I am divorced from my uk wife and have 3 Children in the uk. A year ago i met a beautifully sincere Chinese woman, we became very close friends and now we are inseparable. Her parents are totally against our relationship and insisted we split,well my girlfriend told them that she loves me and that we are going to be together no matter what they insist,(she lives with them still ) I was accused of many untrue things and i was out to con her and beat her.
I have a well paid job and financially we are sound,
They say that as i have 3 children i am not suitable or good enough for their daughter, and she is embarrassing the family.
I have tried to be patient and understanding, but i need help.
Being divorced is a big strike against you in Chinese culture, just as this excerpt from A cultural challenge: Multiple family groups for post-separation and post-divorce families in Hong Kong reminds us:
The marital relationship is greatly valued in the Chinese culture. A family without a marital relationship is viewed as abnormal.
So, the parents probably think there’s something wrong with you, since your first marriage failed.
Additionally, you have children, which is another worry. They might wonder if these children would pull you away from responsibilities to their family — or pull you back to your ex-wife. And what if you no longer want to have children? Her parents would have a hard time seeing your kids as part of the family (different culture, less attachment), expecting your girlfriend to produce a child that carries on the blood line.
What can you do to overcome this?
If you’re still able and interested in having children, let her parents know. That might reassure them that they’ll have a grandson or granddaughter they can call their own.
Be filial — sons (and sons-in-law) are expected in Chinese culture to care for parents and show them respect. That includes everything from asking about their health and buying them healthy foods and supplements to simply “keeping the peace” and being respectful about their opinions. Let them know you care and — most importantly — would never put them in a nursing or retirement home (considered highly unfilial and irresponsible in China).
Most of all, be patient and persistent. You need to show them you’re good, in ways they understand, and that takes time. But if you can see things through, you may be able to win over her parents.
However, don’t necessarily expect them to return the warmth to your children and ex-wife. They’re not blood relations, and sometimes families won’t acknowledge the parents/families of an ex-wife or ex-husband — or will do so in an unequal way, giving more attention/preference to their blood-related grandson/granddaughter(s).
Do you have a question about life, dating, marriage and family in China (or in Chinese culture)? Every Friday, I answer questions on my blog. Send me your question today.