Cross-cultural marriages have the capacity to expand your mind and alter how you view the world. Making a cross-cultural marriage work takes time, but the investment can lead to a rich relationship. Blending cultures creates a powerful and distinct bond for you and your spouse.
Appreciation for Culture
You learn to appreciate another culture. This awareness changes how you view that culture, the people within it and your culture. You may better understand the nuances in a cross-cultural exchange. You can develop a love for how another culture approaches family and marriage, as well as how culture influences people. As you and your spouse appreciate your different cultures, you will grow in respect for each other.
Trying new foods is a distinct advantage in cross-cultural marriages. You expose yourself to different spices, vegetables and other ingredients when you and your wife combine cultures. You may find ways to put a cultural twist in common dishes. For example, if you are American and marry an Asian woman, you may learn to use dark sesame oil, a common ingredient in stir fry, to add a nutty, rich flavor.
Combining cultures often means integrating value systems, providing a global advantage in your marriage. You can synthesize valuable tenets of other cultures. This new framework sets the stage for your relationship and creates a one-of-a-kind set of values that define it. For instance, many Latino cultures emphasize the role of family and many Americans value independence. If you are married to a Latino, combine his strong family values with a sense of independence.
Ability to Compromise
An important advantage to cross-cultural marriage is the ability to compromise. To combine cultures, you have to be able to negotiate what is beneficial for your marriage and what isn't. You learn which parts of your culture strengthen a relationship and which ones don't. Creating this foundation takes mental and emotional strength -- but also love for your spouse. When you undertake this process successfully, you both develop a sense of what it takes to compromise.
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S. Grey has a Master of Science in counseling psychology from the University of Central Arkansas. He is also pursuing a PhD and has a love for psychology, comic books and social justice. He has been published in a text on social psychology and regularly presents research at regional psychology conferences.
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