Dating and marriage culture

Couples have traditionally been expected to live with the husband’s parents until they could afford a place of their own.In the old days the bride was usually several years older than the groom.So, within a family you will see different last names.

Besides the so-called wife of the first rank, a household sometimes included a second and third wife and their children.

In the past Vietnamese marriages were arranged through matrimonial agents (mai-dongs) who brought the two families together and arranged the question of the wedding portion (bride price).

Interestingly, the woman did not bring any marriage portion, and it was the groom who paid for the wedding presents, brought to the common lot his fortune of rice fields and cattle, and often had to pay money to the wife’s family.

Because the individual is less important than the family, it is expected that the family will have a major voice in the selection of wives and husbands of their children.

This is often done through a "go-between" (male or female) to save "face" in case it is deemed best to break off bargaining.

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