If you are new to LiS, then this post is a good place to start. Here are the most popular posts about dating Swedish men. More “Top 5’s” to come soon!
We did it and we survived! The poor little Swede came to India to meet my parents, grandmother, the cousins and aunts and uncles. Being a true Westerner and my family (parents and I) being part Westerners (lived in the US, ethically Indian), it was an experience.
In some ways I expected more drama with a white boy running around meeting Indian families. But in some very Swedish way, it just wasn’t a big deal or stressful to him. He just went with the flow and didn’t seem to mind. Quite different from American boyfriends I would say; many are scared to meet families.
The trip was packed with food, a lot of it. It is a staple of Indian culture to offer snacks, meals, drinks, whatever to guests. Him being the guest, everyone was out to impress him in an ever so subtle way. The good news was that he enjoyed most of the food (who doesn’t love Indian food?!) but the bad news he was stuffed to death; like a poor turkey ready to go into the oven at 400F for three hours. Strange as it sounds, relatives called my parents saying how they were impressed that the Swede ate Indian food AND liked it. Shocking!
I always figured my family would confuse Sweden with Switzerland; everyone does. However, they were confused that he was even Swedish, most thought he was American. Poor guy, he had to do a lot of explaining that he was not American and in fact came from a small little country in northern Europe.
What did we learn from our trip to the East?
- Do not tell relatives that you are living together. Changing subjects always works best in case such a situation arises.
- Do not offer too many details on how you met. It opens you up for more questioning.
- Sleeping in the same room is not possible. It’s not a big deal to sleep apart for a week, so don’t make it a big deal.
- Someone will have a “talk” with the boy. In this case, it was my mom.
- Brown comes in a package. Reminds of the very failed UPS slogan: What can Brown Do for you? anyhoo…
That’s right, you can’t just date an Asian girl or guy, you are tied to the whole family. Accept that the family will always be around and life will be easier. For example, my parents call me almost everyday. At one point it used to be everyday (no joke, honestly) but now they’re down to 3-4 times a week. How they afford to make a cheap call to me is totally beyond me. And considering that I’m too lazy to find a card and make acheap call to India, is well being a bum.
- “There are expectations to uphold.” In no overt way, Indian mothers can tell you exactly what they want in a pretty gift wrapped message. Make no mistake though, these statements should not be treated lightly. For our poor little Swede, this statement means he better get serious about the marriage bandwagon.
It is happening! The Swede is going to meet my family in India. It is the first time for me that not only am I introducing a boyfriend to the family, he also happens to not be Indian.
What will happen?! If you are part of an interracial couple (I hate that word) or a color mix rather, what do you want to know? I am Asian and we are different from Westerners so maybe our experience this week can enlighten any of you reading the blog.
Post any questions about Asian-Swedish dating and I will get back to you all.
An unintended consequence of finding a Swede and sticking to him, is having a monogamous relationship. The Swede I met in the US, Þorbjörn, has decided we should stick together. (Well, I agree too) Adorable, very endearing, shy, he is a perfect a little Swedish specimen.
The problem now arises that I can no longer flirt with the Swedes, Danes, Norwegians, or any boy that crosses my path. I told him it was in the name of research, for all woman out there looking for some enlightenment on the Swedish man. His response: “pfft.” We argued and argued and I gave in, realizing the blog fodder will eventually center around him. I kept quiet and was content. What could be more fun than stories of your sweetie pie?
So now, I present the Swedish specimen, Þorbjörn. =)
What to know about the Swede, part 1:
Housewife…househusband. If you tell him to go do the dishes, he goes. No arguing, no whining, it is equality in the house. Same for laundry and other household matters.
Hold my hand. I’m not for holding hands while I sleep. It is too encroaching. The first few times Þorbjörn held my hand, I was annoyed, really annoyed. I got used to it and now, I look for his hand at night.
Cuddling. He said cuddling is a really important part of sex. He finds it amusingly stupid that American men ‘turn around’ and try to ignore the women talking after sex. He believes cuddling is the solution, “why not cuddle after some strenuous activities?” Don’t think I would hear an American man say that.
The Ex factor. Þorbjörn and I went to chic restaurant in the city and ended up on what many women consider the worst conversation topic ever: the ex. Strangely, it was not horrible. I asked and he openly answered everything. Why women fear learning about an ex (especially a long term one) and men cringe at answering questions is beyond my comprehension. So be prepared to learn about the ex and don’t fear it.
More to come about those funny Swedes!
I’ve been trying to come up with something to post about this week and life hasn’t been exciting. I thought however we would revisit Þorbjörn, the little swede I met in the US. We had a discussion about meeting someone in a bar in Sweden versus the US. Here are the conversations (edited to make sense).
The explanation of wingmen in American culture:
Þórbjörn: wingman ??
me: o m g
Þórbjörn: hey, i am from sweden!!
me: in fighter plane scenarios
there’s always a leader whose goal is to hit the main target
his wingmen (flying behind him in formation)
deal with enemy fire
me: that’s real air force
in social situations it’s similar
Þórbjörn: so if i want my friend to hook up with a girl, i need to be his wingman?
me: well yes, but it’s an art
you have a lead pilot, usually an alpha male
he’s the most charismatic, friendly, and cunning with women
he’ll always have one or two male friends
those are wingmen
me: those guys entertain the target’s female friends
the wingmen also soften the women up by being cute, silly, more romantic
during that confusion
the leader takes his target
Þórbjörn: so extreamly american…
me: hahaha, how so?
Þórbjörn: sounds very american ;)
The Swedish way:
Þórbjörn:my friends in sweden never worked in that way
me: how does it work?
Þórbjörn: how did it work? oh, hot girl, i will go for her, screw you guys
me: oh yah, i was told guys have no problems ditching their friends
Þórbjörn: of course not…you can’t have sex with your friends
me: what about us and how we met?
Þórbjörn: our dating seemed very swedish to me… meet at a bar, have sex, start hanging out, have more sex =)
oh, and one woman at the time… that is complicated enough for me
How to talk to girl in the American bar:
What you do as a male who finally made it past enemy fire and has the target in range.
Þórbjörn: so what would I have done if I was an American?
me: first off, we wouldn’t have never made it to my place b/c i would have expected you to hit on me
and buy me drinks
and flirt and be cute
Þórbjörn: and then?
me: we probably would not have gone home together that night but rather exchanged numbers
maybe make out in the bar
Þórbjörn: that sounds utterly boring
then you would have called me a few days later and ask me out for dinner
Þórbjörn: why can’t you do that?
me: chivalry my friend, male chivalry
Þórbjörn: crazy americans
I was checking out my blog stats today and noticed the original Dating in Sweden post was the most popular. Now I am guessing that post does not enlighten those of us who are currently confused because I am confused too.
I propose that if there are any Swedes (male or female) willing to take a survey about dating/love/sex, I will post the results in one month. Of course if you volunteer, I will not disclose your name or email. Help us, lovely Swedish folks, to better understand your culture.
Email me at fleurdeparis at gmail dot com. (okay that other email I put up earlier…doesn’t exist…yes, I am stupid at times)