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On occasion, it even creeps into the news, like this story.
For now, though, I’m just happy to have John, my Chinese husband, in my life.
Of course, some of it has its roots in the usual stereotypes — stereotypes in the Western World.
According to Sheridan Prasso’s book, The Asian Mystique: Dragon Ladies, Geisha Girls, & Our Fantasies of the Exotic Orient, Asian men in general have long been losers in the world of mainstream American media: If there are some admirable aspects of the portrayals of Asian women in Hollywood and on TV, it’s hard to say the same of the portrayals of Asian men.
It’s true — the sight of a foreign woman and Chinese boyfriend or Chinese husband is much rarer than its counterpart, the foreign man and Chinese woman.
If you go to any major city in China, you will invariably run into the foreign man-Chinese woman pairings in any major tourist or shopping destination; not so with foreign women and Chinese men.
There are hardly enough books depicting foreign women with Chinese boyfriends or husbands. When you have a Chinese husband or boyfriend, sometimes you feel as if you belong to a lonely club. One of my dearest e-mail friends, a woman from Germany, once found me on the net because she had a — then — Chinese boyfriend and yearned to find someone to share her experience with.
Off the top of my head, I can think of Rachel De Woskin’s Foreign Babes in Beijing: Behind the Scenes of a New China and Repeat After Me: A Novel, Nicole Mones’ Lost in Translation, and Pearl S. So I began to wonder — why are there so few Chinese guys and foreign girls becoming couples?
On the other hand, there are Chinese men — and their families — who would be happy to have a foreign woman in the family. For example, my good friend in Hangzhou, Xiao Yu, once told me that some Chinese men cannot overcome their feeling of inferiority — that being an American girl, a citizen of one of the most powerful countries in the world, made my presence somewhat intimidating.When The Supremes were in full swing with their shimmery dresses and funky hairstyles, Black and White love was strictly forbidden. Well, let’s take a look at today’s interracial couples in America by the numbers, shall we? In 1969, 56 percent of Blacks were down for the swirl compared to only 17 percent of Whites.But thanks to , a 1967 landmark Supreme Court case, today’s Halles, Paulas, and Imans needn’t hide their affections for their fair-skinned lovers. Today, a record-high 87 percent of Americans approve of Whites and Blacks tying the knot, according to Gallup. In 1995, 68 percent of Blacks approved while only 45 percent of Whites did the same.According to Xiao Yu, some Chinese men could never believe that such a girl would become their one and only. A driver who took me to the Beijing Airport this summer admitted he once had a Russian girlfriend when he was a college student.But he said he was never able to satisfy her (yes, in way), so they parted.