I’ve been thinking lately about this whole “Russian brides” idea… All the dating sites with Eastern European women trying to find husbands on the West… and the opposite of course. Where there’s demand, there’s supply.
Since I moved to France something very interesting has been happening – I get a lot of compliments from strangers. People in the street stop to tell me “you’re very beautiful” or “oh, how charming you are!” or my favorite “what a nice hat/dress/shoes!”
I have lived in Bulgaria for the most part of my life and nobody ever told me a compliment in the street. All you can get is some mocking or jealous laugh or scowling sight meaning “You’re dressed too strange for my taste. / You’re different from me so I hate you!”. Actually, the only people who said some compliments on the way I look were gypsies. Seriously! But they like kitsch so I don’t rely so much on their opinion.
In a conservative society like Bulgarian, you can’t be very free and you can’t express yourself as much as you can in France, for example. I mean, of course people still think you’re different and a lot of them will not like you, but nobody shows it here, there’s some respect to the personal choice of the others. At least, that’s how I feel… And there are so many creative and artistic people in the streets with crazy ideas who are not afraid to show them.
Anyway, the thing I’m trying to say is that suddenly I realized that for the standard of France I am beautiful while for the standard of Bulgaria I was kind of… average. Maybe it’s because I like wearing dresses and skirts, I don’t know. I also have been asked a lot if I am married or in a relationship. Now for this I understood that my accent and my face plays a big role. I am Russian-Bulgarian by origin so I have a typical Eastern face (especially those Russian cheeks) and I speak French with an Eastern accent so I pass for a Russian all the time (as, you know, Bulgaria is a very small country). The moment people realize you’re coming from Russia, there’s this thought about Russian wives – “the best wives in the world”.
I asked myself why? Why people think that Russians make the best wives? I found some of the answers on some dating sites, where they explained how Russians traditionally educate little girls that being a wife and a mother is the most important role in a woman’s life. It was disgusting to read that Russians are walking at least 1-2 miles a day and thus stay fit, while most Western women use cars so they get obese. Give them more freedom, they will write what kind of food the Russian woman is eating and at what time she goes out of her hollow! As if it’s some kind of an animal. It is such a stereotype… But I think the bigger shame is on those women who post their photos on dating sites. How low do you have to be to sell yourself like that? Because, of course you sell yourself! You are ready to look for a rich husband abroad the easy way by showing your physical beauty! This is prostitution!
I was angry for a while. Then I said to myself: OK, everybody has the right to make their own decisions and we shouldn’t judge someone that puts all Russians the label “easy good women”. It’s their own ignorance and blindness. After all we are who we are and we can be judged only by our actions.
Here’s a commercial I saw in Paris Metro. It’s about a dating site. This huge face is watching right in your eyes saying “I am there, come and take me”. In fact, there’s no text around it, only the name of the site.
The added french text means: “I sell myself = antifeminism, FREE whores”