Should you contact your Japanese girlfriend first?

I received an email the other day from a reader of the Understanding Japanese Women Blog (and a satisfied customer, I might add.) He posed a very good question that deserves an answer. Since it is something that many of the UJW Blog readers could benefit from, he gave me permission to talk about it here with all of you. Here’s an excerpt:

“I had an interesting talk with the (Japanese) woman who cuts my hair yesterday and she was telling me about how Japanese girls are told not to return all calls/emails because this is supposed to make the guy think about her more. Personally, I just get bored with the game and move on but it has given me some insight that may cause me to be more forgiving…. Have you heard anything along these lines before?”

As a matter of fact, I have. And this is certainly is something that needs to be answered so all of you can better understand your Japanese girlfriends or those Japanese women who you wish to get closer to.

I’ll begin with my typical answer: it depends.

If you are fortunate enough (or unfortunate, depending on your tastes in women) to get a Japanese girlfriend who believes you to be the second coming of Brad Pitt, she will e-mail you almost constantly. Again, if this is to your liking, great! If not… oh boy…

Most likely, though, your Japanese girlfriend (or potential Japanese girlfriend) will probably be of the “wait for the man” type. It kind of reminds me of the old expression “gentleman callers.” It certainly does appear that Japanese women prefer to have the man do most of the “calling” (or emailing) during the early stages of dating. Although, I’ve noticed that the more established couples are a little more balanced in the “who calls first” department.

So, be prepared to make first contact often during the early stages of dating Japanese women. Try not to become too frustrated — just grin and bear it (as much as you can.) It’s another one of those “Japanese culture” things.