I’ve lived in China for over a decade now and in that time, I’ve had three Chinese girlfriends.

For various reasons, communicating with a Chinese woman via texting or messaging apps isn’t easy.

So, if you’re trying to attract a Chinese woman or are having problems communicating with the one you’re dating, here are some do’s and don’ts of texting Chinese girls.

I’ll start with the do’s.

1. Do be respectful

The first thing you must understand is that Chinese women aren’t like western women.

I’ve actually read of a dating ‘expert’ advocating the use of lines like “Nice dress. Where’d you get that from, a crackerjack box?” to attract women. Apparently, it exudes confidence.

Please DON’T do this when texting Chinese girls. It doesn’t work!

Ask her questions that show that you’re genuinely interested in her. Respect her views. Remember that China is still a traditional country where respect is a societal norm.

2. Do see things from her perspective

One thing that you must understand is that China is different. The Chinese have ways of doing things that might seem peculiar or even suspicious.

For example: In the western world, a woman who starts asking a man for money early in a relationship would make a guy very wary because it’s well-known that this is what scammers do.

In China however, and especially in the rural or more traditional areas, men are seen as providers.

It’s normal in China (at least in my experience) for Chinese women to ask the men they’re dating for financial support.

3. Do be patient with your Chinese partner

A foul temper or a short fuse won’t get you very far in China since Chinese society is based on the concept of ‘face’ and non-confrontational approaches.

One interesting thing that I found out about Chinese women is that when they’re in a bad mood, they often say things over messages that they don’t really mean.

For instance, my Chinese girlfriend once threatened to break up with me if I didn’t give her what she wanted.

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But then, when she had calmed down, she said that she only said this out of anger and didn’t really mean to break up with me at all.

In her own words: “Fake anger isn’t real anger”.

4. Do be there for her

Chinese women are looking for someone whom they can rely on for absolutely anything. She wants someone to be her ‘rock’.

These days, phone communication is not limited to text messages. With Chinese apps like WeChat, you can have a voice chat, have a video chat, send and receive money and so much more.

If she calls you at 2 am crying, soothe and comfort her. Give her your advice and the benefit of your wisdom and experience.

Now that WeChat is also a means of sending and receiving money, you can even send a red packet on special days like Valentine’s Day or her birthday.

5. Do appear filial even if you’re not

Filial piety is very important in Chinese society. A Chinese parent would do anything for their child, and in turn, the children see it as their duty to look after their parents in their old age.

Not only should you show respect to her family but you should also speak of your own parents in glowing terms.

When texting Chinese girls, you shouldn’t badmouth your own parents because they hit you, scolded you, criticized you or generally made your childhood a living Hell.

Even if it’s true.

6. Do be careful

As I mentioned earlier, it’s quite normal (in my experience) for Chinese girls to ask the guys they’re dating for financial support.

On the other hand, it’s very well known that romance scammers try to get a guy’s trust and then ask for money.

It can sometimes be very difficult to tell whether a girl is asking you for money because she’s genuinely in need of help or if she’s doing so to scam you.

I’ve been asked for money via messaging apps a number of times.

The only advice I can give you is to get to know her well and in person. You should know where she lives, how old she is, what she does for a living and how much she earns.

A good rule of thumb is to only send her money after you’ve met her parents. A Chinese woman normally wouldn’t introduce a guy to her family until she’s serious about marrying him.

7. Do be aware of potential communication problems

This is particularly important if you’re messaging a Chinese girl who can’t speak English.

And even with all the technology we have these days, translation apps in China aren’t very good.

My present Chinese girlfriend can’t speak a word of English so we face a significant language barrier in our relationship.

She once sent me this message:


According to my WeChat translator, this meant “Last night, I got called out for eating out”.

I thought she was merely mentioning the fact that we had dinner together the previous evening. So, I sent her a thumbs up emoji.

Boy, did I get into trouble for that one!

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What she actually meant to say was, “I was on call last night when I was having dinner with you. I got an absolute scolding from my boss when I got back and you liked that?

If you want to read more about communication problems, then you might like my article explaining why Chinese people will never be able to speak English.

8. Do apologize when you’re wrong

This is a bit of a no-brainer, but after a quarrel, always be man enough to admit fault and apologize to the girl, especially if you’re in serious relationship with her.

After sending a message, follow up with a face-to-face apology.

Most conflicts in inter-cultural relationships arise because each party doesn’t understand the other party’s norms and culture.

I was quite surprised to learn that some things that are unreasonable and even downright bizarre in western countries may actually be normal in China

For instance, materialism is quite prevalent in Chinese society. During the Spring Festival for instance, it’s actually normal for a Chinese girl’s boyfriend to give red packets to his girlfriend’s nieces and nephews.

And just think about how much you’ll enjoy making up with her after a fight!

9. Do show an interest in her life

This one is another no-brainer but if you’re texting a girl whom you have a romantic interest in, do show her that you care about how her day’s been, how she’s feeling, and whether she slept well the night before, etc.

Ask pertinent questions. Find out about her job, her interests, and her family.

Make sure you know when her birthday is and don’t forget to send her your best wishes when the time comes.

OK, now for the don’ts.

10. Don’t send d**k pics

China isn’t the West.

As previously mentioned, it still embraces a rather traditional culture (you can read more about the Chinese culture here.)

When texting a Chinese girl, you most definitely shouldn’t be sending sexually explicit images, even when you’re in a sexual relationship with her.

Remember that China monitors all online communications. All the major foreign websites and apps are banned in China.

Sending sexual content via Chinese social media might see you getting a visit from the local police!

11. Don’t fret if she takes a while to reply

Expats in China tend to have a lot more free time than the local Chinese people do.

In China, there’s still a 996 work culture in some organizations where the staff work from 9am to 9pm, 6 days a week.

On the other hand, if you’re a foreign teacher like me, you might be working less than 16 hours a week.

The bottom line is that as an expat in China, it’s very likely that you’ll have much more free time compared to your Chinese girlfriend.

As someone with low self-esteem, I used to worry a lot when I sent my Chinese girlfriend a text message and she didn’t reply for hours.

But nowadays, I know my girlfriend a lot better than I used to so I don’t worry anymore if she takes a while to reply.

12. Don’t tell lies

As I mentioned at the beginning, I’ve had three Chinese girlfriends. No matter what problems I’ve had with any of them in the past, the one thing I can’t accuse them of is lying.

Chinese girls tend to be pretty direct in their communications with men. They’ll speak their minds and will tell it as it is.

In private discussions between lovers, giving face is really not a thing.

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So, please be honest when texting a Chinese girl. Relationships are built on trust – if you don’t have trust, you don’t have anything.

13. Don’t send the wrong emoji

Chinese people these days tend to read more into emojis than westerners might.

For instance, I was once told off for sending a smiley because “the eyes were looking downward, which signifies distrust and contempt for the recipient”.

Emoji-sending etiquette in China is now quite a complex topic. The different ways in which a simple emoji can be interpreted in China is mind-boggling!

You can read more about this fascinating topic over on China Daily.

Some suggestive emojis are universal though, such as the eggplant.

14. Don’t be clingy or a walkover

This is one dating rule that Chinese women and western women have in common. Being clingy, insecure or a walkover is so not attractive to any woman!

So, when dealing with conflicts, stand your ground. Don’t make your Chinese girlfriend feel like you are always giving in to her.

Don’t text a Chinese girl a thousand times a day telling her that you miss her. Let her chase you too.

Remember that a Chinese woman is looking for a provider. That means that she also wants a decisive man who can take the lead and deal with problems in a mature fashion.

15. Don’t be a jerk

A number of western dating experts advocate being a “bad guy”. These people advise men that men actually need to be rude to women in order to attract them.

What I’ve learnt about women is that sometimes, a man needs to get angry before a woman will sit up and take him seriously.

However, there’s a difference between telling a woman, politely but firmly, that she has crossed the line and actually abusing her.

16. Don’t play mind games

Chinese girls generally don’t play mind games. They won’t leave you guessing and you won’t need to count straws saying “She loves me” and “She doesn’t love me”.

In my experience, a Chinese girl is very direct in a romantic relationship. She’ll tell you directly if she’s ready for a relationship or not, what she likes and dislikes about you, and so on.

Therefore, you shouldn’t play mind games either when texting Chinese girls.

And finally, it’s worth pointing out that Chinese girls are generally not attracted to ‘bad boys’.

They’re looking for stable and caring gentlemen who are also good providers. It’s as simple as that!

I hope you liked my article about texting Chinese girls. For more on this topic, you might also like Nick’s blog about the problems with Chinese girlfriends.

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Main image credit: Monster Ztudio on Shutterstock.

FAQ about texting Chinese girls

Is it OK to send messages in English to Chinese women?

Every Chinese woman is different. Some may be fluent in English whilst others may not be. You need to judge for yourself which language is most appropriate when texting a Chinese girl.

How often should I send text messages to a lady I’m interested in?

That is for every couple to decide for themselves. You might want to dedicate a regular time every day for having a text message conversation.

How do I ask a Chinese girl out over a message?

Find out as much as you can about her first. Then, ask her out for dinner or even a walk and see how she responds.