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What are the cultural differences of dating and relationships?

by Stephanie Hannon

Zac Edwards
Teacher, 32 (Australian)
My wife wants to be a housewife and look after the children. I have taken the breadwinner role, and she controls the finances. Handing over financial control was the most difficult thing to adjust to.

Kristen Shimomiya
19 (Japanese American)
A Japanese guy is more likely to just ask me to hang out first and maybe a date would come later. In the U.S. he would ask you on a date and it would all be pre-planned with dates, times and places.

Kostas Georgizos
Thai masseur, 33 (Greek)
As a Greek I like to joke, dance, drink and shout. I am much louder than the typical Japanese. There is a cultural difference in humor; things that I find funny my girlfriend may be offended by.

Sachie Tsuyuki
Thai masseuse, 29
My boyfriend and I are more concerned with the core of who we are as a human beings rather than a particular nationality. Cultural difference exists between us but is not a priority.

Kou Takanashi
Self-employed, 33
When my wife and I were dating, I avoided arguments but she was confrontational. Now I ask her to say why she’s angry in Japanese. This is a good way to calm her down so we can work it out together.

Lanis Takanishi
Recruiter, 30 (Canadian)
When my husband and I went on trips, we would spend days shopping for “omiyage.” I didn’t understand this custom and it made me angry. Now I’m more understanding and he doesn’t buy so many.