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A significant number of women met their Turkish husbands/partners whilst living and working in Turkey: some were teachers working in private schools, some worked in tourism and some in other international institutions which had offices or branches in Turkey.
Others met in social settings or met through friends or met while studying here.
Does this correspond to the most common nationalities coming to Turkey as tourists? As I have written in a previous blog, ‘The Language of Love’, language plays an important part in cross cultural relationships and it was interesting to see that while more than half of the Turkish husbands/partners speak, read and write English fluently, only a fifth of their wives/partners speak, read and write Turkish fluently.
However, as one respondent wrote, ‘Although he speaks fluent English, some things get lost in translation.’ misunderstanding language " data-medium-file="https://i2com/fayerogan.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/download.png?
relationship, love, " data-medium-file="https://i0com/fayerogan.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/relationship.jpeg? fit=232,218" data-large-file="https://i0com/fayerogan.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/relationship.jpeg? fit=232,218" class="aligncenter wp-image-510 size-full" src="https://i0com/fayerogan.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/relationship.jpeg? resize=232,218" alt="relationship" width="232" height="218" data-recalc-dims="1" / I am fascinated by relationships between foreign women and Turkish men. I used various Facebook groups and websites whose members are expat women living in Turkey who have had or currently have Turkish husbands or partners to elicit information and their views.
Having recently created a website where I intend to blog about ‘Love in Turkey’ in all its forms, I decided to do a survey to find out more.
Modern day Turkey is a melting pot of old and new cultures and people’s experiences of living here and their relationship with their husband or partner very much depends on what area you live in.
Foreign women living in large cities, such as Istanbul and Ankara, have a dissimilar experience to those who live in rural towns and villages or in the tourist resorts along the coast.
The decision about where to live causes much stress between cross cultural couples.
Those who live in the south east of Turkey or whose husbands or partners originate for there, where the culture is more conservative and religious practices are more widely observed, have other challenges to face.
There is a common belief that relationships between foreign women and Turkish men don’t last and we all know that holiday romances don’t last don’t we? A huge seventy-eight percent of respondents in my survey met their husband or partner while on holiday in Turkey and the results showed that the majority of those couples have been together for more than ten years.
The survey results showed that this was the main challenge, with forty-seven percent of women citing this as the one issue that caused the most tension in their relationships.
Initially, learning about Turkish culture and traditions can be a fascinating journey, where all the quirks and anomalies seem quaint and interesting.
While I know there are examples of this being true, it is wrong to generalise and make the assumption that all Turkish men are the same.