The differences between French and Philippine dating culture can be extremely confusing, so here are some tips about dating a French guy.
Have you read about my recent article on Filipinas dating foreign partners? The Filipina & Mr. Pennybags: Filipinas Seek Out Foreigners for Money – DEBUNKED
Grayson is the only French guy that I have ever dated and to be honest, I didn’t know what to expect or how to go about it when we were just starting. Just like most relationships, communication is the key and keeping a open mind is essential.
#1 You Will Know If They’re Interested
If a French man is romantically interested in a woman, they will let her know right away. They don’t pussyfoot around or play the mind games. They go after what they want, and if they are not trying to see you, take that as a sign and let it go.
Even before we started dating, he’d ask to talk on the phone or do video calls even when I was just waking up. I turned him down a few times mainly because I’m not a morning person – I, of course, explained this to him and he was very understanding. So if you’re dating a French man, expect him to get in touch with you. A lot.
A ‘non’ can sometimes mean ‘yes’ or ‘maybe’ so if a French guy ask you out and you aren’t interested just tell them straight and don’t beat around the bush.
#2 Dating A French Man May Seem Fast-Paced
I didn’t know we were already “dating” until he mentioned a girlfriend – that was 3 weeks into our video calls. I was about to give him a piece of my mind for leading me on when he said he was referring to me (as the said girlfriend).
I was confused as hell.
#3 Exclusivity Is Often Assumed Before It Is Given A Label
Do not bother asking about your relationship status as the French do not do “the talk”, rather they let the relationship evolve as both parties get to know each other in a romantic way. If you spend time together, you’re together, and that’s all that matters.
#4 The French Don’t Kiss And Tell
Unlike most men I’ve dated, he’s probably the most tight-lipped. I remember playing the 20 questions with Grayson. My blunt self straight asked him some intimate stuff and he was horrified. He did answer my questions truthfully but hesitantly.
While some are confident to volunteer this information almost like bragging – It’s as though they needed to prove something. The French would rather let their unspoken words do the talking.
#5 The Rumors Are True – They Truly Are Romantic
My French man randomly throws “Je pense toujours à toi” (I always think about you) or “Je suis accro à toi” (I am addicted to you) or “Tu me fais tourner la tête” (You make my head spin) which I usually respond with “Tu es un beau parleur” (You are a smooth-talker) but deep inside I wanted to pounce on him. To be honest, he ruined every man for me. They’re not just great with words, they back it up with actions.
He knew The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was my favorite childhood book so he sent his copy which was written in French, he then followed up two months after by sending more – in 21 different languages including Italian, Russian, and Korean.
Last Valentine’s day, we spent 15 hours and 46 minutes (according to messenger timestamp) video calling since he couldn’t be with me in person due to travel restrictions (no thanks to the pandemic). Before that, he sent me an enchanted rose snow globe and it arrived a day before.
He also wrote me a letter out of The Beatles songs – because he knew I love the band.
I am not saying they’re extravagant – quite the opposite. They just know how to make you feel special.
I could go on and on but to round it all up… They’re attentive and they pay attention even to the tiniest details.
#6 Expect Tons of Pet Names
He’s already given me all sorts of nicknames such as “Ma belle” (my beautiful one), “Ma chérie” (my darling), “Ma biche” (my doe – though doesn’t look good in English), “Mon Minou” (my kitten), “Ma souris” (my mouse), “Ma Puce” (my flea – doesn’t sound romantic at all), “Ma choupette” (no translations but it’s derived from chou which means cabbage). – Of course, I didn’t mind. It sounded so freaking sexy whenever he enunciates each word.
I call him “Mon Rêleur” (My Grumpy) and he chuckles because he knows it’s true.
#7 They’re Blunt And Likes To Voice Their Opinion
The French are just very blunt and to the point. They tend to speak about something as it is. If you are a laggard in your work, they will tell it to you on your face. If you are gentle, they will tell that as well to you upfront. There’s no sugar coating for your delicate sensibilities here. That’s what I love that about it.
HIM: You’re not wearing the right underwear for the shorts you’re wearing, and your shorts are too short.SEE WHAT I MEAN?
ME: Excuse me?
NOTE: He doesn’t verbally abuse me, alright? So chill. We’re both blunt with each other, for better or for worse. He’s a smart as*, I’m a smart as* and that’s how we roll.
They also tend to be critical, when they find that something is extremely good, as much they’ll say that the thing “C’est pas mal” (is not bad) but you never will find someone saying “it’s perfect” or at least “is very good.” According to my French man, in France, nobody will take you seriously if you’re the kind of person who’s always satisfied (because it shows that you’re not selective, not exigent, and maybe mediocre).
At first, I thought it was just his character – but my French man confirmed that it’s second nature for them to complain. I quite find it amusing as sometimes I don’t see the point of complaining yet there he was complaining about the people that complain about Daylight Saving Time.
On the brighter side, when a French man compliments you, it surely means you managed to meet his expectations or even could surpass them very well. Again, they tend to complain a lot and generally have something to say.
Do you want to know a secret? Try to wear less make-up but dress to impress. 😉
#8 They’re A Little Tradi (Old-fashioned)
My French man told me that most men in France are often quick to leap to a lady’s aid, whether it’s opening a door or helping her with her coat – some feminists might find this appalling but that’s how they were raised. While they treat all women with respect, their woman gets special treatment. I appreciate that he cares about my opinions and listens to me intently. He has shared some of his without being patronizing.
I can attest to this! I remember when I was in Nice, France, and stopped by a convenience store. I was about to shoulder the door open (since my arms are both occupied with shopping bags) when someone opened it for me instead. When I looked up, I thought they were my tour-mates but he was a total stranger. I offered a bright smile and thanked him – ‘Merci bien’. He responded with a tight smile and nodded courtly.
I don’t remember my French man ever spoke ill against an ex or even willingly open up about a terrible relationship – I had to pry it out of him. Like I mentioned earlier, they don’t kiss and tell.
The few times that he was in a foul mood, he might have raised his voice but to the point of yelling? Never. Rather than exclaim profanities, he eloquently described how aggravated he was.
#9 They’re Naturally Charming, Which Can Occasionally Come Across As Flirting
I think it all comes down to them being good listeners, or rather they listen more than they speak. They think about what you are saying, and not about what they will respond to you.
Aside from my French man, I met a few that are likable and are a pleasure to be around. They aren’t busy thinking of a rebuttal or a response. They don’t interrupt people while they’re speaking, try to dominate the conversation, or tell stories to brag about themselves. They don’t use a conversation as an opportunity to give a lecture or unsolicited advice. Instead, they make people feel like they’ve been heard and focus on what they’re saying.
#10 They’re Cultured
One of the things that I love about our conversations is how it escalates into a debate – for a nerdy, know-it-all, I find this refreshing. The French take great pride in their rich literary history and particularly enjoy discussing philosophy. Ask them about art, books, politics, business, or current events and you’ll find yourself gawking at them.
In a lot of countries, they don’t like to speak about politics or other controversial subjects because it can be misunderstood or simply just doesn’t care. They prefer to be friendly and have easy talks. In France, to oppose during passionate debates does not prevent to be friends so the French practice this intellectual sport regularly. And like any sport, the more they train, the better they become. The brain works like a muscle after all.
As I see it, they do not accept everything as truth until they have fully questioned every detail, thought about the subject deeply, provided their own opinion, and convince themselves that it is the truth. Hence, they want to have debates over subjects even as simple as Charlotte Brontë’s motivation to writing Jane Eyre.
Have you ever been in a relationship with a French person? Or a man/woman from another country? What would you add to my list? I’d love to hear your stories in the comments below! ❤️