People close to me know this has been an extraordinary busy month — which is why I’m late in sharing some good news.
Earlier this month, the Global Times featured me (along with two other women, including fellow blogger Jo Bai of Life Behind the Wall) in an article titled Marrying Chinese Men Means Less Talk, but More Respect and More Help in the Household.
Here are some excerpts from the piece:
Jocelyn Eikenburg, who lives in Beijing and founded the popular expat blog Speaking of China, describes being married to her Chinese husband as “intercultural, interracial, international and bilingual.”
Like De Leye, Eikenburg also found that there are major differences in the way she and her husband express their feelings. Growing up in the US, she watched her parents express love through words, kisses and hugs.
“Here in China, love is something that is shown through actions, such as making you your favorite dinner or buying you something special, and married Chinese men are less likely to kiss or hug their spouses in front of others.” …
Eikenburg says her husband is wonderful at home. He does a lot of housework and always helps prepare dinner. His ideas about couples sharing the work might have been influenced by his parents. When he was growing up in rural Zhejiang Province, both of his parents had to work and also helped around the house, she said.
“There’s no doubt that in a country as large as China, there are regional differences in terms of culture and that may influence what families tend to consider the norm in marriages and households. And I have heard some of these ideas, such as how Shanghai men supposedly make great husbands,” she said.
“My husband’s family is also an example of a household that might not have followed the typical pattern for the village, which reminds me that it’s always important to keep an open mind and never assume that a person will fall in line with the general beliefs or stereotypes.”
Eikenburg also noted that there is a drastic difference on this point between the urban areas and the countryside.
“I’m pleased that my brother-in-law and sister-in-law, who have a daughter, always tell her that they want her to go to college and do well in school; that’s encouraging to see.”
You can read the full article here on the Global Times. And if you like it, share it!