You Like Caucasian Men? an Asian Woman's Reply
After reading my article in J A D E magazine one of my friends (we dated for a short time) wrote the following reply.
I have dated mainly Caucasian men in my lifetime. In fact, I have yet to date an Asian man. This is not because I have anything against Asian men or that I seek out Caucasian men. I do not have a Caucasian fetish. I view as having a fetish someone of one race who specifically seeks to date a person of another race purely on the basis of that race. I do not go out of my way to date Caucasian men and I do not view them as any "better" than Asian men on account of race.
Of course not. No one ever asks a white man why he likes white women, d0 they? It is perfectly normal for a man of one race to date a woman of the same race. When the relationship is inter-racial, then the question makes sense.
I'll admit to having a preference for a man who is taller and stronger (build) than I am, and having been a college athlete, I'm not the typical petite Asian woman. Yet I have seen plenty of Asian men who I would have been willing to date.
Having grown up in the US, I have merely had more opportunity
to date Caucasian men. If I were in Asia, I'm sure I'd be dating
an Asian man. The inter-racial dating has been a result of who
(how) I am, and opportunity, or the seeming lack of Asian men
who can fulfill my needs. On the other hand, some of the characteristics
I look for in a man aren't present in all Caucasian men either;
it's not an issue of race. The other factor, that of my own personal
traits -- that I am a strong-willed, independent, outgoing woman
who has grown up here in the U.S. and who will not be subservient
to any man -- these are not traits that steroetypically, traditional
Asian men look for in a woman. Thus, for all intents and purposes,
I can safely say that I can't date a traditionally-minded Asian
Yet, some Asian men who have grown up here in the US are too
"Americanized" for me. I mean the ones who are in gangs,
or dress according to the latest generation X fad, listen to techno/
rave music, and in general act like they're white, although this
applies more to the ones younger than myself (whom I have no interest
in dating) so it's not a big issue. I prefer an Asian man who
is not too traditional but is still in tune with (and embraces)
his heritage. If his ethnicity is different from mine, I expect
that he'll be able to share it with me. I am proud of my ethnicity,
and enjoy sharing it with others. I love cooking and going out
for Asian cuisine, going to Asian-related performing arts, reading
Asian-related book, etc. I have been fortunate that the Caucasian
men that I have dated have shared my interests or have been open-minded
and willing to let me share my culture with them.
In my mind, the media has "latched on" to this Caucasian man- Asian woman relationship because of the continuing stereotype of Asian women as being exotic and sensual. This myth is further perpetuated by the massage parlor and mail order bride industries. I really dislike the objectification of Asian women as if they are all alike. We may be exotic looking, but we also have intellect, personality and feelings, and if a guy doesn't want the whole package, then he's not worth my time.
I've heard that many Caucasian men have an interest in dating an Asian woman at least once, just to have the experience. This is one thing I definitely make great efforts to determine when I meet Caucasian man; if I feel that he's not interested in who I am, and only in the fact that I am Asian, then I don't waste my time with him. Luckily for me that has rarely happened.
I had been dating a Caucasian (ok, he was mostly Irish) man for about a month before I ever found out that he had had another Asian girlfriend before me, who was of the same nationality that I am. Not only that, but she had died in a tragic accident less than 2 years earlier, and he had been shouldering some of the blame (even though he was in no way at fault). To top that off, he had been saving up to buy her an engagement ring, and was going to give it to her over Christmas; she died in September. To make a long story short, I felt as if he was using me as a replacement for the love of his life whom he had lost. But, by the time I found out these details, I had already developed deep feelings for him, so I decided that I wanted to continue to date him. At some point I even thought that I could be the one to help him heal and get over his grief.
Ladies, don't make that mistake! Don't sacrifice your own sanity. Don't prolong the inevitable, if you are not truly happy in the situation you're in.
Things didn't work out relationship-wise in the long run (and
it had nothing to do with my being Asian), but we became and continue
to be close friends to this day. I am confident that he likes
me for who I am inside.
I agree that there are unique challenges for the Caucasian-Asian relationship, and that they are not insurmountable. All relationships, and especially inter-racial ones, have their challenges. It's a matter of being with the other person for who they are, not what they look like, and thus having more than a superficial relationship. In this case, both people should be willing to work through the challenges, and this will enable them to have a mutually fulfilling, successful relationship.