So today I was thinking about the things people have said to me in the last 6 months regarding my long distance, cross cultural relationship.
I want to encourage you that if you know the person you are with is the right one for you, then stick to your gut feeling. Long Distance Relationships can be hard, but keep your eyes focused and don’t listen to the negative comments you will get from people. Listening to other people’s negativity will only make your relationship harder (And it’s already hard enough). However, if you are dating someone Long Distance and you see red flags (overly distrusting, controlling, wanting to constantly know where you are, jealousy, etc.) those are WARNING signs (the person you are dating may NOT be healthy for you) so SLOW DOWN if you see those signs, and seek wisdom from friends and family, and try to get to know your significant other’s friends and family to know if something is a little…off or unhealthy with the person.
OKAY, Now that is out of the way, let’s talk together a bit about THINGS PPL SAY WHEN YOU ARE DATING LONG DISTANCE OR CROSSCULTURALLY.
1.) REAL QUESTION #1 Are you sure you really know him…what if he is a criminal in his country?
ANSWER: When you court/ date long distance you get to talk with the person you are courting or dating more frequently than many couples who date in person. Talking is the only thing you really can do together. And the relationship is not based on physical things like sex, so you get to know the person much more quickly than many regular relationships.
If he was a criminal, I’m sure after 2-3 years you would realize that there was fraudulent activity occurring because of sounds, vocal inflection, and what you see in the background when you Skype and talk. If you call at night and hear suspicious noises every night you may want to question the person lol. Also our government does an excellent job analyzing people before they come to the US so Evans has to present a clean police report and medical report to come to the US.
2.) REAL QUESTION #2 Are you sure he is not Abusive…I heard African men abuse their wives?
ANSWER: I was in shock when someone asked me this question. Although other cultures communicate differently (Ghanaians are loud and expressive sometimes), that doesn’t mean they have bad intentions. Different cultures have different customs and expectations especially in marriage.
Before marrying you NEED TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE CLEAR AND AGREED UPON EXPECTATIONS ABOUT MARITAL ROLES ESPECIALLY IN A CROSS CULTURAL RELATIONSHIP. All African men are not abusive and/or controlling, that is a wrong stereotype.
QUESTION #3 Are you still getting married? How long has it been?
4.) QUESTION #4 Maybe you are doing something displeasing to God? Your marriage probably will not work if you don’t learn what He is trying to teach you, so God is probably withholding your marriage (punishing you) until you get it right.
ANSWER: I have dedicated my life to serving and focusing on God despite circumstances. I even have a blog about it (sends blog link to person). This comment is based upon the theology of retribution we are not bound to a law of crime and punishment. Jesus died on a cross to forgive our sins and to fulfill the law. So there is grace. NO ONE WOULD BE HAPPILY MARRIED IF GETTING MARRIED WAS BASED ON WHETHER WE ARE “GOOD” or NOT (because we all do wrong and sin, but the belief in Jesus gives us eternal life and a pardon for our wrongdoing).
Evans and I know that God is faithful and we are still supposed to get married. So we simply forgive the negative comments. We know many people are not familiar with Long Distance Courting or Dating and that’s totally okay. We’ll be here to educate, and to support those couples who are going through the fire.
I love you and God loves you so much more! – Jeanette