10 Things You Should Know Before Dating a Girl from the Immaculate Conception Academy

First thing's first: As before baes, always.
by Caitlin Anne Young   |  May 20, 2017
Image: Caitlin Anne Young
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  1. Scale the Great Wall by learning Hokkien!

Chances are we have the Great Wall, so we can date Chinese guys only. Should you decide to embark upon the futile journey of scaling it, however, you can score pogi points with our parents by learning how to speak basic Hokkien.

  1. Use Uncle/Auntie instead of Tito/Tita, etc.

Speaking of the Great Wall, don't address our parents and relatives as Tito/Tita—we use Uncle/Auntie! Same goes for Ahia/Achi instead of Kuya/Ate, or Angkong/Ama instead of Lolo/Lola.

  1. Follow Chinese etiquette.

This means roundtable dinners in—yup, you got it!—Chinese restaurants. Learn how to use a pair of chopsticks, and know when it's your turn to spin the lazy susan and get food. Chinese table manners are everything. But don't worry, it's not that hard—just follow our lead and wait for your turn!

  1. Red is (y)our lucky color.

We're usually only allowed to let guys tag along if there are special occasions, like birthdays. Don't even ask what to wear—just have an arsenal of red shirts ready. (Also, if you decide to wear an unlucky color like black...be prepared to get roasted alive.)

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  1. Expect to be "interviewed" (read: bombarded) with life questions.

Our families aren't shortsighted. We think long-term, and we like to be 100% sure on everything. Like a beauty queen in a pageant, practice your answers regarding your college course, your job, and your goals for the future!

  1. Be friendly with our parents.

This may seem like a no-brainer, but opening up to our parents is essential. They may seem scary at first, but they're actually just wary. They want to get to know you as a potential member of their clan, so be yourself and make conversation with them! It can be as simple as complimenting our mom's specialty dish or agreeing with our dad's business points. Don't be afraid of sharing your hopes and dreams for the future—chances are, they'll end up really liking you for your concrete plans and insights.

  1. We're more conservative.

Please don't expect us to make the first move. :( We went to a Catholic Chinese school, for crying out loud, where we had to sit properly—even in pants. We're also bound to the unspoken rules of Chinese society. If we don't send you a friend request or message you first, it doesn't mean we don't like you—we're just really conservative when it comes to guys. Although we have stricter curfews and schedules, we'd really appreciate it if you made the effort to be the first one to try and get to know us. :)


  1. It's all about ~*simple joys*~.

TBH, we love getting surprises as much as the next girl, but you really don't have to spend too much money or lose too much sleep. We did learn about frugality and simplicity, after all. We're happy with a simple "good morning" text, a good luck note, or even just a PHP10 ice candy/mini snow cone. It's the thought that counts! ♥

  1. We are go-getters who take things seriously. #AsBeforeBaes

As the old mandate goes: As before baes. Acads before lakads. Laude before landi. Chinese parents are stricter, true, but we ourselves were trained by ICA to always give our best. This means we prioritize our academics, our jobs, and our future. We like to plan ahead to reach our respective goals, and we get pretty impressed if we meet a guy who thinks like that, too!

  1. Our ~own~ expectations are only high when it matters.

Contrary to popular belief, ICAns are not stuck-up when it comes to relationships. We don't expect you to show up with a bouquet of roses on every date, or to treat us to fancy restaurants every monthsary. A little surprise here and there is good, though! But what we really value is your personality and who you are as a person. We want someone who's kindhearted, someone who makes the effort for us—someone who supports us, our hopes and dreams. And we'll support you also! As ICAns, although we're aware of our own self-worth, more importantly, we know how to value the people who love us, too. ♥

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Caitlin Anne Young
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