When moving abroad, the thought of dating almost always crosses our mind. Will I meet the love of my life? Will I find someone who I really enjoy spending time with? Will I make the most of my single status and get to meet many Spaniards along the way? No matter what your desires are when it comes to courting abroad, there are a few things you should keep in mind before jumping into the dating pool. Here are five do’s and don’ts of dating in Spain!
Do: Be Aware That Cultural Standards Are Different
Dating abroad will be different than dating back at home. Yes, Spaniards live with their parents longer than Americans do. Yes, family is one of the most important things to them. Yes, they hang out with the same group of friends that they’ve had since high school. Yes, making plans in advance is not something that exists. Yes, putting a title on your relationship might not be the most important factor but if you like spending time together… that’s all that matters.
All of this might be true but you’re living in a different country where customs and norms are different so you need to enter with an open mind. This doesn’t mean you should compromise on things that you firmly believe in, but be willing to meet half way and understand that you might be used to different things.
Don’t: Get Annoyed That They Want To Practice Their English With You
Trust me, I know… you’re living in Spain for a reason. You want to perfect and practice your Spanish, but don’t get mad when the person you’re dating wants to brush up on their English skills. Being able to be in a relationship with someone that speaks a different language is a coveted opportunity and they will most likely want to switch it up every once in a while. Instead of getting annoyed and only wanted to speak in Spanish (I’m very guilty of this), find a happy medium. Choose days or times to switch it up!
Do: Take Advantage that They Know The Town Where You’re Living
If you’re dating a local, it’s the perfect opportunity to truly know the city that you’re living in. Odds are, they’ve been there for a while and know the ins and outs that your new home has to offer. Dating someone from Spain is a great way to try different locations, restaurants and activities that you might not have even known existed if you didn’t have that connection.
Don’t: Focus on Finding The Love Of Your Life
This is key! You’re living abroad to have new experiences, explore the world and make unforgettable memories. Although it would be wonderful to have a partner to share those moments with, don’t make that the main focus of your expat experience. Majority of the time, the most beautiful things happen when we least expect them. When you put your time and energy into chasing your dreams and creating a life you love, that’s when you’ll attract that special someone and it will happen even though you weren’t looking for it. Let life take it’s course and be open to the beauty of what could be!
Do: Be Open To Trying New Things
Allow yourself to have experiences on your own first to figure out what it is that you like. If you find that all of the boys you’ve been matching with on Tinder aren’t bringing anything to the table… try something different. Frequent a café or event each week and keep yourself open to meeting new people. Who knows, your new beau could be at the open mic you hit up every Wednesday night.
What has your experience been like dating abroad?
Sienna Brown is the founder of Las Morenas de España. From New York to Murcia, Spain, she is constantly on a journey to inspire and be inspired while engaging in different methods of creation. Her passion for learning about others leads her towards constant exploration and practicing the art of listening as much as she can. See more of her work here and follow her adventures on instagram.