When love and culture clash: It all comes down to your family, and how easy they are on coping with traditional change.
There is a strict texting etiquette at the beginnings of things, and I only got an inkling of it with her.
I was a bit of a social failure that first year at university.
All this is second nature to young people back home.
You don’t worry about it because you just know, go about it automatically.
She was not, and the feeling of slow, torturous knotting in my stomach as I piled text on text trying to check up on her at 2am on a Friday night from my darkened dorm room is the reason we have a code of communication in the US. Generally, you wait until the next day with a number—if she was that excited about you, you’d be with her and not wondering when to fire off a message. It’s an intricate dance between young people in the States, often enough both parties wanting to get together and both trying not to give off too much the impression that they do.
If you’re following the rules to a letter as a guy, you never text twice in a row. Saying “I love you” too early has been a trope in popular culture forever, and that reticence is now an integral part of the opening salvos of a relationship.The whole ‘we don’t want to put labels on it’ thing, too, is now less something that douchebags say on sitcoms and more part of the fabric of American dating.As I’ve explained it to Mexican friends: you ask somebody to go out, and if it goes well, you keep going out, and after long enough you kind of fall into the boyfriend/girlfriend thing; no formalization anymore, no giving out jackets and rings and asking folks to go steady.I had dinner with my host mom in the city a while ago, and before long it became clear to me that I was getting eyes from the waitress. We strike up a short conversation, I tell her I’ll call her in a week when I’m back in the city and leave it at that, head off to the feria with a couple of coworkers.I didn’t want to tip my mom off, so I left my number on the table with the check. Next morning, I check my phone and find a dozen messages, first asking friendly questions, then a few wondering why I’m not responding, another couple demanding to know where I am, and a final one telling me that yes, I was right, Americans are , and she can’t believe me.There are common stereotypes that Mexican families have strong conservative traditions when it comes to dating.