Foreign Brokered Brides Rethink Korea

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A Vietnamese bride is about to marry a Korean man 20 years older than him. They met through her older sister who also married a Korean. ~ Photo P. DeMarco

When couples say their wedding vows, “till death do us part” is not supposed to mean you stay married until one partner kills the other. Unfortunately, this past summer a schizophrenic Korean man murdered his Vietnamese wife [not the girl in the photo above].

Apart from the ghastly murder, what sent shock waves around the world was that he met his wife, a Vietnamese girl 27 years younger than him, through a bride brokerage service. It is common practice for older Korean men to travel to Southeast Asia to find brides.

Bride brokerage services are very popular in Korea. After the murder, the Korean authorities are cracking down on this poorly regulated practice. Obviously there are some happy marriages between Korean men and foreign brokered brides, but there are many challenges for them as well.




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