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Smile "You don't understand My culture" - 04-21-2009, 02:36 AM

Have you noticed when involved in a different culture relationship and a disagreement breaks out, that more often than not the conclusion from one side, and then the other will be "You don't understand my culture", or "We are different".

I personally believe that many are culturally understanding and minded, and believe that even people within the same culture are totally different.

In other words, is this not "understanding the culture" scenario a simple way out to end the argument, or/and how often does it play a part in your relationship with a different culture?

This thread relates to all cultures as this board is definitely multi cultural so a good chance for all to express our opinions
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04-21-2009, 02:55 AM

I've been in inter-racial relationships before.... It is valid in some contexts.

I've noticed that in Asian cultures the relationship with family or group is more important than in the West and I've often got really angry when a particular ex wouldn't stand up for her own individual interests at the expense of what her family wanted.
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04-21-2009, 03:04 AM

I don't think you can easily separate yourself from your culture. Of course everyone is a part of several cultures that make us unique individuals (country, region, city and even neighborhood, family culture, race, religious culture, etc.) When different cultures interact in a relationship, there is bound to be conflict and/or sacrifice.
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04-21-2009, 03:14 AM

The sacrifice could possibly play the part of the excuse within the disagreement.

I've found that some cultures adopt better to other's.

For example, I have a Japanese female friend who is a permanant Australian resident (Not Citizen), and she hates the place and people.

Then I have some good friends as a married couple with two kids who migrated here from Japan, and they are thoroughly LOVING Sydney, the beaches, people, food, schooling, and all the other good stuff..

So I guess in that respect, we could class that as not being a culture, but rather an individual.

I think it's easy to confuse culture with personality here..

That's why I think the sentence "You don't understand my culture" can be taken as an excuse in many instances.

Some cultures don't accept it and it will always be explained as "You are in my country"
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04-21-2009, 03:22 AM

A good Video
YouTube - Communication Between Cultures
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04-21-2009, 03:33 AM

I can't say if the examples you have noted are culture related or not.

I loved living in Japan and being immersed in Japanese culture, but that doesn't mean I didn't eat cheeseburgers and fries when I could. I would travel into Osaka on Sundays just to buy bagels.

I know Japanese people in America who have lived here for many years, but still don't feel they have had a complete meal unless they have steamed rice.
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04-21-2009, 06:48 AM

Presented in those words, in that sort of context, would indeed be an escape tactic - at least in my opinion.
If there is something you have misunderstood, or that the other party has misunderstood due to cultural differences - there is nothing stopping you from pointing it out. And if the other party is unwilling to see the root of the problem it is likely that it`s not a "cultural" difference.

Liking a culture, and living entirely within it`s rules are quite different. You can really love a culture and think it is great, but be completely unable to function in it. (Seen WAY too often with Japanophiles coming to Japan...) Obviously some of that is going to fall to personality, but a lot also falls to surroundings and experiences. Those sort of things set your attitude and can end up turning things quite sour. Not to even mention a difference in expectations.

I would say that one of the largest factors in an international relationship would be the willingness of each side to compromise to some extent when outside their cultural comfort zone. That willingness to compromise is going to be based on personality, but it isn`t going to erase cultural differences. Just make it a lot easier to smooth things over.


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04-21-2009, 09:42 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MMM View Post
I can't say if the examples you have noted are culture related or not.

I loved living in Japan and being immersed in Japanese culture, but that doesn't mean I didn't eat cheeseburgers and fries when I could. I would travel into Osaka on Sundays just to buy bagels.

I know Japanese people in America who have lived here for many years, but still don't feel they have had a complete meal unless they have steamed rice.
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04-22-2009, 09:34 PM

I think the real answer is yes and no :P

Sometimes there can be a misunderstanding.
Then again misunderstandings of the same type can occur between two ppl from the same country. Does someone from California always 'get' someone from Ohio. Or the same for any two other places.
The first family I knew in Japan the dad was a local in Kagoshima but is wife was from up north, they were like ppl from two diff countries.

On the other hand, yes, it really can be an excuse. I've seen it many times.
then again we all look for excuses, dont we?
I guess that one was just easier to grab hold of because it always bandied about so much its likely to be in your conscious mind.

In another example, from when I was living in Aust.
A polish lady was married to an Aussie chap and they ended up divorced.
From then on she was utterly convinced that cultural differences was the sole cause of the breakdown of any relationship between two people from diff countries or cultures. Curiosly, statistical evidence suggests that marriages between ppl from diff countrie have a lower div rate in fact.
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By the way, did the Japanese culture originate from Korean culture? - 04-23-2009, 11:26 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by snowmanf View Post
I think the real answer is yes and no :P

A polish lady was married to an Aussie chap and they ended up divorced.
From then on she was utterly convinced that cultural differences was the sole cause of the breakdown of any relationship between two people from diff countries or cultures.
That perfectly relates to my original point of the excuse scenario.

I am finding in Australia that an Aussie and non Australian relationship always leans towards the non Australian thinking the Aussie should understand his or her culture, although I'm not believing that the non Australian is interested in understanding Aussie culture.

Having said that, I don't think Australia has much culture being such a young country.

In that respect, could it possibly be that other European, Asian and American cultures or much stronger, hence the need for Australians to understand more?

It's going to be a difficult debate, although would be great to hear some more Japanese opinions on the topic, considering Japanese culture is so strong.

By the way, did the Japanese culture originate from Korean culture?
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