Letters from Japan: “Why Is He Anti-Japan?”



My boyfriend is Japanese (I’m American) but he’s practically a Native English speaker. He went to university in the US and worked there for a couple of years before coming back to Japan. We got together a year and a half ago, basically a month after I arrived in Japan.

I came to Japan to teach, but I really want to study Japanese too. I haven’t really made any progress because every time I try to study, or even mention doing something Japanese, my boyfriend freaks out. He always bad talks Japan, or says how much better stuff in the US is, and that learning Japanese is stupid because no one uses it. At first, it didn’t bother me, but with the whole lockdown, it’s starting to get on my nerves.

I’m not trying to be all like some freaky otaku or anything, but he even makes fun of me when I say I want to see a museum exhibit about something Japanese. Why is he so anti-Japan? How should I deal with his whole “foreign is better” obsession?

No Japanese Allowed

Dear No Japanese Allowed,

I have a couple of things I’d like you to clarify before getting into your questions.

Have you actually studied Japanese in any capacity, or gone to the events/exhibits that you wanted to? If you have, then good, I’m glad you’re not letting him dictate your hobbies or interests. If not, then that is something you should reflect on. Why are you dating someone that stops you from doing what you came around the world to do?

It sounds like you settled into your relationship with him very quickly, which has me curious about what you two saw in each other in the first place. I also wonder if you’ve stayed in this relationship because of the stability it …continue reading