PDA

View Full Version : Why do Japanese talk so much about marriage ?



Maciamo
Dec 7, 2004, 17:24
After 3 years in Japan, I realise that I have never heard so many times the word marriage. It's everywhere in Japan. Impossible to watch TV one day without having a programme about marriage/wedding, celebrities asked about their opinions about marriage, etc. In fact, Yahoo Japan is the only one (I have checked a dozens other Yahoo from all around the world) to have a "kekkon" (結婚) (http://wedding.yahoo.co.jp/) category on its first page.

I hear people getting married all the time, and it is always a big event here. I haven't heard of small weddings with close relatives only. Always the big wedding in luxury hotels with 50 to 200 guests and 2 or 3 separate receptions. People plan their wedding over a year before (in my case, if it weren't for my wife, that would have been like 2 month before, which is exceptionally long term for me) and many of the people I know even have their wedding in Hawaii (mostly), Australia, New York, etc. No, not the honeymoon, but the wedding reception with all the guests !

Guest usually have to pay about 30,000yen (300US$) to attend a wedding, and I have heard many people complaning (esp. in October, November) because they had to attend 3 weddings that months and pay 90,000yen.

So why are weddings so important in Japan, why do they invite so many people, hold them in such expensive places and prepare it so long in advance ? We can't even say it's because of tradition, as most younger people want to get married in a church/chapel with a fake priest, eventhough they aren't Christians, and women prefer at a rate of 10 to 1 to wear the Western-style white dress rather than kimono. Most traditional aspects of the wedding are also disappearing (like the exchange of gifts between families).

Why do they discuss the meaning of marriage, of what is a good husband (usually it means having a high and stable income more than anything else) or a good wife (usually that means cooking well, taking good care of the house, and let the husband go to hostess bar and watch porn whenever they want, etc.) ?

I could positively say that the vast majority of the Japanese are obsessed by marriage. And yet, the marriage rate is falling fast (for other reasons, such as discrimination at work for married women).

Kamisama
Dec 7, 2004, 17:37
We can't even say it's because of tradition, as most younger people want to get married in a church/chapel with a fake priest


uhmm... well tradition was before young people/future generations ruined it?? heh

hmm...

Status? Perhaps a possibility....
Gives people a meaning to life?

Maybe they are all insane. Maybe it's because they are conformists and have group ideas.

Why do I talk about politics? Why do I talk about getting a good job?
I think about love more than I talk about it. I'm just assuming they talk a lot about what they think is socialbly acceptable and current at the time. I call it Societal Brainwashing... Each Society is brainwashed by media and government along with the word of mouth from others..

Maciamo
Dec 7, 2004, 18:38
Societal brainwashing seems like a fair explanation. :-)
However it can become quite annoying when you are married to a Japanese, and marriage (ours or her friends) becomes her favourite discussion topic.

It's interesting though to compare the societal brainwashing from country to country.
Japan also has food and money, which certainly come before wedding. Some topics are almost universally popular : sex, money, happiness, power, fame... But in others it kind be quite peculiar. Examples of national obsessions would be, I'd say, in "buying a house" for British people, "culture" for French people, "sports" for American and Australian people, or "caravan travel" for Dutch people. :p

Brooker
Dec 7, 2004, 18:51
Yeah, I'd have to say most Americans don't spend much time discussing marriage (at least the men don't) other than to bad mouth it.

DoctorP
Dec 7, 2004, 18:53
I think that marriage is quite a common topic amongst women of all countries between ages 20-30. My wife used to speak of marriage all the time...until she hit around 33. Then it just wasn't that important of a topic anymore...she reverted back to food! (just as you mentioned!) I really never notice Japanese men speaking of marriage at all, only the women.


@brooker I think that American women speak of marriage quite a bit...just maybe not as much in the open...more just with friends. But it is quite prevalent, and I always see women buying bridal magazines and oohing and ahhing over dresses, etc...and the weddings can get quite out of hand in the States too!

miu
Dec 7, 2004, 19:10
I guess you could partially explain the expensive weddings with status. I mean, most people would probably be wed in a cathedral than in a cardboard house, right? And yeah, there's always that one thing people talk about :)

And talking about high expectations, I read an article form amagazine where an Indian woman told about ehr arranged marriage. She had lived in the US before marriage, dated guys and so on. She was, however, disappointed with the eternal search "for the one" and eventually went back to India and agreed to marry the man her parents had introduced to her. The interesting par tof this is that she said her marriage worked out because she didn't have any high expectations about her marriage - she just expected her husband to treat her well and support the family etc. This way, there wasn't any "where is the man I married 10 years ago" because she didn't love him at first so there wasn't any drop from cloud nine to reality. They just sort of grew into the relationship and learned to love each other.

I'm not saying that marriying for love is bad, I'm just trying to say that an arranged marriage might not be such a bad thing as long as you're not forced into it. Didn't "love" in Japanese mean passionate love that can fade out pretty quickly more than the kind of love that's usually associated with the Western idea of marriage?

Suki-Yaki
Dec 7, 2004, 19:34
You have to pay to attend a wedding ?!!!!!!!

Maciamo
Dec 7, 2004, 21:51
I guess you could partially explain the expensive weddings with status. I mean, most people would probably be wed in a cathedral than in a cardboard house, right? And yeah, there's always that one thing people talk about :)

Yes, but in the cases of most Japanese (at least in Tokyo), they have their wedding in special reception rooms or luxury hotels because their houses is too small for 100 people and often they don't even have a garden. There is no question of status, just parody. People who can't have their wedding at home because it's too small, even for 20 people, or they are too ashamed of their home, they will never have any status to talk about. That is what makes me sad. Like many other things in Japan, it's so sperficial. It's exactly like those girls/women who absolutely want to have their Vuitton bags, as if it gave them more status. Status is much more than having a handbag by Louis Vuitton. If they sacrifice all their salary for brands or get them bought by their boyfriends, etc. that is just above their status. It's very sad that they can't understand that. Same with weddings.



I'm not saying that marriying for love is bad, I'm just trying to say that an arranged marriage might not be such a bad thing as long as you're not forced into it. Didn't "love" in Japanese mean passionate love that can fade out pretty quickly more than the kind of love that's usually associated with the Western idea of marriage?

Good point. I didn't raise the issue of arranged marriage, but it's true that it is at least as common (if not more common) than love marriage. So as not to be misunderstood, arranged marriage in Japan are normally not arranged against the will of the interested. It's more like choosing your ideal partner on a match.com profile, meet them (parents also meet), then decide within weeks which one you marry. That's how things often work in Japan. Few people would get married without their family's consent, and the majority still regard the good relation (including status) of both partners' families as absolutely necessary to get married. This has long been forgotten in most Western families, where the children marry the person they love and not their family.

kirei_na_me
Dec 7, 2004, 22:46
It's all about status and show. At least, I think it is. It's all about showing how much have and about how you can outdo your friends and other family members.

My husband's two cousins just got married(not to each other, of course). They were brother and sister. The brother got married first and had an extravagant wedding, then the sister had an even more extravagant wedding. It just seems they have to see which one can have the biggest, most expensive affair.

I'm not into weddings anyway. I got married at the courthouse. It would've been nice to have a small ceremony, but it really isn't necessary. It wasn't like a huge dream of mine. It sure wasn't my goal in life. I didn't even want to get married!

BrennaCeDria
Dec 7, 2004, 23:29
Well, I personally would love to have a huge wedding, though not in a church or anything (I'm not Christian and when my boyfriend's sister got married in their church, that particular church got on my nerves seriously--it's beautiful, but because it's 'historic' they wouldn't let her flower girls drop petals, etc, very high strung). However, I'd rather have money to go on a honeymoon, so I'm 100% for skimping everywhere possible on paying for a wedding. Hotels cost so much, but the local beach is free for any size wedding as long as you don't rope off an area or try to exclude the general public. It's not the sort of thing I talk about all the time, though. I mean, I *think* about it a hell of a lot anymore, but I don't have very many girlfriends so there's no silly gossip or anything.

My friend in Chiba, however--her sister is getting married in January, and they're all flying to Guam for the ceremony. I do, in a very big way, envy that. Which, I guess is sort of the point of it.

miu
Dec 8, 2004, 03:41
they have their wedding in special reception rooms or luxury hotels because their houses is too small for 100 people

But isn't this the case in other countries as well? In Finland people rent a place for the reception because no one's house is big enough to host the entire family! :) I don't think I've been at a single wedding that was held at someone's home... I have never been at a Japanese wedding but I'm quite sure people have just as lavish weddings elsewhere, too. The thing is, though, that you don't have to pay hard cash to participate - atleast in theory ^^; But I think in Japan people give money at funerals, too...?

In Finland it would be considered be a bit thoughtless, maybe, to give money because it doesn't show any personal touch to your gift. So, in a way you're not required to give the couple a lot of money, but it goes without saying that you have to spend more then 10 euros on it. The amount on money you spend on the gift also depends on how closely you're connected with the couple, so this is another interesting difference because in Japan all fo the guests give the same amount of money?

Nowadays most couples have probably been living together for quite some time already before getting married or atleast lived by themselves so the more trditional gifts like china, kitchen appliances or bedsheets are pretty useless because they probably already have them. Also, I think that due to globalisation the wedding ceremony is starting to look atleast superficially the same no matter where you go. Though I think that even though it may superficially look like a "Western wedding", the older traditions are still under the surface somewhere.

Furthermore, considering the value of your reputation (face) in Asian countries, you have to throw up a great party, right? I remember one wedding I attended here in Finland where they didn't have any special foods and people still remember it even though it was years ago. So if you have a wedding, it has to "go right" here, too :)

Maybe the expensive weddings have something to do with the modern generations as well... I don't know about japan, but when my parents got married in the 70s, they got married at a court house on their lunch break because it was a cool thing to do. Maybe people are into fancy clothes and throwing rice again :) Not to forget the fact that living standards have changed.

GaijinPunch
Dec 8, 2004, 10:45
I don't know man. After 7 years, the only wedding in Japan I went to was my own, and I didn't even get married in Japan. I was invited to one other one (didn't make it b/c I was out of town), and attended 1 nijikai my last year before going. I guess all of my friends were too afraid to committ. Even so, I was invited to way more weddings when I lived in Texas.

And I think if you'll look at statistics, you'll find that marriage isn't as popular (at least not in practice) as it was a couple of decades ago. (I'm going off what I've heard, not researched, so I could be proven wrong here).

I think what it comes down to is that with the internet getting pretty big in Japan in the last 5 years (namely due to broadband finally making it there) you just hear about it more.

Oh, yeah -- I think you high-balled the donations.
30,000 is for a pretty close relative, or maybe the person's boss. I think the standard for a "friend" or relative that's a cousin or more distant is about 10,000. Of course if you're rich, you have to give more. :) The parents get hosed the worse, forking up big bucks... money the groom will never see.

Maciamo
Dec 8, 2004, 14:41
My friend in Chiba, however--her sister is getting married in January, and they're all flying to Guam for the ceremony. I do, in a very big way, envy that. Which, I guess is sort of the point of it.

I wouldn't even want to go to Guam. That's just a beachy island in the middle of nowhere. We went on "honeymoon" to Hawaii because my wife really insisted, but she was disappointed (of course, having travelled extensively around Europe and India with me before) and it was just as I thought, Nothing much. I would have liked to visit at least the Big Island, but the flight from Honolulu from as expensive as the flight from Tokyo to Honolulu ! Anyway, I can't understand how so many people want to have their wedding in such a boring and ordinary place as Hawaii - let alone Guam ! That seems like anti-status to me ! If you want a nice honeymoon or wedding party, go to Italy or the French Riviera in May, June or September.


But isn't this the case in other countries as well? In Finland people rent a place for the reception because no one's house is big enough to host the entire family! :)

Well in my family (quite big, lots of cousins), weddings are almost always at the bride or groom's parents house. Weddings are usually held in late Spring or Summer so that the tables can be installed in the garden (AmE = backyard) and people have more space to move around. But if the weather doesn't allow, it's inside. Of course, not everybody invites 100 people (that depends on how big one's house is), but some do.


In Finland it would be considered be a bit thoughtless, maybe, to give money because it doesn't show any personal touch to your gift.

Same in about all Western countries. There is usually a weddig list rather than money, and the price of the presents depends on one's financial capabilities. In Japan, everybody must give money and there is usually no discount, even for family and friends. They actually pay most of the wedding expenses from that money. Some managed to make a profit, but others have to pocket out the rest if they didn't have enough guest to reimburse the wedding dress(es), food, fake priest and reception room. That is also why Japanese weddings are hardly a matter of one's own status, but of your guests' status or generosity. If you set the price per person at 100,000yen, and managed to get 50 or 100 guests who are rich enough to pay that for your wedding, then you can have a perfectly lavish wedding and end up richer than you were before. That is certainly not what I call "status" (well not your own).

I hope that Japanese are aware of this. Those who aren't are really superficial and just fool themselves on fake status. For those who understand that, why would they like to pressure their family, friends and colleagues to pay for an expensive wedding party ? Isn't it taking advantage of their kindness ? In other words, people having lavish weddings are only those who do not care about their friends and relatives. Or is it just because they know their friends will do the same to them and they try to get as much as they can in "advance compensation" (then the others do it to get their due back). What a vicious circle ! And the Japanese to whom I talked about this seemed to agree that they'd be better off without such a system - but they don't know any other system and annot change it by themselves, if the whole country does not follow. Poor them !

It is also unacceptable not to go to the wedding of someone who came to your wedding, if you want to keep them as friends. Now I understand why they plan it so long in advance. They want to be sure that as many people as possible can come and avoid absolutely that their friends already have another wedding at the same date, which is the only good excuse not to come to yours. Once they have estimated how many people will come, they can calculate the approximate revenue and decide the venue, or at least food and dress after that. Or the other way round. If you want a very lavish wedding, you try to invite as many people as possible (esp. among colleagues and bosses, as the family has clear limits) and raise the "admission fee" to cover the cost. Usually it is a solution in between, i.e. try to see what is the maximum guest are ready to pay for the max. number of people (knowing that the higher the price and the less people come) and calculate the most economically advantageous solution from that point. Japanese love this kind of careful planning and calculations.

miu
Dec 10, 2004, 03:36
Well in my family (quite big, lots of cousins), weddings are almost always at the bride or groom's parents house.
I got to thinking about this and the way I see it is that if you have the reception someweher else than your own house, it also sort of accentuates the situation - it make sit more special. I guess you could also link this to the uchi/soto concept...


Isn't it taking advantage of their kindness ?
Didn't you sort of answer this yourself? If you invite someone to your wedding, they expect you to also take part in their wedding, too. So you kind of pay back, right?

Oddly enough, I happened to stumble across a book about japanese weddings at the library today.
(Walker Edwards: Modern Japan through Its Weddings, 1989) I just flipped through it but I found the following
points might may explain the wedding fuss:

In the late 1940s people could have low cost weddings, funerals etc by paying a monthly fee (for the next ten years
or so) for a gojokai. The gojokai would then give altar decorations etc for the members' use. Previously the decorations etc
were owned commnally (for example by a neighbourhood) but in urban areas it was common to rent the stuff from an undertaker.
So the gojokai merely expanded the service from funerals to weddings as well. Not to even mentiont he fact that people's
income probably wasn't too great after the Second World War.

In the 1960s the number of this kind of enterprises increased and they also began renting their own wedding halls. The
expansion of their facilities also meant that they were able to produce more services than before. And the rest is
history ;)

Edwards gave a couple of points to why people have so lavish wedding receptions instead of saving money:

1) you get a chance to shine for one day

2) there isn't enough space to host all the guests at your won home

3) economic prosperity

4) you can get a wide range of services through a single organisation

5) people are exposed to a certain picture of what a wedding should look like through media (so I guess the whole thing just
sort of fuels itself..)

6) the wedding industry is able to produce services that contribute to the wedding as a rite of passage

To me it was kind of funny to notice that the whole industry started out as a way to save money while arranging your wedding to
spending huge amounts of money on it!

Don't get me wrong, I'm in no way saying that all weddings should be the way they are in Japan - I'm just trying to figure out the thinking behind it ^^; As a student, I would have no way of paying loads of money just to go to someone's wedding. And if they asked me to pay, I'd be probably be offended because they would know I'm a student and not consider my situation at all.

kirei_na_me
Dec 10, 2004, 03:53
We went on "honeymoon" to Hawaii because my wife really insisted, but she was disappointed (of course, having travelled extensively around Europe and India with me before) and it was just as I thought, Nothing much. I would have liked to visit at least the Big Island, but the flight from Honolulu from as expensive as the flight from Tokyo to Honolulu ! Anyway, I can't understand how so many people want to have their wedding in such a boring and ordinary place as Hawaii - let alone Guam ! That seems like anti-status to me ! If you want a nice honeymoon or wedding party, go to Italy or the French Riviera in May, June or September.

I definitely agree with you about that! I would've never even considered going to Hawaii on my honeymoon, just because every other newlywed Japanese couple goes there. I don't like doing anything that everybody else is doing.

One of my husband's co-workers took his wife there on their honeymoon just because it was cheap. She wanted to go to Tahiti, but he told my husband that he was going to gloss over Hawaii and make it sound even better than Tahiti to her so he could get off not having to pay much. :D

My husband took me to Paris for 2 weeks. He didn't skimp on one thing. He splurged and we pretty much lived like royalty for those days.

DoctorP
Dec 10, 2004, 04:00
well, I guess I'm just cheap...or I just think differently!

I don't understand why everyone wants to be in a crowded place right after they marry? I took the wife to a resort in the mountains, a little off the beaten path, very quiet and out of the way so that we could start on our children! :p

misa.j
Dec 10, 2004, 05:07
1) you get a chance to shine for one day

2) there isn't enough space to host all the guests at your won home

3) economic prosperity

4) you can get a wide range of services through a single organization

5) people are exposed to a certain picture of what a wedding should look like through media (so I guess the whole thing just
sort of fuels itself..)

6) the wedding industry is able to produce services that contribute to the wedding as a rite of passage
These observations are very accurate, I would say. The amount of money, time and energy a lot of people spend for a wedding is beyond my capacity. I would fall apart.

They say it is something needs to be done to show their appreciation to their parents and people who supported the bride and the groom, which I think is BS in Japan, since in many cases the parents often end up helping the couple pay the cost.

I have been to at least 5 weddings in Japan, and I have noticed that the grooms seemed less excited about it. All of them looked very happy, though.:happy:

Everytime when people ask me what type of a wedding I had, I get giggly because it was very cool.

kirei_na_me
Dec 10, 2004, 05:26
well, I guess I'm just cheap...or I just think differently!

I don't understand why everyone wants to be in a crowded place right after they marry? I took the wife to a resort in the mountains, a little off the beaten path, very quiet and out of the way so that we could start on our children! :p

:D

I had already started on mine, I guess you could say. I was pushing 6 months when we went... :souka:

Maciamo
Dec 10, 2004, 11:23
I took the wife to a resort in the mountains, a little off the beaten path, very quiet and out of the way so that we could start on our children!

Funny to see that you also associate marriage with children, like 99,9% of the Japanese.

For me the connection has never been obvious. It's like associating alcohol witha restaurant or video games with a PC. You can have alcohol in a restaurant and you can play games on a PC, but you don't have to and it's is not their main purpose.

For me, marriage means a commitment to someone (not necessairly for life, though), social benefits and some other legal advantages and disadvantages.

Of course it depends a lot on each country's laws. In Japan, there are few social benefits in being married. We can get slightly cheaper health insurance, and get a discount on mobile phone subscription, but that also works for any other familiy member or even non-relative living together. But there are no tax rebates for married couples like in most Western countries.

I think that Japanese associate children with marriage because the laws makes it almost impossible for the father to be recognised without being married. In Western countries (all, I guess :? ) any child can be recognised outside marriage, and in case of uncertainty or if the father does acknowledge his offspring, by a DNA test (even against the father's will to recognise the child). But genes just aren't that important for the Japanese. The family name, for example, is more important the the DNA itself, so that a family with no sons will ask at least one of their daughter's husband to adopt their name too.



As a student, I would have no way of paying loads of money just to go to someone's wedding. And if they asked me to pay, I'd be probably be offended because they would know I'm a student and not consider my situation at all.

I haven't heard that the Japanese made any exception for students or unemplyed people. They would say you can always ask your parents to pay (and pay them back once you work). As I said above, there is no distinction of fee between the ultra-rich company president and the unemployed. What could happen is that richer people give more than is demanded, as a wedding present (the money demanded is otherwise to pay the wedding itself, not really a present, but necessary expenses).

Kei_Shugojin
Dec 10, 2004, 11:28
*snicker* Sorry. The whole idea of paying to go to someone's wedding sounds a bit silly to me. Sounds to me more like going to six-flags astroworld rather than a ceremony of union between two people who love each other.

As far as the kids, people have their own definitions and associations between children and marriage. For some, it's a necessity. For some, it's a delightful bonus. For some, it's an absolute "no no". Whatever your association with it, it all depends on the people getting married.

When I get married, I hope to have kids, but that's not exactly my goal. It's just something I'd like to do. Wether or not it gets accomplished really doesn't have too much bearing on my overall feeling of completeness. lol

cyber ape
Dec 11, 2004, 11:43
Yeah, I'd have to say most Americans don't spend much time discussing marriage (at least the men don't) other than to bad mouth it.

Oscar Wilde once wrote that he'd never ever want to get married, because if you truly love somebody, you don't need to give "some committment" as if you'd leave her in the first place.

Well, something along those lines(it's been a while since I read The Importance of Being Ernest)

Anyways, from what I know, marriage is more important because of the whole family honor in Japan. The Japanese have much respect for their families, and marriage is showing triumph. It shows that you've gotten somewhere in life, and that you'll be happy.

Marriage in the States is mainly just so 1. You're entailed to a little bit more 2. You now have a "love bond" or w/e and 3. It's just a formality. Quite a few of my friends have gotten married just because they love the person, not because there was some big prize in it. I've been to a few weddings, and never once have I seen the parents of a child say,"Nice job!" or "good for you!" or "you make the family proud!" Generally they just cry and celebrate. I bet if I went to Japan their parents would be hugging them more than the spouse.

I do not know why Japanese talk about it incesintly as you so put it, but I guess it makes them happier.

PopCulturePooka
Dec 11, 2004, 11:53
Anyways, from what I know, marriage is more important because of the whole family honor in Japan. The Japanese have much respect for their families, and marriage is showing triumph. It shows that you've gotten somewhere in life, and that you'll be happy.

Shameit doesn't seem to turn out that way in the end, from what I gather talking to people in families.

budd
Dec 13, 2004, 08:57
why westerners talk so much about divorce?
not talking that evolution talk about big peacock feathers or lions' manes and what not
but
women probably need to be concerned about whether a potential spouse will be able to provide something, as they the ones who usually keeping the childrens?
and that not being concerned about it is one of the reasons america is like it is now?
and is it 90%/70%/50% of spousal arguments are as a result of arguing about money and what not?

Maciamo
Dec 13, 2004, 10:11
why westerners talk so much about divorce?
not talking that evolution talk about big peacock feathers or lions' manes and what not
but
women probably need to be concerned about whether a potential spouse will be able to provide something, as they the ones who usually keeping the childrens?

I don't agree. The US has the world's highest rate of divorce, but European countries have a similar or even lower rate than Japan.

Interestingly, Japanese people do not speak much about divorce, as if they thought it would never happen. In comparison, where I come from it is usual to make a prenuptial agreement settling all potential problems about money or even the children's custody before getting married. When I discussed this we some Japanese friends, it transpired that Japanese do not want to think about the possibility of divorce when they are getting married, eventhough 1/3 of people end up divorcing in Japan (33.1 divorces per 100 marriage). That made me think that Japanese do not care enough about what's really important, and prefer talking only about their gorgeous wedding party and what age they should get married.



Anyways, from what I know, marriage is more important because of the whole family honor in Japan. The Japanese have much respect for their families, and marriage is showing triumph. It shows that you've gotten somewhere in life, and that you'll be happy.

I am not quite sure about that. What about all the Japanese marrying foreigners, while there will usually be someone in the family (often a grandparent) that objects or would prefer that they'd marry a Japanese ?
Then in my case, my wife's family is only 2 people, and their opnion was not decisive in getting married, but why wife still insisted on having a lavish wedding party. What I don't understand is why she or her married friends continue to talk about marriage (other people's marriage, or comapring each other's situtation, which can only lead to jealousy on one part or the other) years after getting married ?

On TV there are special programmes discussing marriage or all its perversities almost everyday. For example, every Sunday night there is a TV programme where they ask people which of two (perverted) things they'd accept more easily. Yesterday was something like 1) "a wife that kisses any man she happens to be with when she is drunk, even in front of her appaled husband" or 2) a wife that has bad relationship with your brother (not sure about this 2nd one, as I just overheard while eating). Last week there was also would you prefer a husband that 1) suffers from mother complex or 2) a stalker ?
There are also more "regular" programmes, but I was suprised that the participants were not just women in their late teens or early twenties, but rather men and women between 25 and 50 years old (so many of them probably already married).

GaijinPunch
Dec 13, 2004, 11:32
I definitely agree with you about that! I would've never even considered going to Hawaii on my honeymoon, just because every other newlywed Japanese couple goes there. I don't like doing anything that everybody else is doing

tell me about it. I got married on Kauai, mainly b/c it was the only place to have a 2-person wedding in style. In Japan, that just means the piece of paper, and I didn't want to do that. Kauai was nice, but Honolulu was of course a tourist trap (Waikiki). In short, we didn't like it. 1-year later, the freakin' office moved there (here) and my wife already talks about moving back to Japan... we just moved here in October.


Interestingly, Japanese people do not speak much about divorce,

My wife must be the exception. (see above). Haha.

budd
Dec 16, 2004, 08:16
"The US has the world's highest rate of divorce, but European countries have a similar or even lower rate than Japan."
it didn't make sense to me neither but it sounded good. sorry about that

"Interestingly, Japanese people do not speak much about divorce, as if they thought it would never happen."
exactly

"That made me think that Japanese do not care enough about what's really important, and prefer talking only about their gorgeous wedding party and what age they should get married."
still sounds like america to me
50% of the available magazines @ the health club were bridal/brides or something

GaijinPunch
Dec 16, 2004, 08:22
still sounds like america to me
50% of the available magazines @ the health club were bridal/brides or something

Haha -- no joke. I went to a Christian University for a year my freshman year. One of my friends was waiting for a chick in the girls dorm. There was a book there on the end table called "You and Your Wedding". *shudders*

Maciamo
Dec 16, 2004, 11:14
"That made me think that Japanese do not care enough about what's really important, and prefer talking only about their gorgeous wedding party and what age they should get married."
still sounds like america to me
50% of the available magazines @ the health club were bridal/brides or something

Do Americans usually have wedding parties in 5-star hotels or similarily expensive reception rooms ? Do many Americans have their wedding abroad (or in Hawaii) ? In the last three month, Japanese aquaintances of mine have told me about maybe 8 wedding parties they went to, and 3 of them were in Hawaii (one in the Sheraton on the Big Island, and over 20 guests who came on purpose from Japan).

Weddings can be quite different depending on the country in Europe, but in my family's case it is normal to have the wedding at home or if there is no space (rare case) in a restaurant or public hall in the area. It doesn't have to be luxurious because we don't invite people from work at all. No boss, no colleagues (except if they are very good friends)... just the family and a few best friends (not like my wife's case, where over 60 friends were invited and nearly 50 came).

Just imagine the cost of what you have to give back by attending all your friends' wedding parties. As there are often 2 or 3 receptions in one day in Japan (from the most formal with the boss, etc. to the least formal with intimate friends only), the best friends are expected to attend the 2 or 3 of them and pay something like 2x 30,000yen (2x 300US$) and 10,000yen (100US$) = 70,000yen. That's just for one day and one friend ! My wife has on average 7 wedding parties a year (sometimes 3 in a single month) and I sometimes also attend when I know her friend well. Just count that if she goes to 50 wedding parties in total, even if she attends only 1 ceremony that is 50 x 30,000yen = 1,500,000yen (+ the clothes she buy sometimes only to attend those wedding parties, and that are more expensive than usually clothes).

Let's say that 2,000,000yen (20,000US$) is what (young) Japanese people usually spend on their friends wedding parties. I don't think my wife is an exception for having so many friends. ALL the Japanese women with whom I spoke about wedding parties have as many friends and wedding parties to attend (of course I don't speak about weddding parties with all the people I know...).

PopCulturePooka
Dec 16, 2004, 11:36
I really have an odd dislike for 'princeses'. Girls who want to get married it seems SOLELY to have a big overblown wedding ceremony with pretty dress, and white swans in a big ole church etc. Without paying any mind to the fact that they are entering into what should be a lifelong commitement to someone.

GaijinPunch
Dec 16, 2004, 14:14
I recall going to many very nice weddings in the states. I guess it's a personal thing. I guess most weddings I've been to are in churches... the reception will generally cost a lot of money. I guess it really depends on location and time of year.

I think your comment about Hawaii is valid, although it has a slight fault. Hawaii, while expensive to Americans, is a thrifty vacation for the Japanese... especially for weddings which are horrendously expensive. I was married in the best resort in Kauai, on the beach, with 5 days in a pretty pimped out suite. The whole thing was like $2000 USD, and you know what -- the weather was beautiful, and it was late October. It's not a bad place to get married, it's close (relatively speaking), and there's a whole business catered to these people. You can not speak a lick of English and do fine.

FYI -- I have two relatives that had their weddings in Florida on the beach, and they're both from the midwest. Kinda the same thing, no?

Maciamo
Dec 16, 2004, 14:28
FYI -- I have two relatives that had their weddings in Florida on the beach, and they're both from the midwest. Kinda the same thing, no?

I guess Americans and Japanese hold events far from home more easily than Europeans. I already knew that Americans travelled longer distance more casually than Europeans, but I also realised recently that many of the Japanese I know have lived in many prefectures quite remote from each others.

Eventhough Europeans travel a lot and far away on vacation, they don't move so much at home because countries are smaller (and languages different between countries and region) and because for some reason (density of population, history ?) 100km seems far to many people, while for Americans or Japanese, 100km is "next door". Similarily 100 years feels almost as old to a Japanese as to an American, but for a European that's very new (200 years is still new, 300-400 years is normal, over 500 years is a bit old and over 2000 years is quite old ;-) ).

misa.j
Dec 17, 2004, 05:39
Posted by Maciamo, Then in my case, my wife's family is only 2 people, and their opnion was not decisive in getting married, but why wife still insisted on having a lavish wedding party.
When you and your wife were planning for the wedding, did your preference get taken as an option? I feel bad for you that you had to have the wedding left you negative memory. I would assume you made a lot of compromise for your wife, though I think should you have been more sturbborn and clear about what you liked to your wife, your wedding must have been closer to your style.

Posted by Maciamo, What I don't understand is why she or her married friends continue to talk about marriage (other people's marriage, or comapring each other's situtation, which can only lead to jealousy on one part or the other) years after getting married ?
Women often talk about their friends' marriages just to acknowledge or share their happiness, having said that I understand that some women like to compare and feel good about how her wedding was more expensive and more people came, which I think is disgraceful.

I wouldn't know what kind of wedding I would have had if I got married in Japan, but my husband and I invited only his family including his old dog in the woods, a retired judge from the village read parts from "prophet", told us to exchange rings which we didn't have(neither of us likes jewelry), so we exchanged little sticks that were taken from the trees. Later on, we went to his parents' house and had hotdogs & beer. We didn't care about the honeymoon either. Both of my husband and I have to feel like ourselves than to have a huge show to be happy, so it worked out beautifully.

DoctorP
Dec 17, 2004, 06:37
I guess Americans and Japanese hold events far from home more easily than Europeans. I already knew that Americans travelled longer distance more casually than Europeans, but I also realised recently that many of the Japanese I know have lived in many prefectures quite remote from each others

I don't know that Americans travel so easily for a wedding, unless the two people getting married are originally from two different areas. (which does happen often) But most of these arrangements that I am familiar with result in the wedding happening near the brides home since her family usually foots the bill for the wedding! But I do agree that as a whole Americans do not mind travelling at all....Driving 6-10 hours in a car is nothing for me! My Japanese friends though seem to think that is crazy! I think that comes from living on an island and not really having far to go.

I know that back home in the US weddings usually took place at a local church and the receptions would be done either at the church, country club, or civic center. The weather is too unpredictable where I am from and outside weddings don't happen so often. The weddings I have been to in Japan (including my own) were held in huge hotel ball rooms with many guests (as you said). If I were asked to attend a wedding far away I would probably decline going. It is not worthwhile for me to travel to Hawaii to watch a Japanese couple get married...just doesn't make good sense to me!

GaijinPunch
Dec 17, 2004, 10:36
I don't know that Americans travel so easily for a wedding, unless the two people getting married are originally from two different areas.

I was actually home for my sisters wedding two years ago. A friend that we grew up with was getting married the weekend before, so we went to his wedding which was a 5 hour drive away. So, my mother, father, sister, and myself packed in the Nissan whatever, and made the trek. It was fun... but I have no clue how we did it so often (we took 2-hour drives all the time) as youngsters. Maybe I spent too much time in a train-friendly country.

Oh -- the wedding was a blast, and wasn't really that fancy. It was outdoors, and quite homey.

budd
Dec 17, 2004, 10:38
"Do Americans usually have wedding parties in 5-star hotels or similarily expensive reception rooms? Do many Americans have their wedding abroad (or in Hawaii)?"

yep. the ones i know do -- i'm always invited to take pictures
but lets also talk about how commitment is perceived within different countries
jobs apartments healthcare/sickness transportation safety/crime

i gave a japanese friend a computer, but he was too embarassed to tell me that he still didn't have roadrunner afterwards -- even though he had been paying the service bill for two months

Maciamo
Dec 17, 2004, 11:28
When you and your wife were planning for the wedding, did your preference get taken as an option?

Yes. My only condition was "no church, no chapel, no priest (not even fake)". I didn't mind a Shinto shrine, but she didn't want lol.
For the rest, I left everything up to her as I didn't care much about the ceremony, so that was ok.


I feel bad for you that you had to have the wedding left you negative memory. I would assume you made a lot of compromise for your wife, though I think should you have been more sturbborn and clear about what you liked to your wife, your wedding must have been closer to your style.

I don't feel bad about the wedding. If I had wanted to have one particular type of wedding, I would have insisted (and there is no way she could have won ;-) ), but as anyway the ceremony was in Japan and my family and friends were in Europe, and that I didn't mind not having a ceremony at all (like many men, even Japanese it seems), that was no problem. Actually it was just a 2h party with lots of games, dances, karaoke, etc. all in a lavish place and great food, and I didn't have to pay a penny. So I can't complain. On my side, we only invited my parents, as it would be too much trouble for the other to come to Tokyo at their expenses AND pay 30,000yen, just for 2h. I also don't really have to attend her 50 friends' weddings (just a few for those I know best).


"Do Americans usually have wedding parties in 5-star hotels or similarily expensive reception rooms? Do many Americans have their wedding abroad (or in Hawaii)?"

yep. the ones i know do --

Now I remember that some people in my family had rented a castle for their weddings. However I think it's cheaper than a the hotel's wedding rooms in Tokyo, although much more prestigeous. I guess Japanese would be ready to pay tens of millions to rent such as castle, were it be be found in Japan. But where I come from each village (say 1,000 inhabitants) has in average two castles...

Maciamo
Dec 26, 2004, 21:23
When I was saying that the Japanese make more fuss about their wedding than Europeans, it seems to be confirmed by the website of this Belgian castle (http://www.modave-castle.be/Anglais/Mariage.html), which offers "wedding ceremonies for Japanese couples". Interestingly, it seems that Belgians or other Europeans (who all live nearer than the Japanese), do not request such wedding ceremonies.

budd
Dec 29, 2004, 02:30
"wedding ceremonies for American couples"
http://www.usabride.com/destinations/
i ain't gone tell nobody what to spend they money on, i have to go to target

noodle
Jan 7, 2005, 07:34
Do Americans usually have wedding parties in 5-star hotels or similarily expensive reception rooms ? Do many Americans have their wedding abroad (or in Hawaii) ?

really only if they can afford it. >__> i think the most general thing you could say about american weddings is that people have weddings that suit them. i've been to cheap, simple (and quite lovely) weddings and more lavish, dinner-for-every-guest weddings. there are certain things that are frequently the same but people like to add their own personality to the whole thing. of course, many cultural groups still have weddings according to their own customs.

chinese do something similar to japanese... you are pretty much required to bring money as a guest. a friend of mine couldn't go to her friend's chinese wedding banquet because she couldn't afford it.

hawaii boring and ordinary? hehe... my boyfriend complains the opposite- all other places are uninteresting because he grew up there and nothing compares to the scenery there. but i guess that's quite different from only visiting the more touristy sections.

celtician
Sep 7, 2005, 14:22
Most Japanese women just want a meal ticket "for life" They don't even understand what they are doing only wasting lots of money because they are too confused to have a simple weddingu which has to be 'faux Las Vegas, Western' plus Shinto or Buddist (too confused to decide which) and then become simple breeding machines to ward off the "Chinese 'threat" which is in every Japanese politician's mind.
And yes they don't talk about divorce an inconveniento subjecto!

Chipi
Sep 8, 2005, 17:33
CCI said earlier "I really never notice Japanese men speaking of marriage at all, only the women."

During last summer (3 months in Japan) and this summer (6 weeks) I have heard Japanese men mentioning wedding in some way actually surpsilingly many times. I never hear my western male friends talking about marriage (not with a word, unless someone they know is getting married), so relatively I think the wedding is in the minds of Japanese men too a lot more often than the westerners..
Usually they might ask about weddings in my country, or if i want to get married some day.


I really have an odd dislike for 'princeses'. Girls who want to get married it seems SOLELY to have a big overblown wedding ceremony with pretty dress, and white swans in a big ole church etc. Without paying any mind to the fact that they are entering into what should be a lifelong commitement to someone.

..and to admit, a couple of times the men have also asked if i could marry them.. after knowing me for a few days (!!). So the men can have this "princess" attitude also... its quite confusing :?:

Flashjeff
Sep 15, 2005, 11:59
Guest usually have to pay about 30,000yen (300US$) to attend a wedding, and I have heard many people complaning (esp. in October, November) because they had to attend 3 weddings that months and pay 90,000yen.

I know I'm late on this thread, but, three Benjamins just to attend a wedding???? Da-yumm!!! Where do I sign up to get the concession on that business! I'd make a fortune in a month!
:D

xerxes99
Sep 15, 2005, 13:16
Do Americans usually have wedding parties in 5-star hotels or similarily expensive reception rooms ?
I've been to a lot of weddings in the US and I've seen everything from weddings in a garden that cost like $100 to $150,000 extravaganzas in 5 star hotels.

Let's say that 2,000,000yen (20,000US$) is what (young) Japanese people usually spend on their friends wedding parties. I don't think my wife is an exception for having so many friends. ALL the Japanese women with whom I spoke about wedding parties have as many friends and wedding parties to attend (of course I don't speak about weddding parties with all the people I know...).
I find that incredible. You would certainly bring a gift to a wedding, but nothing like that.
Has anyone else been to a wedding where they do the dollar dance? this might be just a southern thing. the men give cash, usually a $20 or more to dance with the bride. And the women give to dance with the groom. Although the reverse is true too lol. I've just started seeing this in the last few years.

nurizeko
Sep 24, 2005, 00:47
"buying a house" for British people,

Ahmen, everytime on british TV its either a house buying program, a house improvement program, or some other program about a career couple buying and selling property and argh, it gets under my skin.

And i can vouche that japanese think about marriage way too often, my girlfriend thinks of it fairly often, and im just like "listen, i love you, you love me right?, whats the rush?, were 20 years old, and i havnt got a clue what the future holds so instead of worrying about it all the time, lets concentrate on enjoying each others company, and appriciating life, since at 20 theres more important things then the wedding that may or may not occur, i want to get married to you oneday, and i can see that future, but it doesnt need to be poked and prodded at all the time", but god knows, she still goes on about marriage.

cursore
Nov 7, 2005, 22:36
I know that Japanese give much importance to weddings, may be more than western society however if I think that in Italy works more or less like this:

1 If you are catholic, you start with the pre marriage church course (compulsory)
2 Book the curch (usually one year in advance) decoration etc
3 Book the restaurant with reception (the family of the couple will pay the bill for this)
4 Book the invitation (not just a card but the whole bonbonnière kit)
5 Book the honeymoon (far away and expensive place)
6 prepare the whishing list (presents which might be useful to the couple)


so at the end a marriage can cost as much as buying a flat

Maciamo
Nov 7, 2005, 23:23
so at the end a marriage can cost as much as buying a flat

Yeah, well, I prefer the flat then.

cursore
Nov 7, 2005, 23:31
Yeah, well, I prefer the flat then.
so do I, so do I!

brahmavarun
Dec 20, 2005, 22:09
marriage is a sacred ritual that makes people one and hence enjoyment prevails.divorce is not good. Hindus love marriage and have kids.

celtician
Dec 20, 2005, 22:25
The Japanese are all show, no content so like their brothers in China they Must show off. Even though they hate the Chinese they do the same.

Think about it

celtician
Dec 20, 2005, 22:31
Oh, Maciamo why did you get married? Stay true to your values!

JerseyBoy
Jan 2, 2006, 08:29
I remember my dad enjoyed doing ナコードさん for weddings. Somehow he liked being a master of ceremony and I recall he came home late at night (I smelled sake as if a taker-full of sake exploded in my home) for those nights when he was doing wedding ceremonies for his colleagues and friends.

I myself had not been to Japanese weddings as I have been in the States since college (I have been back to Japan for about 12 years). So, I am not aware of what is expected from the guests and hosts. This thread taught me about Japanese wedding etiquette. I am not into weddings and I am sure I won't be thrilled to be invited to weddings (but, in Japan, its society values conformity and if you do something you are not expected to do or do not do something you are expected to do, you are being frowned upon).

I attended two weddings dinner parties (not the actual wedding in the church but the party thereafter on the same day) in New Jersey and both times, they hosted the party at the large restaurant/catering speciality establishment which can accommodate as many guests as the hosts wish (the wedding parties I went had more than 200 people each time). I am surprised to hear people in the states do the wedding at home because to do so you need a very large house and big yard.

nurizeko
Jan 24, 2006, 18:07
If you can fit the immediate family into the home of a couple to be married there, i would be surpised.

I like western weddings, at least the british one, nice and informal, i was not lnog ago at my cousin morags wedding (i know, scottish name, not my idea of pretty but ohwell) and it was in a nice hotel overlooking the sea, a nice small affair.
Its the only wedding ive ever been to, luckily ive only ever been to one funeral aswell.

ive yet to experience the horrors of a japanese wedding, i fear more value is given to the prestigue of the event then the actual point of the ceremony, to get married and bond yourself to your loved one.

celtician
Jan 24, 2006, 22:38
I think Japanese talk about and maybe do the marriage because there isn't much else to talk about.

Domo-kun
Mar 16, 2006, 22:35
I live in Japan. I commute to school by train, and i go every where by train. I see a lot of old folks, teenagers, and other people under the age the age of 50. But there is one thing i rarely see. Babies. Only about twice a week, i spot a baby, and also not many couples. Well, its no wonder the media talks about this everyday. The population of children is too low!

tekfrank
Jul 27, 2006, 00:14
Hello,

Where can I find Japanese wedding and divorce statistics?

Do Jap marry more than others?

Thank you!

tekfrank
Jul 27, 2006, 00:19
The Japanese are all show, no content so like their brothers in China they Must show off. Even though they hate the Chinese they do the same.

Think about it





It's everywhere like this in asia, it's called FACE

Maciamo
Jul 27, 2006, 00:22
It's everywhere like this in asia, it's called FACE

Isn't that just a nicer term for pride ?

changedonrequest
Jul 27, 2006, 10:17
I remember my dad enjoyed doing ナコードさん for weddings. Somehow he liked being a master of ceremony and I recall he came home late at night (I smelled sake as if a taker-full of sake exploded in my home) for those nights when he was doing wedding ceremonies for his colleagues and friends.

Question here;

When you say that your dad was "nakodo" for a wedding, was he the matchmaker of the couple getting married? 仲人 means to be a go-between or matchmaker.

From what it sounds like from this, he was the MC like you wrote, but if he was the "matchmaker" as well that means something totally different.

HouseChurchill
Aug 6, 2006, 18:00
um... I find the discussion so interesting :haihai: ! Personally, my husband and I just registered in the little courthouse in Edinburgh, Scotland, the place we met... we even stopped his parents from going with us. I felt sorry for that as I think they (Japanese parents) may want to attend??
We think of holding a ceremony back to our home, but then I find myself not really enjoy having it at all, so do my husband. We still think about holding one or not.. for me, I am just worred if his parents would mind if we don't have one.. however, I cannot ask his parents myself as my husband would say they don't ask such thing in Japan.. my husband said they don't care but I really wonder ....

nice gaijin
Aug 6, 2006, 18:19
I'm a bit confused, HouseChurchill... You are from Hong Kong and currently reside there, but you just married a Japanese citizen... in Edinburgh? You must get around a lot!

HouseChurchill
Aug 7, 2006, 01:48
Oh yes, sorry for the confusion. My husband and I got married two years ago, and we have been deciding a place to settle down (HK /Japan). Finally, I decided to move to Japan next summer cox I don't want to be saparated with him anymore. and Yes, it has been a tough time to get around so many times before and I'll be flying to Tokyo tomorrow... so now, I am preparing to move there next summer, I mean psychologically ...

gaijinalways
Aug 7, 2006, 05:57
Yes, Japanese weddings are something that takes getting used to. My wife and I decided aganist going to one (sending a gift instead) because of the cost involved.

gaijinalways
Aug 8, 2006, 01:03
Big wedding parties are nothing I favor either. My wife's and my parents wanted them, (and probably my wife, to be honest I don't remember), but I was happy wih no party the first time, so it didn't make a lot of difference to me the second time around. I was always more into smaller gatherings where you could talk with everyone if you wanted to, and get into deeper discussions, rather than just general small talk and move on often to do the same thing with another group of people.

The up side was a fun party where my wife and I sang, and my father-in-law impressed me with singing opera, and my best mate at the time read out a poem he composed.

The down side was at the second party in Japan having to try and find a bank machine, because my wife had expected we would receive cash from her parents that day to pay for the izakaya gathering, but her father forgot to bring cash. I forget where the second party was held, but this was in Japan 8 years ago when many bank machines didn't stay open after hours (and no handy ATMS in the convenience stores),so I was rather annoyed and tiffed at being unsuccessful in my forays to get additional cash.

Luckily, we had enough, otherwise we would have had to been bailed out by our guests (actually, one of the Western guests offered me some money later, just wish I had thought to ask earlier, though a bit embarassing, but it would have avoided looking like I had to go to the toilet all the time)!:bluush: when I was ducking down the street looking for an ATM that was open!

catriona
Aug 18, 2006, 20:21
I like western weddings, at least the british one, nice and informal
Are you serious? British weddings are stuffy and boring affairs. I dread 'wedding season' every year. Luckily this year we've only been invited to one so far.
British weddings are over-organized and have a rigid schedule like a military operation. In other European countries weddings are less structured (just about anyone can make a speech if they feel like it, you don't get kicked out at a set time) and guests are generally more relaxed and enjoy themselves. I've been to weddings in Spain and Italy that were great fun. Most British weddings I've been to have been very formal and dull in comparison.
We got married in the Caribbean to save money and avoid some annoying relatives that would no doubt have made a huge fuss had they not been invited to our wedding at home. Best decision we ever made.

yamada
Aug 23, 2006, 23:34
Back to the top question, some company flames to do so.

bagdeparag
Aug 25, 2006, 21:38
Did you say, you have pay, to attend the marriage..............

Maciamo
Aug 25, 2006, 23:07
Did you say, you have pay, to attend the marriage..............

Oh, not so much, about 30,000 yen, i.e. the equivalent of the monthly GDP per capita in India... :p

yamada
Aug 25, 2006, 23:09
Did you say, you have pay, to attend the marriage..............

Their parent got more likely to prepair for their daughters/sons happier roads, as parents got richer. No couple wants to invite so many people and hold such a crazy expensive event. Any estimate by any company such as hotel, ceremony hall and directer always expensive.

Carlosx2
Aug 28, 2006, 04:07
or "caravan travel" for Dutch people. :p


ok lets get this part straight. we do not talk about that at all. here it would be how we except everything and that we are so open minded. Which is not really the case but the politics wants to see it that way.

:wave:

ArmandV
Aug 28, 2006, 05:05
Oh, not so much, about 30,000 yen, i.e. the equivalent of the monthly GDP per capita in India... :p

Or roughly $270 U.S.

For that amount, the least they can do is have a full hosted bar.

Kana_Star
Nov 5, 2006, 14:03
Wow people, most of you have no clue

First, a wedding is something a lot of girls want and dream about, sorry most of you don't want a big wedding. We are also not the onlt ones that have super expensive weddings. Have you seen the 15 year old parties they make in mexico, and that not even the wedding. People have different traditions. We are not stuck in the old times so don't expect us to have a wedding at a temple.

Dutch Baka
Nov 5, 2006, 15:32
We went to St. James club this morning, me and my wife, to plan our wedding ceremony upcoming year. So much fun it is, and today was the day for trying on some wedding dresses.

We are think about having a western dress first, and then change into Japanese style ... or even Japanese/Dutch style haha.

Weddings are fun when you have one... when you visit one, it is pretty expensive : 20.000/30.000 Yen

taehyun
Nov 7, 2006, 12:56
On the question about the marriage

Until the WW2 the marriage has been a must in the Japanese rural society.As Kunio Yanagita says, the Japanese women have been worried about the difficulties in of their life as wives, but have been even terrified of leaving single. The answer why is given by Laurel L. Cornell in her article "Why there are no spinsters in Japan?" published in No9 of Journal of Family Studies, 1984

If somebody really is interested in Japanece concept of the marriage, this article can be found on the net, it is worth seeing.

xFumiko
Jan 3, 2007, 14:02
Money, Family.

Rarely a divorce but my family is Chinese and Japanese but is greatly influenced by the Japanese culture--especially on my mother's side. We are very business orientated and even though the primary reason was a "compatibility", most marriages in our family was for business purposes. Most likely, a "matchmaker" was involved [probably my eldest uncle or my grandmother because my grandfather is deceased].

It's not too surprising that I too might have to go through an "o-miai"-type deal but I don't mind, really [It's more like, "connections" to the rich and introductions and hopefully they get married:kanashii:]. It just takes time to get used to. Mostly Western type wedding is Love, Sex, Family, then Money. But for my family, it was always Compatibility/Stability, Money, Children. Sounds kind of harsh and greedy, but that's how it is. Even if my grandmother, who is very strictly buddhist, lives modestly, my family is still one huge [evil?] corporation. [laughs].

I guess it is scary for women to be living single, as taehyun has mentioned, because of the difficulty of supporting whatever children that may have been conceived or even the woman herself. Men are traditionally seen as "working" while women are usually stay-at-home but many business such as my family have the "CEO" or Manager as women. Women are beginning to work more often now which is a good change for many in Japan.

Ichiroll
Mar 26, 2007, 12:34
I do find for some japanese women/ladies "feel" they should marry by certain age before "being seen" too old to be really married by men. But there are those that want to marry later. Whther it is the tradition being married by 28 or whether they marry young or later, it is personal choice and mostly the Chemistry of the couple being"right " for each other. Tottemou daijina koto desu.

Ichiroll-sama

JerseyBoy
Jul 21, 2007, 23:56
I think many Japanese are tough to accept marriage as a rite of passage in the course of the life. Social pressure to get married is very strong in Japan (or some other countries as well). I've been away from Japan more than 10 years since I turned 20; so, I don't subscribe to the cultural norm without any hesitation.
I am single and I just do not feel like getting married. Even though it would be nice to have a close significant other, I feel I would be shackled to the institution called marriage if I got married. My married male colleagues have to hand over their pay checks to their wives every month. I know I cannot do it as I am so used to spending what I have earned on whatever I feel like spending. Some estimates put a price tag of JPY 50 million for raising a kid for 22 years in Japan. I would rather keep that money in the mutual funds or stocks and use it for my early retirement. Some people want to get married and have children so that they don't feel lonely when they get old. By the time I would need to get in the home, my mental ability would be bad enough to recognize who is caring me.

minime
Apr 7, 2009, 16:18
love the old style wedding!
love the dress (not the guys' though)

Vivek Gopinathan
Apr 28, 2009, 22:38
In India too the concapt of marriage has been traditionally the same, where the men were exceedingly dominating and women mere cooks and nannys. Like in Japan, marriage was arranged and children-centric. Women are expected by many even now to stop work after marriage. Also sex was non-existent many a times within the marriage.
But things are changing for good. Things are going liberal while keeping in touch with the traditions. Love has won over the race for children in many cases. Also the society is becoming acceptable to married women working.

MadamePapillon
Apr 29, 2009, 13:01
It's so strange this subject ... I rarely think about marriage and even more rarely hear it mentioned. It seems like marriage is sort of an afterthought in western culture and comes secondary to pretty much everything else in a realtionship.
I know I certainly think about my relationship and the future of it and possibly children (one day) ... but almost never about marriage. It just seems like such an overdone thing, so many people always want to have the biggest and best wedding ever and show off in style, they spend ridiculous amounts of money, some even driving themselves to debt just to pay for a good show.

People (and I think Japan is probably as guilty of this as the west, maybe even more so) have turned marriage into a spectacle. It doesn't feel 'special' or like the 'sacred union' that it once was. I'm honestly not sure which is worse, really, getting married and then divorced a year later or having a mock white, chapel wedding that you borrowed from another culture. :?

gaijinalways
Apr 29, 2009, 13:46
MadamePapillion posted
this subject ... I rarely think about marriage and even more rarely hear it mentioned. It seems like marriage is sort of an afterthought in western culture and comes secondary to pretty much everything else in a realtionship

This thread was forgotten for 2 years! As to marriage itself, it's more than an afterthought for some in Western countries (such a general concept). Many people, at least in the backs of their minds, are thinking of getting married, hence a reason that they date.

SweetBride202
Nov 10, 2009, 13:13
Some girls just love to get married as soon as possible and some don't. It really depends in each person. So just get married whenever you're ready and whenever you find the right person. :D