Dutch Men and Relationships
In love with a Dutch man but can’t understand his quirks? Not enough romance perhaps? Some strange habit that defies logic? Read on:
“Dutch Men” Article from Radio Netherlands, 20 April 2001
Dutch men have no sense of romance. They don’t buy their women expensive gifts but they do treat them as equals and they are faithful. For him diamonds are not a girl’s best friend – he is. These are a few general characteristics of Dutch men that pop up when you talk to foreign women about their relationships with the male Netherlander.
French journalist, Sophie Perrier, recently wrote a book about the men of The Netherlands, for which she interviewed 35 women and one gay man from Germany, Hungary, China, Columbia and the United States among others. All these people live in The Netherlands and all have had a relationship with a Dutch man. Are they really that different from their peers elsewhere, in Belgium or Germany, for example?
Women Are Human Too
Treating someone like a human being may not be what every woman wants but it does have its advantages. Dutch men, according to Sophie’s interviewees, can make very god lovers.
“They’re very happy not playing the dominant role in bed, unlike a lot of men in the world. The Dutch man likes to please his woman, he likes to take time for her, he really cares what she wants and not what he wants. On that point foreign women like a Dutch lover very much. They say he is compromising in bed, like they are in their daily life. Sometimes maybe it’s not as exciting as it was in their country, in some ways they miss the power-game, that was making the sex exciting.”
Those Little Differences
But perhaps behind – or more accurately, standing next to – each of these boring Dutch men is a Dutch woman. In the true spirit of compromise it could be that Dutch men are ‘not so exciting’ because that’s the way Dutch women like them. Sophie’s conclusions might just say more about foreign women than Dutch men.
“Of course, it says a lot about them. They are not as emancipated as Dutch women. They are more traditional, they expect more presents, they expect more romance, they expect to be treated in a special way only because they’re a woman. Maybe it’s not politically correct but I personally feel the difference between men and women bring a lot of charm in life. It brings a little interaction between men and women, a little bit of flirt, it’s just a little game between men and women.”
Objects of Desire
To be this boring and unromantic takes years of training. Sophie puts it down to a combination of religious history, a nation of liberated women and an unrivalled sense of individuality in Dutch men.
“Women don’t want to be treated as objects, that’s absolutely taboo. You have to take a woman as a human being, not as a woman. The second thing is Calvinism in The Netherlands. You don’t have to do crazy things, you don’t have to spend money if you don’t have it. You just have to be very faithful. And maybe the third thing is that they are not scared to do things that are not typical for a man. Dutch men don’t care that a typical man should give flowers, or that a typical man should be very ambitious at work. He doesn’t care about that he just does what he thinks is the best.”
Marks out of ten then from Sophie, just how highly does she rate Dutch men? “I think it would be quite high, 8 or 9, because he’s very emancipated. He’s faithful, you can trust him, he’s nice, he listens to his woman, he treats her as his equal. These women like it very much, especially in the long term. In the beginning they think; ‘well he’s not romantic, he’s not exciting, he gives me such small presents’ but if you stay with a Dutch man for years then I think you will be very happy.”
Another humorous reading on Dutch Men: