I remarried about three years ago to a woman from Vietnam whom I met through a friend I work with. We were introduced by my friend who is also from Vietnam. We became pen pals and conversed via e-mail and chat for almost five months before I went to Vietnam to meet her. She was a school teacher in Saigon and had never been married. She and her family survived the brutal takeover by the communist North Vietnamese after the U.S. government abandoned the South Vietnamese in 1975. My wife and her family made several attempts to escape after the war but were caught and imprisoned until they bought their way out of jail. They finally resigned to staying in Vietnam and moved to the central highlands to become farmers. Years later they moved back into the Saigon area and now maintain several homes and properties they have acquired. Things in Vietnam are much better now that the communists have opened the borders to foreign trade and tourists. Most Vietnamese are free to travel anywhere in the country and around the world if they can afford it. I have been there three times and enjoy it immensely as the people are very friendly and just curious about outsiders. My wife has adjusted to life here in Southern California and now works in a nail salon as many Vietnamese women do because it is easy to do and the money is very good. My wife is very survival oriented because of her former life in Vietnam and she still maintains a garden here. She is very thrifty and resourceful as most Vietnamese are. She understands my survival preparations and is okay with them as long as I don’t “break the bank”. None of her family want to come here to the U.S. because they have successful thriving businesses and family back in Vietnam and things are very expensive here. My wife calls her family almost every week and we travel there to visit every year. It has been a wonderful experience for both of us to have met and married. You may post this if you feel your readers might be interested.
Thanks again for a great site with lots of good info about our ever more dangerous and changing world. I am a 10 cent challenge member and have been into survival prepping for more than 30 years. – DC in So. Cal.
The Memsahib Replies: Your suggestion that foreign women make better "survival" wives is very interesting. Many American women I know from the baby boom generation have had it good all their lives. They were brought up in a time of a booming economy and their parents did very well for themselves. These women do not want to face the reality of the weakening American economy. They want to go on their merry way, believing they will be just as affluent as their parents and that their children ought to be even more materially blessed than they were. Most of the practical women I know are women who are in their eighties! They are old enough to understand the realities of the Great Depression. They saw the shortages of the World War II years. It makes sense to me that foreign-born women who have experienced war, persecution, and economic upheaval would be survival minded. My caution would be though that those women might be so desperate to marry an American that they might pretend to be someone that they are not, just in order marry. I also think certain countries have a "national personality" which is more congenial to meshing with the American personality. Native-born Filipinas that I know seem to have a strong Judeo-Christian underpinning but the Soviet Bloc and Communist Chinese women I have known (raised during 60+ years of atheism) have been brought up to look out only for themselves. Make sure that your faith matches that of your prospective spouse. Also consider the differences between women raised in rural villages versus women raised in big cities. For any SurvivalBlog readers considering marrying someone from abroad, I suggest that you interview many men that are already married to women from the country that you are considering. Are they happily married? If not , why not? Is there a pattern of behavior/attitudes that their wives show? I also counsel a really loooooooong engagement!