[How is it dating a Brazilian? The views of the article do not necessarily represent all Brazilian men but are just a reflection of my time spent in Brazil and conversations that I have had with numerous individuals on what’s it’s like dating a Brazilian]
Who can resist the allure of dating a Brazilian man, famously known for his passion and his persistence. But what is like to date a Brazilian after you strip away that casanova facade?
My first time in Brazil was in 2012 where I spent 12 days in Rio de Janeiro with a friend that was also Brazilian but was currently living in Brussels. We went down to the local watering hole where I noticed something that I’d never really experienced before. A clash. One after another, women would enter the bar decked out in their finest, sky high heels, short and tight mini dresses paired with heavy makeup and an overabundance of accessories. But as I turned my gaze to the man that stood beside, I was surprised to see wearing a t-shirt, jeans and a pair of sneakers. It looked strange.
First off, because usually this type of fashion show was reserved for a night out at the club, and not the corner bar where you meet cheap beers before heading home. But secondly, it was the fact that the men looked strangely raggedy and disheveled next to their dates. This launched my fascination with the Brazilian dating culture. I later found that, that Brazilian men apparently almost never dress up. In fact, my Brazilian roommate would often make fun our French roommate when he opted for a clean dress shirt and swanky shoes when they went out to pick up girls. In contrast, he would wear shorts, a sleeves shirt and sneakers. They made quite the pair.
Flash forward 3 years. I now live in Brazil as a single woman and the dating culture is something that I yet to fully understand. The first couple of weeks in Brazil, I ended up training with an Englishman who would regal me of stories from Sao Paulo. He stated that infidelity here was rampant and that men would frequently cheat on their wives. And why not? Sao Paulo makes cheating easy with brothel hotel clubs that cater to every type from the middle class man to the rich, young society type. In fact, Sao Paulo has “luxury houses,” in fact, one of the most luxuries brothel in the world is located in Sao Paulo. The Cafe Millennium looks like a large upmarket international nightclub and is complete with a restaurant, swimming pool fitness gym and a shop. Anyway, I digress.
I can not really say whether or not my Brazilian trainer was right about the rampant infidelity between couples within the country. His experience lies on years of training and teaching usually affluent Brazilians who would share his stories. But after logging onto Tinder for the first time in two years, being courted by a number of Brazilians and spending time with gringas and Brazilians, I have noticed a couple of things on what it’s like to date a Brazilian man.
Brazilian men have the extraordinary ability to be almost simultaneously a complete gentleman and a complete ass. Machismo is alive and kicking, at least in Sao Paulo but at the same time there exist a type of respect for women. Here in lies the dichotomy that I consistently struggle to understand and fully accept. When they aren’t trying to emotional screw with your head, they tend to act like complete gentleman, at least at first. They’ll pick up/drop you off from house, open doors, always pour the drinks for the ladies first etc. etc.It can be a complete and often confusing mind….well you can guess what comes next.
Then there is their [quite often] inability to take care of themselves. Unlike many Western countries where both men and woman move out of their parent’s house at an early age, it is quite common to meet men of various ages who still live with their family. Their escape from the next usually happens if they need to move to another city due to a job or when they get find “the one.” The problem is that as they move from one nest to another, they don’t know how to fly.
Ok. At this point you might be calling me out. Bullshit you say. They can’t all be like that. The most shocking thing that I have experienced in Sao Paulo is the Brazilian woman’s admittance of the fact that they don’t like dating Brazilians. At first, when I heard an older woman tell me that she would never date a Brazilian man again, I thought. HEY. It’s probably a special case where the marriage ended badly. Then I heard it from two women in committed relationships who both tried to live with their boyfriends and failed. They became their boyfriend’s new mommies. I was quite shocked when I sat in a group of 3 girls who talked for two hours about Brazilian men and their inability to live without a “mommy figure” in their life that provides for them. But that wasn’t the end of it. I heard it again and again. Never date a Brazilian man.
In truth, my personal experience does not necessarily help my perception of dating Brazilian men. I’ll admit that I have a thing for Latino men. Their passion and their aggressiveness can [initially] be quite refreshing but after finding too many wolves hiding underneath sheep’s clothing, a girl does get quite exhausted. So let’s recap: as a blond hair woman in Brazil, finding men is no problem. At first I scoffed at women’s exhausted comments about keen on dating a Brazilian in the city. My experiences were positive; gentleman treating me with respect. At first.
But after each frustrating experience [around seven to be exact], I realized a common theme: a general self absorption whereas a man only really cares about himself and his needs. This can be seen in the simplest forms, like the way that they dress. Men expect the women to be top notch while failing to show the girl that same respect. But this isn’t the only example. I can definitely give you many more. This self obsession is hard to notice as first because the Brazilian men I dated made it seem like it was all about me, when in reality it was all about them. From the tattoo artist that would stand me up or always arrive late and respond with at least I’m here with you now baby to the feminist philosopher who after pursuing me aggressively and being incredibly sweet realized that he actually just wanted to be alone to the rich society boy that had his license suspended after he blew .001 over the alcohol limit and had his licence suspended after our date and subsequently *hinted* that it was my fault [best thing was that he demanded to see me again as a way to “pay him back.”]
My perceptions and ideas of the dating a Brazilian are obviously limited to my experiences in Brazil, primarily in Rio de Janeiro and in Sao Paulo. And although I have had negative experience, I have also made some great male Brazilian friends [not many but some!] Nevertheless, I can’t help but be intrigued by the number of women [bot gringa and Brazilian] who have warned me: never date a Brazilian man. Is this the end of me dating a Brazilian? We will have to wait and see.
What do you think about my perception of dating a Brazilian [from a gringa’s perspective]? Am I completely off my rocker or do you agree? Do you have a “how to” in dating a Brazilian?