Understanding the Filipino Way of Reasoning

Understanding the Filipino Way of Reasoning

The following is a guest post submitted by Geoff, who has an interesting story to tell about understanding the Filipina mindset. Check out his story. He has some valuable lessons to share. Many thanks to Geoff for sharing his wisdom. Here's the post:  april and friends


Well,you're in luck. I'm the guy with all the answers. I first married a filipina in 1983 so I  speak from experience  and now I'm prepared to  share  my wealth of knowledge with  all  my  friends  out there. Ok, now  I'll  fess  up. I'm  only  deluding myself (but the  fantasy was  great  wasn't  it?)

After  being divorced  from my filipina after all  these  years I'm no  wiser  now then that  fateful day in 1983  when I  married  my  filipina  gf as  a  31-year-old  guy. Oh,   sure there have been moments along the way when i  kidded myself that I  understood  the thinking of  a filipina and woman in general,   and  I  had a unique and  deep  understanding of the  filipino culture.

But now I  face the  ultimate reality  after being married  for 14 years and  divorced in 1997,  and after  a  total of 16  visits to the  beautiful  Philippines  I understand  nothing at  all. But I'm now  prepared to  share  my  lack  of wisdom and  a  few  experiences  with all  you  married  guys  out there.

After Christine (not her real name, to  protect the  guilty ) and I  were divorced  I decided  that  I'd had enough  and  admit  defeat, I will  remain single the rest of  my  life.  No longer  do I need to  bash  my head against a brick wall day after day  through  frustration.

Now  we  leap  to the year  2010. I am much more mature and  much  wiser. I now have the patience and the wisdom to  understand any  situation  (hope  springs eternal) so  i  began to  chat  a  beautiful  filpina in Mindanao. After Jojo and  I  chatted for  3  months, I    stayed in her  modest home at the foot of the mountains 3 hours north of Davao  city for  6  weeks. 

Jo is  a widow (her husband passed away in 2005). Everything seemed  perfect. We took the  kids shopping: an  iPod for  Cindy, a  bike  for Russel, a portable  cd  player  for  Sandy. Everything was so perfect. Jojo loves me. The kids love me.

The next  few  months I sent  five balikbayan boxes. "Oh, thank you  a million times,  honey" everyone chanted. Last June  2011  I returned to Mindanao  (this will  be  bliss: I  will  watch  Russel  riding his  bike, Cindy  will  be in her own world  listening to her  iPod , Sandy with his  cd player. I (we) will  be  so  happy.

Reality bites,  and  he was about to  bite  my  butt. Hugs, kisses all  around.

  • "Welcome home, honey,  the  kids are excited to see you, as I am."
  • "Hi,  Cindy, how many songs do you have on your iPod?"
  • "Oh, sorry  Uncle. It was lost  long  before."
  • "Oh,  Sandy, how's the cd  player,  man?"
  • "Sorry, Uncle, it's broken."
  • "Hey, darling, so now you are collecting scrap  metal?."
  • "No,  honey, that's the bike of Russel. Do not wori that is  only  material things,  walang  problema,  honey."

Ok , now to  share  my  profound  knowledge and wisdom with  you  guys .As you have made a pretty  woman your  wife and you want to be happy the rest of  your  life, don't ask me. After all these years, I have no understanding of  woman and filipino  reasoning at all.


22 thoughts on “Understanding the Filipino Way of Reasoning

  1. I dont know that this is unique to Filipinas and their kids. I have bought multiple ipods, music players and cell phones for my two kids. Some have been broken, lost, or go unused. My son’s $250 BMX bike that he begged for, has probably been ridden no more than 10 times in 2+ years. My daughter never learned to ride her bike. Our Wii system is rarely used.

    Come to think of it, I did similar stuff when I was a kid. Expensive toys got ignored. Cheap toys (or the boxes the toys came in) got played with for years. It happens.

    • Good point, Dave. I’m an older geezer that grew up in the 50’s and didn’t have any expensive toys. I did have a bicycle that I treasured and took care of, but I think things are different now no matter what country you live in. I’ll let Geoff, the author of this post, put his two pesos worth in if he likes. I enjoyed his article, and will be happy to publish any guest posts that deal with the Philippines in some way. Thanks for your input, Dave.

  2. Sorry but this has nothing to do with the Philippines but has everything to do with human nature. Things that cost nothing have NO value. Make the children work for what they get…then they will take care of it.

    • Great observation Gary! That is what I have instilled in my children in the US. People here cannot believe that my two children work and support themselves while going to college in the US. My children only ask for help in a crisis and I have not had to help either one in the last two years. My children for sure will not be marching with the occupiers. Haha!

      • Gary, Tom,

        Totally agree with what you say. I worked myself to death for 6 years to help pay for there college while they both worked. Had to also give them money for emergency situations. I told them once college was done you are on your own. You have to sink or swim. I sacrificed alot so they could get there college degrees w/o any loan debt. They really appreciated it. So far have not had to help them at all. Nowadays kids really don’t appreciate things unless the money comes out of there own wallet and its not so easy to replace something that breaks.

  3. Thanks for the replies to my post .i tried to tell my story in a lighthearted way .like Dave(the Kano)I grew up in the 50s.Life was hard.Dear Mom was widowed at a young age with 10 hungry kids to support.I treasure what i have and count my blessings every day .Surely its only natural that wanted to buy gifts for my gfs kids.Maybe i was expecting too much when i they thought everything would be treasured ..I’ll ponder that when i ride my 1966 Speedwell bike to the shops .

    • Geoff, I did not come from such a large family, only two younger brothers. Mom did not pass away until five years ago. But I can assure you we appreciated what we had, and really enjoyed what little gifts we would occasionally get. A trip to Dairy Queen during the summer to get a five cent Dilly Bar was indeed a treat. We went to school with patched jeans and cardboard on the bottom of our shoes to keep the rain out of the holes of our shoes. If not for Grandma and Grandpa giving Mom and Dad groceries we would have gone hungry at times. Life wasn’t easy, but we treasured what we have. We had chores, but no allowance. I’m grateful for the life I have now. But a “Speedwell” bike? I had to “Google” that one, Geoff. Take care.

  4. Gday Dave ..point taken,sure this is not unique to the philippines and may be a generational thing but these are kids aged 16,14 and 12 yrs old who have never been to Mc donalds or Jollibee because the parents could not afford .i thought they may appreciate my gifts ..anyhow???

    • I have to agree with you, Geoff. I, too, would have thought that your gf’s kids would have appreciated the gifts more, too, and taken care of them. It’s hard for me to comprehend why they did not. I was trained to take care of my stuff. I did. And with your gf’s children never having been to McDonalds or Jollibee’s one would think they would have treasured the gifts. Thanks for the post, please feel free to contribute anytime. I thoroughly enjoyed the story.

    • Geoff,

      I understand its hard to be a single parent, but maybe your girlfriend needed to instill a little responsibility in them when they received the gifts since you spent alot of money for them. Maybe i’m wrong. But thats just my opinon. Good job with article!

  5. I read a great book called “A Long Way to go for a Date” by Henry Makow. It is a true story about an older gentleman who traveled to the Phils to meet and marry his young girlfriend. To quote, “…men harbor a vision of beautiful tropical island women, adoring and submissive.” The story ends badly for him. Although divorce happens with Filipinas, I suspect it is rare. We must always remember Dave’s advice: vet your pretty, young girlfriend thoroughly before making a commitment!

    Regarding the unused toys and gifts, I find that strange, but will remember Geoff’s story the next time I think about my little nieces and nephews, and all the wonderful toys I would like to buy for them.

    • Ice Man, I cannot stress again the importance of that line you bring up: “vet your pretty, young girlfriend thoroughly before making a commitment!” I recently have had emails from some guys that are coming to the Philippines very soon to meet some Filipinas they have been chatting with online. If they ask for money, RUN, RUN, RUN, RUN. And PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE make sure they are single first. A Certificate of No Marriage Record, CENORMAR, can be obtained from the National Statistic Office, NSO, of the Philippines.

      I, too, Ice Man, cannot understand the situation with the gifts. My asawa and I have purchased gifts for our nieces and nephews, too, and they were appreciated and cared for.

  6. The wife gave our son expensive SLR camera and other gifts which he used for a bit and resold to either buy gifts for his g/f or mods to the car. After spending hours in SM trying to understand the 50+ (mainly filipinas) in line waiting for a taxi and the neatly dressed persons wandering SM and other mall… I think I understand. 80% of the 80%that drive a taxi have at least 1 OFW sending them money each month… So they awake wander the streets to SM buy a few items, take a taxi to another place, buy some more and this process has taken up the day. The next day wander the streets and resell what they bought for a profit. Ingenious!

    • It’s a way to make a peso or two, huh, Ricky? Interesting observation . We are told the majority of the homeowners in our subdivision have at least one OFW supporting them. Many have vehicles and can even afford a 1.5 million peso SUV like our neighbor Jesus. Those without vehicles wait for a shuttle, which costs 7 pesos, to take them to the main gate. And I’m talking about young people, not just lolo’s and lola’s. Thanks for your input, Ricky.

  7. One non related thought, don’t post comments while at work. The boss appeared and the I clicked post. I meant to write 80% of the 80% that DONT drive a taxi have at least 1 OFW sending them money each month… Anyway

  8. The Filipinos are really difficult to understand. Every province has its own language and subculture, every sector i.e. peasant, laborer, professional and elite have different upbringing and way of thinking. Items or gifts would be appreciated differently. I wrote a book on a Filipina, The Email Ordered Wife and started a blog, http://www.filipinathenandnow.com. I hope these help other nationals to appreciate and fully enjoy this very unique creature.

    • Filipinos are hard to understand, Lori? I’ve been married to a wonderful, loving beautiful Filipina for over 13 years. But do I understand her and her varying moods? 😯

  9. I have been seeing a Phippina off & on for a while. I met her on line we met in person. She came to my house. made me dinner.
    I was afraid she would steal something. I’ve know her for a year and couple of months. no affection, not even a kiss. And I bought her stuff, handbags, clothes, coats, etc. i feel im being used. Any takers ??

    • John, are you currently in the Philippines and this girl is coming over? Not that it matters in my response because, yes, personally, I feel you are being used. There are plenty of great Filipinas out there that won’t ask for one peso from you or expect any kind of gifts. Time to move on, John. That’s my advice.

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