When decades space between birthdays of couples it can be cause for gossip. When west meets west the age between couples is rarely more than 5 to 8 years. However when east meets west huge age differences are the norm.
I can clearly remember my first experience with a friend who I will call Tom married his pen-pal from the Phillippines. He was 42 and she was just 21. I knew about the age difference before hand and had seen some photos of her and she was just gorgeous. So he had traveled to Cebu in the Philippines got married inside two weeks and returned to the states alone as the visa process was lengthy.
When she finally arrived several months later he arranged a party for her and invited several of his friends including myself. Of the bunch I was the only one who had foreknowledge of her age and appearance. I was also the first one to arrive at the party. What happened next was the basis for this series.
When the first couple arrived they seated themselves in the living room and he got them started with snacks and beverages. Soon after 2 other couples arrived at the same time. Tom’s filipina wife being shy was more or less hiding in the bedroom, and after a few minutes of coaxing she came out to greet the 3 couples and myself. The men guests reacted very differently than the women guests and it was very apparent in their body language what was going through their minds.
The men immediately smiled and it was very easy to see they approved even before she said hello. The women on the other hand reacted negatively to both Tom’s young wife and their husbands apparent approval of her. With everyone around the age of 40 the wives were starting to show their age and apparently felt threatened that they could so easily be replaced by a young very attractive Asian woman set off alarm bells. Before my friend married his young bride, his now ex-wife was also about 40 and friends of the guests. Her age and appearance was similar to the guests showing the mileage. However she had since moved on to other parts of the country and was no longer in contact.
As the evening progressed the men were clearly impressed and made several comments on how lucky Tom was to have a young attractive wife. This absolutely won zero points with their wives and the men heard about it on the way home as was later reported. The women were polite and kind as one should be and other than that, the evening progressed nicely as everyone got acquainted. Tom’s young wife proved to be a shining star once her personality started to emerge after the initial shyness. This no doubt upset the women even more because they obviously saw that Asian women go out of their way to take care of their man, when western women could care less.
The big issue here was simply the women were jealous and the thought of being replaced with someone half their age was no less than a slap in the face. They had slacked off in more ways than one when it came to their husbands. All the pre-marriage courtship had long since ended and they were in the same grind. In short their marriages were not as healthy as they could be. Partly due to the thinking that if divorce ever came of it, the men would have a problem finding what could be seen as a quality wife. Obviously that little bit of perceived security was shattered into tiny pieces.
To be continued in part 2 of this 4 part series.