A series of academic studies have found evidence that many ‘mail order brides’ are willing and active participants in moving abroad.
To better differentiate themselves from trafficking, mail order websites may be able to rebrand themselves as ‘international’ dating sites.
The 2001 study ‘Marriage, Migration, and Markets: International Matchmaking and International Feminism’ found “preliminary evidence that the international matchmaking industry can be seen as a positive force in the context of shifting gender relations within and between the countries involved.”
2013 work entitled ‘The Filipina-South Floridian International Internet Marriage Practice: Agency, Culture, and Paradox’ found that the stereotype of an exploitative husband was largely unfounded, and that both partners talked fondly about falling in love with one another.
The 2014 paper ‘Mail Order Feminism’ reads: “…it is time to stop demonizing these unions and recognize their potential benefits.
“Mail order marriages provide options to men and women who find their domestic marriage opportunities limited and disempowering.
“These marriages give participants a way of reasserting control and finding a fulfilling, if unconventional, route to marriage.”
The website www.internationallovescout.com is attempting to push a rebrand of the niche, providing detailed blogs and guides.
It details the history of mail order marriage, comparing dating among the European nobility and early American settlers’ wives to the modern day practices.
Read more here.