The Socials: hopes and outcomes

Tanya Proidenko

Over 20 years back when USSR collapsed and the former Soviet block countries were first opened up to westerners marrying a Russian woman became the dream of tens of thousands of western men. Many guys did get into successful relationships, however, just as many became victims of scams of all sorts. And the more years pass after the country's collapse and desperation, the more varied the scams become. Many of them are so well hidden one won't even consider them a scam. 

One of the popular ways western men use to meet Russian ladies is Socials (social events for meeting single women). They are arranged by a bunch of dating services and the explanation for their efficiency given by agencies is that in these events men meet not just one woman, but many, and have a really good choice of a life partner.

Working as an interpreter at socials I often observe this picture: just 5-6 guys (mainly Americans) who came on the tour are enjoying the company and attention of tens of pretty ladies and their interpreters. How many of these meetings will result in a real relationship? Perhaps one out of 100, and most probably - none. 

The reasons for this are quite obvious. And the first one is - most of these girls have no any intentions (!!!) to find a husband abroad. A couple of weeks before the social Russian and Ukrainian cities are full of ads run by dating whatever dating agency is arranging them saying: "Any single women under 35 are welcome to join a social party with free food, drinks, dancing and a chance of meeting a nice western guy for relationship." What girl would not take up on an offer of a free party? A serious one probably wouldn't. While all the party-girls of town will immediately be there. I saw some desperately drunk girls in these sorts of social parties and I saw some that definitely looked like a professional escort in search of a client. 

The second reason why socials hardly ever work is that something given as a positive reason to join them is actually a negative one - and that is meeting so many women rather than one or two. Even if there are some good and serious girls in the crowd, by the end of evening men don't remember any names and will even confuse the faces of everyone they met up with in these few hours. After having met a 100 women within one evening no wonder a guy would have a hard time remembering all of them! And even just half of them! ))) 

And of course, agencies will recommend men to set up meetings with as many girls as possible to have more chances of meeting their soul-mate. But are the chances really there, or is it just a chance for the agencies to make some money by charging for direct contact of each girl? (Ladies in social events aren't encouraged by their agencies to give out direct contacts, and if they do, they are sort of cheating on the agency). 

I'm not being negative, just realistic. If you hope to meet a serious Russian girl for marriage or relationship, try to meet one via a social network, perhaps some dating service - but it should be only one girl, whom you can really get to know better. Perhaps you can write regularly to a maximum of 2 or 3 so as to have a back up. But it's always worthwhile to only meet with people you already knew well in advance when visiting Ukraine or Russia in case you want a serious relationship. However, if you just want a fun party, and perhaps a short-term company of some party-people for entertainment - socials are the perfect thing.

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