Three Reasons for Yangxifu Pride

It’s a mixed bag of reactions whenever I declare I’m a yangxifu, foreign wife/bride, at least in the United States. As a possibly necessary disclaimer, I do not inform acquaintances merely by translating into English, but may mention my husband is Chinese.

Self-identifying as a 洋媳妇 in China would always illicit positive responses, especially from the taxi drivers who mistook my nationality, identifying me as Russian. Many saw nothing out of the ordinary in a Russian woman marrying into a Chinese family.

I mesmerize millennials and many, but not all, of my peers, when I disclose my husband’s nationality. They get caught up in “the trans-national romance,” many having been abroad understanding the subtle nuances of creating lasting bonds, perhaps not as lasting as mine.

However ill conceived the reactions may be, here are three reasons why I exude pride as a yangxifu:

1. I  pick up a new character, word, phrase of the Chinese language everyday, and how many Americans can even claim this? 

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Although I am not dedicating serious time and energy to mastering Mandarin, I’m always refreshing, revitalizing, or refurbishing the language chops. Yes, many can lay claim to language learning everyday, but yangxifu pick up bits and pieces of their families’ language quirks, and if we’re lucky enough, a dialect. A shroud of comprehension began to envelope me when hearing my in-laws use Shaanxi dialect over Skype on Turkey Day.

2. Daily rituals inspired by traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). 

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Credit: Pinterest via Stephanie Bonck

Limiting your intake of ice water, cold water, cold foods, and fruits during your menstrual cycle. Drinking 红糖, brown sugar packed with ground ginger and dates. Being open to more natural remedies to ward off colds, digestion issues, and other ailments. Understanding, and interest in the yin/yang elements, or components foods, our bodies, and other objects possess.

3. Once a yangxifu, always a yangxifu. 

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All dolled up for our wedding ceremony, Feb. 2014

Clearly, I don’t seem to fit the yangxifu bill as hubby and I now live in the US. Does that make him a foreign husband/groom? 😊 No, referring to him as a foreigner does not suit us at all; self-identifying as a yangxifu, because we married in China, and my own adoration for the term (yes, I know it’s not a wholly positive term of endearment), I’ll stick by the affirmation of “once a yangxifu, always a yangxifu!”

Check out the 28 days worth of NaNoBloPoMo challenge: 

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4 thoughts on “Three Reasons for Yangxifu Pride

  1. CrazyChineseFamily says:

    I see you had also your adventures when Chinese think that you are Russian 🙂
    Over the past years I can’t even count anymore how often I was asked from which city in Russia I am from, telling them that I am in fact from Finland/ Germany they just ignore it and go on with Russia…

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