Love And Marriage Across Cultural Lines

One thing about this job is you get to work with people around the world.  I love being exposed to a such a wide range of people, their beliefs, various moral standards and cultural rules.

A lot of the consulting work I do is focused on relationships. There are couples from the same or similar culture living in their country of origin, couples from same or similar culture living in a different country trying to maintain their core beliefs and couples who fall in love across cultural lines and face tremendous challenge trying to get their families to accept an outsider.

I think this is an extremely complex and interesting issue and if people might share their experiences.

Have you ever fallen in love ‘cross cultural lines?
How far ‘cross?
Did you have problems with your friends or families?
Were you able to resolve them?
What was the end (or ongoing result)?
Where is your Venus?


Love And Marriage Across Cultural Lines — 37 Comments

  1. When I was very young, interracial couples was still a social “issue” but now it’s very common and has dropped off the map as one. I think dating across socioeconomic status is more of an issue where I live.

    Both sides of my family has a few interracial/cross-cultural couples/kids since the early 90s, so it’s normal for everyone. I have Venus in Sag and the interracial relationship is going well – I’m learning a lot about another culture/language too lol. I’ve dated Canadians, 2nd generation Canadians, and foreigners. I’ve had no problems b/c of that. However, I have not dated anyone whose religious beliefs were strict and tended toward a culture of avoiding inter-cultural marriage. I have seen relationships (e.g. Hindi/Muslim) that have broken up b/c of that but I’m not sure if socioeconomic status also played a significant role as well.

    I think how your society views this plays a significant role. A friend moved to somewhere conservative, and it was incredibly difficult for her, someone even comparing her relationship to bestiality or cross-species dating 🙁

  2. I’m attracted to a wide variety of different men. I like to say I’m an “equal opportunity employer.” Lol. My Venus is in Taurus in the 11th house opposite Saturn. I do tend to get in cross-cultural relationships and there’s always fallout from people who don’t get why I wouldn’t necessarily stick to my own race (I’m biracial- I think most of us are a hodgepodge of different ethnicity anyways), or that I’m betraying my own kind. Well I’ve got different “kinds”- Black, Korean, and Irish.

  3. And I believe we’re all different, but we’re all ONE, alike, in so many ways. I would also like to add that this goes with my friendships too. Growing up I had a very diverse group of friends, mostly biracial.

  4. I was always interested in other cultures and had various “foreign” boyfriends throughout the years: japanese, indian, more asian! It never got serious where family wld be involved and even so…. my parents are gone. And even so that, my mother only wanted me to be happy – she wouldn’t care about nationality, etc.

    Now the indian guy I was involved with: a different story. He felt tons of familial pressure. And I know for a fact he married an indian girl his family chose but has affairs with americans sigh

    I still like the idea of cross cultural stuff but my most recent and my potential romance are american. And the potential one is same ethnicity/race as me

  5. My ex was Iranian, and a Muslim. The difference in religion wasn’t much of an issue, at least not to me. But my father didn’t like him at all, and so does most of the family. We broke up after a few months eventually. He wanted us to get back together, but being with him was too suffocating I let it go.

    I did say before that I prefer someone from my own race, and would never ever date or marry (gasp!) a foreigner. That is until I fell for that guy. And now I guess I prefer foreigners (maybe it has something to do with my 8th house in Sag and Uranus’ placement there).

    My Venus is in Leo. I have met an Italian man online through a networking site whose Venus is in Leo too. Well, that’s another story.

  6. Oops, I meant 7th house in Sagittarius, with Uranus and Eros too. Excuse me, as I am just beginning to study astrology and my birth chart. 🙂 I guess I really am looking for someone who would expand my horizons.

  7. Have you ever fallen in love ‘cross cultural lines?
    – Yes, had a couple of crushes and one, big love, that lasted 6 years mutually and took me other three to get completely over (a year of longing for him, two of bitterness).

    How far ‘cross?
    – I’m of a rural, Lutheran, North European background, he of a Catholic, Southern European, from a small town.

    Did you have problems with your friends or families?
    – None what so ever. His parents geinuinly seemed to love me, mine liked him. His father apparently took our breakup really badly. My friends knew already knew I loved Italian culture, so it was no
    big surprice for them I’d get seriously involved with an Italian. His friends may have intially thought of me as an other “easy Scandinavian”, but I think I proved a point with my behaviour (I’d talk about soccer with other guys, but with Virgo rising that’s as far as I’ll go)

    What was the end (or ongoing result)?
    – Basicly, daily life. He grew up in a traditional family, with a mother who took her role as the housewife with an immense pride. Although he encouraged me to have a career outside, and helped with the housework, he still expected me to do or at least know how to do all the things his mother did. And that’s simply not me.

    Where is your Venus?

    – Scorpio, 3rd house, conjunct to Uranus and North Node. His: Leo, probably 4th or 5th house (his mother couldn’t remember the exact hour of birth)

  8. i’m biracial and my family is multiracial, so whoever i date, i am never dating “my kind”. also, whoever i date i still have to deal with the stigma of an interracial relationship, for this very reason. no one can tell what i am from one day to the next. it’s not a problem in my family because it’s the norm. it’s not a problem with my friends because thought like that is just pretty outdated, at least around these parts. i’d rather date someone with different values and culture than try to find (in vain) a person with similar background. cuz it ain’t gonna happen.

    12th house venus in cancer conjunct chiron.

  9. *Have you ever fallen in love ‘cross cultural lines?
    Oh certainly! 🙂 I’ve dated across the map! 🙂

    *How far ‘cross?
    I’m not sure what this means but I guess I’ll illustrate in the terms I understand. I’m Asian (Filipino) and I’ve had caucasian, Italian (Elsa, correct me if I’m wrong but my ex didn’t consider himself “caucasian” since he’s Italian), and other Asian ethnicities (Filipino, Korean, Chinese). I’ve gone out with other guys of different cultures aside from the ones mentioned but those did not work out.

    *Did you have problems with your friends or families?
    One of my Filipino exes was from a different socio-economic class. There definitely was a problem there as attitudes from certain Filipinos coming from the city is different from those from the rural areas. His family had a very traditional hierarchy, which made me very uncomfortable. He wasn’t quite comfortable with the very openly affectionate and communicative family that i have either.

    *Were you able to resolve them?
    I guess you can say that. I had to break up with him. He’s a really good guy, but our goals, what we want in life really are totally different from each other. Plus, I want to raise future kids (if any) to be very open and communicative.

    *What was the end (or ongoing result)?
    Well… after much dating and relating to different men of different culture I deduced this: I’m attracted to who I am attracted to and obviously I prefer someone somewhat “close to home” yet someone who is very liberal like myself. I like dating men of a culture similar to mine, yet still has a very liberal/freethinking spirit. Men of Asian and Hispanic or mediterranean descent seem to fit the bill, but even then, many of them can be very traditional so it’s not that my dating pool has been wide to begin with 😉

    My boyfriend is Chinese-Canadian. I think what unites us both is the similarity in value systems and… well… we just like being around each other. We both agree that the similarities of both our cultures work in our relationship as well as being both Canadian.

    *Where is your Venus?
    Venus in Taurus 2nd house. Sextiling Moon and trining Saturn. opposing Uranus squaring Mars.

    My 4th house Moon in Cancer also trines Uranus – which likely explains why I like “familiar” yet “different.”

  10. I’m from a very traditional irish catholic family and when I lived in London had a live-in boyfriend who was African and very dark-skinned. All fine and dandy until my father decided to visit me one weekend so I had to warn him before he arrived. He wasn’t too bothered about me living with someone ‘Well that’s what you young ones do nowadays’, but he nearly fainted when I told him the boyfriend was black! If my mother had still been alive she would probably have gone into mourning with the shame of it all. It was never a problem for the two of us because London is such a melting pot and neither of us really thought about it, but then his mother in Nigeria found out and phoned him and told him to come home and marry a ‘nice African girl’, because apparently all white girls were trollops! At that point we both decided it was hilarious – the parents might have different colour skins but boy were they alike. We broke up eventually for completely other reasons. I have Venus in Sagittarius and he was Sag Sun.

  11. Yup.

    I am Hawaiian-Filipino-Chinese. The two mates in my life are European (haole in Hawaiian terms).

    Have you ever fallen in love ‘cross cultural lines?

    The crossing over has been huge. My Venus is in Sag, and in all ways my love of diversity has played big.

    How far ‘cross?

    Both the men I married were intrigued and curious with the ‘exoticness’ of island women. Early on, in the early ’70’s it was a time of exploration and rebellion … some of that fueled the reasons for my first marriage. I left my homeland, disconnecting the culture to adapt. That was a mistake I have learned to understand and circle back upon during the 1st and 2nd Saturn returns.

    Did you have problems with your friends or families?

    My family had trouble with me leaving the tribe. My friends on the island accepting the move with more acceptance and many island people have mixed marriages.
    My own sense of self and cultural valuing went through huge ups and downs. After more than 20 yrs in another culture (white, small town America) I felt the inner explosions … I needed to reconsider the adaptations.

    My 1st husband and I divorced soon after that.

    Were you able to resolve them?

    I have been resolving those issues over the past 15 yrs. I am married to a working man (like my father … old time laborer) from the mid-lands of America. Our marriage began later, when I was 50+.

    His understanding of my culture, my baggage and my unadapted self is broad, accepting and we just LOVES ME! His original ‘curiosity for the exotic’ has been tempered by fire (with 5 signs in fire, I guess he would) and a journey lived in many places/situations.

    He has a seeker’s soul and does not think I will just ‘be done changing’ as my first husband hoped. Today, our lives are more an earth culture with a daily appreciation for values that have simplified.

    What was the end (or ongoing result)?

    Ongoing result? We both love the Hawaiian culture and the influences of my Filipino and Chinese heritage. I am always aware of his Irish-Polish-Ukranian working people values. We play Chinese Checkers … and there is a funny scene to explain ‘ongoing results.’

    Where is your Venus?
    Venus in Sag conj Jupiter in 11th house

  12. Lunalie, I am Filipino too (forgot to mention that). 😀 Is it really a Filipino thing to be not too accepting of prospective partners from different backgrounds, be it socio-economic or cross-cultural? Hmmm…

  13. I fell in love with an indian guy and I’m pakistani. So cross-country & cross religion. It lasted two years then he buckled under the family pressure and married a girl chosen by his parents. He’s sticking to it honourably though. Taurus sun & moon with Virgo rising and Venus in Aries. Mine’s Pisces sun, Cancer moon, venus in Pisces 7th house- boundaries….

  14. @Smashyyy lol you used my line “equal opportunity employer”. I have dated all kinds. I think this is due to my Aquarius Moon in the 9th house. When I ended up pregnant with my daughter I told my parents. They didn’t know I was even dating anyone (it wasn’t that serious). I then told them that he was Puerto Rican and my mom flipped,lol, she was like omg the baby is gonna be brown. I was like so what if she was,haha. Then I told her he was her skin tone she is indian,french and scottish soo… Now they are in love with their first grandchild who will be 11 in Oct.

  15. @vixen The only time that my family has ever not accepted a man I was dating was when I dated my last ex. It’s because he really was from a very rigid Filipino family and my family can sense that. They know what I am like as a person (very liberal-minded, freedom loving) and they were concerned that my ex restricted me a lot – which he did, though not intentionally.

    Other than that, my family has always been accepting. 🙂

    I just read what you wrote! Funny how mine went the other way around – I dated non-Asian men first before I realized what I really felt most comfortable with people of a similar culture but someone who is a freethinker like myself 🙂

  16. In my early twenties I had a relationship with a man of a different race for about five years. I kept it secret from my father for most of that time. We eventually broke up because my father did not approve of my boyfriend, and my boyfriend wouldn’t marry me unless my father was on board. The situation was supposed to be resolved by the break up, but I don’t feel like it was since I’m still very close with this person.

    I have Venus in Scorpio in the Eighth House–that could give me secret romances I guess. I chock up the cross-cultural aspect of the relationship to the triple whammy of having Jupiter in the Seventh House, Jupiter as the ruler of my Ninth House, and the ruler of my Seventh House in the Ninth House.

  17. yes, my first steady BF ever was of N. African descent, his family rejected me and mine rejected both of us, it got me fired from my job; I was not able to resolve the situation. Venus square Uranus.

  18. I’ve had relationships with so many from other cultures that I could open up my own branch on the United Nations with my ex beaus, my dears. I’m over 50 now and was only married for one year. Persians, Palestian, Korean, a Chinese, East indian/South Asian, American Jewish, one German for a very short duration. Why travel when it can be brought to your door and your and your house hold?

    The last one is an upper class WASP on the social register. That’s still on, sort of.

    Venus in Leo, in tropical. Venus in Cancer in vedic. About five planets in the 11th house in tropical Less so in vedic but then my Moon goes into Satabhishak in vedic. Honoary Aquarian any way you look at it. Ketu in the4 7th, Rahu int he first. Same birthday as the late Mr. M. Jackson. I gotta kuja dosha which has done wonders for me picking the wrong fellows.

    So do the query responder pool at hand meant that mostly Venus in leo and Sag are the ones having the foreig affairs or that we are the only ones bold enough to be answering your request?

  19. How about the former child TV star? Shall we count him as being from a different culture? He certainly though being in KC in the 1980s was a different location from the Hollywood Hills and Laurel Canyon.

  20. I am in a “cross-cultural” relationship, but it doesn’t seem like one, since my boyfriend is so much my kind that questions of nationality or culture fade into the background. I’m american, and my man is from a very remote area of Europe. He grew up in a communist country, served in their army, worked as a contractor in a middle eastern country in the 80s and was able to defect from there. So he is not particularly identified with his home culture. However, we were raised very differently. I had a typical middle-class american upbringing, while he grew up in a house without running water or electricity. These differences have been more significant than the cultural differences.
    I have Venus in Leo, 11th house (trine moon/jupiter in 7th).

  21. Have you ever fallen in love ‘cross cultural lines? Religious lines not exactly the same but can be close. My 2nd husbands family and back ground was Southern Baptist they just could not understand where I was coming from. My back ground is Catholic and disciples of Christ Christian.

    How far ‘cross? Depends on how you assess the lines that are crossed.

    Did you have problems with your friends or families? My family is very accepting. My second husbands family finally decided we were weird and quit asking questions.

    Were you able to resolve them? to a fashion

    What was the end (or ongoing result)? They stopped asking questions so they would not get answers they would not accept.

    Where is your Venus? My Venus is in Scorpio in the 9th house conjunct my Saturn square Jupiter and Pluto in the 7th both are in Leo

    Present husband is from San Diego, CA I was raised in Tulsa, OK. West Cost and Mid Western cultural differences. He sometimes looks at me like I was raised in the dark ages, and I sometimes look at him like he was raised in outer space but it is more humorous than anything. Plus even though we have some vastly different growing up experiences we have strikingly parallel life experiences.

  22. This is an excellent topic.
    And a relationship issue that I, believe it or not, have not yet breached on a personal level. Although, mentally, I have gone there

  23. Oh boy….yep, been there done that! My first husband was British and we moved to the UK a couple months after getting married. He was here on a student visa.

    We are divorced now and I can honestly say that the reason was based in some part on our cultural differences. He was raised in a very devout Catholic home and even though he wasn’t a practicing catholic, his mindset and ideas turned out to be disctinctly British and catholic conservative. A combination of the way he was raised in his culture and their religion.

    This was clear case of not waiting to know someone well enough before doing something stupid like getting married!!! The 8 months we were together here in the states was great and we got on really well. Once we were married though and moved to the UK with his family around he changed. Suddenly all of my beliefs were wrong and I was expected to become someone I wasn’t and would never be. In his mind, I needed to ‘grow up’ despite the fact that I was 6 years older than him! He also thought that growing up meant letting go of my beliefs in astrology, divination, etc. and embracing a ‘real adult set of beliefs’….like catholicism of course. Fucker.

    It’s ok though because it taught me what I needed to know to make it work for real. I wouldn’t trade that for anything because every step of that process brought me closer to The One for me, and I love him with all that I am!! 🙂

  24. Oh oops…and my Venus is in Virgo. Defintiely taught me all about unrealistic expectations and how damaging they can be in a relationship!

  25. alphaxys, me too, being multi-racial.

    I did marry someone whose family had major problems with me for this reason. I was very patient, with them for many years, and although some of his family grew to accept me, I gradually became estranged from them all due to my intolerence of their (imo) racist views. It put a lot of pressure on my husband. I think it many ways on that frontier it’s a relief for us to be divorced. It was never a problem between us though, we were color blind.

    Actually, I think some of the racism was just classism. I think if I had tons of cash in my family, it would have helped sweeten the deal for them.

    Venus congunct saturn in Gemini, neptune in the 7th, jupiter in the 9th

  26. Wait a minute, I’ve done this! Well, I’ve dealt with it sort of through my kids. My grandson is bi-racial. Or so they say. I think bi-racial is a stupid term because we are all pretty much a bunch of Heinz 57 mixes by now. But anyway, as you can tell, it didn’t cause a fuss. LOL He just looks all Leo to me.

  27. I was surprised to find when I fell in love with someone from the Midwest that there are “cross-cultural lines” in the same country (I’m from the West Coast). Not necessarily as drastic as some of the other stories here but in talking it over with other people who were from that area, had lived in both, etc., I realized that there had been some fairly ingrained cultural standards and mores that might have contributed to the ending of it. Venus in Scorpio in the 4th, Uranus in Sag in the 4th.

  28. Uzmi how did you find it with your venus in Pisces and his in Aries?

    I’m English living in Greece and I have a Greek boyfriend. The cultural differences are huge not to mention the language which I haven’t yet managed to get my head round. He speaks English quite well anyway so that doesn’t help my efforts to learn,lol. His venus is in Aries and mine in Pisces. Sometimes we just don’t understand eachother and we’ve concluded it’s not the language or cultural differences, though for sure they don’t help at times. Despite this we are like peas and carrots, we’re both Aries too!!
    His family and friends like me and mine him. He’s not uber Greek (thankgod!) I couldn’t stand being with a typical macho immature
    mummys-boy Greek anyway. They start out being awfully romantic and passionate which i love but sooner or later the misogynist appears, lol.

  29. The Mid West is the home of the Bible belt and that usually means Deep Southern Baptist views any where from way fundamentalist views to not so stringent and strict. Where as the East and West cost is way more open minded about most everything. Then if you are talking Oklahoma then you have to include Native American vies and some of the tribes have adopted those Southern Baptist views and put a Native slant on them. Makes it extremely interesting to say the least.

  30. I had a friend, caucasian, who was really interested in African men, usually musicians. Well, one of her boyfriends was from Mali, and when his mother found out he was seeing an American woman, she decided to do something about it. She became very ill, was on her deathbed. Her last dying wish was to see her son, her eldest, married. So, a marriage was quickly arranged with a distant cousin, from the outer provinces. And glory be, a miracle happened, and mom got well right after.

  31. Geat Subject Elsa,

    Being a Sag, w/ Jupiter in the 9th,(Venus in Cap in the 4th)I’ve had plenty of foriegn boyfriends, either on home turf or abroad. (Sounds like bragging, I know, but when I was kid, I planned to travel alot and have LOTS of boyfriends.)

    I met my husband in Korea. He was my Teakwondo teacher. It took two years of sweat in the dojo, before we went out to the niteclub. After the first date, this commitment-phobic Sag said the unspeakable, that I would marry him. I said it out loud to our mutual friend. After two years of Pluto travelling over my mercury, my Korean was comprehensible.

    For our marriage date, Pluto was transiting my sun along with Chiron. WTF! No way was it a dream wedding-it was an internal hell. The painful death of a Sag. I can’t say it was wrong, it just was.

    Pluto retreated and when it crossed my sun the second time, we moved to Canada and I became pregnant. More death of the Sag. My first daughter’s pluto is conjuct my sun, squaring my natal Pluto. How could anyone find their own baby to be threatening?- I did mine.

    The first ten years of our marriage were brutal. Hardcore work just to survive and give our marriage a place to grow. We are in a much better place now. We have been through so much. We are starting to thrive again as a couple.

  32. @lulu
    Well noted – yes I think it added another layer of difficulty in my case. I retreated in piscean mists from the initial Arian approach & that laid a bad foundation.

  33. Except for my husband (who is from the same country, but of another ethnic background and religion) ALL my romantic relationships and my first marriage were with men from other countries and of different religions. Venus in Sag, (3rd house), Uranus in the 9th. What’s interesting is that cultural differences are exciting for me but I need to feel that a partner and I have similar philosophies and educational level.

  34. My husband is Irish and I am American. I grew up in the Southern Bible belt of the states and he grew up in the Western side of Catholic Ireland. We live in Ireland now and we don’t have any problems. My family loves him and his family is still getting used to me I think. I think the biggest shock is from other people when they hear that he’s only 25. They wonder why he got married so young. Where the opposite is true in America. (They wonder what took him so long.)
    My Venus is in Leo in the 6th house.

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