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Dating a Latina from another country gives me the right amount of separation from my culture

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I love being from Mexico, a strange, folkloric, and melodramatic country — until I don’t. My peoples neurosis can often border on psychosis, and that makes me thankful I also grew up in America, where I acquired a second perspective about #life.

When it comes to romantic relationships, the concept of dating doesn’t even exist in Mexico — or most places, really. If you’re having dinner with a Mexican, and tell them you’ve been trying to hook up with other people as well (“dating”), get ready to peel off some greasy chorizo tacos from your face.

In contrast, telling an American that you’ve been testing the waters might actually spark a better connection: “You went on other dates? How’d they go? Yeah, I’ve had some shitty people too. This dude named Anziz took me to dinner, and he didn’t even let me choose the wine. He’s got no class.”

Americans are quite liberal about other aspects in relationships. Straight American women, for example, are fairly permissive when it comes to allowing their partners to have friendships with other women. In Latin America, most straight men will never attempt to sell their their girlfriends on lady friends because they’ll get some greasy chorizo tacos thrown on their face, plus some wine.

Non-self-hating LGBTQ+ groups from all countries have already broken through old relationship taboos just by being themselves, so they’re usually playing on another field. However, an acquaintance of mine, a therapist who specializes in gay couples, told me that many of his Mexican male patients are alarmingly violent with their partners.

Apparently being sexually progressive is not always enough to shake off Mexican machismo.

That time my GF took a picture of me in front of Shakira’s sad statue in Barranquilla. I’m not sure why I’m showing it to you.

All of this super scientific evidence, which I’m not even remotely qualified to write about, points towards one super scientific conclusion: If you live in America, dating Americans should be, at least theoretically, easier than dating jealous, regressive, possibly violent Latinos.

This is incredibly reductionist, I know, because dating outside of your culture — and class, perhaps more importantlycan be incredibly complicated. Conversely, sticking to what you know order to remain in your comfort zone is hardly challenging. You’ll never grow as a person and it can fuck with your life until it’s too late (see #3).

I’m a curious dude, so I’ve “gone out” with plenty of people inside and outside of my own culture. But for over two years I’ve been dating a lovely Boricua, and she gives me the right amount of separation from certain aspects of Mexican culture I don’t love.

Cultural compatibility does not make or break a relationship for me. Humor, disposition, attitude, and perspective are on the top of my want list. But not having to fully explain the complexities of my peoples to a partner — or at least the weird shit I partake in — does make a relationship more fluid.

I say “fully” because Ibero-American countries have more than enough differences within them to distinctly set them, and their inhabitants apart. But the fact that my girlfriend and I are from Spanish-speaking countries means explaining the ocasional cultural enigma is easy, or entirely unnecessary.

Case in point, a few weeks ago I booked a flight to Puerto Rico. I was scheduled to spend the holidays with my girlfriend’s family, but she warned me: “My family has this… tradition. We go to my grandpa’s tomb on Christmas to sing a few songs before going to a relative’s house to party. My mom said I should tell you, so you don’t freak out if you come along.”

“Yeah, cool” was all she got out of me, because Mexicans invented singing to dead people and making a party out of it.

During the following days I hung out with her family, had a great time, and I flew black to NYC with a red, greasy appearance — not because chorizo was flung at my face, but because Puerto Rico is hot as balls all year round, and it almost gave me skin cancer.


 

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Culture

Oh, right. Old-school Mexicans humiliate their children by pretending they don’t exist.

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I’ve been visiting my mother, and all of our immediate family, for the last week. They’re old-school, rural Mexicans. The kind who always offer food, even if they hate you.

I’m in my mid 30s now, and have been living on my own since I was 18, so at our gatherings I get a proper adult seat at the table. They listen to what I have to say, but it wasn’t always like that.

It’s not like that for my younger relatives, either. At family reunions, I see them out of the periphery of my eye. They’re trying to get a word in, but those older Mexicans won’t allow it. Why would they? What have those mocosos (snot-nosed kids) done to deserve anybody’s respect? Did they pay for their food? For the roof over their head? For their car, gas, clothes? No? Then they don’t exist.

Yes, they’re physically there, but unless they can prove their worth through monetary independence, they’re no one. If they try to make their voices heard, they’ll be silenced by a death stare, or an abrupt change in conversation.

If they persist, other humiliations will be flung at them, such as being asked to do something entirely meaningless, just like their opinion. “Vete a ver si ya puso la marrana” (go see if one of the pigs laid an egg) is a classic. My grandma had one of the most bizarre just-get-the-fuck-out-of-here phrases, which I’ve never heard elsewhere: “Vete a descular hormigas” (go chop the asses off ants).

I know these Mexicans sound like assholes, but they’re like that because they believe in resilience, not fragility. Giving encouragement to a mentally and physically healthy person seems redundant to them. Those people already have all they need to succeed, they’ll think.

To gain their respect, at the very least a person will need to become self-sufficient. That’s how you earn the right to sit with them. Either you’re with that, or you’re not there at all.

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“Trump Dating” site doesn’t want the gays, but allows the “happily married” to join

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You can even be mad at Trump Dating, a new website for lonely — or not so lonely, but just promiscuous — maganogamous people. It’s a perfect representation of their cherished administration, since it’s also homophobic — it only allows “straight” women or men to sign up — and, just like Trump, it’s all about adulterous relationships:

“When you kick off the process of starting a profile, you get two options for labeling yourself — ‘straight man’ or ‘straight woman.’

Yet according to Trump Dating’s rather strange drop-down menus, married people are welcome. For a relationship status, the site offers options like ‘have a significant other,’ ‘happily married,’ and ‘unhappily married.'”

And since no self-respecting republican-specific dating site should exist unless it takes an issue with race, Trump Dating allows their users to be super specific about their genealogy:

“The ethnicity options also seemed oddly specific. In addition to the typical categories, the site includes choices like ‘Scandinavian,’ ‘Polynesian,’ ‘Eastern European,’ ‘Western European,’ ‘Mediterranean,’ and ‘Eskimo,’ a term used to label the indigenous people of Alaska, Canada, and Greenland that is considered offensive and inaccurate.”

OMG, you guys. There better be a second menu where users can identify which of the five Aryan subtype races — Nordic, Mediterranean, Dinaric, Alpine, and East Baltic — they belong to. Otherwise the server room of this Trump Dating is gonna get tiki torched.

Anyway, where you at, Chispa, the “Tinder for Latinos”? You gonna let Trump Dating walk all over you? You need to re-brand to DACA Dong, Canelo Kennedy Courting, or something.

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