Ten things that happen when you marry a German

  1. You argue about wearing socks or house shoes. I hate socks. I enjoy being barefoot, even if my feet are freezing. LET THEM FREEZE! At least I’ll be comfortable without being constrained by socks.
  2. You disagree with the importance of A/C. Look there are places here (the U.S.) where it is regularly in the 90s and 100s (30s-low 40s). A/C is a must. Last summer all I heard from HB was about how hot it was in Germany, even inside. You know what can fix that? Freaking air conditioning. Granted, Americans usually have it running full blast, and that is miserable, too. I don’t want to dress for the Arctic in the middle of the summer because my house, job, department store, what-have-you is freezing.
  3.  You start trying homeopathic remedies, because “Americans take too many pills.” That’s completely true. American’s are generally over medicated. That being said, if I’m sick pass me the NyQuil. I don’t want to remember being sick. I just want to wake up and be normal again.
  4. You get free German lesson. Okay, so they’re less like lessons and more like eavesdropping on your husband’s phone calls home, and listening to him curse at traffic or something.
  5. You have very heated debates about whether old wives tales are true or not. I kid you not, HB and I have had so many debates recently about some of these. He believes that a breeze on your throat will give you a cough or a cold. I disagree, because SCIENCE! I mean there may be some science out that that agrees with the old wives tales, but I feel like it’s more of a coincidence or self-fulfilling prophecy when that happens. I could be wrong, though, but I’m probably never going to admit to it if I am.
  6. You become a walking dictionary and thesaurus combo set. Now this doesn’t happen too terribly often with us, because HB grew up as a bilingual magical little unicorn (totally not jealous at all…okay maybe just a smidge), but sometimes one of you has to describe what a word means to the other, or you have to try to figure out what word your partner is trying to use by listing off as many synonyms as humanly possible. These are both super difficult. Thankfully we all have smartphones now and can look this stuff up online, because I am awful at defining things. (I’m a horrible English major, okay?!)
  7. You become weirdly elitist about the “best part of Germany” (a.k.a. where your spouse is generally from). Man, HB has me reppin’ Bayern like nobody’s business. I’m even telling other people it’s the best part of Germany. What is wrong with me? I don’t know this. I may like another part of Germany more as time goes on. Hell, I’m from the South and I can’t even tell people that the South is the best part of the United States. WHAT HAS HE DONE TO ME?!
  8. Public displays of affection become the norm. Look the German in the relationship isn’t giving up P.D.A. so you either get used to it and ultimately enjoy it, or stand your ground and y’all reach a stalemate. I just hopped on board. My mom and step-dad were always publicly displaying their affection while we were growing up so it made it easier for me to get over my aversion to it.
  9. One of you may take up cooking food from where the other is from. I do my best to give HB food that is as close to what he’d get at home as possible. It’s not perfect, but it works. I’ve learned to make pretzel rolls, broetchen, schnitzel, and a few other things. I choose to believe it helps with homesickness, even though I have no actual facts to back that up. I’ll never be as good as Oma or his mom, but I can come in a close third, right? Is that a thing? It is now.
  10. You find that the little mishaps, mispronunciations, and incorrect word choices are hilarious, yet endearing. Even though HB is a native English speaker he still occasionally messes up his English by Germanizing a word. (Not that native monolingual English speakers never make mistakes. We do, all the time, and it, too, is hilarious.) I kid you not HB has used “sinking” instead of “thinking” in a sentence before. It was so adorable and so funny. He also can’t get the pronunciation of piranha down to save his life, and I love it. It comes out as peer-an-e-ah, which is literally just the German pronunciation without the article. Are you even trying, love?

Obviously everyone is different, and these aren’t all the little differences that seem to pop up between German-American couples, or even HB and I, but they’re some…or maybe they’re not. I’m curious to learn about some differences between other couples with different nationalities and cultures. Silly or not, feel free to share your experiences or ones you’ve noticed from other people.

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