On December 25, 1991, the Soviet Union collapsed financially and ideologically; the days of communism in Russia were over. Mikhail Gorbachev was no longer president, and Boris Yeltsin became the new leader in the independent state of Russia. In the aftermath of the collapse, Russia now had to find its new ground to build its future, moving from a planned economy to a free-market economy. The welfare system that existed under communism existed no more, and people in Russia had to find new ways to make a living in order to survive. For women in Russia, it proved particularly hard, and thus, classified personal ads started to emerge in newspapers in Russia, where a Russian woman would seek a western man. However, since not a lot of western men read newspapers in Russia, it didn’t take long before Russian women’s classified personal advertisements started to emerge in western newspapers. Likewise, international classified personal services in countries such as the United States started popping up, offering single men to meet a single Russian woman looking for marriage.
At the time, if you had to respond to a classified personal ad, a man would have to call or write the newspaper in order to get the necessary contact information of the single Russian woman he wanted to get in contact with. Henceforth, the correspondence would occur by exchanging handwritten letters by post, back and forth to Russia. Later classified personal ads became available as a phone service where a man could listen to a recorded message from a single Russian woman looking to meet a western man. At the beginning of the 2000s, the first international dating websites started to operate and very fast became popular. At the beginning of 2021, it is estimated that over 100 international Russian dating or marriage agency websites operate worldwide. Nonetheless, even today, it is possible to find newspapers or magazines in Russia and the west, where single people advertise for someone to start dating or marry. In Russia, you find local newspapers in small cities that run Russian women personals on the last page to accommodate those single women who do not have internet access.
In remote areas of Russia, sometimes finding an internet connection or getting mobile coverage can still be difficult. Therefore single women have to use a physical newspaper or a newspaper’s website if they want to run a personals ad. In the west, even the British newspaper The Guardian has a section called up close and personals, where singles can meet other singles through what in Britain is called a lonely hearts column. If you want an example of what a lonely hearts column looks like, you can click on this link. However, most people have internet access on their phones and desktops in this day and age, no matter if they live in Russia or the west. Thus, when it comes to meeting a single Russian woman, the internet has its advantages, compared to old-school classified personals or the lonely heart columns. In conclusion, and to answer the question; what is the deal with Russian women personals today? Russian women personals are not a big thing anymore; however, you’ll still find them in Russia’s remote areas. Today internet based solutions such as international dating websites have taken over.