Freitag, März 27, 2015

"Erübrigt ein paar Gedanken an westliche Männer, die in Japan gefangen sind"

Wie Olga Garnova für die Japan Times berichtet, ist das Einstreichen der "patriarchalen Dividende" in Japan fast noch schwerer als in Ländern der westlichen Welt. Das gelte vor allem für Einwanderer:

Sebastian, a 32-year-old university student with several part-time jobs and 12 years of service in the German Federal Armed Forces, discovered this disconnect the hard way when a Japanese girlfriend he had been together with for a year and had proposed to dumped him because he had "no future." According to her, his Japanese major was not a promise of a successful career and, not being a native speaker of English, he could not secure teaching jobs. "Why is it always about money?" he asks.

To borrow from the headline of a past column by Kaori Shoji from these pages, "Marriage has little to do with romantic love." No wonder foreign husbands often complain about Japanese women suddenly transforming from sweet and cute girlfriends into shufu — professional housewives emotionally and physically distant from their husbands and fully devoted to their children and home. Men can be sidelined when it comes to participation in child-rearing and other home-related matters, such as controlling the family budget. As opposed to a safe haven from the pressures of work, marriage can become an additional source of stress for men.

No wonder Japan has one of the highest suicide rates in the world, at 18.5 per 100,000 inhabitants — about 60 percent higher than the global average of 11.4. As in most of the rest of the world (the most notable exception being China), men in Japan kill themselves at a much higher rate than women.

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