German will probably never be known as “Die Sprache der Liebe,” “The language of love.” German men will likely never flirt with you as an Italian would, or shower you with romance as the French would. German romance is more subtle. It’s like an onion, exposing itself one layer at a time instead of all at once, but no less flavorful.
In my 20s I would have considered it boring, in my 30s it became sexy.
So just what does romance in Germany look like?:
When a guy says he’ll call, he’ll call – If he likes you, he may even call the next day. Germans have rules for almost everything, but apparently waiting 2 days to call so that he doesn’t appear desperate is not one of them. But be forewarned, he’ll call because he promised he would, not necessarily because he likes you. He may simply be calling you to inform you that he doesn’t like you, and doesn’t want to see you again, but is calling because he promised he would. (This has happened to dozens of friends of mine.)
He Will Be On Time – Germans are sticklers for being on time, so if you agree to meet at a restaurant at 8:00, he will be there waiting at 7:59 and not keep you waiting. On the flip side, he expects the same of you, so don’t keep him waiting either. There’s no playing “will he show, or not show” games in Germany, which is a relief for anyone who has ever been stood up desperately trying to convince the waiter that your date is simply running an hour late.
He Will Be Honest – If a German guy says something, chances are you can believe him. When he says “I love you,” he most likely means it. When he says he sees a future with you he means it. On the other hand if things aren’t going in the right direction, he will also be brutally honest about why he is ending it. None of this “It’s not you, it’s me,” or “I’m just so busy with work right now that I don’t have time for a relationship.” For better or for worse, you will know where you stand with your German guy. He will also be honest about whether he likes the gift you’ve just bought for him.
He Will Plan Dates in Advance – No more waiting until Thursday night to see if he’s going to call and ask you out for Friday night. Most German men would never dream of asking a girl out with only one day advance notice. He will ask at least several days in advance, assuming that you also have your life planned out in advance like he does.
He Will Want to Go on Vacation Together – Most Germans love to travel and have a lot of holidays compared to North Americans. If he likes you, he will want to include you in those travel plans and may even do all the research and pre-trip planning as well. Having a German guy = lots of fun, romantic vacations together – see 4 Reasons to Turn a Holiday Romance into the Real Thing and 5 Tips for Keeping a Holiday Romance Going Strong. Just be prepared to pay your share. Many German guys are all about going “Dutch” or “German” as it should be called in Germany. In fairness to them, this is because many German girls are also about going “German” so they’ve used to this. Besides he’s probably putting the money he saved for your half of the trip away for your future together, or his future with someone else as the case may be.
He Will Help You Navigate Through German Bureaucracy – This doesn’t sound very romantic, but anyone who has ever tried to get a work/marriage visa, insurance, or file taxes in Germany knows how utterly frustrating it can be and will be eternally grateful for all of the countless phone calls and visits to the Ausländerbehörde (Foreigner Office) made on your behalf.
He Will Open Up – Many foreigners find Germans cold at first. Germans prefer to think of themselves as reserved. Regardless, once you get to know a German man you will see his warmer, funnier side (yes Germans can be funny) that he doesn’t show to just anyone.
Have you been swept off your feet yet? No? Just wait a while, German men take some time to grow on you. Like when my then fiance came home for lunch for the first time in 12 years, because he missed me and thought I might be lonely, or how he stayed 14 hours straight at the hospital when I had knee surgery, or how he took me to castles every weekend when I didn’t have any friends when I first moved to Germany, or how he moved to Munich since he thought it would be easier for me to settle in….you get the picture. That’s why I married him.