This Saturday morning my boyfriend and I didn’t want to get up since the thought of having to study all day wasn’t really appealing. We stopped for a moment, cuddled, talked, enjoyed each other’s company (and procrastinated). It was such a wonderful way to start the day since we usually don’t wake up at the same time.
Today I had my Chinese exam and the frustration of learning all the characters led me to write a post about my experience.
I moved in with my boyfriend in October last year and let me tell you, we had several arguments since then. Before we moved together, we were a couple for about 2.5 years. I lived at my parents’ house and he lived by himself in a shared apartment. Now we study at the same university at the other side of Germany and live together in a two-room apartment.
So far so good.
And now the reality of living together with somebody kicks in. Since living together I know that a relationship is work.
You think you know each other, but you actually just really know a person if you live together.
This post is a little update about what happened this week and what I learned from it.
This week was physically not easy for me. On Monday and Tuesday I had a course which required attendance (from morning till evening) and I had a graded presentation on Tuesday. But it was so hot and humid on Monday that I felt like I would faint. I was sitting in class and “listening” to other presentations but the whole time I was busy not to collapse. I couldn’t think, I was nauseous, my legs and arms were shaking, I felt dizzy, I had to hold my head up with my hands since it was too heavy. It was so stuffy in the room…
This week was my boyfriends and my 3 year anniversary! YAY! To celebrate this day, I want to share my experience in an international relationship. I was also in a relationship with a German guy before, hence, comparisons can be made.
First things first, I want to give you a little information on us: My boyfriend is Chinese and I am German. He lives in Germany since about 7 years and we both currently work on our master’s degree (in different subjects). We met in Germany at university (or rather on the way to university). We live together since 10 months and I wrote a seperate blogpost about tips on how to survive the “getting used to each other phase” when moving together!
When we had arguments because of cultural differences I looked for other people’s experiences online on how to handle this situation but I couldn’t find our certain problem. It seemed that people always wrote about the obvious problems in a binational relationship. That is why I called this post REALITY of an international relationship.
Well, it is easy to say that we have many cultural differences. Some don’t matter, and some I will never get used to. I’m not naïve. I know that we will always quarrel about certain topics just because we look at them in different perspectives.
This is not a happy-go-lucky post. There are serious matters to consider before committing to an international relationship:
1. planning the future
There are conversations you HAVE TO HAVE in an international relationship. At least if you reached a certain age where planning a family and buying a house is in the near future. Where do you want to live? How do you want to raise your kids? What is the role of a “good wife/husband” in your culture? What does your partner expect from you which is normal in his/her home country? etc. I think it is important to talk about these serious topics to check, if your future is even compatible. Don’t be naïve and think loving each other is enough. If your partner wants to move to the other side of the world or wishes that you behave differently because he wants a “good Chinese wife”, would you do it?
I don’t want to waste my time with a relationship that is not going to last. I don’t want to play around. That is an advantage of international relationships. You basically check on the most basic views of life (or at least you should be if you don’t want to be negatively surprised in the future). I think in a relationship with a German guy I would wait longer with these type of serious conversations. I write more about the guilty feelings in an international relationship here.
I love to read inspirational quotes, so whenever I come across a quote that really got me thinking, I make sure to write it in my little notebook. Therefore, I already have a nice collection to look at in demotivating, overwhelming and frustating times. One after another I want to share my favorite quotes with you guys!
Let’s start today!