Asian stereotypes and myths are rife. If you’ve started dating an Asian girl, congratulations! Dating a girl from a different culture is super exciting. Still, it’s also fraught with some difficulty, as you may have vastly different cultural experiences to your girlfriend, which can sometimes lead to conflict and disagreements. One of the best ways to avoid conflict in your new relationship is to disregard many of the Asian stereotypes and myths you may have heard about Asia, and we will share five of the most common with you in this post.
Stereotype #1: Asia is a country
Nothing is more annoying to your Asian girlfriend than mistaking her country for another. Asia is a vast continent full of diverse nations that are unique and fascinating in their own right. Make sure you know which country your girlfriend is from and do some research into her culture. This will show you care about her and help you avoid some fractious moments in your new relationship.
Stereotype #2: Asia is poor
This goes hand-in-hand with stereotype #1. While there are some developing countries in Asia, such as Bangladesh, the continent is also home to economic powerhouses such as Japan and South Korea. Even if your girlfriend is from one of the continent’s poorer nations, such as India, it doesn’t mean she or her family is poor. Please don’t assume that you know about her country’s socio-economic complexities before getting to know her family!
Stereotype #3: Asia is all about the cities
While Asia is home to some of the most populous cities on earth (think Beijing, Tokyo, New Delhi, for example), there is so much more to the continent than these densely populated commercial hubs. Don’t forget the imperial Himalayas straddle Asia, and the sun-soaked beaches of Thailand and Vietnam draw millions of tourists every year. While it can be easy to think about the vast cities packed with people, don’t forget about all of the beautiful nature and wildlife that Asia has to offer.
Stereotype #4: Asia is dominated by China
Although China is the most populous country on earth, it is not representative of the whole of the Asian continent. Undeniably, China plays a huge part in the dynamics of Asian culture, but there is so much more to Asia than China. The Indian sub-continent, for example, is essentially a continent within a continent, and it can be challenging to remember that it’s part of the same region. When using the term ‘Asia,’ make sure you apply it liberally!
Stereotype #5: Asia is dangerous
While crime, of course, takes place across Asia, it is proportionate, just like crime in Europe or the US. It is no more dangerous than the other densely populated continents on earth. As with everywhere you visit, you should do your research in advance and understand the country’s situation and particular cities that you’re visiting. If there is instability in a specific country, then don’t visit. But don’t assume that all of Asia is dangerous just because of a conflict in a particular country!