Post # 1
Guys, I need some advice. I’m wondering if anyone can help me understand some clashes that my FH and I have occasionally. I’m not one to discuss our problems with people, but I think I am in need of some help from my fellow intercultural bees here!
I am caucasian and my FH is first-generation Vietnamese American (He’s the oldest child of 4, too). I am very close with his family, and I do understand many of the cultural nuances and speak a fair amount of Vietnamese. So, it’s not that I am totally clueless….However, sometimes we butt heads and I am left confused.
For example, we were out for a run last night, and he began to run out across a small intersection after the light turned green. There were cars waiting to go, and I stopped and said “Honey! Stop!” because I was a runner in college, and have seen many of my teammates get hit by cars–I’m so scared of that! So, he stopped and ran back. But then, I noticed that he was quite upset with me. He said that I embarrassed him in public and made him look stupid. He was very quiet all night and would hardly speak to me! I apologized, and explained that I was just worried about his safety! (Side note–he would have been mad at ME for doing exactly what he did–cross the road with cars at a green light. He’s extremely protective of me.) But when the tables are turned, it’s inexcusable to him.
Can someone help me understand how to handle this type of situation? Things like this happen every once in a while, and I have a feeling that it involves some cultural differences, as his family (whom I adore) operates very differently from my own.
Post # 3
I’m engaged to a Vietnamese guy too. What a have noticed about Viet people is that they really care about appearances and impressing others. For example… they lie to their friends and say that my FI is further along with his schooling that he really is… because of status or they invite as many of their friends as possible to their kids wedding and they need to at least feed them lobster and 6 courses of food for the wedding because they want to show off. At least that’s what I gathered from being around his family, seeing his sister go through the whole wedding thing last year and now this time around us.
Now i’ve never experienced something with my FI where he’ll get angry at me and stop speaking to me over something so small. If it is something that is still bothering you speak to him about it again.
From what I know, my guess is that if you go based off of the same idea… he didn’t want to look like you two were having a fight or you were bossing him around in public. I’m guessing he’s not a fan of PDA either. My FI isn’t a fan of PDA either but I happen to be shy as well.
Post # 4
My ex is Vietnamese and wasn’t a fan of PDA either and would get upset if I (his words, not mine) “disrespected him in public”.
My Chinese fiance isn’t all that much different (except for the PDA). I guess they prefer their women to be more reserved and let them take the lead. They can behave hypocritical sometimes. I don’t know how to solve it but I can suggest to try delivering your presentation of caution differently and see how that works.
My FI and I still butt heads b/c I’m a Type A personality and so is he. I think it’s also best to talk to him about these situations and tell him that it makes you unhappy when these quarrels take place. I just give my FI time to cool off then all is right again.
Good luck, hun!
Post # 5
Oh goody! I’m first-generation Vietnamese, and I don’t date Asians due to the culture and mentality and such practices. Although I am quite Americanized, there are still some Asian influences in my lifestyle, but I am unconventional and non-traditional regardless.
Making good impressions are a big deal with not only Vietnamese culture, but ALL Asian cultures- even Indian(although they are pretty different).
Saving face, pride, ego, being “top dog” is a big deal. A lot of it involves concern for reputation, respect, and dominance. Your man might’ve felt undermined by your “Stop!” but he has some nerve to blame his feelings on you. I really intended to comfort you, but his irrational finger-pointing, and behavior and reasoning really pisses me off. You did nothing wrong but show concern, and instead of being empathetic, he blamed you for embarassing him. Wth is this? HE made himself look like an a$$ the moment he ran across the street in front of cars that had the right of way. I understand pedestrians always have a right, but it’s disrespectful, it’s uncivilized, and it’s DANGEROUS. Here you are, all oppressed by his behavior towards you, when you should be the one questioning his hazardous actions, and why he would put you at risk of a heart attack if he were to get hit by a car. *sigh*
This is just about running across the street (in public), who knows what else is to come if you were to marry him. I coudn’t marry such a man. I want to amke sure you understand and remember that I am also 1st-gen Viet-American, and I don’t do stuff like that or react/behave the way he does. It’s not you, it’s him. 😉
*hugs* for you