For many expat women, dating in Japan is a nightmare. Western women have difficulty adjusting to Japanese beauty standards and new dating rules. Sometimes our doofy expat brothers manage to score Japanese Barbie while us expat sisters are drinking copious amounts of booze, taking up a new hobby or stuck at home on a Saturday night watching reruns of our favorite K-Drama. (I’m so guilty of binge watching Secret Garden.)
One of my struggles with dating overseas is the feeling of unattractiveness living in Japan. I’m your average woman with curly brown hair, tan skin, and a nice smile. After six months of living here, I had to quickly re-evaluate the quality of my life.
While tan skin is attractive on the western side of the globe, white skin is revered and sought after in Asia. Gina 0, Japan 1.
The fact I’m taller and stockier than most men and women also counts against me. Gina 0, Japan 2.
I go and talk to the cute boy at the bar and he flips his shit because he can’t speak English? Gina 0, Japan 3.
No problem, I’ll speak my awful, broken Japanese. At least I’m trying, right? Boy still flips his shit because he can’t believe I speak his language. Gina 0, Japan 4.
Oh, you’re a western woman and you have an opinion? You’re confident and you know what you want? While that’s intimidating to some men on the western side, it’s enough to make many Japanese men hit the ground running. Gina 0, Japan 5.
As I briefly addressed in “Eight Reasons You Should Love Korea” Japanese take their time getting to know each other.While I respect taking your time, it’s usually my friends and I starting the dance party at the club and the creepy, wasted Japanese guys attempting to juke but looking like a deranged hoard of mini Godzillas.
Don’t get me wrong. There are the occasional success stories of my expat sisters who manage to “win the lottery” and catch a Japanese boyfriend. Baby, I would shake your hand if I could, but instead, I offer you a cyberspace one. Not all women share my struggle; I’m just giving my personal opinion on the matter.
I base this off two very recent blunders, sending me face first into the brick wall of, “Not so fast, bitch. This is Nihon, not ’MURICA.”
Our first story follows our heroine desperately trying not to fall for the handsome math teacher at school. He teases her by teaching her Japanese she shouldn’t be repeating and speaking to her in Japanese while she’s going through culture shock. At first, his presence is met with a glare until our heroine manages to beat him at his own game. Some muuchi and cleared misunderstandings, the pair becomes close. Coming to terms with her feelings, one day at lunch, she boldly asks, “Do you have a girlfriend?”
He responds, “I have a girlfriend for every day of the week!”
Taking it as a joke, our heroine thinks nothing of it until at the end of the school year she is notified by another teacher he indeed has one and they live together. Can you say dickface?
That doesn’t make me; I mean her, look retarded or anything…
Our second emotional hit comes with our heroine falling madly for a guy at Cross Fit and learning Japanese because she desperately wishes to communicate with him. Said ex object of affection disregards telling her he has a wife and later our heroine finds she’s known his wife the entire time…Only to learn his wife also neglected telling her she was married…
Of course I don’t feel like an idiot. NOT. Deception is not cool. A stupid gag on having multiple girlfriends is not funny and neither is a couple not wearing rings or acknowledging their marriage. Da fack did you get married in the first place then?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m still not deterred from dating Japanese men. After being deceived, I recognize what happened to me can happen all over the world. I get it, but I’m still taking a break, and I still find Japanese men attractive.
A week ago, I had a conversation with my mom detailing the only way I could date a Japanese man is if my Japanese improves, he has lived abroad or is more open minded, and he can speak some English. I need someone willing to share their feelings and understand I’m different as I will with them. “Winning the lottery” doesn’t seem a close future prospect and I still have plenty to learn. However, I look forward to sharing my experiences with my expat sisters on dating in Japan.
Any of you ladies have an opinion on the matter? Please leave a comment on my blog or consider submitting to Gina Bear’s Blog!
P.S. Awhile ago, some asshole was catfishing others using my photos (particularly this post). Don’t be an asshole and 1) steal my pictures and 2) catfish others. Karma is a bitch and if you steal my photos, I’m sending an extra load of angry karma at you. 🙂