions, but I'd like some extra feedback. Here are the details.

 

1. She actually sought me out while I was at work. We are both academics.

2. We went on a customary exploratory group date first (at the time, I was clueless about that approach and thought it was sort of a business lunch), then contacted me a week later by email.

3. When I asked her to meet me for lunch, she IMMEDIATELY accepted. (Still clueless at that point.) We had a great time together. (Her English is not good, but I speak enough Mandarin to make it work.) In fact, she wanted to pay for our outings, but I did not let her.

4. She invited me to go out with her to sing karaoke on the night on my last day in China, but I had an official business dinner and could not. (Darn.) She seemed disappointed.

5. Now that I am back home, we chat using QQ almost daily, sometimes for hours.

6. She calls me her "close friend" (I figure it's the "friendship first" approach) and has stated that she is looking forward to my coming back to her city and that she would also like to come visit me and meet my family at some time. I likely won't be able to return to China until next spring.

7. She is concerned about my health, giving advice on what to eat and how to dress. She also gives me fashion advice.

8. She is from a second-tier city and lives in another second-tier city, with a family background considered less than desirable by Chinese standards. I couldn't care less about that.

9. She is very attractive and, yes, cute, making me wonder why Chinese men don't line up to date her or why she isn't dating them. Definitely no boyfriend.

10. Her parents seem to know that I exist (not sure on that, though). My question about being a laowai was answered that in the case of an open romantic relationship, there would likely be "comments," but friendship is no big deal. Don't know if that means her parents might disapprove. Probably, huh? Maybe she wants to see if I'm in it for the long haul before she broaches the subject? After all, this relationship is new. I may be the first laowai she's ever gotten to know.

11. Right now, we do this weird chat dance where we allude to romantic matters but state everything vaguely enough to be able to deny we said what we said if pressed.

11. And the biggest issue, she is less than half my age. Why would such a gorgeous, intelligent woman seek out a guy like me? I know the usual answers, but I see no deception or attempts to wrangle a Green Card out of me. So I am not sure what she wants from or with me.

 

I realize no one can know her intentions and that I will find out sooner or later, but I am still interested in figuring out what kind of a relationship I am in here and whether my assumptions of her signals may be correct. Of course, I'm also trying not to invest a lot of time into something that might go nowhere, but I realize life does not come with guarantees one way or the other. Any feedback or comments would be appreciated.

 

5 years 15 weeks ago in  Relationships - Other cities

 
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From dear Abby to ask Vicky
Maybe the china daily can help you

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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From dear Abby to ask Vicky
Maybe the china daily can help you

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Going out with a girl half your age is odd. What can you have in common? You would look silly and sleazy. She would look like gold/digger passport chaser. To be in love with someone twice your age is pretty rare/next to impossible I'd imagine.

Why does she contact you? Maybe she has serious daddy issues. maybe it is simply money/passport. Whatever it is it won't be because she finds you attractive. That's no bad thing. I went out with an 18 year old when I was 25 and that was a pain in the arse.

 

 

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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"She is concerned about my health..." - She wants to marry you.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Maybe she wants a passport, or money. Hard to be sure. Are you hideously ugly and/or fat?

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Are you sure she classifies as pretty?  Just because she's warm blooded, covered in flesh, and is interested in you doesn't necessarily make her beautiful. 

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Danger Will Robinson DANGER!!!

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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What's the risk worth? And can you afford it?

 

Chinese - perhaps by nature - tend to be quite vague and secretive about their personal lives (which I find extremely disturbing... simple questions like "do you have a boyfriend?" can be answered in the most infuriating - non-useful - way!)

 

If it were me*, I'd be figuring out if you're actually going to a) return to China, b) contemplate a relationship which may end up being c) long-distance, or d) entails you moving to China to live with her for some period of time.

 

Each of those involves a certain amount of sacrifice, and a couple a great deal of life-changing.

 

Thus, I would e) just be completely up-front about it and find out what she wants, what you're prepared to give, etc. Get past the vagueness, and put your cards on the table.

 

 

(*NB: I'm single, have been for most of my life, and no doubt will be til I die. I often do not understand humans and the things they do. I have no need for a female companion, no desire for marriage, and only sometimes do I miss having someone. Some regular sex would be good - if it's good... So, you should probably take what I wrote with a grain of salt!)

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Are you sure she's single ?

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Am I 100 percent sure she's single? Of course not. Can't be at a distance. However, no hint of a boyfriend on her QQ page or otherwise--she'd really have to be hiding him well, especially since our chats take up a good portion of her time, and then what would the point of a relationship with me be? She is clearly attractive. When I showed pictures to my friends at home, they all started drooling and high-fiving me, so I think we got that covered. She is insecure about her looks, though. As for me, my friends tell me I look young for my age. Definitely not fat.

 

Not sure about the "passport chasing." She has a satisfying career, and living abroad with her lack of English skills would be quite a challenge professionally. At the same time, my career does not allow me to live in China for any extended period of time, nor do I want to. As things are shaping up, it appears that for the next few years, I will return to the same city in China for about a month each year.

 

Does she want money? Maybe. There were some vague comments about her brother's undefined health issues. No, I will not function as an open wallet for her family.

 

Maybe I do need to put my cards on the table. Taking my cues from the looking odd and maybe creepy comments, maybe I just need to pull the trigger and ask some tough questions. Of course, I don't want to come across as a total jackass either and ruin whatever this relationship may hold. Cr@p, this stuff is hard.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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You aren't even sure if it's a relationship, yet, and she's telling you how to dress? Am I the only one who finds that strange?

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Are you sure that you're not seeing her through the "yellow fever filter"?

I have come to realize that there can be several reasons why a "very attractive" woman can be single...

She is an aspiring Xiaosan, and is between patrons at the moment...

She isn't actually single, and has a bf/husband hidden away somewhere...

She has a Foreigner fetish, but lives in a city that does not have many foreigners...

She is an after-hours KTV hostess/bar-girl/massage parlour worker...

She has the GonaSyphiHerpilAIDS...

She is a Green Card hunter...

She is a raging bitch...

She is 22/23, just graduated university, and you met her before she is married off to Rando McBuysmybride.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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you are right to question your status between the two of you as this can be vague for many Chinese.

If you say she is an academic, yet single, she is probably late twenties (even if she doesn't look it), and under pressure from family to marry asap, yet she is picky as to who she is willing to marry.

However it is not unknown for single Chinese girls/women to hedge their bets and have a couple of guys being strung along and being 'tested' as to how compliant you are to her 'demands' - hence the 'fashion advice'.

Equally it sounds like you are being 'tested' on the money front as well.

 

As MissA point out, this is strange for 'friends' to do this.

 

Many Chinese girls (and boys) have totally unrealistic expectations as to what is involved in a relationship, being influenced by what they see on TV and using this as the basis for what to expect, and having less real life experience due to social pressures.

Chinese bf's are made to jump through hoops before they are deemed suitable.

 

Two months is not an adequate basis, especially if she is being vague and noncommittal, for thinking you are in a relationship.

 

Keep in mind that Chinese people have ulterior motives when it comes to ‘friendship’ with foreigners - which is not to say that they make suitable marriage partners as the guys on this site can testify to, but if she is an academic in the same field as you, your 'friendship' might be a career move for her, and not due to genuine personal interest, romantic or otherwise.

 

I'd suggest playing to cool and being unavailable for a while due to 'work' or 'family' responsibilities. I despise game playing with people but you have to keep in mind, this is probably a game to her.

 

check out these sites for some more insights (note Admin, this is NOT spamming)

http://middlekingdomlife.com/guide/dating-etiquette-sex-relationships-china.htm :

https://cultofconfucius.wordpress.com/category/relationships-3/

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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There is a pretty good chance she is setting you up.  If she is as beautiful as you think, she has many options who are currently living in China, including foreigners.  Her mentioning of the sick relative could mean she will hit you with that later.  Of course, personalities vary and I can't say here or there about that.  One thing is for sure, you need to have a serious and direct conversation about this.  The more time passes, the more your heart will get involved and start making decisions for you.

 

But it seems to me that you already know the answers.  You are not willing to stay in China for any length of time.  Her prospects in foreignerland are slim.  I see no good ending in this relationship (based on the facts you have given).  The sooner you both realize this, the better.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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1st Take all negative aspects in this column with a grain of salt. Most here have had a bad experience and I have never heard anyone on this forum say a broken relationship was any of their own fault. The rest comes from whispers and friends of friends. As most here have some form of chinese companionship be it a wife , gf , fuck buddy or friend, its safe to assume not every woman is a full fledged scam artist. Though you would never know it here.

Allow me to play devils advocate and be positive.

Attractive? A few thought on why she is single. Often I have seen that foreigners and chinese men have very diffetent tastes. They seem to prefer tiny and tea serving 17 year old looking types. Me and my foreign friends will see a knockout and my chinese friends will yawn. So perhaps she is especially attractive to you. This is a plus.

As you said, she is an acedemic. This is intimidating to plenty of men this making her less attractive due to independance and power. Chinese prefer doormats.

Does she find you attractive? Perhaps. What I say has no judgement but are widely known "truths" . Chinese often put much less emphasis on looks than in other cultures. Perhaps it is insecurities or situations are more important i dont know. But in my opinon a woman who chooses a man based on security is not much different than a man choosing a woman based on a great ass. I dont think it means she would love you any less eventually.

Chinese blindly find whiteys more attractive. Where foreigners choose who is attractive based on a complete package of physical traits chinese individualize them. Tall nose? Check! Round eyes? Check! Tall? You betcha! Add it all up and you are handsome. Regardless of what you actually look like. So she may very well think you are attractive.

Half your age.
In china a gap that large is noticible but not too out of the ordinary. Lots of factors could be involved.

Women here often find men their own age to be immature. The amount of video games and basketball played seems to play a part. The chinese sytem itself also forces women to marry older men. Check the ages people can marry. Men 22 and women 20.

Most people whine about it all the time on this site. Mostly out of ignorance or insecurities but again in my view, a woman choosing a man who is financially secure is perfectly normal and ok. House and car isnt too much. If shes asking for a Ferarri thennnn maybe consider it . But no one falls in love in a day so those situations such as looks and finances play a large role at the beginning. This is a reason women choose older men as well.

Lastly. Perhaps she likes talking to you and being around you?? Its a chance. I find chinese dont often talk to deeply about things and have opinions about things and never ever do they ask anything but the most basic of questions. Perhaps time spent with you is exciting and enjoyable?

I often see or come across chinese women in laowai pubs. They all used to have a laowai man and then broke up. They do not go back to Chinese but desperately try to look cool and western in hopes of catching another foreigner. They usually broke up because the guy was a tool or unmotivated or would do anything even for himself. But that is much better than a relationship with a Chinese guy who might have a house but never speaks to her and never hugs her or sais he loves her. Its obviously a draw for chinese women and perhaps you have drawn her in?

In any case, nothing you have mentioned to me screams shes a gold digger or passport hunter or a con artist. You want my advice? Grow a pair and be a man and lay it all out on the table. Worst case scenario is you had it all wrong from the get go so you sign off qq for a while.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Well, if she is an academic as you say... then more than likely she is somewhat intelligent and this scares off many Chinese males. Also, academics... as you should know... do consider physical beauty but are much more attracted to meaningful conversations, personality and opinions.

 

They do also want to better their own life situation and perhaps find a mate that is not only stable but someone they can talk to and have a good time.

 

Asian women (Chinese women included) like to do the dance of... I like you but do you like me, cause if you don't like me... then I can't show I like you too much... and on and on... until the guy does something that is obviously moving past friendship.

 

 

If she spoke to her parents about you then she is warming them up to the idea that she MAY want to be with you. Most Chinese women don't tell their parents about men unless they are contemplating marriage. If she is concerned about your health, it is because she feels close to you... Most Chinese women don't get close to a foreign male and worry about their health unless they feel something for them.

 

Most Chinese women are IMPOSSIBLE to have conversations with for hours. A man of your age should consider yourself VERY lucky to find a girl half your age that you can speak to and possibly have a mature conversation.

 

Who knows... she may have alternative reasons. Maybe she wants a better life for herself, maybe she wants to go to America... it doesn't really matter. What matters if how she makes you feel about yourself and if she cares about you.

 

Which she most likely does on some level.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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All good answers above.

Just be aware... she will want a baby. It might be an American baby or a Chinese baby. It does not really matter. But a baby she wants. I would rate that at 95% probability.

If your happy with that I would say go fill your boots.

If the thought makes you uncomfortable, I suggest you let her go.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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Thank you for all the useful responses. A lot of food for thought. Yes, I do believe we are doing the "liking" dance right now. And, yes, I feel like I am being tested on multiple fronts. 

 

I have done things beyond friendship such as romantic morning text messages, oodles of compliments about how pretty and smart she is (specific, too), sending her a couple presents and even inviting her to join me (and paying for the trip) where I am currently working on assignment (much closer to China than the U.S.). No rejection per se, just a vague allusion to some problems needing to be solved, which I interpret as "No." Anyway, I will soon move from a hotel to a furnished apartment here, and she keeps asking about the apartment and my move-ín date. Is this a test?

 

She also mentioned wanting to have some minor cosmetic procedure done and asked my advice. I told her she was beautiful just the way she was and that there was no need to do it for my benefit, but if it made her happy.... So far, no progress on that issue. Was this a test to see if I might pony up the money? Answer right now: No.

 

She also does this annoying thing that when she visits her family for the weekend (couple of hours by Gaotie), she just disappears and cannot be reached, then on Saturday night or so sends an innocent message. She's pulled this stunt now twice. I mean, can't you send a quick message to tell me you'll be out of touch for the weekend?  I have plenty of work projects to keep me busy. Is this a test to see if I am willing to let her put her family first or a test to see if I go nuclear over her thoughtlessness? Answer: I play it cool.

 

I'm good with the baby thing.

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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A troll posts a bogus relationship question and the sheep rush to answer . 

How can complete strangers tell you what type of relationship you're in?

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5 years 15 weeks ago
 
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'K, guys, I took your advice and laid it all on the line. Gutwrenching as that was, literally, I now apparently have a Chinese girlfriend. Let's see where that goes...flying high or crash and burn. MD out.

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5 years 14 weeks ago
 
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'K, guys, I took your advice and laid it all on the line. Gutwrenching as that was, literally, I now apparently have a Chinese girlfriend. Let's see where that goes...flying high or crash and burn. MD out.

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5 years 14 weeks ago
 
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Let me answer you from a Chinese female's point of view. China has the high-context culture when people tend to say things they don't mean just to be polite.  She's just treating you as a friend, or an alien study subject. All the signs that make you think she's interested in you is only cultural customs in China. We Chinese do things to make us look hospitable, such as asking out for food and offering to pay, asking you out for KTV, asking you to go home with you. She's less than half of your age, very nice looking and cannot speak english very well. Maybe she's flirting with you just to practice her english. You, on the other hand, really wish there's something between you. So you posted this, that's for sure.

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5 years 14 weeks ago
 
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作为一个土生土长的Chinese,我赶脚我的回答应该有一定的参考意义!

As a local,of course girl,I think I can give u some information and wish can help u :

1, U said :"She calls me her "close friend" , I want to tell u something about Chinses so called CLOSE FRIEND ,in Chinese culture,if a girl/boy says someone(opposite sex) is her/his so called close friend,that means the people is not her/his right one but can just contact with him, it is means 备胎(beitai),you can search this words and figure out it's meaning;

2,and u said "I figure it's the "friendship first" approach" , I really want to ask u ,ARE U SERIOUS??? In China ,if a girl want to cultivate a further relationship with a boy ,NEVER SAY FRIEND!!

3," she is less than half my age",I think the girl is more likely just want to get green card or something else if she really saty with u  ,it is sound so cruel but true,in China ,a good educationed(or high level family) women usually marry or dating with the same generation,,,,,,etc, but who knows,

4,For reference only,good luck !!

 

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5 years 14 weeks ago

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My two bobs worth....don't go there.  More than half your age?  No good.  Unless it's something exceptional it's just not....not.... 

My wife is ten years my junior and I thought long and hard about that.  I'd say ten yrs is about the limit.

If you could remove yourself from this situation and look at it objectively, well...what advice would you give yourself?

 

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5 years 13 weeks ago
 
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She's probably interested.

 

But don't give her a greencard.

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5 years 13 weeks ago
 
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