Why American Men Seek to Marry Russian Women?
By Paul Wuehler
I will tell you of one man’s experience encountering woman in the former Soviet Union. It was my experience, so I know it well. I have written a long version of this tale, but here it is presented in miniscule form. Here are mainly my thoughts as to why American men go to seek a wife in former Soviet countries. I do not speak of all women and men, Russian or American, but of those involved in the process and why they become involved.
I was divorced in 1992. I remained a single man for many years. However,
American women had turned me off, just as they had turned off many of
my American brethren. Why? Because many American women do not want to
be women anymore! That is, they do not hold to tradition male/female
values anymore. They have “new” ideas about what a relationship should
I would enjoy to chronicle my many visits for you. From my first venture into Russia arriving in St. Petersburg speaking essentially no Russian and after having made all my own arrangements (airfare, hotel, visit visa, etc.) over the internet. Except that what I thought was a visit visa turned out to be an invitation letter so I was turned back at the airport and had to spend several days at the Russian Consulate in San Francisco to get my visa. Finally I arrived in St. Petersburg. Had the woman I was to meet not been at the airport I would have been in world of hurt. My experiences ranged from St. Petersburg, to Moscow, to being picked up by the police at Red Square, to the interior of Russia (where I used a pay toilet and got a ticket to go in!), to Sochi, to an aborted landing of an airplane in Rostov-On-Don, to Simferopol, and to Yalta. Many great adventures and many lessons, happy and sad. Most of all I met many great people and made many new friends. I even got a wife, although that has not turned out well. However, my experiences are not the point of this writing.
What I learned about the Russian people was that the propaganda passed out in the US during the Cold War years when the Soviet was in power was mostly lies. What I learned, again, was governments can be evil, but people are just people, hoping for a better day tomorrow and a better life for their children. And I learned first hand how difficult life is in CIS countries for many people. I could offer my opinions on the subject of life in the CIS, but that is not the point of this writing. I did gained some understanding about why the internet is full of women representing a desire to come to the west.
Now to the central question of this writing: Why did I go to Russia to find a bride? Why do many American and other western men go to Russia to find a bride? After all, women are ubiquitous. They are everywhere. The US is full of unmarried women seeming to seek the primary relationship. So why did I go? The answer has already been alluded. At least in the US, women have become something many men cannot abide. Many of my American sisters do not want to be women; they do not want to be feminine. They have a new attitude about what female/male relationships should be. Certainly not all American ladies are like this, but ask any man who has headed over the pond (as they say in England) about why he is not interested in US women. From almost every man you will get a resounding label for the American women he has encountered in the dating scene: “Bitch.” It is not a very nice word and it is not said gently. [And it does not apply to all the women he has met in the dating scene.] The man is genuinely angry, although many men will quickly back down and offer a litany of excuses for the women. [In the back of my head I can hear my American sisters saying: “Yeah, well, American men are jerks!” I cannot argue that one! I just wonder which came first: The proverbial chicken or the egg? I offer no answer. I just tell how it is.]
In contrast, the mentality or attitude of the “Russian” woman is very different from her American sister. Russian women appear to value “traditional” (as the agencies say) family values and “traditional” male/female values. What does that mean? To be traditional? I am not certain I know, but I can tell what is so attractive about Russian women.
APPEARANCE: It begins with physical appearance. (In truth, it always begins with appearance for a man.) Russian ladies like to look good. Their appearance is important to them. No tattered sweatshirts worn to the market. When I see a babushka wearing her good fir coat to the market, I know the appearance issue runs deep in Russian women. American men like their woman to look good. [Show me the man who does not care and I will show you a strange duck! ?] American women do not possess this interest so much. Maybe they will dress up to go out Friday night, but they suggest: “I don’t have the time” to dress for every occasion. [And the man thinks: “She does not have time for me!”] The American woman’s lack of willingness to put in the time to look good is a turn off to many American men. A Russian woman takes time to appear in a manner which will be pleasing. She does so because she wants to do it, not because she feels required. US women are much more likely to dress in order to look good to other women; men are not a concern unless she is out looking for a date. Likely Russian women dress for the approval of other Russian women, but the man still plays a part of her consideration.
TIME: Time use is a powerful indicator intent. Time pervades every strength, every problem, and every circumstance in the relationship between a woman and a man. A person may claim to be time pressured and unable choose their life path, but the truth is: As a general rule, people tend to do just about what they want to do. Each person chooses where to invest their time. Russian women seem to choose to use their time in efforts more related to family, relationship, and self. In a way, it can be said that Russian women choose to use their time in “emotionally warm” efforts [things that make one feel good] while many American women are more likely to use their time in “emotionally cold” efforts [material possessions]. The investment of time is critical to the emotional attraction a man has for a woman.
POWER: Psychological power as it relates to the feeling of self-worth is a crucial issue. The work place examples this issue. Russian women have been in the work place since time in memorial. American women, on the other hand, are relative newcomers. The cultural ethic in the US up until the 1960’s dictated the proper American woman was a housewife and mother. Right or wrong, that was the prevailing cultural attitude. The 1970’s and 1980’s found the “equality” movement gaining strength in the US. One result was women in the work place in large numbers. The motive was to be “equal” to men and work along side. Certainly there were financial motives, but equality was a major motive. The equality attitude was appropriate, but the implementation was problematic. [I will ignore here the problems men had in this process.] A problem for women was that for decades the socialization process told women to stay home and raise children. Moving into the job market caused women to feel uncomfortable, sometimes guilty, and often out of place. As a result, women developed a real need to compete with men rather than just be partners on the job. This competition helped give rise to what I believe was a demise in the American woman’s yearnings to be domestic and, hence, feminine. The American woman felt she had to be tough, competitive, and aggressive. These are not qualities of the feminine personality. Of course, a woman can be tough and feminine at the same time, but many of my American sisters have not figured out the balance.
In contrast, Russian women have the balance figured out. They play those two parts extremely well. Russian women do not need to be competitive with the man to gain their sense of self-worth. They know who they are, what they are worth, and they have known it since adolescence. Therefore, the attraction for western men is to a woman who is both very happily feminine and very competent in her life process. This translates into feminine power which is extremely attractive to western males. Sadly, my American sisters used to possess much more feminine power than they now do. It seems that in some groups of women it is almost “evil” be feminine. This is a sad and unacceptable to many American males.
ATTENTION: It should go without saying, but seldom does, that people pay attention to what interests them. Hence, the amount of attention invested in a relationship reflects the person’s level of interest. The life of an American woman is often so busy that she has precious little time to attend to her partner, or so she believes when in reality it is her choices which take time from her husband. In one sense, US males are still big babies; we still want our mommy to give us the emotional comfort we received as a child. But now we males are adults. We do not need someone to wash our wounds and call little Jimmy’s mother because he hit us. No! What we need is the affection and emotional attention that once our mother’s gave us, and now we expect from our wife or partner.
SEX: You thought I lacked the temerity to approach this subject, did you not??!!? ? Sex makes the world go around; it always has and it always will. Having lost much of their feminine interest, many American women have also lost affectionate/erotic interest. They are too busy! Many American women think once a month on a schedule is enough. Even some are genuinely offended that a male should be interested in such things. Many American women have “moved beyond” (as they put it) such mundane and immature activities. Or if they will participate in sex, they do so as a duty. What these women have really “moved beyond” is a loving relationship. Whether they realize it or not, it is a choice they have made. Russian women still recognize the essential need of sexual contact between a man and a woman. She recognizes sex is part of the sweet glue (as I call it) in the relationship. Whether the Russian woman does so out of duty or out of personal desire, she maintains this fire in the relationship. The Russian woman recognizes that to schedule sex is to extinguish the fire. The fire went out ages ago for many of my American sisters and, frankly, they see little need for it. She believes her husband/partner “just needs to grow up. Sex is what kids do!” How many times has that statement been heard? Do not get me wrong: Many American women like sex, but a barrier exists which must be overcome. Sex should not be work! It should be part of romance.
ATTITUDE: Attitude can make or break a relationship. This is the problem for which my American brethren have often labeled the woman: “Bitch.” Not a very kind epitaph. The best way to explain this is to example many an American male. We all know American men [men in general for that matter, am I right!?] who think they are “God’s gift to women.” Thank you to equality, many American women have developed the same attitude. She is “God’s gift” to men and the man is expected to prove his worthiness to be in her company. Russian women, except for a few, have no such pretentious, megalomania attitude of entitlement.
ROMANCE: Finally, what makes a western man seek a Russian woman? It is the grand expectation of true romance. Nothing more, nothing less. Romance: The sensuous art enticement. The gentle art of making one’s love feel completely incomparable—no one else matters! There are those who are romantic by nature, those who are romantic by a plan, and those who could not find a romantic bone in their body if they were about to be shot. To be romantic is an attitude, a mystic, and a feeling, more than any behavior. It seems to encompass all the issues listed above and yet much, much more. Much more which is indescribable. Bottom line: True romance is the feeling as if nothing else in the whole world matters except her/him. And yet, there is no egotism involved; no attitude; no requirement or expectation. It just happens. Very fleeting. Romance cannot be captured as an entity. It is this feeling the Western man seeks. He knows people are busy; he knows there is work; he knows the children have needs; he knows there is a life to live outside the primary relationship. But he seeks those special moments when the world and all its demands melts into oblivion and there is just he and his lady. He believes his chances of finding that lady are greater among CIS women than among American women. To that end the American man flocks to CIS countries seeking his one true love, his “Russian Bride.”
So there you have it. My simple ideas about what attracts western men to Russian women. The astute will recognize there are several important issues I did not list, including love, communication, and maternal instinct. That is because American women are strong in these areas, and it is these areas that likely keep American marriages together as much as anything. On the negative side for Russian women, I could list a number of reasons why there are problems in Western/Russian marriages. Problems which have to do with cultural differences and communication limitations. But that is for another writing.
The author: Paul Wuehler is a forensic psychologist in Marysville, CA. He has been to Russia some seven times and to the Ukraine three. He is part owner in Black Sea Brides (www.blackseabrides.com) which is a match making agency in Sochi, Russia. He is in the process of developing actual research regarding the Russian Woman/Western Man phenomena, rather than just relying upon his own ideas or the ideas which come from the many agencies which populate the internet. He would be happy to receive anyone’s comments regarding this article at firstname.lastname@example.org (place RW Article in the subject line to avoid your email being sent to the spam pile).
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