How To Marry A Frenchman

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 I am often asked how I happened to meet and marry a Frenchman. Women often ask with awe and longing in their voices, like it must be heavenly, like it was magic or something. I guess it must not be that common although you wouldn’t think that if you started looking at all of the blogs out there written by American women married to French men.

 

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  I was married before, for 26 years, to an American. After a very painful divorce and finding out how much of an illusion my marriage had been, I went through years of depression and floating about in life. I became a traveling nurse and moved around the States like a ball in pinball machine. It wasn’t until my oldest son and his wife were expecting their first child, my first grandchild, that I decided I wanted to be back in Texas. I didn’t want to move back to Dallas where I had lived with my ex, so I choose Austin, a city I had always been fascinated with. It’s not like most places in Texas but has a looser ambiance, a hippy feel left over from the 60’s.

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 By then almost seven years had passed since my divorce and I felt ready to start dating again. I even joined a dating club and must have dated a dozen men but nothing clicked. Then I was set up on a blind date by some friends with this Frenchman. Was it love at first sight? No, but I found him attractive and he was a very nice man. A gentle man. He didn’t have that force field and aggressiveness that most American men seem to have and I found that refreshing. It wasn’t until our third date that there was that “bing” as he calls it.

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 We dated for about 6 months and it was wonderful. Then he got transferred back to Paris-he worked for IBM. I visited him there a short time later and loved it, Paris not being the most romantic city in the world for nothing. But, when he asked me if I loved him enough to marry him one day, I really panicked. I wasn’t ready for marriage. I liked being single and in control of my life. So I went back to the States and started dating other men again. I broke it off with Maurice. Maurice is a man who can quietly get things done and get them done his way. He got himself transferred back to Austin a year later. The minute I heard his voice on the phone when he called me after he arrived, I don’t know why, but I knew I would marry him.

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 We had our wedding in France, in a small village near Annecy close to the Swiss border. We ended up back in France via IBM again. Maurice retired a few years later and we still live in France. I know he would move back to the States with me if I wanted but I am enjoying life so much here that, even with guilt and longing for my family in the States, we live in France.

 Why am I writing this? We will celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary this week. Has it all been a fairy tale? Of course not. We’ve had our ups and downs but I have a fantastic life and he really is a wonderful man. I never could have guessed the direction my life would take, how with the closing and opening of various doors in life I would end up in France. I never spoke French, I never had a longing to live in France. I did have the longing to travel and see as much of the world as I could and I certainly have been doing that with Maurice. I wasn’t sure if love would ever come to me again after my divorce, but it did. I feel like I am in part II of my life, and it is fabulous.

 

 

 

39 thoughts to “How To Marry A Frenchman”

  1. I could hardly read the story for looking at these magnificent photos!!! And that is saying a lot because your story is fascinating, Linda. What a life! And these ARE incredibly well-done photos!

  2. “Love is lovelier, the second time around…la…la…la”
    However, should we be worried about that 7th year itch? -;)

    Your pictures are breathtaking, although my husband cannot believe all those fall colors already (we live way up north from you and the trees are still green). Is that normal for Provence?

  3. What a wonderful love story. I can only dream of something like that happening for me. I was married 21 years and have been single for 6 years. It\’s time that I start living part 2 of my life, but I\’d rather not do it alone…or where I am living. Would that providence would bring me to Paris and that I would find love there! I admire your courage to begin again. Congratulations on seven years, and many, many happy years and adventures to come.

  4. What a sweet love story. For you both to live apart and begin different lives for a year and then get back together makes it a special relationship. It’s so refreshing to hear. (And to live in France–married or not–is icing on the cake!) Best wishes to you both. Congratulations! xo

  5. You certainly make me feel much more optimistic about my dating prospects when I move to France in November. I have never been married but after my last serious relationship ended in 1998 I guess I took what ended up being a very long break from dating, too, focusing on my work instead. I did once have a vacation fling with a Frenchman when I was about 22 but he ended up not being such a nice guy, so it\’s really good to read so many bloggers who are married to wonderful French men. Just goes to show you can\’t generalize about people–thanks for that reminder, and if a French guy asks me out, who knows?!

  6. What a beautiful, inspiring post. I guess they don’t say”The best things in life come to those who wait” for nothing. A very happy anniversary to you and your Frenchman and many more magical years together.

  7. that really was a lovely story. I am so glad I found your blog =) I am married to an Italian but living in the States for the moments. Marriage to a European is no bed of roses (but really whose marriage is?) but hugely rewarding. We have just celebrated our 5th =) I look forward to your future posts!

  8. Oh, Linda, I have tears in my eyes…really. I’ll have to add the category “love stories” to blueVicar for sure. I’m embarassed to say that it hadn’t yet occurred to me…thank you.

    A very happy anniversary to you. A toast of champagne and three cheers!

    Meilleurs vœux!

  9. I appreciate this entry for the emotional depth and reflection on your part. I, too, am with a Frenchman and that *bing* occured for us aswell. We are not close to marriage yet, but I feel it coming in my heart and like you, plan to let destiny take its course. I am inspired by this entry. Thank you.

  10. Love often comes without notice..Whoever you are, I am so happy that you finally found the love of your life! And oh, Happy Anniversary..I hope you’ll have a hundred more…

  11. I am moved to tears reading this story. I have been to France about 50 times in my life, and my lifelong dream is to live in Paris and be married to a Frenchman. I was married for 9 years– divorced now for the past 10 years. I have dated since divorcing, but I have not dated a Frenchman yet. I live in NYC, where there is a large French community. I need to get out there and start dating while I am working on my own plans to live in France. I am so inspired by your blog. Merci mille fois!

  12. I recently have met a frenchman online he seems to be charming, but i live here in california and he lives in Paris. He is about 10 years younger than me, and seems to good to be true. Sort of a mysterious in a way. Today i received flowers(12Roses) two balloons saying he misses me and a pink teddy bear with a very nice card. I didnt know what to think but feeling overwelhmed. I am not sure if its just a different culture than american men. I am excited yet nervous to let my guard down after all its only been barely two weeks and we only talk online because of the time difference. Maybe i can have a dream like yours???? I also have been married several times so i dont want to get hurt again.. Your story was so grand.. You are very lucky indeed!!
    Congrats from sunny california

  13. hello,congratulation and wish you a happy life.i am looking for a french man.they sure are different from english man.i have been married twice but i am still looking and hopefully it will be soon.your story is inspiring and give me hope.bonne chance et gros bisous.farah

  14. hi linda,

    i think that i am too late to greet you for your anniversary celebration and too early for an advance greetings for your next celebration.Anyways, that is a really sweet story.i kept on looking for a sight that will give me a hint or idea on how french man treats women. Im from asia but im currently residing here in NY. and a french man is courting me right now.he is 26 years old and im 23.please get back to me, i will be waiting for your reply. thank you so much

  15. oh you are so lucky. i have just met a handsome young french man here in Australia. Never in my life have I met a man who can look at me in the eye with so much meaning and hold the gaze for a long time..it’s so beautiful. He has a girlfriend back in France but we have got close and are hanging out quite often. His actions say he likes me more than a friend but he tells me otherwise. I AM SO CONFUSED and wish I could tell whether or not he wants me or not. If you have any input or advise that would be much apprecciated..Once again you are the luckiest woman ALIVE! bon jour!

  16. it is indeed a wonderful love story…i am very inspired….i am never married though i have a handful of hearthaches…. ijust met an awesome frenchmen on line and i wish i marry him in the future….congrats to your marriage and i do hope it last for until eternity…..Godbless you both….

  17. I came across your site.
    It was lovely to read.
    I know it’s a number of years old…but I hope everything is going well with you..
    I seem to be experiencing now what you have went through previously..with the dissolving of a marriage and meeting what seems to be a wonderful Frenchman.
    I didn’t think there was that big of a deal about him being French..but having been looking here online….apparently to find a Frenchman is a wonderful step to a loving relationship.
    This one has kind of just fell in my lap *lol * I think it could be fate.

  18. sounds great and wonderful! I have been married for 18 years to a French man and now separated, looking to write a blog on everything you need to know BEFORE marrying a French man!!

  19. Happy 7th anniversary, Linda. Beautiful lovestory, touching and what is the best on it- true. I am German, so my first husband was a German.What a tragical mistake. I now don´t mean nationality but my choice. No matter what.Now I am married to a Frenchman too, living in Alsace-Lorraine. I don´t know if am truly blessed but it was my choice that i never really regretted.My best wishes to you, you lucky one 🙂

  20. Hi Linda, guess what? My French boyfriend just asked me to marry him! I’m American and this would be my second and his first. I’m panicking too….so thank you for the inspiration to move forward. We both live in Germany (which he loves more than I do) but he’s willing to go back to France – esp to start a family since it has great healthcare for new mommies 😀
    All the best to you….

  21. Dear Linda,

    I had an affair 20 years ago with a frenchman. I’ve never been able to get over him. Now, after 26 years of a not-so-great marriage, I am getting a divorce. I found my frenchman again after 20 years and realize he was SO WORTH never getting over! I am moving to France in a couple months! Thank you for sharing your story. I wish we could talk!

  22. My Frenchman whom I’ve been with for 3.5 years just broke my heart as he’s lied to me about having another woman. I want to move and live in France and learn the language and learn to cook. I want to have a family and my time really is running out. I want to meet the man of my dreams for the life of my dreams and wish it would come soon!
    I want a love story like yours! Thank you for posting. I am still hopeful!

  23. I’ve been a francophile for 63 years. Your story is what I had always dreamed of. I’m also a single American having lived in the Netherlands for 22 years. Just recently able to rediscover France. Wish I could have found that oe la la French man in my life though and lived in France instead of Holland. C’est la vie, n’est pas?

  24. This is a very touching story, which shows that being open-minded is so important. You never know where life’s journey will take you.

    I met my French boyfriend when he was stationed in my country. After some treacherous past relationships, everything about him and our connection was so refreshing. He really knows how to treat a lady with love, consideration and respect. He also loves – I mean LOVES! – to cook all sorts of amazing gourmet dishes.

    Similarly, he had to relocate back to France last October and we’ve been braving the long distance love to this day. It’s now been just over 2 years that we are together. For someone who has never been to France, I have now been there 3x and one more trip to come in a week’s time (so excited!). Funny enough, he is from Annecy. It is such a beautiful place, especially Lac D’Annecy!

    I’m keeping the faith and welcoming great things for our great love!

    Wishing you and everyone the best in their lives and love.

    A Votre Sante!

  25. I met my Frenchman in 1985 and married him in 1995. He was and still is the love of my life even though I moved back to the USA and we divorced in 2000. We still see one another every year, and I wish I could turn back the hands of time and change things. If you find a mna like this, never give him up!

  26. What a beautiful story, Linda! C’est magnifique! So happy for you…with every best wish to the both of you!
    Laurah

  27. I just married a French in France. I was wonderding the process on bring him to America for a visit. Does he have to get a different visa then the normal since he is married to an American now?
    Thanks,
    Darshaya

  28. I met my french friend on the Bangkok -Chang Mai train in Thailand. He was travelling with his 2 friends, they are a tight group. We hit it off there was a spark between us and we spent the night talking. Next day he came with me to Chiang Mai, they were tavelling further north. We just seized the moment had a great 24 hours and met up with his friends the next day,They are gentlemen. I came back to Oz and kept in touch by email to his friends email. Our relationship has 4 people in it!!It is very charming I get photos emailed regularly from the others He now has a computer at home, we email everyday and Skype every 2 days. I am coming to France in April. We are both mature aged, I have no illusions about real life. Im living for the moment and we will see where it goes from there.

  29. I have been divorced 4 years after a 23 year marriage. I met a French man on a dating site and no man has ever been this wonderful to me. I hope it just lasts and lasts.

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