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You have been a victim of the infamous “pancho.”

Pancho refers to that awful situation (so typical in couples) where irrationality takes over and everything goes to hell. Getting out of the car in the middle of nowhere, tearing photographs, making a scene, the cold shoulder… burning down the house. It’s all the same thing: panchos. And yes, Mexican girls love panchos.

You’re constantly pressured to join the Telenovela fandom.

There is a cancer in Mexican society and it is called Telenovela. We are totally surrounded by this evilness and it’s quite easy to become addicted if we’re not cautious. If your girlfriend has this evil inside her, don’t get overconfident or you’ll get infected too and your personal ambitions will become as vain as staying home on a friday night because you’re so hooked on María la del Barrio and its never-ending cliffhangers.

You are getting used to your new relationship…with all of her family.

Since you met her family for the first time, they started calling you mijito, they asked you everything there is to know about your life and you met more relatives than you can actually recall. Chances are they were doing all these introductions while you were chopping some onions to help with dinner preparations. If her family lives near you, it’s quite probable that you’ll end up at her place for the next Christmas, Day of the Dead, Independence Day, New Year’s Eve, Día de Reyes, Easter, Mother’s Day — welcome to your new grand family!

You live in constant fear of her jealousy.

Your ex is your new best friend? Not anymore! Sometimes you get a ride from that pretty neighbour of yours? Forget it! This is how it’s gonna be if you want to live in peace and happiness, especially when you’re starting a relationship and insecurities abound. Mexicans are the jealous type, but since we’re all the same, we hardly notice it. That said, if you ever run into a girl that manifestly admits to be VERY jealous…get the hell out of there.

You know a “family gathering” means the WHOLE family and probably some neighbors too.

If you’re thinking about dinner with her folks, be prepared for a surprise. Mexican families are large and they get together at every opportunity. Keep in mind that important events can gather family members from the farthest regions of the world as well as every single Mexican in the immediate surroundings. A good example of these gatherings is the Boda de pueblo, a traditional marriage that lasts three days and brings half the town together for a celebration you’ll never forget.

Your waistline has grown since starting this relationship.

Your new family never gets tired of feeding you. They’re not planning to feast on you for Christmas or anything that macabre, it’s just that in Mexican culture, food is the perfect excuse for socializing. Food, drinks, and more food will keep coming while you participate in long conversations around the table. Mexicans also have a habit of stopping for tacos after a night of partying…and that’s a habit you can get used to.

You know that “I’ll meet you there” is not an option.

Mexicans have a set of unwritten rules regarding courtship. Ladies and gentlemen’s roles are partially determined by the legacy of machismo we inherited from old Mexican traditions. Some of these rules have found their way into modern society and can determine how your girlfriend expects you to behave toward her. One of these conducts is especially widespread and ignoring it can result in incomprehensible panchos: your Mexican girlfriend expects you to pick her up at her home, regardless of plans, geography, traffic, or convenience, always!

Your new family is all up in your personal life.

When marriage and kids come into conversation, there will always be a nosey aunt that puts you and your girlfriend on the spotlight by asking “When are you gonna surprise us?” Go ahead…defend yourselves.

You’ve memorized her favorite songs even though you don’t like them.

You’ll surely learn some Spanish lyrics based on your girlfriend’s preferences. Luis Miguel, Vicente Fernández, Timbiriche, La Banda el Recodo, and even Maná are all common options. The things you do for love!

You’ve learned that simple details are the most appreciated.

The best present for your girlfriend is not necessarily the most expensive or luxurious, but the one that demonstrates that you invested time and effort in something that is both personal and a reminder of the special things you share. If you’re far away from Mexico, you don’t need to spend a fortune taking her to dinner in the fanciest restaurant for her birthday; way better if you can get hold of a some Chocolate Abuelita, Pulparindos and Miguelitos.

You look extremely happy!

You have a mexican girlfriend — what else could you ask for?