17 Things That Happen When You Date A Latino Man
You might be a Latino or a non-Latino man or woman who is suddenly dating a cute Latino guy. If you are not familiar with the ways of the Latino men, you have a whole new world to discover.
Here’s our ultimate but non-comprehensive list of things that you will experience in your new caliente relationship. You will find many more, we are sure… but here’s some of the key delights of dating someone of proud Latino heritage.
1. You date the whole family!
Think My Big Fat Greek Wedding. This is simultaneously a blessing and a curse. You will have a whole bunch of new tíos, primos and even abuelitas that will pamper you as one of their own retoñitos. But you will also find that for many of us privacy is not necessarily a rule. You will have to be firm but loving.
2. You discover the benefits of caballerosidad (Old World chivalry)
Many Latino men are old fashioned in their manners. You will soon find that your galán opens the door for you, says por favor and gracias and gives you his seat. If you feel uncomfortable tell him. If you sorta like it just go with the flow and enjoy some chivalry.
3. Your palate becomes more sophisticated (chili is a whole new world…)
Latin America is a diverse continent when it comes to food. Your gringo idea of Hispanic food will be broadened: arepas, tacos, tinga, pozole… your tastebuds are the limit. Just for the record: Tex-Mex food is a no-no.
4. Stereotypes fall like a house of cards
Popular culture in the United States has generated dozens of stereotypes regarding Latinos. Truth is there are rural and urban latinos, cultured and uncultured, queer and straight… Latinos are not made with a cookie cutter you know? Mexicans, Colombians, boricuas, Dominicans, Argentines… we are all different and sometimes we can’t even understand each other!
5. You discover that Spanish is romantic as hell
Good old Español is a multifaceted language that gives ample room to metaphors. Your beau will surely whisper some suave phrases to your ear. Those rodillas will buckle even if he whispers the lyrics to that annoying song “Despacito”. When Latino men apologize for being a jerk you will listen…
6. Your views on world history might change a bit
Latin America is the product of histories of abuse and colonization that indigenous populations were subject to. Later, US and European influence in the continent has had good and bad repercussions. Your man will likely be well versed in history and broaden your perspective, making you question who the good guys and the bad guys truly are.
7. Your geography improves
Latin Americans are proud of their heritage and of the place their family comes from. We can provide details on the different landscapes of our homeland. You will find out, for example, that Mexicans get really cross if you think their homeland is in Central America when it is actually in North America.
8. Your sense of humor gets sharper
Latin American men have a knack for double entendres or doble sentido. Many jokes are buried in layers of meaning and often seem tame at first, but are actually fun in a dirty kinda way.
9. You accept that the world should be a matriarchy
Even if popular culture leads us to believe that Latin American society is ruled by men, the true bosses are the mamás, abuelas and tías who discretely rule the household. You will see how your man turns into a humble little boy in front of them.
10. You get to know a whole bunch of new pop culture references
Latino pop culture goes well beyond Shakira and Ricky Martin. You will suddenly discover the guilty pleasure of telenovelas and the sinuous rhythms of the continent (see our guide here). Figures like Don Francisco are part of daily conversation and you will keep track of Thalia’s whereabouts. Walter Mercado’s horoscopes will be a topic of scorn and adulation in equal measures.
11. You will realize that Latin America has produced amazing painters
Art history is told by hegemonic cultures such as Western Europe and the United States, which is probably why you think of Warhol and Van Gogh when you think about painting. But beyond the amazing Frida Kahlo there are Latino painters like Francisco Toledo, Remedios Varo or Rufino Tamayo who are among the best humanity has produced. You might spot a poster or two at your in-law’s.
12. And amazing writers
Yes we sure love old García Márquez and Neruda, but others like Guadalupe Nettel, Ricardo Piglia, Juan Rulfo and many more are also absolutely fantastic. Make sure your chiquito reads some out loud. A true aphrodisiac.
13. Social justice will be key in your understanding of the world
Credit: Giphy. @Complex.
Latinos in the US have struggled for decades to assert their rightful place in society, which makes us fierce combatants when it comes to social justice. At one point in your relationship you might discover how politically involved latino men are. The man on the picture: César Chávez, the legendary chicano activist.
14. You will stop whispering
Latinos are proud and proud of what we say… so we say things clear and sometimes loud. No need to whisper your opinions: yell them, let the world know who you are and what you stand for. Also, you will have to SCREAM at family dinner sometimes as the whole clan will talk over each other.
15. Yes, it is true: you will learn (or at least try) to dance
Good or bad, most Latino men bust a move when required. For Latinos dance is part of the everyday and a form of physical, emotional and sexual individuality. Un pasito palante!
16. You will own a Che t-shirt
Ernesto Che Guevara has become a cultural and hipster icon worldwide. Unless your pololo is a conservative Latino (they exist, believe us) chances are he thinks El Che is cool and will gift you some paraphernalia. It is sort of an initiation ritual.
17. You will find out that contrary to popular belief, many Latinos are very conservative when it comes to sex
Most Latinos are very religious, mostly Catholic and evangelical. So contrary to the popular belief that Latinos are all sex thirsty sensual machines, you will find that many take things easy and promise eternal love before reaching third base… or even second. Don’t be fooled though, some will try to charm their way into your love.
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