Ask the Yangxifu: My Chinese Boyfriend’s Parents Think We’re Unnatural

A white woman with Cleopatra-like blue eye makeup and a jewel on her forehead.
Her Chinese-American boyfriend's parents think their relationship is "unnatural" because she's older and taller than him (and not because she's white). How can she get them to like her? (photo by Shonna Clark)

Andrea asks:

I am very in love with a Chinese-American guy and he feels the same way about me. We have similar educations and world outlooks. I really feel like he might be “the one” for me. The problem is that when he introduced me to his family they had a strong objection to me.  Although they said I was pretty and nice and spoke Chinese very well, they were not okay with the fact that I am four years older and two inches taller than him.  (A classic case of jiedilian I suppose).  They explained to him that our being together was “unnatural” and to prove their point cut him off financially until he found a more suitable girlfriend. I should also probably mention that I am white – but he has dated white girls before and they were okay with that so I don’t think that is the problem.

He is still very happy to be with me and told me not to worry and that they will “come around”.  Prior to being with him I lived in mainland China for three years and am skeptical that they will learn to ignore the height and age different.  What do you think is the best approach to winning them over?  Should I ignore their feelings towards our relationship and just continue to be sweet and friendly (aka play dumb)?  Should I try to bring it up with them somehow?  Is there some special way to make them like me I haven’t thought about?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Continue reading “Ask the Yangxifu: My Chinese Boyfriend’s Parents Think We’re Unnatural”

Ask the Yangxifu: On Jiedi Lian, China’s Cougar Love

Barbie Hsu and Vic Zhou, hugging
Jiedi lian (China’s version of Cougar love) is rare — but it can happen, such as when Vic Zhou and Barbie Hsu, stars of Meteor Garden, dated. (photo from

Jie Jie asks:

How much does age difference matter for Chinese people? I’m in my late twenties and I happen to like a Chinese guy who is in his early twenties. He mentioned the term 姐弟恋 the other day. He asked me if I know what that means. I don’t know if I should be worried about his question. Could that mean that he regards me as a craddle-robber or a cougar?

However, he has literally told me that he likes me.

Could age be a barrier between us? Would a couple where the woman is slightly older (in my case, 5 years older) judged negatively? Continue reading “Ask the Yangxifu: On Jiedi Lian, China’s Cougar Love”