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“They've Been Together For 20 Years Now”
“They've Been Together For 20 Years Now”

"My friend Richard has a mail-order bride from the Philippines. He's a scruffy redneck long-haul trucker from West Virginia, she's tiny, slender, and ten years his junior. At first, she cooked, cleaned, and kept his bed warm, but after a few years, she told him she wanted an education. He put in a ton of overtime and saved up enough to put her through college. She's a physician's assistant now and makes more money than he ever has, but she still makes him dinner and makes a point of always being waiting at the door when he gets back from a long haul; They've been together for 20 years now and it's a joy to see them together."

“It's Even Creepier In Person”

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“It's Even Creepier In Person”

"One of my mom's friend's married a mail order bride from the Philippines about ten years ago. I spent New Years at their house two years ago and let me tell you it's even creepier in person than you ever dreamed it could be. He's approaching 80 by now and she's mid-thirties. He just hangs off of her, insisting on PDA at every opportunity. I think she's remarkably well-adjusted given the circumstance. Over the years she's saved enough money to bring over several family members, which I'm sure is some welcome solace."

“My Mom Was A Mail Order Bride”

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“My Mom Was A Mail Order Bride”

"Although my parents were always too ashamed to admit this to anyone but myself and my sister, my mom was a 'mail order bride' about 23-24 years ago. This was before all the online companies that do this, so my father had to find my mother in a sort of magazine catalogue of Filipino women. He sent her letters, and she replied, over the course of a year. They finally met and my mom moved to my dad's tiny hometown, got married, and they had two daughters together (one being myself).

They were both looking for a better life and someone who would treat them better than past partners had. And they both got that, plus it turns out they both have the travel bug. So now they're retired, living a nomadic life traveling the globe, and they got more than they ever hoped for.

Sure, I've always known there were some serious cultural differences between my parents that they've never been able to fully reconcile. My mom, being from a very traditional village in Northern Philippines, has a hard time understanding a lot of North American norms and beliefs, and they butt heads over a lot of small things. These cultural clashes have taught me so much though, and their collective love of travel and culture has inspired me to study Anthropology and travel around the globe."

“She Hated Him”

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“She Hated Him”

"One of my uncles, who is Filipino, convinced one of his white coworkers to marry his 28 year old niece who was still living in the Philippines at the time. The guy was at least 20 years older than her. The relationship was really rocky the first 2 years. She hated him, basically. But she stuck with the relationship, got him to go church and they were more or less, together. About ten years into the marriage the guy needed a kidney transplant. Months pass, he can't work anymore and she's spending all her free time outside of work taking care of him at the hospital while he's waiting for a kidney. I visited one time while he was in the hospital and she broke down telling my other relatives and me how much she loved him and she didn't want to lose him. The doctors finally give him like less than 3 months to live if he doesn't get a kidney and after a month and half later, he got the kidney, recovered and went back to work within a year's time. At a family get-together he bragged to everyone including me about how amazing he feels and how much he thought he was dead and that he was blessed to have a new lease on life. Then a few months later I get call from him saying that he's met someone online and that he still considers me family. In shock, I tell him I'm busy and then called my aunt who then explained to me he found a 21 year old single Filipina mom from Cebu and already filed divorce papers against my uncle's niece, who was almost 40 at the time."

“He Wanted One Of Those Stereotypical Asian Marriages Where The Wife Existed To Please Their Husband”

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“He Wanted One Of Those Stereotypical Asian Marriages Where The Wife Existed To Please Their Husband”

"I went to a college course and one of the other students was a pretty obvious mail order bride.

She was Thai and the more we got to know her the more she shared about this relationship, she was late 20s and he was at the lower end of 60. He didn't work but had received some big work compensation payout and was apparently quite wealthy because of that. She told us they met online on one of those 'meet Thai ladies who are just dying to be your girlfriend' kind of sites, and after talking for all of two weeks they agreed to marry. This country is a little bit stricter about these sorts of unions so there were some hoops they had to jump through such as he had to go visit her for a certain amount of time in Thailand before starting the process, but essentially they were engaged after a few weeks and married within a few months.

The guy essentially wanted one of those stereotypical Asian marriages where the wife was subservient and existed to please their husband. She would tell us he would make her wait till he was done to eat and he would only let her eat 'ladylike' foods like salad, he paid her a monthly 'salary' which was pretty abysmal and she had to use that for clothing and other essentials. He also wouldn't let her go anywhere by herself and would drop her off and turn up an hour before classes ended in case we got let out early to drive her home. I remember we had to do a group assessment and I had given her my phone number and he forced her to delete it (I'm a female). I think the saddest part was when she asked a bunch of us if we could get birth control pills for her because her husband kept destroying her scripts/pills, and you could tell she was absolutely terrified of getting pregnant.

The weird thing though was that she wasn't terribly bad off in Thailand, her family was apparently quite wealthy and she had her own home and stuff over there but for whatever reason, she didn't want to live there. Personally, I would have ran the second I saw that purple faced blob of a 'husband.'"

“She Tried To Help Her Friends Back Home Hook Up With Guys Here”
“She Tried To Help Her Friends Back Home Hook Up With Guys Here”

"One of my best friends was a mail order bride.

Well, she was a Czech girl on a website who you could write to and eventually visit and if everyone agreed she'd come back to the US and marry you, which is what she did with a programmer guy here I never met personally.

She was dedicated to being positive and loving and was stunningly gorgeous with fantastic curves, and honestly, she's one of the smarter/better people I've ever met.

She tried to help as many of her good looking friends back home hook up with programming geeks over here as she could-even introduced me to one though I didn't get any spark at all from it and it went nowhere. Good looking woman, nice to chat with, but no shared interests, no spark. Oh well, I still appreciated the thought.

The sad part to the story was she helped bring over her best friend from home - a really gorgeous blonde girl, she was ridiculously attractive. Then her husband cheated on her with the new girl and got her (the new girl) pregnant. Such an idiot.

Anyway, my friend moved on, got herself a new guy, geat guy too.

Overall, it left me with a really good impression of the whole possibilities there, and I'm really glad I got to know her."

“She Has Truly Changed Him For The Better”
“She Has Truly Changed Him For The Better”

"About 10 years ago I was working as an actor/guide in a medieval castle in a very small French village.

The owner of the castle was a 50 something, very stereotypical French man with a moustache and as rude as you'd expect him to be. He was very greedy, paid us a quarter of what we agreed on, blah blah. I worked there every summer for 4 years. At the end of the 3rd year he 'mail ordered' a bride from the Philippines, went there quite often, and by the next year they were married and she was flown to France. She was like 20-years-old.

When summer started she had been there for 2 months. She didn't speak French, but she knew some English. The thing was that her husband didn't want her to speak English, he said she would 'learn French the hard way.' She was miserable. No one could understand her and her husband wasn't a very nice man. Since my English wasn't too bad I started hanging out with her. I'd teach her a few simple words in French whenever her husband was near, and when he wasn't we switched to English and she'd tell me about her family, her village, her friends.

We hung out a lot, no one else bothered to talk to her cause they didn't understand her. The castle owner freaked out because he thought she was cheating on him with me (mind you I was a 15-years-old, awkward, small guy who could barely look a person in the eye). One day he got really angry and threatened me, and just as he started to get violent she yelled at him to 'stop the nonsense,' that she would get on the first plane back to her country or that she would call the police and send him to jail. And it worked! He calmed down, apologized, and that's when we all realized that this terrified, petite and frail woman could basically turn into a she-hulk with a Filipino accent.

We lost contact for a few years. I saw them again last year, and she has truly changed him for the better. She speaks perfect French but she decided to speak English with me just to annoy her husband. He's become very kind, very patient and generous. She has a strong temper. They seem happy together. They have a son whose second name is my second name (husband doesn't know)."

“Let Me Correct A Few Common Misconceptions About How It Works”
“Let Me Correct A Few Common Misconceptions About How It Works”

"I have been married to what some might call a 'mail order' bride for almost a year now, but first let me correct a few common misconceptions about how it works now (in the USA, at least).

First, you can no longer just get a catalog and pick a woman out of it and pay to have her sent to you. 20+ years ago maybe, but not anymore. In order for her to get a K-1 Fiancée visa, you have to have met her in person at least once and provide substantial evidence of a meaningful relationship such as pictures with both of you, email/phone/chat logs, or other documents such as travel records showing you were both in the same place at the same time (You can apply for an exception to this on cultural grounds if both you and her are part of cultures that regularly practice arranged marriages).

Second, she still has to go through all of the procedures involved in getting a permanent immigration visa. That means background checks, medical checks (which can usually only be performed at a very short list of places who naturally charge a lot), tons of documents from both parties, and an interview in person at her country's US embassy (or sometimes at a consulate) which might be a really long way for her to go if she doesn't live in her country's capital city.

Third, if you meet her through a service (legally known as an 'International Marriage Broker,' or IMB) designed specifically to match Americans with foreigners looking to marry and immigrate, you have to get a background check done on yourself, and that information is then given to her as soon as you start talking. This information includes things such as your criminal record (especially any history of domestic violence), your marital and family history (number of previous wives/divorces, number of children) and personal information (age, full legal name, etc).

All that said, I went on a tour of Thailand as a combination vacation and to meet some of the women on one of these sites. I was 34 at the time and the next youngest man who was there at the same time as me was 48, and I'm pretty sure all of them (8 others) had been married before at least once. As for the women, some just seemed like they wanted money or free food/drinks, others seemed like they just found foreigners more attractive but had no interest in leaving their country, and very very few seemed like they might be honestly interested in me and in moving to America eventually. Most of them I couldn't even have a conversation with since they didn't speak enough English. I consider myself lucky to have found the woman who I ended up marrying since she was both one of the honest ones and she had a university degree in English.

I kept in touch with her daily over internet chat and video chat, and I flew back to see her 3 additional times before the 5th and final time when I flew over there with my family and she flew back with us. We had a traditional Thai engagement ceremony while my family was there and we had a small courthouse wedding a month after we got back to America.

Our first anniversary is next month, and right now she's going to an American community college to try for an associate's degree here while cooking me delicious Thai food all the time. So I'd say it's going great so far. We've had a few arguments/fights (like I assume most newly married couples do, especially ones that didn't live together before marriage) but I'd do it all again in a heartbeat."

“She Attacked Him And Had Him Arrested”

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“She Attacked Him And Had Him Arrested”

"My dad had one a few years back (I was 17). He met her online and flew out to get her after a while. She was a shut in and was legitimately afraid of me. It was a weird dynamic. If I was home she stayed in her room, unless I had been in my room for an extended period and she deemed it safe to get food from the kitchen. My room was in the basement just for clarification. The few times we crossed paths she would see me, gasp and then run to her room. My dad never saw this as a problem. He basically catered to her every want and need. Also, I should mention he was 56 and she was 29.

A year later I moved out. Since then she has attacked him on two occasions and had him arrested. Eventually, he sent her back to Uzbekistan, or maybe she left I don't know. I no longer speak to my father so that's the extent of my knowledge."

“It Actually Seemed Like A Nice Fit”
“It Actually Seemed Like A Nice Fit”

"I used to work retail with a Filipino woman who was a mail order bride. She was a tiny little thing, around 35 years old, and her husband was a very large, stocky white man around 50-55. I thought it was very weird when she first told me, but when I met him and saw them together, it actually seemed like a nice fit. He was always coming into the store to bring her lunch or to buy her things, and pick her up from work on his motor scooter. It was pretty cute watching them ride it together. It seemed like he really enjoyed spoiling her, and when she talked about him, she seemed very much in love with him. It didn't appear that he was particularly wealthy or anything, but he treated her very well and they seemed very happy. Just before I left that job, she had just became pregnant with their first child."

“I Know Of 3 People Who Got Mail Order Brides”
“I Know Of 3 People Who Got Mail Order Brides”

"I know of 3 people who got mail order brides.

One guy was a 40s-50s successful college professor and fairly known author in his field of study. He got a mail-order bride from China or something. Never saw or met her, but the professor always talked about her and was candid about their arrangement. It was like any other middle-aged professor talking (affectionately) about his wife during lectures. It was cute.

Another guy lived in the same building as me. I always thought he was super weird. 40-50 bald, chubby man, always wore knee-high socks with short shorts. Mean guy too, always looked upset. One day he had a woman with him. Pretty, I guess -- no make up, dressed in bland shirt and bland sweat pants all the time. She never spoke to anyone, always looked kind of frightened. I worked the lobby of the building and sorted people's mail and discovered she was a mail-order bride from Thailand or something. I suspected he bullied/intimidated her into not talking to anyone, or maybe she was just shy and didn't want to.

Last guy was a co-worker, around my age too (at the time, early 20s). I was surprised because the guy was reasonably handsome and genuinely likeable. He had a mail-order bride from Korea and was very open about it. She'd stop by the office to drop off lunch for him a few times, and they had a baby son. They were a perfectly normal, happy young couple."

“The Girl Left Him As Soon As She Legally Could”
“The Girl Left Him As Soon As She Legally Could”

"I had a friend of a friend who did it. He was an unappealing neckbeard with a terrible personality.

He got a truly gorgeous Vietnamese girl (through some bride-to-order agency) who was really sweet and seriously, a catch.

The girl left him as soon as she legally could (having gained citizenship).

Honestly, I think the deal worked out really well for both them. I also think if the guy was worthy of her, or even just you know, a sweet guy, she would have stayed."

“He Has A Wife And Daughter Who Care About Him”

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“He Has A Wife And Daughter Who Care About Him”

"My uncle is married to a wonderful Filipino 'mail order bride.' He's socially awkward; she's warm, gregarious and funny. They've been together probably 18 years and they have a great, well-adjusted kid.

As a teen, I thought it was such a weird relationship. I imagined, for her, that it was very shallow and lacking in fulfillment. Now, I can see that they both got a better life-her financial situation improved, as well as that of her family back home. She has a beautiful child, and she married into a pretty nice family. For my uncle's part, he has a wife and daughter who care about him and help him navigate the world.

I adore her mostly because she was so good to my grandmother (uncle's mom). She visited her all the time, called her 'mom,' made sure her daughter (she's my cousin even though she's younger than my own kids) had a solid relationship with grandma. All in all, I think my uncle seriously lucked out by meeting such a great bride."

“The Culture Gap Was Just Too Much To Overcome”
“The Culture Gap Was Just Too Much To Overcome”

"I actually married a 'mail order bride' if you can call it so. She wasn't actually a mail order bride but I went to Moscow and stayed at a hotel where it is known that Russian women who are looking for a foreign (preferably American/German) husband hang out. Anyway I met her there, we had a short romance and we got married and she moved with me to the US. I can't say the marriage was a success because we divorced 2 years later. The culture gap was just too much to overcome and obviously she understandably didn't have love on her mind but rather a way to improve her life and move to another country. I still harbor no resentment and take responsibility."

“My Great-Grandmother Saw The Ad And Said She'd Do It”

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“My Great-Grandmother Saw The Ad And Said She'd Do It”

"My great-grandmother was a mail order bride.

A man in Central Louisiana had been widowed and wanted someone to raise his kids and help out on the farm. This was 1935-ish. My great-grandmother saw the ad (in Kentucky) and said she'd do it. However, she neglected to tell him she'd be bringing 4 kids with her. I guess when she got here, the guy was like 'oh well, that's cool' and allowed her and the kids to stay. My grandmother was the only one to stay down here, though. The other kids went back to Kentucky or Indiana when they were old enough."

“She Just Up And Disappeared One Morning”

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“She Just Up And Disappeared One Morning”

"I think an old high school buddy of mine did this. Went off to college on the west coast, came back with a Thai wife who barely spoke any English. He spoke a bit of Thai, but not much. They were together for about 3 years, then she just up and disappeared one morning, leaving their son behind. Not sure what happened to her. He claimed she went back to see her family. We joke that he killed her.

He may have killed her though."

“He’s 75+ Morbidly Obese And Uses A Power Scooter”
“He’s 75+ Morbidly Obese And Uses A Power Scooter”

"A patient at my uncle chiropractic clinic is 75+, morbidly obese, and uses a power scooter. One day he scooted into the building with an extremely attractive Filipino girl (early 20's) riding on his lap. She was a mail order bride.

The old guy was pretty wealthy, so I've always imagined swooping in after he dies."

“We Got Married 9 Days Later”
“We Got Married 9 Days Later”

"I met my wife through a website. I was 40, she was 25.

We chatted online and long distance for a couple of months. Then I took a trip to go meet/visit her in her country. She had a regular job working for USAID in Zambia.

I remember seeing her in person for the first time at the airport in Lusaka. I was struck by how tall and beautiful she was. We got married 9 days later.

That was 12 years ago. We're still together and we've got 4 kids.

Sometimes these relationships don't work out, but sometimes, they do."

“Both Marriages Didn’t Last”

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“Both Marriages Didn’t Last”

"My dad's coworker got one from Vietnam. He went on a 'love vacation' or whatever they call it. They got married shortly thereafter and she moved to the US. Then, after three months in the US, she called the cops on him, saying he was abusing her. He got kicked out of his own house, she divorced him, and he lost a bunch of assets to her.

A couple years later, I found out he married another one from a different country, thinking he'd have better luck. I don't know what happened with that one for sure but I know it didn't last either."

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