They can be exciting, frustrating, wonderful, terrible: intercultural relationships. But what is it really like when dating a Japanese?
Since Japanese culture differs immensely from Western culture, it can be a hassle at times when misunderstandings occur, which often can lead to fights or even worse: a breakup!
The most important thing is to follow your heart and to be prepared that it will be different from what you are used to. Relationships are never easy, but when you are able to reach a point of mutual understanding things should go more smoothly from then.
Most of the time, Japanese are more than happy to learn English and will do their best to be able in order to communicate with you. However, should English not be your mother tongue, beware! If you are dating a Japanese guy chances are low he is interested in your native language. Chances stand better if you are dating a Japanese women: they tend to learn foreign languages more easily and are also more interested in a harmonious relationship. But that does not mean Japanese men are lazy or not interested. It is more a comfort zone: if you have already a common (foreign) language, why bother study another?
Getting to know each other will open a new world to you and in return you will have to open a new world to your Japanese partner as well. Be patient, try your best to explain your concerns well and also be interested in Japanese culture, customs and should you have children in the future, try to keep both of your cultures alive by celebrating each others holidays in harmony.
Do your homework: try to find out what difficulties your culture and the Japanese have experienced. Find out what the Japanese know about your country and be willing to share those aspects of your home country. Also try to avoid certain behaviour that is considered normal in your country but maybe strange or rude in Japan, to avoid being something your Japanese partner might feel ashamed of!