4 Things I’ve Learned from my Cross-Cultural Marriage

Once upon a time when I was a wee little grad student, my plan was to specialize in working with individuals and couples in cross-cultural relationships. Since then, my specialties have expanded quite a bit, but I still love navigating the nuances that come up in diverse relationships. For individuals who immigrated from the same country, the difference could be whether they were first-, second-, or third-generation immigrants, what part of the country or city they moved from, age of immigration, religious differences, language proficiency, etc. Even for those raised within the U. This list barely touches the surface. My point is, there are a wide array of shapes and forms cross-cultural relationships can take. Is a Difference Unhealthy, or Just Cultural? If we dive further into this question, things start to fall apart quickly. To start: what is culture?

Another Country: The Cultural and Religious Struggle between Northern and Southern Kenya

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While he is both of cross-cultural relationships Well in Arabic.

Cross-cultural issues faced by couples include loss of identity, conflicts over differences in fundamental beliefs, clashes in parenting tactics, struggles with.

I was born in Louisiana, grew up in rural Georgia, and moved abroad to Australia in The plan was to stay for a year, to work as an au pair while interning with a global non-profit, and then to go home with a career path for my future. The plan was not to meet someone six weeks into the trip. Like most other couples, we got a lot of marriage advice. Some of it was solicited, and some, we politely smiled at before secretly rolling our eyes. We faced challenges that other couples never have to think about, and some things that other newlyweds struggle with came easily for us.

5 Lessons I’ve Learned From My Cross-Cultural Marriage

The more research I have done on intercultural marriage, the more I have realized that it has long been misunderstood by Christians. For thousands of years, scriptural principles have been misinterpreted and twisted to accommodate people’s racial biases, prejudices, and personal agendas. Perhaps the strongest misconception I’ve found is the idea that intercultural and interracial marriage were prohibited by God for racial, ethnic, or cultural reasons. This is not the case.

Some of the wisest and most honored biblical heroes and heroines including Moses, David, Esther, Ruth, Solomon, and Joseph were involved in intercultural or interracial marriages—marriages that God approved of and blessed. The Bible does contain some instances in which God warns His people not to intermarry with others, but this was always for spiritual reasons rather than for racial or cultural reasons.

Every marriage is different, and ours, being cross-cultural, is different in a way and I chose to get married relatively soon after we began dating because we Tagged: advice, Christian, Christian marriage, communication.

God clearly separated the races, and separate they should remain or so the argument went. To this they added the injunction against Israelites marrying into the nations around them and the verse in Acts about God appointing boundaries for the nations see Acts This addresses the question of not marrying outside Israel. His punishment? Church pioneer and prophetic voice Ellen White also addresses interracial marriage. She makes two main arguments.

We must remember that she speaks from a monocultural experience and from the middle of the American Civil War and the fight for abolition and equal rights.

A Biblical Look at Intercultural Marriages

Despite these very significant challenges, cross-cultural relationships can be uniquely fulfilling and satisfying. When cross-cultural couples embrace their differences as assets, they are able to combine the best parts of their cultures. Leveraging the strengths of their cultural backgrounds they can build strong, healthy, connected family units.

Most importantly, maintain a life of forgiveness and focus on Christ. Editor’s note: For a helpful resource on cross-cultural relationships and marriage, How important is it that the person you’re dating has the same call to missions as you?

A Biblical Marriage. Hello, my name is Rachel. I am an American. The Lord has taught me many lessons about life and people and Himself through our cross-cultural marriage. Yes, its true that men and women already think differently men are from Mars, women are from Venus, remember? But when your spouse hails from another part of the globe, this is going to be magnified to a much greater degree of intensity. It may not be obvious at first. For example, Niall and I both grew up speaking English though he also speaks Irish.

He has been here for eight years and even sounds like an American. Certain things he would say or do struck me as weird in the beginning of our relationship. Then I went to Ireland….

What does the Bible say about interracial marriage?

More information and a sample issue can be found on our newsletter page. Email Address:. First Name:. Last Name:. Check all that apply: I have long-term cross-cultural service experience.

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The questions of interest were: 1 What is the influence of parental attitudes towards interfaith and cross-cultural relationships? Fifty-five university students with diverse backgrounds participated in this study. The findings indicate that the majority of the participants were influenced by the social pressure put upon them. However, interestingly there are signs of a generational attitude shift. This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access. Rent this article via DeepDyve.

Berger, C. Beyond initial interaction: Uncertainty, understanding, and the development of interpersonal relationships. Clair Eds. Oxford: Blackwell. Google Scholar. Interpersonal communication: Theoretical perspectives, future prospects. Journal of Communication, 55 3 , —

How to enjoy a rock-solid Christian intercultural marriage.

Marriage , also called matrimony or wedlock , is a culturally recognised union between people, called spouses , that establishes rights and obligations between them, as well as between them and their children, and between them and their in-laws. Over time, it has expanded and also constricted in terms of who and what is encompassed. Typically, it is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually sexual , are acknowledged or sanctioned.

generation participants were more likely to report intercultural dating conflict with par- tionships which cross cultural boundaries ”may have as much to tell us about Christian). Participants also were instructed that intercultural status was.

The questions of interest were as follows: 1 what is the relationship between the three monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and attitudes toward interfaith dating and marriages, and 2 how do the participants perceive their religious backgrounds to impact on their decisions to enter or avoid cross-cultural and interfaith relationships? Using semistructured interviews, qualitative data were gathered from 57 students 42 women, 15 men, mean age The findings suggest that university students in Australia Jewish, Christian, and Muslim are generally disinclined to engage in a cross-cultural or interfaith relationship.

Only some participants in the present study were open to engaging in a cross-cultural and interfaith relationship, provided the partner was neither too religious nor demanded for the participants to change in any way. However, none of these participants was actively searching for a partner of a different culture or faith. Finally, there was a clear reluctance by non-Muslim participants to be with a Muslim partner.

Till Faith Do Us Part Department of Psychology. Overview Fingerprint. Access to Document Link to publication in Scopus.

Cross cultural marriage

This hard-won advice is intended only for those couples who are truly considering entering into a cross-cultural marital situation. Simply marrying someone whose ancestry is different from your own is not quite the same thing. Much of who we are and what we believe is the result of what we see around us as examples during our childhood. Someone born in Japan who is brought to the United States before school age and who has lived here ever since will not benefit so much from the advice I have to give here.

There are three argument sources against interracial marriage that we, as Seventh-day Adventist Christians, should take seriously: the Bible.

The picture of an 8-year-old wife posing beside her year-old husband appears at the beginning of an article in the June issue of National Geographic. I hated to see him. Arranged marriages, but not forced marriages, were the norm in many cultures for thousands of years. Arranged marriages are ones in which someone other than the couple marrying selects the spouses, curtailing the process of courtship.

This is done with the consent of those getting married. It becomes a forced marriage if the singles are required to marry against their will. Following is a description of a system of arranged but not forced marriage that lasted years. Arranged marriage was very common in Japan from the 16th century until the last half of the 20th century and still exists today. The following information comes not only from available written sources but also from cross-cultural workers who have served scores of years in Japan observing and participating as go-betweens.

The typical procedure was and is as follows.

Sobering Advice for anyone contemplating a cross-cultural marriage

And what we learnto value in these cultural environments stays with us for life. Yahya R. Kamalipour 1.

A Christian couple contemplating marriage must prayerfully and carefully consider the impact their marriage will have within their cultural context, their family.

That last word, “unbelievers” is of key importance. A Christian should not marry a non-Christian no matter how kind and good they are. What about interracial marriage? Deuteronomy tells the Israelites to destroy all the inhabitants of the Canaan land and not to intermarry with them because they would “turn your sons away from following Me, that they may serve other gods.

Moses’ wife was of another race and in Numbers Aaron and Miriam were punished for criticizing this interracial marriage. The book of Ruth tells a delightful story of a foreigner who became part of the lineage of Christ. The harlot, Rahab, also of another nation, is included in the lineage of Christ as recorded in Matthew 1. Colossians makes it clear that from God’s perspective all are one in Christ.

The Bible is clear that when both parties are believers equally yoked , interracial marriage is not wrong. A Christian couple contemplating marriage must prayerfully and carefully consider the impact their marriage will have within their cultural context, their family relationships, future children and the society in which they live.