The five biggest mistakes that damage Western-Ukrainian marriages
Finding true love can be difficult; however, for millions of people who are in Western-Ukrainian relationships and marriages, there are additional factors which must be considered in order to have a successful outcome. There are countless benefits to being in a long term, committed relationship with someone from a different culture.
Many times, these relationships thrive on the unique perspectives and cultural differences that each partner brings to the table. However, with Western-Ukrainian relationships and marriages also come unique issues which must be addressed with the utmost respect and sensitivity to both partners.
This article will explore some of the biggest mistakes that one may make, which can permanently damage a Western-Ukrainian relationship and marriage, as well as ways to avoid such issues in the first place.
Mistake #1: The Family-Planning Dilemma
One of the most pressing issues for many Western-Ukrainian relationships is the decision of whether to have children. While some people from Western cultures are fine with never producing offspring, Ukrainian and also Russian cultures place an emphasis on family life.
So for example, I have experienced that German-Ukrainian relationships fell apart due to family planning issues. Many German men (especially who are older and already have children from previous relationships) do not want children anymore or guess that they are not in a financial position to begin right away because the Ukrainian wife does not work and the men feel they cannot afford a child. On the other hand, many Ukrainian women want a baby immediately after marriage and believe that you will never be financially ready.
This is especially important to remember, when engaging in a relationship with Ukrainian or Russian women. One must be open to the possibility of having children at some point in the relationship. For many individuals, the unwillingness to have children can be a “deal breaker,” and may lead to a separation. Prior to getting married, it is extremely important to discuss one’s own willingness to have children, in order to ascertain that both people in the relationship are on the same page.
Mistake #2: A problematic relationship with parents-in-law
Along the same lines of having children, many cultures value a close, interconnected family unit. Because of this, it is important to try to get along with a partner’s extended family. Family cohesion may be disrupted if there is turmoil between any members of the family.
It is important to try to make an effort to establish meaningful connections with a partner’s family members, even if they live far away. Showing effort, and valuing a Ukrainian wife’s family, will make for a happier, healthier relationship, and will help to strengthen bonds among all members of the family.
Mistake #3: Being selfish and lack of cultural tolerance
There is often some personal compromise which must be done when engaging in a Ukrainian-Western relationship. It is important to try to quell any selfish tendencies one might have, especially if one’s partner is not particularly accustomed to the culture.
In addition, cultural sensitivity is extremely important, especially if one desires a long term commitment, such as marriage. Be open minded regarding customs or traditions that one’s partner may want to incorporate into the relationship. One of the best things about being in an intercultural relationship is the variety and spice that it can bring to the union.
Mistake #4: Lack of honesty
Another cornerstone of successful intercultural relationships is honesty. Telling lies is never a good idea, especially if they are ill intentioned. Being completely truthful with one’s partner in terms of relationship expectations, thoughts, and feelings, will lay an important foundation for the relationship to grow and mature.
Mistake #5: Lack of communication
Lack of communication is often a pivotal factor in regards to whether an intercultural relationship is successful. With many intercultural relationships, there is often a significant language barrier which must be addressed. Many times, though, communication relies on both verbal and non-verbal cues. As important as words and vocalized expressions of love may be to a relationship, one can deeply strengthen his bonds with his partner through simple acts of kindness and romantic touch.
Many times, as a relationship progresses through the years, couples may forget to reaffirm their love and commitment towards one another. When this occurs, cracks in the relationship’s framework begin to form. By keeping lines of communication open, addressing one another’s needs for kind words and romantic touch, as well as keeping each other’s best interest in mind, intercultural couples are much more likely to have a successful relationship.
Maintaining a successful Ukrainian-Western relationship does pose some interesting situations which must be adequately addressed with sensitivity and respect to both partners. Being aware of both partner’s expectations of the relationship, as well as differences in cultural upbringing, can be beneficial in enhancing compatibility and love. Aside from issues regarding cultural differences, many of the same cornerstones which lay the foundation of a successful relationship can be utilized to help an intercultural relationship grow. 🙂
Questions? Feel free to ask Krystyna, your Ukrainian dating expert 🙂 (s. here: Contact Krystyna)