(Closed) If your SO is Korean or Asian how long before you met parents?

posted 4 years ago in Intercultural
Post # 31
955 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

husband is Chinese but grew up in Canada so is very westernized. I met he family 2 days before the wedding…lol….but that was because he had green card issues and couldn’t go back to Canada.

he told them about me about 4 months in mostly because his mom point blank asked if he was dating anyone. I think she was sick of neither one of her kids being married because apparently the Conversation went like this:

“are you dating anyone?” 

Him: “yes, for a couple months”

Her: is she white?

him: (nervous) yesssss…

her: (long pause….) you should marry her.

lol apparently her standards went down after her 32 year old son wasn’t married yet??? 😉

Post # 32
26 posts

I think you need an honest answer to why he’s not introducing you to his parents.

It took one year for me to introduce my bf at the time (now fiance) to my mother and I didn’t introduce him to my father until after we got engaged (we had been dating 2.5 years when they met). My parents are extremely traditional Korean parents. I would have NEVER introduced a man to my parents unless he was the one I was going to marry, which is why my fiance is the first and only man to have ever met them.

At the same time, I met my fiance’s parents on our second date before we even were officially dating and it was completely casual. His Korean parents are more modern and chill and are like his best friends.

He explained to me why he needed me to meet his parents so early and I explained to him why he needed to meet my parents so much later. We both had a mutual understanding and agreement.

Timing of meeting a SO’s parents does NOT correlate to the feelings that the SO will have for you. However, he needs to have a reason why he’s waiting and you have the right to know and understand.

Sorry this is so difficult for you, bee. Hoping that he has a good reason for not sharing with you.

Post # 33
265 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

My FI’s mother is Filipino, and I met his parents about 4 months into dating. He brought me to his family’s Thanksgiving. His mother has just always been desparate for him to have a girlfriend, though, so she loved me right away simply for the fact that I am his girlfriend.

My best friend is Pakistani, and her parents have always been very against her being with anyone but a Muslim. She didn’t even tell her parents about her SO until they became engaged. They were not happy AT ALL, but since they’re engaged they are working towards accepting it.

I think it’s dependent on the culture, and the viewpoint of the parents. My best friend loves her Fiance, and knew that she wanted to end up with him even before he proposed, but still didn’t introduce him to her parents until they were engaged because she knew how her parents would react. It didn’t mean she didn’t love her Fiance.

If you trust that your Fiance is committed to you, I would accept his cultural differences and give it more time. It may be that you won’t meet them until you get engaged, which is fine.

Post # 34
155 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

My Fiance is Taiwanese, I am Caucasian. I think I met his parents around 2-3 months after we started dating. His parents have lived here in the states for about 30 years, so they’re fairly western in thinking.  It could be a cultural thing with your boyfriend’s parents, especially if his parents are super traditional. Why don’t you just straight up ask him if thag is the case, explaining you would have no hard feelings, but would be more comfortable knowing?

Post # 35
505 posts
Busy bee

My Fiance is 2nd gen Korean and I am white– his parents moved here when they were teens. I did not meet them until we were dating for over a year. It really really hurt me trying to understand what the “wait” was for. I think everyone’s story is little different but here are a few things I have learned within the 4 years of dating and now being engaged.

– It’s some what cultural to not introduce your SO to your parents until you are sure they are the one, I know of a Korean couple that met eachothers family early on in dating and their parents asked for over a year when the wedding was– they were not even engaged!

– I heard over and over again to wait it out and that they will “come around”. Sure enough, after 3 years I was no longer his “friend” I was his girlfriend and soon after I was his fiance.

– Some very, very hurtful things were said to me and about me. It came from more of a protective place than anything but I won’t ignore the hurt that the words caused.

– Once we were in engaged it was like light was turned on. I am not a daughter in law, but a daughter. They are fully on board and accepting and I call his parents Mom and Dad in Korean.

– Since there is a launguage barrier, when you do meet them I would figure out how he communicates with them. Hopefully there is someone that can translate.. that’s I do with his grandmas.

A lot of my white/ non asian friends told to throw in towel or give him an ultimatum since they only saw the struggle I was having with his family and we rarely spent holidays together until after we were together for over 2.5 years. All of my asian friends kept repeating “they will come around” and there was moment where I did not believe it could happen.

My only advice to you is to see what the hold up is. If it’s truly his parents culture I would let it rest for a while (I know how much that hurts, but trust me) and focus on your relationship with him. I had someone explain to me once that even though they are very much Americanized they still think and process situations in a Korean way. Not wanting to meet the white girlfriend, not wanting their son to live outside the home before getting married.. the list could go on.

Hang in there, bee. It was really hard for his parents when we started dating because I was not Korean but they have slowly came around and love me to pieces. I can tell you with confidence that we can communicate with so much more ease and I never doubted his love for me since he was constantly sticking up for me with his parents.

Post # 36
197 posts
Blushing bee

For me (born and raised in Canada, but Chinese), introducing a significant other to parents is an incredibly big step. My ex boyfriend’s parents were more open to meeting significant others early on – I met them 4 months into our relationship. He didn’t meet my parents until about 8 months. (Still early, IMO!)

My fiance was introduced to my parents at 5 months only due to the fact that I did not want to shock them at my convocation. I met his parents at about a year and a half, which was… better… (his family is Indian/Pakistani.)

In my friend circles, introducing a significant other to the parents is a REALLY BIG DEAL. I’m not sure when I would feel perfectly comfortable introducing a significant other to my family, to be honest… Though being engaged sounds like a good time. 😛 That’s the moment that our families became more welcoming, whereas they were much colder before.

Post # 37
111 posts
Blushing bee

View original reply
wedtobe123:  Since they’re older and are immigrants, they’re probably even more old fashioned than younger parents in Korea. You’d think they’d be Americanized but the isolation seems to help them preserve the old ways even better lol. The typical old fashioned parent child relationship is more about respect and responsibility. It’s not as chummy and intimate like in the states. Dads and sons don’t really talk about feelings much let alone dating. Unless your boyfriend has news to share(like you two getting engaged), he most likely wont talk about his love life. It’s not you. It’s the culture 🙁 

Although, I do think it’s your boyfriend’s responsibility to help you understand better since things are very different. Explain to him why it is very difficult for you to understand his actions and help him see the difference between what you’re used to and what he’s used to. I don’t think your boyfriend is hiding anything. In law relationships are extremely difficult and sensitive even here in Korea, which is why people push it to the very end to begin these relationships. Let me know if there’s anything else I can help with!

Post # 38
431 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2016

My husband’s parents are Cantonese from Hong Kong. I finally met them 2 years after we started dating. Even if parents are more westernized (as my in laws are), it’s still a big deal to meet. It’s funny as most 2nd generation Asians will tell you, you’re not supposed to date until after college, but then all of the sudden have a girlfriend/boyfriend immediately after that you may marry…..but I wasn’t “allowed” to date otherwise! My husband had never really dated much or introduced his family to anyone before me. My parents met him around the 1 year mark.

That being said, I was around another 4 years before he proposed. Our parents met just recently though 1-2 years before our wedding. His parents were really nice to me adn would always say oh in our culture, xyz. I’m like I’m Vietnamese, most of our traditions are rooted in Chinese anyway, but I’d smile. Like another said, even after dating so long, my Father-In-Law said recently, oh I have a daughter now! It’s really sweet and asian families can be brash, loud, and want to make you go crazy, but also fiercely loyal.

Just have a honest conversation and let him know you’d like to meet. Be understanding but let him know he can’t use it as an excuse if he’s unsure. Just for some parents, meeting is like, this is the person I’m gonna marry. Good luck!

By The Way, just a funny movie, Meet the Patels on Netflix. Not quite the same but a first and second cultural generation look at dating and marriage 🙂

Post # 39
644 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: A restaurant on the beach

My Fiance and I started dating in high school and I met his parents almost immediately. I was worried because I’m not Asian and I’ve heard stories about tough Asian parents. However, it turned out that I had nothing to worry about because he’s adopted and his parents are white lol. 

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