I had some discussions with a Chinese college freshman who was obsessed with thoughts of romance.
Katherine assured me that young people really, really want to touch each other, but don't dare to. I soon tired of this and refused to answer such questions. She constantly worried about being too tall and too heavy, and looking older than her age.
Marriage is the final goal, and even bigger business. Marriage is certainly big business in the West, too, but people think romance without marriage is ok. Fantasy gives way to routine; the grind of working to pay their expenses sets in; if the couple ever held hands or - gasp - kissed in public, they stop. I also have the distinct impression that sex stops after a child is born; many Chinese seems to regard romance without marriage and sex without procreation as somehow improper.
With all the emphasis Chinese place on marriage, I find it odd that any romance or displays of feeling seem to disappear quickly after the ceremony and couple set up house.
She would say, “I want a boyfriend, I want a boy to love me, I want a boy to kiss me! I did not have the time, energy, or motivation to do what her parents and her school should have been but were not doing. And by no means should she have sex if she knew nothing about it. One day she told me some Chinese would pretend to be Westerners when chatting, to attract more attention. So she was flattered when he solicited her after he viewed her photo and address on her online profile. A male student, who had more traditional views, said that you shouldn't start talking to strangers, unless someone you knew introduced them. Eric was already thinking of his future wife and worrying about buying a house. After marriage, they are in debt for the rest of their lives.She spent more time playing, chatting with her friends, making phone calls, and daydreaming than she did studying. She agreed, but I didn't observe any change in her manner. What's worse, a man once offered her 5000 RMB to meet him. To her credit, she said she wouldn't accept, no matter how much he offered. I came to learn that many Chinese kids posted all kinds of personal information online, with no thought of the perils. One of her college roommates was sneaking off on weekends to a hotel with a boy she had met online, someone her parents would never accept.. He wanted a girlfriend, but didn't know how to find one. I said there's no need for a boy to get married right out of school, to his first girlfriend. (Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.) That's a good insight into the thoughts of teenager in China.One young man actually jumped up and exclaimed, “I've never heard anyone talk like that!” But a young woman soon to be married, said, “You've never been married? ” I replied that had I a husband and children, I'd still be in the US and not travelling or teaching in China.
When they inevitably ask if I'm married, have children, etc.
and I say no, the world has plenty of children and doesn't need mine, people are shocked.