October 04, 2007

Western Men, Be the Boss!

The relationship between men and women in Japan is quite different from how it is in the western countries. In Japan, the ratio of the power dynamic between a husband and wife is NOT “50/50”. Generally, it is about “70/30”. (Perhaps it is my opinion.) So, sometimes, when a man starts to communicate with a Japanese woman, he might get off the wrong foot because of the cultural difference.

For Example, when you date, you might ask her
“Where would you like to drive?”
Then she answers,
Or, when you eat at the fancy restaurant with her, you might ask her
“What would you like to eat?”
And she might answer,
”I would like the same as your order.”
She doesn’t say what she wants to do or what she wants to eat exactly, yet she is waiting for his decision first.
In most of the western countries, it is generally accepted as the norm that each person is free to make his/her own decision or to come to an agreement after discussion. However, in Japan, a woman expects a man to decide for both of them. She expects him to be a strong leader whom she can follow. In Japan, the male dominated society has existed since “The Samurai Period”, and it still continues in the 21st century. In order to promulgate a harmonious relationship with a Japanese woman, I advise you to be the “boss”, almost like most Japanese men, but in a friendlier way. When you date a Japanese woman, it would be better that you give her the direction. So, as in my previous example, it is better for you to decide where to dine and to suggest the special yummy dishes. And then, she will feel more comfortable with you. The ratio 70/30, this is one of the keys for good communication with a Japanese woman.

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