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Q: Dating Italian women ( Answered,   4 Comments )
Subject: Dating Italian women
Category: Relationships and Society > Romance
Asked by: chemquark-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 09 Jun 2006 21:38 PDT
Expires: 09 Jul 2006 21:38 PDT
Question ID: 736912
I saw a similar posting about this, but its a few years old. I have an Italian
friend I met on the beach years ago, and recently reconnected with
this lady (now 32 yrs old; still unmarried), when I visited
Italy 2 weeks ago. We've written off and on since I met her, but this
is the first time I've seen her since. We did hit it off and both
enjoyed our visit. I also met her Dad briefly by accident.
Laura still lives at home, which I think is common there. Is that
true? Also, she doens't seem to have a regular job or career - is this
a problem and should I be concerned? (in the USA, that is a warning of
possible problems at that age:).
How involved will her parents be in any relationship that develops?
She's invited me back, and I've invited her to visit me in the US,
which she seems to be reluctant to do. I'm told Italians are
open about sex, but I'm not sure if/when that can be "initiated" and
at what point its "acceptable" the US I'd know the stages of a
relatinship, but I'm at a loss with an Italian girl and don't want to
offend her (but don't want to look disinterested either).
Just looking for advice on how they handle things!
Subject: Re: Dating Italian women
Answered By: hedgie-ga on 11 Jun 2006 01:30 PDT

While there are 'cultural differences' between nations 
and even more between US and EU 'federations'
when it comes to marriage and dating rituals,
the differences between individuals in any country are even larger.

Meaning, there is only one reliable source of information: Your Italian friend.

Be verbal and ask her what she thinks about cross cultural marriage
 (that is a search term)
 (meaning, enter that into search engine for more results).

First read some Sobering Advice:

There are whole books on the subject:

As I commented at the end of this answer (see the links there)

 Cross-Cultural marriages are both rewarding and challenging.
 One advantage 
(which  queries here on GA show to be growing in demand)
 is that ,after you marry, you both can live and work both in US and EU :-)
There are other, yet

when somebody asks me (and it happened) should I marry XY?

 I always says NO

If they are in love enough, to ignore this sensible advice, and marry anyway,
then the marriage has a good chance of being happy.
I do apply this to your question: Should I cross cultures? as well.

Good luck

Subject: Re: Dating Italian women
From: probonopublico-ga on 10 Jun 2006 00:23 PDT
It sounds like her Dad is seriously rich.

How would a 32-year-old live otherwise?

I reckon that you will have to pass the Daddy Test before you will
make any real progress.

And would Daddy want his lovely daughter moving off to the USA with
someone who (presumably) lacks the private income that she richly

I suspect that you may be out of your league.

She might even be a Princess!

Please remember 'Roman Holiday' when even Gregory Peck couldn't break
into a European Royal Family. (Well, I think that's how it ended.)

Good Luck, anyway!

Subject: Re: Dating Italian women
From: aussietpp-ga on 10 Jun 2006 08:30 PDT
As far as the job goes, you won't really know unless you ask her. Be
tactful, just ask her what she does with her time, what sort of career
she is interested in, that type of thing.

In regard to intimate relations, assume all women want to wait until
they get married. (Especially if they still live with their parents,
maybe they are elderly and she cares for them?)

You probably need to talk a bit more openly about these matters to her.
Subject: Re: Dating Italian women
From: myoarin-ga on 10 Jun 2006 14:58 PDT
I started the following before Aussietpp's posting, with whom I generally agree.

Probono has a point about her folks probably being better off and a
bit conservative, but that needn't be a deterent or indicate nobility.
 My daughter's Italian in-laws didn't prepare a "wedding bed" until
after the German Lutheran wedding that they attended had been followed
three months later by holy communion in their Catholic church (which
was/is not authorized by RC rules), although they must have known they
had been sleeping together for years  - just not when they were
visiting his parents.
Your friend and her parents could well feel that her accepting an
invitation to visit you is inappropriate before the relationship is
close to being recognized as an engagement.  (My daughter's future
in-laws considered them to be engaged long before they made any formal
If she is their only or youngest daughter, they may well be tacitly
expecting that she will be around to care for them in their old age,
and probably feel that her moving to the States would be more finally
separating than it seems to you or maybe her.
Italian families are closer, and  - from my little experience - 
Italian mothers live up to how they are represented in films and
stories.  ;)

You will have to pass the Daddy Test, but if she has invited you back,
I read that as a sign that she feels that that won't be a problem. 
(Maybe you have already, by that "accidental"(?) meeting.)  Keep
corresponding and be open about your thoughts and questions.  If they
give rise to any misgivings, well, that is better to learn early on,
rather than ignoring your questions  - and hers -  while continuing
correspondence suggests a deepening relationship.  At 32, she will
either be eager to marry or resigning herself to spinsterhood, and
should have more than a 20 year-old's idea of what her parents' are

To avoid making a visit to the family purely a "courting call", it
could be useful and tactful if your trip could also be motivated by
something else
(business, hobby, ...), so that neither side feels that any sort of
decision must result.  And if this "something else" could provide an
opportunity for her to accompany you to another place for a day or
two, and if she chooses to  - or feels that it wouldn't upset her
parents, ...  Well, ...,  you understand.

Besides all this, I think you need to remember that there are other
cultural differences, even if she seems very modern and has traveled
and knows other countries, differences that only can be recognized
with time and exposure to each other's culture:  eating/meal habits;
interaction with friends  - or maybe, "friends", the word has more
significance in European countries, i.e., the difference between
friends and acquaintances in English; even simpler matters that either
of you take for granted as the "only" way to do something, but might
discover that the other does differently.

Just something to think about and not be surprised about.  ;)

Oh, and if you pass the Daddy Test with flying colors, don't be
surprised at - be prepared for -  hearty embraces by all members of
her family, including cheek-rubbing "kisses" by men as well as women,
both sides, usually left-to-left cheeks first.

Good luck!
Subject: Re: Dating Italian women
From: irlandes-ga on 11 Jun 2006 14:56 PDT
Amen to the last part of your answer, hedgie.  I remember back in the
late 80's, when I was supplying no-fee counseling to divorced men, two
men, both in their early fifties, in very short time asked my opinion
if they should marry. They had both had really bad experiences with
divorce, one personally, one observing his father and mother, and they
were concerned they could lost half their life savings OR MORE, due to
generous judges.

After some thought, realizing they were asking me a really hard
question, I essentially told them what you said. If they didn't love
their women enough to take that risk, they should not marry.  But, I
did tell them it is a risk and not to fool themselves on this point.

Both decided to marry; both are still married nearly 20 years later.

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