After you have searched and decided on the lady or ladies you wish to pursue, the customary way of making a first contact with a Russian woman is through a written introduction of yourself to her. This introduction will either be sent by postal mail or transmitted by email. There are advantages with each form of correspondence but the recommendations for the content of your introductory letter are generally the same.
Similar to a job resume the objective of your first letter is to introduce yourself to someone new with the goal of creating an interest and curiosity to learn more about you. You will want to make a positive first impression that inspires a reply.
Remember that ‘you only have one chance to make a first impression’ will be important to keep in mind as you write your introductory letter.
How To Write Your First Letter
· Keeping the following truisms in mind; ‘put your best foot forward’ and ‘you only have one chance to make a first impression’ will help guide you as you write your introductory letter.
· Hand written letters with a nice easy to read ‘penmanship’ can be much more personal and appealing than a computer printed letter. However if you do not have good penmanship or the time to hand write numerous letters then computer printed letters are fine. Use a good quality pen with ink that won’t smear or bleed on your choice of paper.
· If you intend to hand write your letter, consider composing it first on the computer and copying that by hand. This will enable you to edit, revise and spell check your letter before committing pen to paper.
· If you use a computer to print out your letter make sure the font style and size is easy to read. Use an ink jet or laser printer for the output. Consider Times New Roman 14 point or Arial 12 point. Don’t use Courier unless you are really typing on a typewriter. Don’t use script or calligraphy fonts since they will be difficult to read.
· Visit your local stationary or office supply store for ideas on fancy or elegant stationary and envelopes. Purchase a sturdy paper that will work well with your printer.
· Send the letter in a language she will understand. A fantastic letter is worthless if she cannot read it. Have it translated to Russian if you are not certain that she has strong English skills. You can send either the Russian version alone or the English original with a Russian translation for her convenience.
· Don’t say too much in your first letter. Introduce yourself to her with the goal of creating an interest and curiosity to learn more about you. You run the risk of boring her or seaming a braggart if you tell her everything about yourself in a first letter. Keep in mind that future letters create opportunities to tell her more about you on various subjects.
· Describe your appearance honestly, don’t lie or exaggerate the truth. Eventually if you are to meet she will compare the real you to the mental image she has developed. If you weren’t honest she will be disappointed and consider you untrustworthy. This could jeopardize all that you had achieved before your first meeting. If you are uncomfortable or uncertain about what to say then let your pictures do the talking for you.
· Send at least one good portrait of yourself. Consider having a professional portrait taken instead of a snap shot. A second, full body picture is ideal too unless you feel you have something to hide from the neck down. If you are a large man then you can be proud of who you are and introduce yourself accordingly or delay exposing this side of yourself until after you have created more of a bond and hope it doesn’t matter to her. Physical appearance is not as important to a Russian woman as is a man’s character so this can be to your advantage. It is in your best interest to find out if a woman has a physical attraction to you as soon as possible . . . no point in wasting your time if she doesn’t.
· Describe your height and weight in Centimeters and Kilograms. Russia like most of the world uses the metric system of measurement. If you are American and speak in terms of pounds, feet and inches she may not understand or know how to convert this information.
· Describe your geographic location. Describe the environment and climate of where you live. Explain why you enjoy living there. If you live in a small town mention what major city you live close to.
· Explain why you choose to contact her. Explain what personality characteristics she has that attracted her to you and why. You will be more successful if you can create a notion of why you think the two of you are compatible beyond a mere physical attraction.
· Avoid writing a long monologue of ‘I’ statements. Your letter will be more interesting and enjoyable to read if it doesn’t appear to be dominated by your ego.
· Speak from your heart. Show some positive emotions. Explain what brings you joy and happiness. Express how you want to share your passions with your future wife. Don’t mention how sad and lonely you are as this will make you sound weak and undesirable. Russian culture favors a strong man in character. Most women favor a man that will be kind, gentle and loving towards their wife yet strong, resourceful and generous towards his family.
· Blend in some questions with your statements. This will express your interest and curiosity in her as person and make it easier for her to know what to write about in her reply.
· Avoid slang phrases. Common American phrases such ‘girlfriend’ or ‘someone special’ may not be understood. Russian women want to be a ‘wife’ and have a ‘husband’. Speak in these terms or you run the risk of not sounding very serious.
· Describe your values and goals. Explain what is fundamentally important to you especially on the subject of having a family. Most Russian women are very family oriented so she will be more interested if you are the same.
· Find out what her preferences for children are. They should be the same as yours. If you do not want children with your future wife it would be best to say so early in your correspondence to avoid.
· Don’t discuss or display your wealth or possessions. There is no need for you to mention or brag about your salary, savings or material acquisitions. You can’t buy true love and any attempt to impress her with your financial abilities will only serve to attract the wrong kind of lady into your life. Keep it simple and just convey the idea that you have a stable job and can provide for yourself, a wife and a future family.
· Avoid political subjects unless you have knowledge that such subjects are of interest to her. Leave your ‘Cold War’ opinions, impressions and beliefs behind you, they are not relevant in modern Russia.
· Don’t make assumptions of her lifestyle. Whatever you think is probably wrong anyways so learn about her lifestyle by asking. Be empathetic and not condescending if you learn her everyday life in Russia is not as convenient or comfortable as yours.
· Most people like the idea of leisure travel especially to international destinations. If you like to travel and explore new places tell her where you like to go and why. Few Russian women have opportunities for foreign travel. Create the romantic notion of how you would like to share such experiences with your future wife.
· Be careful that you don’t imply that she will be your future wife in a first letter. Such over confidence on your part will be too presumptuous before actually meeting and making such statements in a first letter will make you sound like a fool.
· Russian ladies can receive many letters from western men. Think of ways to ‘stand out in the crowd’. Little touches can make a big difference. Consider using stationary accessories that ‘romanticize’ you mail such as envelop stickers and little red hearts you place inside with your letter.
· Include all possible ways she can reply back to you. This can be your postal address, email address, phone number and fax number. She will most likely choose your postal address if she doesn’t have access to email. A phone call or fax reply is very unlikely.
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