Three Truths about Typical Turkish Men

August 8, 2014
turkish men

The personality traits of a gentleman, smooth talker, romantic, and extreme flirt are all wrapped together to give you the typical Turkish man. At first encounter you will be charmed, wooed, and certainly enchanted by his “going-out-of-their-way” hospitality and attention. But be cautious. Some men have ulterior motives, and some will definitely get you into trouble.

When I first came to Turkey, I was given no warning about how typical Turkish men would act. I wondered if they would be anything like American men, the only type I knew, or if the culture would alter their personality completely. I had heard stories of getting lots of extra attention from men if you were naturally blonde or red-headed, but that seemed normal since those are very distinct foreign looks. Nonetheless, I had a rude awakening about the characteristics of typical Turkish men within the first month I lived in Turkey.

I didn’t date much in high school or at university, and I wasn’t given much attention by men. All of that was fine by me. I am a self-proclaimed bookworm and nerd to the core, so nothing could keep me from the gorgeous university libraries or research lounges. My experience with speaking or talking with guys all came from my two best male friends and my two big brothers–obviously nothing romantic or flirtatious there.

Furthermore, I thought that having tea or coffee with a new male friend would mean nothing because how could tea or coffee be anything but harmless?

These are simply my experiences in my small city outside of Istanbul.

Now, this type does not describe all Turkish men, because I have met some really great male friends while in Turkey. I’m also not trying to create a stereotype about typical Turkish men. These are simply my experiences in my small city outside of Istanbul. Not all of these traits or experiences are only a result of Turkish-ness. Some of the stories that I have heard have been due to women beginning the flirtation themselves, and some men have a view of all Western women as being the same as women in movies.

That being said, here are three things I have learned about typical Turkish men:

Three Truths about Typical Turkish Men

1. Typical Turkish men are persistent.

If you are casually asked to have coffee or tea, and politely decline, that may stop them—for a few minutes. Even if you haven’t tried to give them extra attention, some take even simple eye contact, a small laugh at a joke, or just the fact that you are alive as an acceptance to their marriage proposal. If you say no to them once, they will ask again, or they will lie low until you notice them again.

To me this was so bizarre because in the States most men get anxious even asking a girl out (kudos to those who have the courage to take that risk). Once they’ve been shot down they don’t attempt again. The only way to deal with Turkish men’s persistence is to grin and bear it. Soon they will find another girl and/or you will begin dating someone, which will turn them away because…

2. Typical Turkish men are jealous.

This does not solely go for Turkish men; this is true for men and women here. Jealousy is part of their culture and a fact of life. If you are dating a Turkish man or woman, there are no other men or women that exist anymore. Now in America and in the UK, jealousy is a green monster that most people have a strong distaste for.

Here in Turkey, if you are not jealous of whom your partner speaks to, looks at, or hangs out with, it is the equivalent of raising a small flag that states, “I don’t love him/her.” It also doesn’t matter how many times you try and explain the cultural difference—they won’t change their minds. Because of this jealousy you have to be careful of who you hang out with because…

Three Truths about Typical Turkish Men

3. In Turkey, everyone talks.

If you have tea with a guy after a class and someone sees you together—and they most certainly will—within the hour your classmates, your school, and all of your friends will have found out. There have been instances where I have been walking around town and I ran into one of my students. We decided to chat for awhile, usually for them to practice English. By the end of the day I would be asked by either my boss or friends if there would be a date soon.

So what can you do? You continue to live life.

The attention is going to come, and you have to accept it. In the beginning you think you are royalty, but the best way to make sure you are safe is to use common sense. In Turkey there are different social norms that you have to follow. Here it is all about being continually conscious about what others are thinking, both if they see you alone with someone, or if a guy is asking you to hang out.

At the same time, typical Turkish men are not always to blame. My personality can, at times, seem very social or flirtatious because I am a bit sarcastic. Sometimes I come across as initiating, while really I’m just trying to be myself. Therefore, while a lot of the bad press about typical Turkish men centers around jealousy and persistence, it is a two way street—with a misunderstanding of both sides’ social norms and cultures.

Have you traveled to Turkey and dated Turkish men? Email us at for information about sharing your experience and advice with the Pink Pangea community.  We can’t wait to hear from you.

About Haley Larkin

Haley LarkinHaley Larkin is currently teaching English in Turkey through LanguageCorps.

114 thoughts on “Three Truths about Typical Turkish Men

  1. Avatar
    John Marks
    July 14, 2020

    You get this attitude because Turkey is a shithole and Turkish men are aholes and many abuse their wives, which is allowed in their religion. Their jealously is because they have nothing in their pathetic lives in Turkey and want to hold on to the only thing they have going for them – you! If I were you I would get the hell outta here, there are much safer places to teach English. Westerners wonder why they get in trouble when working overseas, these type of cultural differences are part of the problem. Western women are no naive they are may as well have a target painted on their backs. Ah.

  2. Avatar
    Stacie Pike
    May 31, 2020

    To Sammie who met a Turkish man on a dating app…March 2020.. what app? what was his name? What behaviors did he have? Did you speak to him?
    Maybe it’s another person or maybe it’s the same story. But I’m curious as I too met a Turkish man on a dating site. He’s hot. But I’m concerned as he isn’t sharing much details of himself. ?????

  3. Avatar
    April 6, 2020

    turkish guy it really jealous if we talk to other guy . some how there are kind , honest , sweet and etc but when you make him jealous , he will ignore you and there were gone in your mind. if you love him do not make him jealous . it just i want to say about turkish guy cause i have date before .

  4. Avatar
    March 15, 2020

    I met a Turkish man in dating app. He is gentle, honest and smooth talker, it’s fun talking to him. He is an architect and told me that he is always busy but he texts me everyday. We’ve been texting in whatsapp for a month now, he sends good mornings and heart emojis, he always tells me i look great and cute everytime I send photos/selfies, he asks if what am i doing and tells me goodluck at work. Does he like me? Helppp I am catching feelings from him. How can I tell if he really do like me? Or maybe he just text me cause of boredom 🙁

  5. Avatar
    March 2, 2020

    I am in love a Turk who has engaged marriage soon. I love him even he is the most jealousy guy in the world…..Cant imagine the one who will spend the rest of his life with is someone he doesnt love….pity sad …:(

  6. Avatar
    June 29, 2019

    Hey i just wonder something, i have meet a guy from turkey and he is from Istanbul. We meet online and he give me his whatsapp.He say he love me and want have sex in real life and cam but i told him no and he didn’t force me if i say no. So what should i do any tip?

  7. Avatar
    April 10, 2019

    I agree with everything you said above. But Turkish guy might have some differences when it comes to jealousy and worldview. So if you will marry a Turkish guy who has never been outside of the Turkey. Probably he has all of typical characteristics that you said. I met my husband in my home country where we worked together. So he left the country long time ago, and he has more western attitude. Of course, we all have natural and ethnic stuff from genes. But I love him he is a family man. Turkish man might cheat that’s what my husband says about his friends. I believe him and his honest. But!!!! I hate Turkish men with traditional view in Turkey. I find them very annoying with maniacal eyes. So be careful when you come to live to Turkey. As a foreign women you will find Turkey very uncomfortable. Turkish women are very rude and unwelcoming in Turkey. Their women jealous of western women. And they will constantly show their hostility. But Turkish men are very disrespectful towards the non Turkish females. I can’t go out without my husband I just afraid them. They are very oppressive to Turkish women as I understood. Once I went to the store to buy something and I just said hi to local cashier and he accepted it as flirt. When he approached me he touched lightly my butt. I was so angry and cound’t control myself and yelled in the market. It was obvious sexual harassment. Please be careful when say hello and smile any men. They will automatically accept it as a sign for intimacy from you.

  8. Avatar
    January 19, 2019

    Sorry for the bad experiences you had. I will try to explain a little bit. Many Turkish people are not used to have long flirts. Some of them avoid to flirt even if they want(every human being wants this) because they’re religious, but some of them don’t obey the rules of religion, they’re completely free to behave like that but their family might get sad about this. Some others are never care about religion and flirts freely, they’re also completely free and no-one has the right to interfere. But majority of Turks are from 1st or 2nd group, they try surpass their feelings and mostly they’re not married(i mean virgin). Because of that when a Turkish guy even have a little attention from a girl, it makes him like fall in love or obsessed. Normal things for European people like hugs kisses hangouts are the things that Turkish people experience before marriage during being fiance. That’s the difference. There are many things to write but it will take paragraphs. I summarised. But i can tell if someone needs. My Skype is aliyasinkesen 😉

  9. Avatar
    January 19, 2019

    Sorry for the bad experiences you had. I will try to explain a little bit. Many Turkish people are not used to have long flirts. Some of them avoid to flirt even if they want(every human being wants this) because they’re religious, but some of them don’t obey the rules of religion, they’re completely free to behave like that but their family might get sad about this. Some others are never care about religion and flirts freely, they’re also completely free and no-one has the right to interfere. But majority of Turks are from 1st or 2nd group, they try surpass their feelings and most they’re

  10. Avatar
    November 25, 2018

    VERA, just dump him, I am Australian we don’t put up with stuff like that, or I don’t anyway, he’s not worth it, and women are so much more intelligent than men, we are the smarter of the two species, so love YOURSELF and not some man. your worth more than that 😀

  11. Avatar
    November 19, 2018

    That’s a nice read 🙂 I’m Turkish and I totally agree with the things you observed in Turkish men’s attitudes towards foreigners. If you are a Turkish woman, their behaviours totally change and most of the times the flirt becomes “subtle”. They need to get soaked in alcohol just to come up with a simple icebreaker 🙂
    The relationships in so called “westernized” communities in big cities (like Istanbul, Izmir, Ankara) are somewhat different but more dangerous as Islamic values are still engraved in the curves of the Turkish men’s brains even if they look like hipsters, drink alcohol and go out on Saturday nights. My advise would be; if you are a woman brought up in some Western country, try to find a Turkish guy who has lived in a Western country at least for a couple of years 😉 Good luck!

  12. Avatar
    November 17, 2018

    I miss my turkish ,man. I dont understand him at all. his behaviors
    But he broke my heart too and i am not teenagers
    He disappears and busy with his own life and work and i am am alone, then he suddenly appears and it ruins me…
    Why he is doing this
    I love him and want to see but i have no ability.
    I think he doesnt need me for me as a friend now. Though before he said we will be a couple.
    I need now 3 months to recover
    its hard now to trust men
    I dont know…i wish i could do smth to be with him
    But i cant do anything, because i dont live in such good succesful country and i cant go out of my country.
    But i dont want to loose him, i dpnt want him to marry another woman
    i wish i never met him((

  13. Avatar
    November 6, 2018

    The things I read here made me very sad. i am a Turkish man

  14. Avatar
    July 9, 2018

    so guys, i had quite lots experience with turkish people, especially Turkish guy. so, i visited turkey for the first time in august 2017 and i found that turkish people are very warm, welcome, friendly to tourist, helpfull most of the time, and HANDSOME! OFC haha. so i went there to join a festival, and theres a another group participant too from another country. and every group got 2 tour leader from turkish, to help us or to explain everything in turkey, lucky me i got a handsome tour leader. so, i met this turkish guy, like i said hes very very very handsome, and also helpfull. in that time, i think i just met the most handsome guy ive ever met in my entire life. i spent 1 week there, hes being so generous, kind, helpfull all the time to us. and soon i realize i was crazy over him. and he was like just smiling or laughing everytime i asked for a picture together with him, since hes very good looking. so i asked a million picture with him together, he was like smiling laughing, very sweet. but then i had to go home, so sad:( i think i will never ever be able to meet him again after that since we live so far from each other. but after that festival, hes kinda arrogant and not answering my whatsapp, and just liking 2 of my instagram picture. i was so broken hearted, eventho i knew this thing wouldnt be gone too far, but i just feel sad and broken hearted, being away from him wouldnt be able to see him again, etc. but theeennn…. idk if its a fate or what, i got a chance to go back to turkey just FUCKING 4 MONTHS after my last visit so i went back there for my 2nd visit in january so it winter time, i mean like…. i felt so lucky in that time i think.
    and you know what will happen, i soon texted him that im going back to turkey again, maybe we can meet again for the last time etc, i still love and like him in that time. but yeah, he said he will moved to london etc and wasnt able to meet me in that time. i asked about the detail of his moving things to london, but he seems avoiding me. and this time i will spent 40 days in turkey, is that too impossible for him to met me just for 1 second??? huhh.. SO i got a conclusion that i cant meet him again after thousand miles i flew, but thats alright. because i have new mission of coming back to turkey for looking another guy, and moved on with. and you know what? my 2nd trip in turkey… I MET NOT ONLY JUST ONE GUY THAT LOVES ME, BUT MANYYY GUY LOVES ME HAHA. but not love in relationship way, they loved me as a friend, sister, and family. so after spent 40 days in turkey, i met lots handsome guy, even far far far waaayy better hotter more handsome than the first guy i was falling with. im so glad. im moved on. but i still wasnt able to tell the difference of when this guy like me as a family or he flirting with me. but i was so happy there, i received so much love everyday everytime… but then this issue comes back again. i like so many guy and even so hard to choose which one that my heart really like, since theyre very warm hearted, kind, HANDSOME, etc. and then in that group of guys that i like, theres this one guy i very very very very like and cant stop thinking about him all the time like legit, everytime i think about him. hes very nice, we did a lotsssss physical experience, like hugging, idk in turkey maybe hugging is like common thing. but for me it is very special, so we hug each other a lotssss. and for me this hug means different, everytime i hug him i feel it to my heart as i push my body to him, since hes very tall, my head will be in his chest, and i will always smell him, omg i cant describe it. and it happened almost everyday for 40 days. and he also kissed me on top of head on valentines day, and said “happy valentines day” omg!!!!!!!! he did all of those cute little things that made my heart confused like “is this thing common in turkey?? like having a boyfriend girlfriend relationship with just friend” ??so im just kinda let it flow, enjoyed every moment i spent in turkey with a lots of my friends… and then i had to go back home. at last night in turkey, i had to sleep in his place because something’s going on that time… so we just slept in the same room. i slept in his couch, and he slept in his bed. but because he had exams so he had to stay up late until like 3 am something. since i also cant eveennnnn sleep that time because i was waayyyy too nervous with him omg, like hes my crush, and now i will spent the night with him. so its very very awkward silence in the room. he did his homework stressfully, and i was just there laying tried to get some sleep but i cant, its was toooo awkward, nervous, but im too happy, i felt like im dreaming. hes sometimes sit next to me to smoke. we just did the things that couple usually did, even its way more sweet. and i ended up cant sleep until he finished his homework at 3 am, and i slept at 3.30 am. in the morning, i woke up i had to leave to catch the train to go back. then when i want to leave his room, he still sleep. i was just about to love, didnt want to disturb him at all. the he woke up and then we hug kinda long time, and me myself considered it as a goodbye hug, hes the man i love, like, and this is my last time seeing him, so i hug him sooooooo tiiighhtttttttt like omg i wanna cry :((((((((((((((((((((((((((:(((((:”””((((((((((((((. idk, i felt so warm and comfortable when i hug him. then i said goodbye but i keep coming back hug him tight again, and then in the end he said “if theres anything u need in istanbul, just text me” haha aahh so sweet. then i left. after i left not until an hour he text me about something, and then he said “i love you, sorry my disturbing” with love emoji. idk. isnt that too sweet right??? i really love him. and now its been like 6 months after, i text him sometimes, because i knew hes busy, very busy with everything. i knew how his daily routine is, hes very social able even maybe too hard to text somene. i sometime text him said i missed him, whats up like that he said hes busy and he missed me too. but he often left my text unread. but then he still like my instagram picture.
    hahahaha im sorry if my story was tooo long to read, and sorry my english wasnt that good, and also if u read all of my story, can u tell me whats should i do or what is this thing called? is there a hope for me? i really had issues with turkish guy 🙁 please huhu:( thanks

  15. Avatar
    May 20, 2018

    What means of ” secular” and “Ataturk” , ? to know if they are good or bad turkish..

  16. Avatar
    April 8, 2018

    this was really helpful. glad to know these things

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