I’ve been reading Bob’s blog since almost the beginning, 2 1/2 years now and along the way there has been a lot of good information on life over here in paradise. One of the best bits though related to marriage and talked about the inevitable “culture clash” that will happen between you and your wife but at some point in the marriage everything would hit a happy medium and you and your wife would begin to create your own unique culture. Well seemingly that has finally started to happen in my marriage with Venice.
We were wed on July 10th, 2007 so it’s been over 2 years now that we have been married and there were many rocky parts to the path of wedded bliss. We argued… quite a lot, and blamed it on the fact we are both so bull headed but this scapegoat of an excuse did nothing to help us. To be honest there were a couple of times where I really wondered if I had made the right decision to move over here.
Ever since I returned from working in Alaska this year I feel different. Finally unwound after a decade of high stress retail management jobs, finally more patient, and finally more willing to accept the quirks of life here in the Philippines. It’s a necessary step on the path to true integration into Philippine society and of course true marital bliss with your wife, which leads me to the other half of the equation. To truly meet in the middle and create that unique combination culture your wife has to change her perceptions as well.
I knew Venice was changing the day she said something sarcastically…. seriously, Filipinos do not understand sarcasm and unfortunately I come from a family history of sarcasm. It’s no wonder Venice thought I was complaining so much in the first 2 years of our marriage. There have also been other little things that all combined and taken as a whole shows me that my wife is starting to gravitate towards that happy medium between our cultures.
I’ve also changed in that I am more willing to accept Philippine myths and superstitions, or maybe not fully accepting but I won’t argue about them anymore. I realized this in myself as I was planting garlic on the windowsills to keep away an alleged Aswang. But the one thing that I have realized after 2 years of marriage is that I love my wife more than ever. We have ridden through good times and weathered the bad ones and we are still together so I am willing to say that our marriage is built on strong foundations. Who knows, as my new culture develops I might even let my wife persuade me into going to church… once in awhile anyway.
My advice to anyone who is married to a Filipina is patience. The two of you will hit that point in your marriage when the same culture creation occurs and the two of you will be happier for it.
Louis is a full time Philippine resident who works part of the year in Alaska! Sort of an American OFW, so he has a unique perspective to share with us! Louis has been an on and off LiP writer since the early days of the site!