The Russian Connection program has evolved since 1991 folowing democratic reforms in the former U.S.S.R.
Refinements have come about as a result of visits and contacts with the C.I.S. and networking
with Russian citizens who became part of this cottage industry. A subsequent merger with Video
Introductions (established 1977) brought about additional refinements
and a greater variety of helpful services.
In contrast, Russian women have been exposed to a glamorized view of American men and life in America.
Although Hollywood and Madison Ave. have certainly helped to create this romantic image, in numerous
ways life really is much better in America. Moreover, American men have become more aware and
sensitive to the needs of women (with the acknowledged help of the feminist movement). However,
too many of us fall short of the exacting requirements of some American women (tall, handsome, etc.).
Nonetheless, we are greatly admired by Russian females who are less influenced by such American prerequisites,
and who still consider marriage and family to be paramount values in their lives. Compared to certain
aspects of life in Russia, life in America with just an ordinary, good man has many advantages.
However, we caution that Russian women may have an exaggerated view of what life in America may be like.
We suggest that you attempt to provide a realistic view of who you are and what life in America or
another country is truly like, rather than feed into any unrealistic expectations.
Together with any initial letters, we enclose a copy of your member photo-profile information sheet
and any photos or video you want to send. We address the letters in Russian and forward them by airmail.
We pay the postage on your
letters to Russia (up to 2 a month). For an extra fee we can send letters by registered mail and
request a return receipt, or ask for restricted delivery so that the return receipt is signed by the
woman to prove that she got your mail. In some areas International Express Mail is also possible.
If you decide to visit the women who reciprocate an interest in you, we can arrange a trip and
provide the address and phone. We request that you don't ask for the address or phone or
provide yours in preliminary contacts before a trip is arranged (see
"Why We Don't Sell Addresses" below). Writing letters helps to establish
the foundation of a relationship during a period of correspondence - an old fashioned but
very effective relationship building procedure, largely neglected in our fast-paced American
culture. For the member prefering immediacy, some women are accessible without much or any
letter writing if they should have a phone, computer, or e-mail, or if they live in an area where we have a
local representative. Please be aware that many Russian women do not have phones or access to a computer.
Since the effectiveness of our program is related to the authenticity, availabilty and credibility of the males and females involved,
we refuse to sell addresses. This allows us to safeguard contact information for serious members. We do this because:
A) The selling (and reselling) of addresses and the easy procurement of contact information, readily leads to many unknown men with questionable intentions contacting Russian females, thereby reducing the success of serious clients. Letters and phone calls from numerous men who may be neither serious, nor able to consider the prospect of marriage, or even a trip to Russia, can needlessly raise and then crush hopes of these women who openly pour out their hearts in their communications. We do not want to expose trusting, sincere women to married men, manipulators, prisoners, egomaniacs, low investment-low involvement curiousity seekers, or the financially unable. After a few such experiences these women can lose faith in the process and in the sincerity of the men and stop responding.
B) Our system qualifies and limits the number of men participating. As a result the women benefit from a better quality man and the men benefit from less competition. The qualifying (screening) process occurs in two stages. Initially, a membership fee serves to help eliminate men who are not serious about this venture, and allows us to provide personalized services to those men who want better than average results, and can afford a better quality program with a reputable firm. At the next stage, after mutual attraction and interest have been determined, the optional purchase of a trip enhances the man's credibility and reassures the woman that he really will come to visit. At this point you may choose to continue to communicate with the assistance of our office staff or you may contact the woman directly. On written communications routed through the office we will continue to address your outgoing letters in Russian (up to 2 a month) at no extra cost, and of course, 3 way telephone conference calls can continue to be made with the assistance of one of our translators. This process enhances communication, protects you both and improves your results.
C) Our method allows tracking of responses of women to letters and phone calls and helps to identify problem women. Bargain-bassement addresses are no bargain if you get no responses, or you are not alerted to problems other men have experienced.
D) Our method allows us to be aware of your developing situation and offer help if either of you should encounter problems in your attempts to communicate and establish and maintain a relationship. As a result, our members enjoy a high success rate with an ethical firm. Otherwise you're on your own.
Fill out your Member Profile and make your selections based upon your review of their Member Profile information,
their photos and Partner Compatibility Questionnaires (if you have the compatibility questionnaire membership option).
At least one photo of yourself is requested for each woman you want us to contact by mail. Of course some Russian members will
be able to view your photo on our web site if they have access to a computer. For local members, V.I. Portrait Studio is housed right in our
office if you'd like to include professional photos. In any case, provide a photo that gives
a fairly close up view of yourself. Photos of home, children, etc. are fine as long as she gets a photo giving her
a fair impression of what you look like now or in the recent past. Don't send only something many years old without
identifying it as such or you may both be disappointed when you show up in person.
Seriously consider investing in the partner compatibility testing process and carefully review the questionnaires of members
you may be interested in. If the member doesn't already have a questionnaire on file, ask us to obtain it. If you haven't already thought about the
these issues, a valid question to ask yourself is: How can I determine if we're compatible during a short trip to
Russia, and in her 3 month fiancee visa trip to my country following our engagement?
The partner compatibility testing process provides a excellent time saving preparatory
tool and is a great short cut in getting to know a lot of important and personal things about someone which
may be crucial to the long-term success of a relationship. It reveals a lot of valuable information about a person
from the start, allowing you to move on to a more compatible prospect if there are too many important differences between you.
You'll learn things about each other that even persons close to each of you may not know, or were afraid to
ask. If you do your preparatory homework properly prior to a trip, you'll lessen the chances of marrying
for the wrong reasons.
Tips on how to write a letter are included on this site. Along with your letter we send your Member Profile sheet and photos. We can also send a video interview of you. Be honest and open in your communication. Don't exaggerate who you are or what you have, or have unrealistic expectations or demands of her. There's no sense in deceiving her or expecting the impossible, as you'll both eventually have to confront reality anyway. Save a lot of time and trouble by being straight from the start, enabling you to bypass incompatible or unrealistic possibilites and provide a shortcut to finding the person who likes you for who you are.
On the other hand if you think that you'd like to meet many women, consider certain
aspects of this approach very carefully. Please consider the feelings of someone who may have
invested a lot of emotion, expense and effort responding to your overtures. She may
have taken the time and trouble to travel several days across the country to meet you. Upon
meeting her, don't quickly dismiss her as a serious candidate due to a snap judgment on your part,
or too tight of a social agenda. Please don't instantly judge her in this inital meeting
based on the superficial glamour-industry criteria so common in American culture. Keep in mind
that you'll have to live with her personality, attitude and values long after you may tire
of her looks, or her looks are gone.
Give these women the attention and respect they deserve,
and please don't trifle with the feelings
of these wonderful women who have gone to such trouble to be there for you! We ask that you
treat them with dignity and respect and also reimburse them for any substantial expenses.
If a woman does not reside in an area where you will stay, she will incur travel and lodging
expenses. Although inexpensive by Western standards, this can truly deplete her resources,
or be financially impossible without your help. We never want to put a woman in
a situation described in a TV news report, in which a woman sold all of her
possessions in order to travel across Russia, just to attend a social sponsored by another company
where the women significantly outnumbered the men. A typical Russian woman may not have a lot
and wages are very low by our standards. Around $58 a month are average wages of Russian
people according to a recent report. She may be too proud or embarassed to discuss her financial
situation. So be a gentleman and take the lead here. Also, if a woman is coming a long distance
to meet you, it is important to get your itinerary establish several weeks in advance. There's
nothing much more frustrating for either of you, than to fail to connect due to imporoper
advance planning or poor communication.
It is impossible for us to make certain that all representations by all participants
are accurate and most representations are taken at face value. We reserve the right
to terminate anyone of we become aware of willful misrepresentation. In contrast,
a 6/3/95 Moscow Times article refers to allegations that European Connections'
owner knowingly bought and featured photos of unavailable models who were portrayed as prospective
marriage partners in their catalogs. And on 5/25/95 the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette exposed
their Moscow coordinator, described as a "flimflam man par excellence", as a fugitive from U.S. justice
after personally bilking numerous persons in the United States.
Some ladies may exaggerate their familiarity with English. The use of translation services
is often advisable. Some may not present their language ability accurately out of fear that men
won't write or visit. Some of the ladies have very good written English but may not speak as well
as they write. Men who handle this situation sensitively can foster a receptive attitude and gain
respect from these beautiful women who are so eager for the chance to participate in this program.
Clarification of this issue early on represents a great opportunity to offer assistance. We can
provide written and verbal translations and enhance the clarity and quality of your communication.
Moreover, you will show her that you are making an effort to be aware of, and sensitive to her
needs. Despite language limitations, this isn't a major problem, since experience has shown that
many women are very resourceful in getting letters deciphered and replies translated. Also some
of the women are truly fluent in English as English is a required course of study in schools
in the C.I.S.
A challenge to this industry is how to conduct business in a humane way while reducing risk
for all parties involved. Optimizing the success of our male members and minimizing
any hurt on the other end can often be at odds, partly due to the overwhelming number of women
available compared to the number of men who join our program and contact them,
and the even fewer men yet who actually make the trip. Try to imagine the C.I.S. side of the equation.
As a woman who has ventured into this relationship opportunity, you get featured in albums
and a web site competing with a lot of beautiful women for the attention of relatively few men.
You may get some interest letters, but by definition, your chances for actual marriage are slim.
You are hoping to make a contact that will lead to love
with a good man and a chance for a better life. If you are lucky enough to appeal to a
man who is willing and able to travel to Russia to meet you, you will probably be
competing with other women he has contacted, who may also be meeting him during his
visit. If against the odds, you should be the one fortunate enough to be offered
a marriage proposal, the price will be that you must leave your family and friends to go
to a country where you don't know anyone else. You'll have to master another language,
adapt to another culture, and if you plan to work or pursue a career, you may have to start
all over again. With these uncertainties, you hope that the man is who he seems to be and
the marriage is worth the risk.
From the male's standpoint, a man might think that
having various beautiful women at his disposal is not a bad problem to have.
Nevertheless it can be. The very same characteristics that make some of
these women so receptive and eager, can put them at considerable emotional risk in
respect to dupicitious activity on the part of the man. Mistakes in social interaction that
might be considered trivial in the West can be serious in the East. Against some zero-tolerance
aspects of a difficult life in the C.I.S., the line between what is perceived as a mistake
vs. dishonesty may not be seen at all. A thoughtless indiscretion in a relationship situation
in another culture can have harmful ramifications.
In America we've become accustomed to a land in which there is often a safety net to
protect us from errors in judgment, and foolish or counterproductive behavior. In some
other less fortunate countries there may be no second chances. In contrast to the perplexing behavior
displayed by some American women in your attempts to meet and court them, playing
hard to get or acting haughty has no practical value in this international courtship
situation. Moreover, these women are more likely to say what they mean and mean what they say,
rather than engage in polite dishonesty, issue avoidance or question evasion when dealing
with uncomfortable issues. Having the advantage of financial leverage, even a man with
a kind soul who has been alone too long, may find his personal integrity tested to the limits.
So please say what you mean and mean what you say, and do not take advantage of these wonderful,
sincere women. And if you've got character flaws, have the courage to work on them.
Don't think that someone from afar is the solution.
Some ladies have complained quite bitterly about their treatment by various agencies
(there are many Cinderella stories as well). We have chosen to address these issues
and implement our beliefs in the nature and structure of the program we offer.
We hope that you will appreciate the wisdom of our approach, and our sincere
concern for all persons involved. By using our services you join us in fostering
dignity and ethics in this marketplace.
After you have accomplished what you set out to do, and have reaped the rewards of taking
this approach, you may wonder why others haven't done the same thing. You are among the
vanguard of some practical and resourceful American men who have thought through a problem
and found an innovative way to solve it. As a result, you're likely to have found a partner
from abroad who like you, discovered an innovative solution to a need and had the courage
to take a risk.
After all the effort, disappointment and heartache you may have experienced with American
women, it is truly amazing, and almost unbelieveable to some, that you are simply able
to go to another part of the world to find a marital relationship with a wonderful women
you've heretofore only dreamed about, and in some cases given up hope of ever finding.
It can be a fairy tale come true for both of you, if you have heeded the advice we've provided
and utilized the relationship tools we've made available. May you both live happily ever after.
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