Let the Myth Go!

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Let the Myth Go!

Dating is a very important part of social life. In any country all over the world it can either end up with the beginning of a relationship or lead to huge disappointments. We can try and look at dating with a sense of humour or use our experiences for future reference. If we are talking about the experience of Russo-British dating, I personally would stick to the most important advice – don’t judge the whole nation by certain individuals as all people are absolutely different. Tear OFF the labels. However there are some common mistakes which are usually made by British men. Here I will guide you on what should be avoided, so as not to get into trouble when you arrange a date with Russian woman.

Stereotyping is the biggest problem in the way of harmony.

British man and Russian woman find themselves “wrapped in” stereotypes and fairytales, which they believe in, even before they meet someone new. When I was a teen, the UK seemed to me a country of ‘cold fish’ and mysterious men. Probably I was influenced by books I’d read and movies I’d seen (thanks to Agatha Christie, Conan Doyle and Enid Blyton!). At the same time, British men seemed to me extremely handsome, polite, gentle, a little bit too unemotional, but very attractive and romantic.

When I grew up and started communicating with my British mates, some points of their behaviour turned out to be an unexpected surprise for me. Well, I didn’t expect Brits to stop cabs with their umbrellas and put their coats under my feet, but I was quite astonished to find out, that many British men seem to forget the standard courtesies towards woman and sometimes even lack good manners. I was very disappointed with this fact until I realised, that they are not guilty. There are standard ways of courtship in Russia, but they’d never work in the UK and vice versa.

My friend was quite impressed by the romantic gestures of her British boyfriend, while they were in Moscow, until in a discussion about his perfect manners he said “If I was in England I would never do this. That’s how you do it in Moscow with all these bouquets and surprises, so I kind of had to do that too”.

Ouch! This doesn’t sound cool, but it’s not such a huge deal if you look deeper into it. Any Russian girl would notice immediately, that there are not that many flower shops in London, compared to Moscow or St. Petersburg. In Moscow there is a reminder for men on every street  “Flowers, Flowers, Get Flowers for her, make her smile, write her a card, meet her after work with a surprise, jewellery, if you are serious enough for a special gift and flowers, flowers, flowers”. It doesn’t make us spoiled or demanding, it’s just makes us a bit different as we were lucky enough to experience all of this in our Motherland.

However I can also understand British guys. They are watching films about beardy Russian men in woolly hats, alcoholics riding bears and poor Russian girls who are trying to escape from all this hell to achieve a brighter future. Breathe in, breathe out and forget about this perception of Russians forever, otherwise you have no chance in understanding a Russian woman as she really is, but only as you want to see her – miserable and suffering.

Due to my job, I communicate with British people a lot and I often see this unspoken wonder on their faces, when it turns out that a great many CIS women (especially from the capital cities) are coming to the UK to have a highly-paid career, to run their own business or study for a MBA. I see questions marks in the eyes of Europeans, when I tell them that modern Russian women are decisive, self-sufficient and very often well-heeled. They are not tortured by mythical tyrants, never ever in their lives, they don’t know what poverty is, they are very well-educated and bright and of course, none of them is fainting from the delight of seeing a foreigner!

Dear men, welcome to the real world, where most modern Russian girls are doing well in their lives and if you want to conquer their hearts, it is a good idea to be “old-fashioned” in your romantic approach, as it is the normal way of doing things in Russia. Though some stereotypes will still follow us, but we all melt from the tender brutality men can have, when they really take care of us and take us under their wingJ

Text by Olga Sokolova

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