Images of Iran, the historic center of Persian culture, evoke a fascinating blend of tradition and independence, the civilizing influence of the past and the sophistication of the modern era.If you are a newcomer to the Persian dating scene, you can feel more at home in this culture by learning some basic rules of Persian social behavior. Whoever you're dating no doubt speaks excellent English, but if you're going to venture out of your comfort zone–to pay a visit to Iran or to your partner's parents or grandparents in their home–you will want to know a few traditional phrases, such as “Salam aleykom” ("Greetings"), “Motashakkertam” ("Thank you") and “Khahesh mikonam” ("You're welcome").Of course, not everything in Persian culture is formal and traditional.
The purpose of tarof is to allow the host to demonstrate excessive generosity while the guest counters with excessive humility.The simple truth is that like everyone else, Persians are adapting to modernity at their own pace and in their own way.Because this can appear baffling to outsiders, it is best to stick with a simple rule: If you are offered a gift, refuse it at least once. If you visit your girlfriend's grandparents in Kerman province in Iran, don't be surprised if they light a sweet-smelling herb in a metal dish.It's known as esfand, and it's considered good luck.
Western women seeking to date Persian men should be aware that despite the recent trend toward liberalization, egalitarian norms are still the exception rather than the rule.(Self-centered Persian men are sometimes ridiculed as “khastegars,” princely paramours who reflexively demand submission from their wives or girlfriends.) The point isn't to reinforce stereotypes, but to counteract them with a healthy awareness of your own cultural values and biases. In most Western countries, etiquette in the home is direct and unambiguous.