Twenty-year-old Barbara Li, a lingustics majorr from Nanjing University who works at a magazine in Shanghai, told The Times, “I’ve been single all my life.
In high school, we were not permitted to have boyfriends.
As many as 300 million rural Chinese have moved to cities in the last three decades.
Uprooted and without nearby relatives to help arrange meetings with potential partners, these migrants are often lost in the swell of the big city.
These sites cater mainly to China’s millions of white-collar workers.
One young man told The Times: “I’d like a girlfriend who is kind-hearted, who believes in me and is faithful.This may be a time of sexual and romantic liberation in China, but the solemn task of finding a husband or wife is proving to be a vexing proposition for rich and poor alike.“The old family and social networks that people used to rely on for finding a husband or wife have fallen apart,” said James Farrer, an American sociologist whose book, “Opening Up,” looks at sex, dating and marriage in contemporary China.Potential boyfriend and girlfriends break off from the group, often in a way orchestrated by other members of the group, and go for walk somewhere.Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore wrote in The Telegraph, “ China’s spectacular economic growth has, for many, turned dating and marriage into a commercial transaction, and material expectations from marriage have soared.In the 1980s, couples were still apprehended by discipline police at universities for smooching on campus.A decade-old law forbidding marriage among university students was only repealed in September 2005.Some colleges require married students to live apart while they are enrolled.Most parents don’t want their children to date in high school or the first two years of university. Even so many highschool students and some middle class students have boyfriends and girlfriends.It is often said – only half-jokingly – that to compete even at the lower reaches of the urban Chinese dating market men must have at least a car and a flat.The matchmaking industry has gone into overdrive, not just to cater to the rich but also because of government unease over the numbers of older single professional women.[Source: Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore, The Telegraph, October 22, 2013 ^|^] “Although forced or arranged marriage was banned in 1950, finding a partner remains a formal process for many.“Marriage is seen as a factor in promoting social stability,” explains Leta Hong Fincher, the author of a forthcoming book on “leftover women” and gender inequality in China.