毒男宅女的問題 – young and single in Hong Kong

Apparently somehow you seem to like my grumpy husband’s posts. With all the moving, packing and cat-paperwork stuff I can use it as an excuse to let him do all the dirty, writing work, just give him an idea and see how IMG_0004he almost cries ‘Babe, do I really have to?’.

This time he writes about a situation that a lot of young Hongkongers (and not only!) are dealing with: being young and single. I know it seams like not really serious problem, but if you go through forums and blogs you can see a lot of people who were in the same situation, as young kids they were forced to only study and then when they grow up they are expected to get married right away or at least be in a serious relationship leading to marriage. But because of that ‘study hard, don’t think about girls/boys’ they don’t have (sometimes any) dating experience. But let Sing tell you more about this problem and his thought on this topic!

Don’t date and study hard, you won’t need to worry about girls when you have money. I have been listening to that since middle school. Personally after so many years of living in different countries, I think that statement is somewhat accurate. Money can get you woman, whether long term “GF” or short term one night stand. However, are you satisfied with this kind of ending?

Unfortunately, I did listen to my mum and studied hard. The moment of getting a high score did make me feel good in front of the other, but at the end of the day I was still a lonely single guy for over 20 years.

My first real love life started when I was an adult. Before that I basically was like the otaku in Densha Otoko, BTW this is my most favorite drama which I have to watch over and over from time to time. So back to the topic, when I was young, study was what I did. I was not good at sports, I was not good at video games although I enjoy playing it, I was not talented artists. Therefore I don’t have much to talk with girls beside my findings during my study. Something I gave people a feeling that I only talk serious things like politics and science. But deep in my heart I wanted to find a girl that cares about me and can talk the topics that we are interested, instead of LV or food.

Sadly I went to a boy school with a cross on top of the roof. Things got even worse that we have guys that were able to date girls from the school next door. I know being an Asian living in Australia is not the most advantageous thing, especially at high school I thought my good student character will attract smart girls too. Turns out that muscular A-holes who was good at BS gets the most girls.

When I saw the article of “The life of a single/poison guy”, I felt what he felt. The reality is guys like us already receive the good-man card which makes us frustrated. However, what I don’t want to see is we keep complaining to the society. Put it in the way at my work, we should look at ourselves and do a Failure Analysis, use 5-why or fish bone diagram to find out the root cause of each failure and learn from it. If a girl doesn’t like the way you talk, then listen more. If a girl doesn’t like your appearance, then take a look of some trendy magazines. It is almost unavoidable that girls will look at your physical appearance before they even talk to you.

My point of writing this is not only to show any sympathy to the people who can’t find a girlfriend, because I’ve been there too. What I am trying to say is if you want to have a girlfriend, either:

  1. Study really hard so you end up with a good job or good connection in fancy college, so you can earn good money (to be honest I doubt if it’s that easy since job market isn’t at its best time everywhere butIMG_0005 who knows at the time you graduate?), then you can start from there. It will satisfy your parents, maybe it will give you inside satisfaction but you can become a gold digger magnet.
  1. Take care of your appearance, when you see not so handsome people still can find a cute girl, quite often is because they maximize the effect of their appearance. So shave up and dress up! (Said Sing with 4 facial hair. But I have to agree, he might not be the most handsome guy, but if he dresses up nicely, calms his pineapple hairstyle, puts lenses instead of glasses and moment later my legs looks like frog’s legs – Lina)
  1. Try to talk! Nothing will happen if you only stare at your crush from the back, except she will think you are the stalker if she finds out. Talking won’t hurt, this is what I found out after dealing with sales and marketing in my company. Trial and error will definitely open some conversation between you and the others. Let them know you! Let them know your passion and interest, this all starts from the moment you open your mouth.

Lastly I just want to say, date more, know more about girls! Once you start to know what they like, they are not that untouchable. So just calm yourself and go ahead while you are young!

Is it similar in your environment or culture in your country? Any advice you can give to the youngsters? Love to read your comments (not to mention Sing gets vain and grows 5 cm in height every time you agree with him)!

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37 thoughts on “毒男宅女的問題 – young and single in Hong Kong

  1. I know there’s similarities with Japan in many waysーespecially recently, it’s not even “can’t” date people, it’s “no interest in” dating people. I can see how it can be a pain in the butt for a lot of reasons, but still, an interesting development in a country that’s worried about a sharply declining birthrate.

    As for advice: try new things! Hobbies, events, etc. Anything where you can meet new peopleーgirls or guys. You’ll learn more about yourself even if you don’t meet “the one”, and make new friends. That will help do some groundwork for when you do start meeting people you may like. The more you know yourself, the less time you’ll waste on people who may not suit you.

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      1. Yes, that’s definitely one aspect that is already on it’s way out. (I wrote about it too a while ago: http://ichigoichielove.com/2014/07/10/the-anatomy-of-the-herbivore-man/ ) but now it’s even stronger and they’re called 絶食-zesshoku boys (literally fasting boys) are actively avoiding it because it’s too much trouble. XD Was all over the news last week! (The herbivores are just not interested, while the fasting boys are like EWW NO XD) I dunno how true it actually is, but it’s definitely getting media attention.

        And thank you! I think Sing’s advice is good too though! 😀

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          1. Haha, right? It doesn’t seem like a usual first choice.
            Although given how much of a pain in the butt it can be with too high expectations on either side I can also see their reasoning. XD Thank you ❤

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  2. Definitely noticed that the average age of first dating in HK was much later than in the UK, and I agree that all that studying and extra curricular activities probably has something to do with it. I think as teenagers in England we just had a lot more time to kill, hanging out with boys and drinking in parks… so that even going to an all girls school most of the girls had a bf at some point.

    Also could not agree more with Ri above, on trying new hobbies – if you meet someone while doing an activity you enjoy you already have something in common and having fun together, rather than going on a formal nerve-racking date, makes it a lot easier to break down barriers and get to know one another!

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    1. Can I ask did you yourself had that kind of pressure? My parents always told me, that if I put studies on the 1st place I can ‘talk to the boys but nothing more because that leads to pregnancies’ XD but they never forbid me, jus wanted to be sure I put studies first. For Sing Momzilla was pretty tough, probably thought that the gift from God (a.k.a. little treasure Sing) once he grows up he will become an instant chick magnet. Didn’t happen 😀

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      1. My parents were fine about me having a boyfriend, as it was pretty normal amongst other teenagers my age and there were no teenage pregnancies at my school to get them worrying (A bit of a side note but basically all independent studies have shown that pressuring kids to abstain is the least effective way of preventing pregnancies – they rebel, and then what? they haven’t been taught about safe sex and consent) There was pressure to work hard, but it wasn’t put as a choice between boys or work. If anything it was sport and spending too much time chatting with friends over MSN that was seen as interfering with my studies. Also the pressure to study hard mostly came from my school and my own competitiveness rather than my parents. They took my on holiday skiing a month before one of my exams and I insisted that I be given time alone in our tiny chalet to work for 4hrs a day after we skied. it was exhausting!

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    1. it’s good to hear that! my parents were quite liberal as long as studying was the priority and there was no teen, outside of marriage pregnancy. I still remember my dad saying ‘talking is fine, that’s dating, other than talking is pregnancy’ 😀

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  3. Here in Germany and Finland I grew up a bit different. Studies were never really my priority but sports were! In the last years of my high school time I had everyday a 6h swimming and gym routine. This besides school leaves you exactly enough time to eat, play some pc games and sleep. So no wonder there as well that I stayed single until I was 19. However I was more of a special case and it seems that most others managed to be in relationships much earlier, no matter how less time they had

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    1. With all the physical condition you could become a super hero and save damsels in distress 😀 I really admire you, I cannot push myself to run for more than half an hour yet you could do sports for 6h! And I bet Sing-knows-nothing-about-sport is jealous of you 😉

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      1. Oh it never were 6h in a row (except once) but 2 1/2 in the morning and the rest after school. Those times are long gone and now I have trouble to motivate myself enough to get the next bag of chips from the kitchen…

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  4. Gosh, so many things that I identify with. Growing up, my parents were really traditional asian parents. While they didn’t really push me very hard to study, I was rewarded each time I performed well AND dating was a no-no back then. They were really traditional and also thought that it would interfere with studying. Fast forward to now, once you have a stable job, they are now massively encouraging me to date and eagerly waits for confirmation of my attached status or even marriage. Gosh, it’s like a ticking pressure beside me..haha…but I’m taking things into stride.
    I have no problem meeting people but I am a bit shy with getting to know people properly. All I can advise is to just go out and experience as much of the dating scene as possible. And of course, don’t listen to your parents pressures. 😄

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    1. What you wrote reminds me little bit of this comic http://www.comicsbeat.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/11-4-drawing-asian-daughter-w500-v2.jpg I always try to find a logic in that ‘study hard don’t date, but once you graduate immediately find a husband/wife and get married’ – especially a lot of them met and got married because families or that special lady arranged that, but then you have those poor youngsters who cannot get such help. Sing’s sister is now going through that, Momzilla shows her ‘approved future boyfriends’ because she’s ‘already almost 24 and no fiance!’ so there’s a family drama now 😀

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      1. Haha! Well, from my parent’s perspective, they see dating as a distraction from my studies so dating was not allowed or even the thought of it was not tolerated. After graduation, it would seem that they can be relieved that they have successfully made me graduate because having a degree is seen as a sign of economical stability which then brings it to the next step in life after getting economic stability: producing the next generation for them to then pamper and spoil as their rights as grandparents. This is literally their entire thought process which I have often protested against. But then they grew up in a time when times were hard and it was a struggle to feed the family so I suppose they prioritise this over others. Unfortunately, growing up in this era means that we don’t really think that way anymore. Oh well, I’ll just wait them out although they did mention arranging dates for me. But to me, Shing’s sister is still young! I’m 30 and still single and I do not mind it at all…haha..😄

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        1. there’s is some logic behind that, I have to agree, but I can’t imagine how often thy want the whole dating and marriage RIGHT AWAY 🙂 you’re lucky you don’t have outside grandma like they have, always gossip, always judging and calling her soon expiring. I was like ‘is your sister a minced meat that she has an expiration day?!’ – it’s hard for girls, that’s for sure! 🙂

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          1. Haha! Minced meat! That’s a thought..haha…but unfortunately that’s how they see the females here. Beyond 30 and you are an old maid while guys actually have no such pressure. But I do agree that I’m lucky I have no outside pressure like her, just have to manage the parents and the occasional nosy relative. The poor girl, though, I hope she will look back and laugh instead at these trying times..haha..😄

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  5. There’s nothing wrong with using money to get girlfriend/wife, except that you will most likely already be at least 30 years old so instead of sweet young love, you only get matured relationships. I think that’s quite sad.

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  6. Personally, I feel that many Taiwanese girls have the idea of a perfect man molded and shaped in their head and sometimes they are not willing to settle for anything else. For example, I have a friend who would only date foreigners, more specifically Englishman. When she didn’t find an Englishman, she was willing to date any foreigner. Now, she is in her 30s and the last time we met, she said she is now willing to consider Taiwanese men. I am not saying that she should settle but I think her ideas may have hindered the potential of a great relationship and now she is alone.

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    1. Don’t think it is just Taiwanese, basically all ethnic Chinese girls have this mindset. They think western men are more gentlemanly and can offer them a route to migrate to so called “more civilized” countries (a.k.a a better lifestyle), until they discover for themselves what “douchebag” means, and that Englishmen on TV are different compared to real life Englishmen. They can’t all be Benedict Cumberbatch!

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  7. Altogether interesting. There is some common sense to encourage a teen (anywhere in the world) to make their school studies a priority ie. pass their courses, etc. and graduate. At the same time for many of us, high school is also remembered in terms of a few good friendships –platonic girl and guy friends first, before getting into the dating stuff.

    I know a lot of people including myself, who didn’t date until university/ college.

    It should be noted that the trend in some North American areas,….is that people are marrying for the lst time later in life….mid 20’s, even early 30’s is quite normal now. A lot of students are in debt after they graduate from university…so they have to cope with some serious financial matters….which means going back to live with their parent(s).

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  8. Hi! I really enjoyed this post! I think its a serious problem, especially with my cousin who always seems to be in front the computer playing games and never seem interested to join us for family events. I feel like many teenagers/young adults are like this because of the pressure imposed on them by parents and schools. So much are expected from them, and the pressure and sometimes be overwhelming, I think that’s why many ppl choose to stay closed on and become unsocial.

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  9. As a asian guy growing up in Canada , the bullshit that our parents feed us with studying your youth away and your university years away is crap. Even if you have the highest marks in everything from studying all the time, they don’t guarantee you any job or career. That’s a combined effort of academic ability and the ability to interact with people , something that most asian parents seem to loose sight of. You loose out on how to talk to people , socialize , and in the end that definitely screws you over with girls.

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  10. what do you do with people who ignore you regardless? I work in a retail environment so come across lots of lots of people every day. Many come in to have a chat, etc. But what I have found is that A LOT of young women actively ignore me or would rather wait in a queue to be served by someone else.

    It happened today twice, a girl comes up to me with a question, takes one look at me and then continues the conversation with the other (white) male attendant. When she leaves she hasn’t looked back at me once, even when I replied to her.

    And then another woman who spends 2 minutes waiting to be served by that white guy, whilst I’m free. She sees that, but chooses to wait. She then proceeds to have a 10 minute conversation with him, completely ignoring me.

    In both scenarios I’ve done nothing to make her choose away from me. So what’s going on, is there some sort of automatic switch that goes “ignore the asian man”?

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    1. maybe they assume since you’re an Asian you must be like FOB and don’t speak English well (racist alert) ? or they are just very mean bitches, because I don’t know why would someone normal behave like that. Is it only for girls or every person does that? if only for them I wouldn’t be worried – in that case you are just really unlucky meeting some bad girls, too many assume that all Asians are pervs who only think about getting them naked when they see them. I hope it won’t ruin your day 🙂

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  11. I have an option number 4!!! Look into the heart of the person and not the outer appearance. If people search for for inner beauty they will find love a lot quicker. There are many beautiful women that are overlooked and dateless because people place superficial beauty over inner beauty. My advice is find a girl who will make you laugh who will complete you, who understands you, whose flaws make her more endearing, find a partner in crime. Don’t dismiss her because her wrapping isn’t what you expected. Look into the soul and many of these men and women will find love. Honestly in the dating field I am automatically dismissed as dating material and enter into the friend zone due to my appearance. So anyone reading this and finding dating is hard look into the heart and find true love.

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  12. yeah. sadly, it’s a common thing among us asians. i too was sent to a boy/boarding school in australia. that taught me a lot about discipline and being independent. then college was in united states. but guess what? i didn’t ‘date’ anyone until after college. true story.

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  13. As a former single guy living in Hong Kong, it’s cool to know I’m not the only one who unfortunately related to Densha Otoko. Terrific show. Sigh….

    Now I’m a single guy living in my home city of L.A. Maybe it’s time to give that show a rewatch….

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  14. The whole ‘all or none’ mentality of many cultures makes me sad and frankly is kind of abusive and unnatural. Personally, I think that balance is the best way to go in all areas of life. Focus too much on any one thing, and you are guaranteed some mental health problems in the long run…

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