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noname223

Illuminated
Aug 18, 2020
3,053
I know it depends where you live. I am living in Germany. This could become a longer post. I don't want to migrate. A friend of mine has the dream to migrate to Japan. Somehow I can relate to that. Though I think rationally this is probably rather detrimental for him. I can relate because as a child I envied people who live in the US or Japan. In envied the consumerism in the US. Everything seems to be louder, faster and bigger in this country. Now as an adult I am glad/thankful I live in Germany and not the US or Japan. The US has a shitty welfare and health care system. They have a lot of problems. But this thread is not about the US.

I have the feeling I have the responsiblity to be warn him about the negatve aspects of life in Japan. I don't know how much he read how living in Japan really is like. I think some people have a romanticized notion of Japan due to anime/manga/video games. My friend is far left. When I expressed some concerns about the life in Japan he played it down. I think this dreams means much for him. But I think his plans will rather backfire. This dream gives him a lot of strength and hope. So I probably have to support him. I am not sure how aware he is about the Japans society.

Here are some of my concerns about Japan.

Racism towards foreigners. He responded this only applies to older folks in Japan.
Blind sheep mentality. He said he kind of prefers that though I think it rather contradicts his values. I have the feeling he just said it because he loves Japan.

Conservatism. The conservative party is extremely powerful. I think there is a lot of nepotism in this party and even connections to sects. Politically it contradicts most of his values.

LGBTQI rights are not that widespread in Japan.

The insane performance pressure. For me personally I think my main concern. The life quality with such a stress is probably way lower than in Germany. (compared to the German work environments)

The high suicide rates. Probably due to the high performance pressure and the next point

Mental illness is very stigmatized in Japan. From what I have read is suicide also ( very?) stigmatized in Japan. Though on this I have read diametrical stances. Maybe there are nuances I don't know. Due to the fact christianity is less widspread suicide is not seen as a sin. But I think there are not many helpful approaches to handle suicidality in Japan. Or to help people who lost someone to suicide. I think it is already horrible how stigmatized mental illness is in my country. And in Japan it seems to be even way worse. Personally I prefer when people are more open when they don't like somethig. And in Japan the average person rather wants to be polite.

Many of the powerful elites seem to be very conservative. Like this insane porn censorship in Japan. One of my friends told me (I am not sure whether it is accurate) the politicians just don't want to change the law because the topic is so touchy. And they don't want to be associated with something like porn.

Oh and one more thing. I think bullying is a huge problem in Japan. I know in probably all countries bullying is a huge problem. But I think there are many cases when students committed suicide in Japan due to bullying. Maybe this sheep mentality plays a role in it.

I know sheep mentality sounds pejorative. It is deeply rooted probably because of culture, religion etc. And there are also positive consequences. The people wear masks to protect other people from illnesses for example.

Maybe I sound arrogant and pejorative about Japan and the Japanese culture. Though I want to say I love many many things of the Japanese culture. Their exports are in the top three of my favorite products. My life would be way worse without Japan. Something would be missing.

Though I still think the life quality in Japan might be worse for him. Especially due to the insane performance pressure.

What do you think about it?
 
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jandek

jandek

Down in a Mirror
Feb 19, 2022
147
Maybe the regulations have lightened up, but I don't think it's easy to immigrate to Japan... If your friend got a temporary job and work visa they could hopefully figure out whether they wanted to live there long term. I assume that'd be the first step to immigration.

I'd say a lot would depend on your friend's personality and willingness to adapt to the culture. Japan definitely has a brutally competitive school and work culture. I don't think there's much outright xenophobia in Japan these days, especially toward Europeans, but it could be psychologically difficult being a "foreigner" and all that entails. Language might be an obstacle. Even when people are friendly, I often feel self-conscious and uncomfortable in such situations, afraid that I'm misreading or missing cues. I'd love to at least visit Japan one day, maybe for the shikoku pilgrimage. The countryside looks so beautiful.
 
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W

whywere

Enlightened
Jun 26, 2020
1,913
Hi!

I live in the U.S., and I totally agree with you about the healthcare system. Ours is broke in more ways than one, just terrible.

Now I have had the privilege of being around a lot of folks from lots of countries and my limited experience is that some places put a high value on work, and conformity. Now this is NOT just about countries like Japan, as I have seen this mentality from various places.

For me, to exist in a place where one is working a lot and is either conservative or even worst is a no go for me. I was VERY poor growing up and faced humiliating situations growing up, read discriminated against and over 50 years later it still stings.

To live in a place where there is anything negativity like LGBTQI rights is a NO GO for me as the old saying goes, pick on one, pick on all.

I love and care about all forms of life period and I could NEVER EVER live where one is in harm's way, even just thoughts and words.

Like in the Colorado bar shootings in a gay club, 100% wrong, will we ever evolve?

Walter
 
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MellowAvenue

MellowAvenue

👻
Nov 5, 2020
520
I kinda hate saying it because I was one of them at one point but a very sizable amount of people who want to move to Japan nowadays want to do it because of anime and otaku culture not realizing that that isn’t at all indicative of Japanese culture as a whole. Obviously some of these people do move to Japan and enjoy, but based on things I’ve seen in the past the romanticized view that many of them have about Japan quickly deteriorates after they move there and see the rather brutally conservative and work heavy culture Japan actually has. As someone who has worked with an Asian company, albeit Taiwanese and based here in the States, I can definitely tell you that they are crazy hard workers who typically work long hours and build a lot of whatever social life they have around the company itself.

Ultimately I think it comes down to why he’s looking to move to Japan. If it’s to be better understood or to have more freedom in his day to day life, I REALLY wouldn’t advise Japan and if it’s “because Anime” then he needs to do more research.
 
𖣴 nemo 𖣴

𖣴 nemo 𖣴

...member...
Dec 15, 2021
172
Many of the powerful elites seem to be very conservative. Like this insane porn censorship in Japan. One of my friends told me (I am not sure whether it is accurate) the politicians just don't want to change the law because the topic is so touchy. And they don't want to be associated with something like porn.

Insane porn censorship? They're one of the last developed countries in the world to ban possession of child porn (2014) after years of international pressure.

But it's not reinforced and there are lots of loopholes - graphic, sexual depictions of children including stories of incest still aren't banned in anime and manga. More explicit and often violent content is still available online.


'Japan's fascination with young women as sexual objects is apparent from a quick glance through Japanese bookstores and subway ads featuring "junior idols" aka child models. The new law would not apply to most such images'

'Quasi-pornographic "chaku-ero", or clothed eroticism — images of small children posing in tiny swimsuits — are easily found on the Internet, slipping through a legal loophole.'

 
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MellowAvenue

MellowAvenue

👻
Nov 5, 2020
520
Insane porn censorship? They're one of the last developed countries in the world to ban possession of child porn (2014) after years of international pressure.

But it's not reinforced and there are lots of loopholes - graphic, sexual depictions of children including stories of incest still aren't banned in anime and manga. More explicit and often violent content is still available online.


'Japan's fascination with young women as sexual objects is apparent from a quick glance through Japanese bookstores and subway ads featuring "junior idols" aka child models. The new law would not apply to most such images.'


What you say is true but he isn’t referring to the distribution of the material but rather the censorship of the material itself. You aren’t allowed to openly display male or female genitalia. That’s why when you look at Japanese pornography penises and vaginas are typically censored in some way. There have been cases such as this one where adult material creators were in trouble over insufficient censoring, not no censoring, but insufficient.

 
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𖣴 nemo 𖣴

𖣴 nemo 𖣴

...member...
Dec 15, 2021
172
What you say is true but he isn’t referring to the distribution of the material but rather the censorship of the material itself. You aren’t allowed to openly display male or female genitalia. That’s why when you look at Japanese pornography penises and vaginas are typically censored in some way. There have been cases such as this one where adult material creators were in trouble over insufficient censoring, not no censoring, but insufficient.

Surprised that there isn't a loophole for pixelation too

 
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Chinaski

Chinaski

Arthur Scargill appreciator
Sep 1, 2018
2,870
Insane porn censorship? They're one of the last developed countries in the world to ban possession of child porn (2014) after years of international pressure.

But it's not reinforced and there are lots of loopholes - graphic, sexual depictions of children including stories of incest still aren't banned in anime and manga. More explicit and often violent content is still available online.


'Japan's fascination with young women as sexual objects is apparent from a quick glance through Japanese bookstores and subway ads featuring "junior idols" aka child models. The new law would not apply to most such images.'

Well, this has certainly made me feel uneasy about those members with a cutesy anime aesthetic, that's for sure
 
D

DysphoriaKilledMe

-
Nov 21, 2022
51
Maybe the regulations have lightened up, but I don't think it's easy to immigrate to Japan... If your friend got a temporary job and work visa they could hopefully figure out whether they wanted to live there long term. I assume that'd be the first step to immigration.

I'd say a lot would depend on your friend's personality and willingness to adapt to the culture. Japan definitely has a brutally competitive school and work culture. I don't think there's much outright xenophobia in Japan these days, especially toward Europeans, but it could be psychologically difficult being a "foreigner" and all that entails. Language might be an obstacle. Even when people are friendly, I often feel self-conscious and uncomfortable in such situations, afraid that I'm misreading or missing cues. I'd love to at least visit Japan one day, maybe for the shikoku pilgrimage. The countryside looks so beautiful.
Japan is great, language barrier aside.
 
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Angst Filled Fuck Up

Angst Filled Fuck Up

Visionary
Sep 9, 2018
2,309
Personally I enjoy the pixelated cheeto-dick porn from Japan. I mean nobody really wants to see a penis, and a vagina close up? Not for me. I say we censor all porn until it's just one obscure blob of god-knows-what. Would probably help me kick it for once and for all too.
 
Rounded Apathy

Rounded Apathy

Longing to return to stardust
Aug 8, 2022
728
In my 20s I accomplished my lifelong dream of relocating to Japan and spent three years living there. I subsequently decided to gtfo. It's the same as any other nation with big presence on the world stage; the perception from outside is skewed by over-representation of whatever people think are the positive attributes (which are somewhat in flux depending on who/when you ask), and it isn't until you're living there as a member of society do you begin to see the shit.

The following YouTube channel as well as blog are some sources of insight I recommend to anyone curious about more inside takes.
www.japaneseruleof7.com
www.youtube.com/AsianBoss
 
Insomniac

Insomniac

𝔄 𝔲 𝔱 𝔦 𝔰 𝔪
May 21, 2021
1,358
I think it's cool as long as you don't understand the language. Then you can continue to float on the bliss of ignorance lol
 
Jason Steele

Jason Steele

Merry Christmas!
Nov 22, 2022
18
People who die by suicide due to overwork are called karōjisatsu (過労自殺). The phenomenon of death by overwork is also widespread in other parts of Asia and can also be considered a worldwide phenomenon.
I would not live in Japan. They're either worked to death or become isolated stunted hikikomori.
 
KuriGohan&Kamehameha

KuriGohan&Kamehameha

your free trial of life expired, purchase winrar?
Nov 23, 2020
1,220
I dated a Japanese guy for a long time. He had emigrated from Japan during childhood, but his parents were very traditional and held the majority of the strict conservative values characteristic of old-school Japanese culture which didn't wane despite them having lived in the west for a long time.

I think we tend to be overexposed to the wacky, eccentric, cutesy and cyberpunk aesthetics of Japan in the west, as opposed to the dark sides of their society. Many young people are pushing back against sexism, xenophobia, homphobia, unfair workplace practices, and pressure to conform to arbitrary metrics of worth and success that a culture of austerity has imposed upon them. However, it is far from the norm to rebel against these expectations.

My experience dating a "traditional" Japanese guy was nothing like the romanticism you see conjured up by shoujou manga readers and j-drama connesseuirs who fawn over the idea of an old-fashioned relationship dynamic. My ex boyfriend wanted absolute control over me and everything I did. To him, I was property, and my actions and beliefs would reflect poorly upon him if I strayed out of line from what he wanted.

I was 19 years old at the time, and everyone else I knew was taking time to get a feel for what they wanted in a partner, while I was pretty much locked into marriage if I stayed with him. He wanted me to quit education, and working part time, to become a housewife and "carry on the bloodline" . However, I was not allowed to meet his parents or become integrated into his family unit, because he was ashamed of me. He feared that I would voice an opinion that went against theirs and would embarrass him in front of his parents by being too left-leaning.

His entire family was very racist, and only allowed me to date him because I was a white woman and him and his father both fetishized white women due to us being an exotic rarity in Japan. They hated other asians, and often my ex would say racial slurs about Chinese people or remark that the only attractive woman is a white woman.

I was told I had to be loyal no mater what, while my ex was free to flirt around and try to sleep with others (don't think he ever succeeded though.) When I argued about this, I was told that I had to agree to these conditions to stay with him. Infidelity is extremely common in Japan, and many men and women alike are forced to accept their partner's promiscousness in order to avoiding rocking the boat.

He would often tell me that my interest in music was futile, because I hadn't been trained since childhood to do it like he was. Despite being a firm believer in discipline and rigidity, he would often tell me that I should be lucky that my family severely neglected me and abused me in that way, because at least I was not forced to learn a musical instrument and study at a prestigious school like he was!

Despite having me on a leash, literally and figuratively, my ex would never speak out for me or protect me. When the man who groomed me and abused me was stalking me in public places, my ex would not say a word. He would never stand up to him. Before we were dating and I was still living with the abuser, the aforementioned man punched me, and still my ex sat outside and did nothing. He never extended the courtesy of defending me when others bad mouthed me after all of that. Complacency and refusal to make a spectacle or have any sort of dissenting opinion were his principles.

Besides being forced to do sadistic sexual acts for his pleasure, this sort of emotional neglect was the cherry on top for tearing me up. It is shocking for westerners to hear about these things, but they are far too common in Japan. You can read websites like 2ch, yahoo jp, etc if your language skills are good enough, and see many people abusing their partners, being racist against foreigners, or making vulgar and nasty comments in general because they know the victim's cries for help won't be taken seriously by the authorities in Japan.

Many men learn these toxic behaviors from their fathers, which were passed onto them from their fathers, and so on and so forth. It is hard to speak up when your boyfriend/husband controls you, and it is culturally accepted to maintain loyalty to them or family no matter what. Of course, this doesn't always happen, and you can't generalise an entire culture based on one anecdotal experience.. But there are many accounts online from foreigners who moved to Japan and were treated terribly.

Racial profiling and discrimination is incredibly common. It is not rare to be refused service because you aren't Japanese. Foreigners often get framed for crimes they did not commit, due to the deep seated xenophobia and mistrust of outsiders that lies at the heart of public opinion. Being an outsider is a cardinal sin, which is why bullying is so common and not taken seriously. It is often those who cannot fit into the mold of what it means to be a perfect Japanese citizen who are bullied, making it sanctioned and acceptable to do so.

Now, I never lived in Japan, but I pretty much spent all my time with my ex and his friends for a solid couple years, while taking intensive Japanese language classes too. There are many things I miss about that lifestyle and get nostalgic over that western culture lacks, and I'm sure those sorts of things are what your friend admires about Japan too. The food is incredible and so is the fashion, films, music, artwork, and various forms of media. Of course, people will love to say anime is cringe because it's a varied medium and is full of just as much trash as treasures, but you can't really compare moeshit to something like Cowboy Bebop or Miyazaki's films.

I do admire the dedication and commitment to family, which is something we often lack in the west. Many people will say they don't owe you their time, don't give a shit about their community, and are uninterested in commitments and responsibilities. My ex and his family were the exact opposite of that, they were always helping and looking out for each other, in exchange for the limitations on expression/opinions they had to maintain to please each other.

While he wouldn't stand up for me, I must admit my ex had unmatchable work ethic and diligently maintained commitments to me and his responsibilities (job, community service/volunteering, helping his family) when most others would not. He did not constantly threaten to abandon or leave me, or put hedonism over my safety in the way that individualised western men often do.

There are good and bad things about Japan, but it is a harsh environment. There's a reason why many choose to drop out of society and become NEETs rather than pursuing marriage and careers. If your friend is looking for the types of interactions and stories that you'd see in an anime or something, he is in for a rude awakening. You can't express yourself in those eccentric ways in Japan without being ostracised. You will be controlled by the burden of expectations, even down to how you look and what you do with your body.

Employers in Japan force their workers to undergo mandatory medical screenings yearly and punish those who are unhealthy. Women often don't get proper anesthetic during childbirth either. Pain medication is very rare, and taking any kind of drug is severely frowned upon. Foreigners are often denied proper medical care or assumed to have mystical qualities of body and mind that Japanese people do not. It is very dystopian and unequal.
 
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