Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Ask an American

After taking a look at the blog Ask A Korean I was amused by the post that talks about "Everything you wanted to know about a Korean." But when you read through the post the author makes the point that:
  • A Korean Man is a Man first before he is Korean. Like any man in the world of course he would want to date a foreigner because simple she is a woman (if the Korean man swings that way).
Okay, that's a great reminder. Men are men first! They want what all men want...

Yet, after reading this a few questions came upon me.

  1. What does a Korean man think is different when he dates a foreign woman?
  2. In other words, what is it like to date an American woman?
  3. Is a Korean man just another man or are there cultural inclinations for his actions and desires?
And so I am seeking answers to these questions from my own observations of dating BK for the past 4 months. Also I have experience dating a Chinese man for 4.5 years.

My answer to #3, is yes! Most definitely yes! Now this all depends on what kind of people you date. For example some guys are bastards and some are sweethearts. In general not all of them are going to be bastards and sweethearts all of the time, you are going to get a mix. Unless of course you can see a bastard before you get to know them or sweetheart before you get to know them.

Anyways, culture does influence the person you date. There is just no way around it; however, you can avoid putting stereotypes onto the foreign man that you date. For example, the size of their !!!! or that they are good or not good in bed. That sort of thing is better left out the window okay.

So here from my experience are a list of particular attributes to dating a non-American man, especially East Asian, that I find worth noting.
  1. There is going to be a language barrier. Unless he is fluent you are going to run into communication issues. And I don't just mean short misunderstandings, but situations where you are in an argument and the conversation doesn't get resolved. This is because he needs time to come to an answer in his head, or what he feels inside is hard to translate into English.
  2. More caring. Yes I hate to tack this on and sound stereotypical, but in general I have felt more cared for than my American partners. Yet keep in mind the American men I dated tended to be lazy duds. By caring I mean they will worry about your health, food intake and other necessities of life instead of just whether you are happy or not. I don't want to speculate incorrectly what cultural reason there is for an Asian man to be more caring, but I am going to pin it on the fact that family and infidelity is taken much more seriously, which perhaps causes someone to be respectful and mindful of an others situation.
  3. Love is something more serious. Saying I love you or expressing it is a feeling that is taken more seriously instead of just saying it all the time on the whim. Again, culturally speaking I would think that using this phrase is somewhat not spoken often at home and around school. Causing the expression to be reserved for more serious of times.
Well I can only think of those three right now and hope they were a bit accurate without being too overtly heinous.

I just couldn't help but think about writing about how there has to be cultural inputs into the people you date, if they are from another country.

As I continue my relationship with BK and make friends with other Koreans, I believe that I will be mindful of both our differences and similarities and the cause for them.

Yet more importantly I want to address what it is like from the other's perspective. What does BK think of me? Am I different from a Korean woman because of my American ways? Or is it just that I am a different woman...no matter my country of origin?

It is these questions I hope to answer with a follow up post someday.

4 comments:

  1. Hmmmmm....I don't think you were "dating" a Chinese man for 4.5 years...it was a "significant other" living together type relationship. You were dating a Chinese man that I met at your graduation last yr., but that was a different man.

    Of course there's going to be cultural differences & language misunderstanding, etc.... when people from two entirely different cultures/backgrounds get together.

    What are you really trying to understand....not clear, too vague for this reader!
    M.

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  2. Ok ok lets not delve too much into my past please....

    Yes the differences between two people from different cultural bakgrounds is obvious.

    My point was that many people end up blaming an issue they have between two cultures on it being a fault of the whole culture and not just the person. Then there are people who try to avoid this alltogether and end up missing the point that there are differences that should be discussed.

    hmm sorry to be vague...it was just my response to a post I read elswhere...

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  3. Hey , just want to say I appreciate this blog.
    I am an American ( white) woman who as of late , has just dated a few Asian guys, mainly Korean just by happenstance.

    I am completely confused as to what the expectations are .

    Language is definitely key , but it seems that I have met guys who are either strictly interested in sex and feign any communication , or either want complete seriousness and commitment almost immediately.

    I have never been the "dating " kind , as I have mainly been in long term relationships , and as of late am trying something different .

    The dates I have had just happen to have been with Asian men , who I do find completely attractive , but am trying to really understand how to make it work .

    I have no resolution here in my email, just sending thanks for having this blog period,and hopefully can learn something here.

    Gombae

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  4. Wow~! Thank you Daphne..:)

    I haven't blogged much lately on what it has been like to date a Korean man, mostly because when I did at times the responses people gave me weren't good.

    I think it is important to remember that you are involving yourself intimately with another culture. But remember that all men are just men, and they have their own way of being.

    I hope I can provide more insights into this part of my life so a reader like yourself can see more of what it is like.

    ReplyDelete

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