There’s a contagious myth, in both Japan and abroad, that by simply being a foreigner, one has an automatic advantage for dating Japanese girls. The reality is that there are many reasons why Japanese girls don’t like foreign guys, the majority of which can be summed up by one of Japan’s most relevant cultural exports: anime.
1. Language Barrier
it can be cute at times, especially on dinner dates when she texts you
beforehand about how “hungly” she is. And sure, she may accelerate your
Japanese learning process, but when you get into more intense subjects,
the translation apps go out the window and your charades become the new
It’s not just conversation that makes this a turn off either. If a foreigner guy’s language doesn’t progress with the relationship, he’ll have to rely on her progressively for understanding all sorts of issues: visas, taxes, healthcare, education, your haircut, ordering your food, her holding his hand to cross the street…
2. Public stigma
is a largely homogenous culture. Less than 2% are foreigners. Very few
couples are interracial, and of those that progress to marriage, the
overwhelming majority are actually between a Japanese man and a foreign
women. Of Japanese women who get married, 1.3% marry a foreigner.
Combine this with the other details on this list, and the recipe for public judgment causes many Japanese girls to steer clear.
3. Parental Disapproval
in hand with the public stigma are the judgment of what may be a
Japanese girl’s most influential figures: her Mom and Dad. This isn’t to
suggest that parental disapproval is the norm (although there are some
horror stories), nor is it to say racism is rampant, but sometimes there
are some old-fashioned attitudes in regards to relationships. Add a
lack of a common tongue into the mix, and foreigner’s chance of wooing a
girl’s affection can get a bit complicated.
As Japanese girls tend to live with their families well into their 20s, ensuring she doesn’t “offend” her parents may rate higher on her priority list than the cute gaijin sending her Line stickers. Short term, yes, you can bask in the beautiful neon rays of love hotels, but long term, the best you can do is to minimize the other red flags in this article.
4. Lower Income Jobs
not all Japanese girls will make a final judgment on dating a foreigner
based on their income level, some certainly will. Image is high in
Japan; look around and you will hardly see a girl not dressed to the
nines. English Teaching, one of the most popular jobs for foreigners
coming to Japan, nets a salary of 250,000 yen per month (or 25,314 USD
salary per year pre-tax income). Definitely not enough for a family
long-term, and possibly not enough for a solid date. Dependent on a
girls age (younger girls care less), this could be a significant
deterrent when it’s layered on top of other reasons in this list.
5. They are “charai”
get a bad rap of being labeled as “playboys.” It’s this label that also
fuels the stereotype of foreign men having some mystical “game” when it
comes to Japanese women. Charai, or the Japanese phrasing of such, is
basically being called a “player.” While you can gently toss it aside
(or defend yourself valiantly), chances are you already in the hole.
Coupled with recent shitshows by certain foreigners (Julien Blanc,
anyone?), and the public perception of “charai foreigners” is definitely
at its pinnacle. While you can proudly show your 30 LINE contacts named
“Kaori” to your male counterparts, watch those wandering eyes when on
the date with your lovely Japanese lady.
6. Transitory Foreigners
this can benefit a foreigner depending on the girl’s preference for
relationship duration, it can be a real detriment if the girl is looking
for the possibility of a long-term relationship.
“Where are you from?” won’t seem so innocuous anymore.
The basic reality is that most foreigners only temporarily live in Japan, whether it’s for a week or a few years, there’s almost always an exit date. And even if the plan is long term, circumstances (lost job, visa expiring, deportation) make it impossible to afford a girl the same level of “security” that a Japanese citizen can.
Japanese girls know this – even if they’ve never dated a foreigner before.
this doesn’t mean you’re socially smooth like the lube of the same
name. It stands for “kuki yomenai,” which means quite the opposite. It
means you are socially uncalibrated and that you can’t read the air.
Talking on your phone on quiet train. Going for a full on make-out in
public place. Pointing to your condom stash when she mentions the “last
It can be simplified as bad manners, cultural ignorance, and poor social skills. While you may be bound to accidentally coming across KY as a newcomer or tourist to Japan, you’ll still need to pick up on subtle and environmental cues to make sure you aren’t “that guy.”