Post Number: 1
|Posted on Monday, June 11, 2007 - 5:02 pm: |
I need some advice about the culture in Argentina. I have been happily married to a man from Argentina for the last ten years, but there are still some things that I don't understand. First of all, he left Argentina to work here,and he makes a very good living. My question is, lately his family has been calling us and basically demanding we send them money, because they say we're rich[we're not]. He explained that we have many expenses[I'm disabled and have a lot of medical bills]. This information didn't make any difference to them. As far as I understand, they are doing fine, and have quite a few ways to make money.They don't seem to understand that we have a lot of financial obligations. My husband also told me that it's the culture for the man to take care of the relative when they are old. Is this true? Could they be wanting us to send money as a way of "compensating" them for him not taking care of them? I don't mind sending some money, but their bossy attitude about it is unnerving me a bit. Please advise! Thanks
Post Number: 1
|Posted on Monday, June 11, 2007 - 5:50 pm: |
This is not normal, at least in my experience.
Hope this helps
Post Number: 1144
|Posted on Monday, June 11, 2007 - 7:24 pm: |
Argentines and americans understand personal spaces very differently and are taught different things while growing up. What you may feel as an invasion of your space (emotional if not financial) is actually very normal among argentines... sometimes even encouraged. I certainly understand you being upset but better to put it into perspective and not let this bother you. The weak link here is your husband who should know these differences and should have played the role of cushioning the impact of argentine straightforwardness and lack of strong sense of boundaries.
And yes, locals tend to think you have 3 times their money, although when it comes to relative prices this may not be true.
Post Number: 6
|Posted on Tuesday, June 12, 2007 - 12:44 pm: |
lack of strong sense of boundaries. -> It's a cultural matter as you remark it. What you understand as boundaries depends on your cultural background, or in other words freedom and the fear of it depends of your experience.
Returing to the post My Big Fat Greek Wedding is just funny on screen, and i undestand this kind of things are very annoying. If someone call you saying come on help me you are rich, it looks more than a character from 'My name is Earl' more than a typical argentinian tradition.
It's true that in Argentina - more in the country cities are changing a lot about that - the more extended concept of family is the extended one - in a very 'italian' fashion - where if any relative is an elder person with no means that allow him/her to have a good life, all family helps as much as they can. If that person can work and get any kind of decent job relatives helps him/her, buying a suit/dress to applying for a job or giving some pocket money, etc.
Help is great but been pushed not. One thing is asking for help and other thing is black mail.
You can help your husband listening to him but being clear and at the same making him feel loved. In that way he can be honest with himself about their relative's intentions and also understands that not necessary means that their are 'mean people' just that they have an illusion about your situation. If they are honest people they will understand and if the situation is so desperate for them, offer another kind of help that don't envolved giving them money directly.