Boyfriend, cross-cultural relationships, cultural differences, england, Englishman, international correspondent, locals, Relationships, romance, Sewanee: The University of the South, University of Leeds, work to study program There are many things that no one told me would be different in England: pancakes, apple juice, and lemonade to name a few.However, I didn’t realize how different developing romantic relationships would be.Before deciding to study abroad, I met and started dating an Englishman.This has made my experience here extremely special, and has also given me certain insights into the dating culture in the UK.Because of the many similarities between the British and American cultures, I was surprised about the cultural differences related to dating.My boyfriend—who is from London—has helped me observe and understand some of these differences.For example, guys generally don’t make the first move.This probably isn’t always the case, but in my experience, seem to wait for the girl to express interest before approaching her in a bar or club.
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I have also noticed that relationships here are more casual.While exclusive relationships are fairly common, they aren’t taken as seriously as they are at home.Dates are also smaller affairs; they seem simpler here, possibly because English students have very little disposable income. Refraining from public displays of affection is likely cultural.When people-watching on the street, you begin to notice subtle differences such as less touching. One of the interesting and subtly complex parts of dating someone who doesn’t share your culture is learning to navigate these differences in experience.
As always in a relationship, it is important to find a compromise that both parties are comfortable with.
Along with enabling me to better understand the culture that I am temporarily a part of, dating someone from England has enabled me to befriend and live with locals.