Parental influence on dating

Especially young males with a Turkish and Moroccan background seem to hold on to the values of the cultures they come from, and particularly Turkish immigrants seem keen on keeping the cohesion of their ethnic group intact by opposing interethnic dating, and by favoring parental influence on mate choice as a way to achieve this goal. 9(1), doi:10.5964/ijpr.v9i1.184 Received: 2015-01-11. In Western societies individuals are generally assumed to freely choose their marital partners.However, independently selecting one´s spouse on the basis of one´s own preferences, and particularly on the basis of romantic love, is cross-culturally and historically a quite rare phenomenon, and has often been considered as decidedly the wrong basis for the choice of a spouse (Apostolou, 2014; Goode, 1959; Harris, 1995; Levine, Sato, Hashimoto, & Verma, 1995; Murstein, 1974; Pool, 1972; Reiss, 1980).We examined (1) to what extent young second generation immigrants of Turkish and Moroccan descent in the Netherlands, and native Dutch do favor parental influence on mate choice; (2) to what extent these young people do oppose mating individuals from the other ethnic groups; and (3) to what extent the perceived desirability of parental influence on mate choice is related to opposition against mating out-group members.The Turkish and Moroccans are by far the largest immigrant groups in The Netherlands: 2.3% of the Dutch population have Turkish origins, and 2.1% have Moroccan origins (which is similar to the percentage for people of Surinamese origin, 2.1%).In contrast, in both Turkey and Morocco, arranged marriages are still rather common.While in Turkey the influence of parents on mate choice has decreased in the past age as a consequence of Westernization, in present day Turkey still about 50% of the marriages are arranged by the families, and extended family involvement in the ceremony of giving permission to the marriage occurred during the 1990´s in 44% of the marriages (Hortaçsu, 2003).In Morocco, many young people currently still believe that their parents should select a marriage partner for them (Davis & Davis, 1995).On the basis of the foregoing, it can be predicted that young Turks and Moroccans in The Netherlands will have a more favorable attitude towards parental influence on mate choice, and will be more opposed to interethnic mating than ethnically Dutch young people,.

In about 70% of contemporary hunter-gatherer societies, the most common form of mate-choice is parental arrangement, where parents, and especially the fathers, choose the spouse for their children, and especially for their daughters (Apostolou, 2007). Kung of South Africa, first marriages are usually arranged by parents and other close relatives (Shostak, 1983), and in a community of Australian aboriginals, marriages are predominantly arranged (Burbank, 1995).

This gender difference was especially pronounced in the Mestizo group – the group with the highest status, who would assumedly have the strongest interest in preserving the status of their group.

The present research was theoretically and methodologically built upon the study by Buunk, Pollet, and Dubbs (2012).

More specifically, the virtually universal criteria that parents tend to impose are that the future spouse of their children should come from the same ethnic group, the same religious group, and the same - or higher - social class (see Apostolou, 2007, 2008, 2013, 2014; Buunk et al., 2008; Dubbs & Buunk, 2010; Sprecher & Chandak, 1992).

The desire to prevent one´s offspring from marrying out-group members may become particularly salient among immigrant groups, where children are usually in frequent contact with members of the majority group and with members of other ethnic groups.

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  1. If you find you don’t like to share, or you just don’t like kids, that’s fine — it’s better to know this and avoid dating men with children, rather than put yourself in a situation that isn’t fair to you, him, or the kids.