Why don’t recent young people in Japan date?

12A3146026D Mirai Fukushima

1. Introduction
Nowadays, Japan has big problems with the declining birth rate and aging society.
Especially about the declining birth rate, there are some causes such as late-marriage, women’s
progress, and even worse, the high rate of singles in entire life. That kind of problems are probably
happening in other developed countries too, but it looks like Japan is particularly severe. When
asking some friends about dating, not all but some feel dating is not so attractive. What does make
them think so? To find the reasons, I decided to research on ‘Love’, which is too abstract to survey.
Then, I divide my research into 3 parts : What is love, differences of Love and Friendship, and
reasons of not dating.

2. What is Love
This might be one of the most complicated questions, but I asked 4 people about it. They
answered differently, which is so interesting. My friend A answered that love is ‘patient’. Love
hardly comes true, so he thought we have to endure something when falling in love, which means
love is somewhat hard thing. My friend B told me that love is that he want to protect his significant
other from everything. He looks so passionate toward love, and inspired me that love gives us the
unimaginably big power. Here is another answer from my friend C, that love is ‘secret intention’. It
means the clear underline of love and friendship is whether they want to kiss the other or not. That is
good point because probably we feel something special feeling which we have never felt so to the
other. She said that is secret intention. The last is from my friend D, which answer is love is just
unfamiliar with her. Because she has never experienced falling in love, love is mysterious.
Interestingly, answers are different and these depend of each person’s background. For people who
experienced falling in love many times like friend A and B, love is more serious than my friend C
and D thought. As stated above, love is mysterious, so it is natural there are various opinion.

3. Differences of Love and Friendship
Then, what are differences of love and friendship? To figure out might be one of steps of
understanding the low rate of dating recently. According to a website, called ‘Wiki How’, love and
friendship are close but different with our feeling.

Look at the picture above. For example, if you are just friends, you can be happy when he (suppose
you are a girl and the friend is a boy) tells you that he me a really cute girl and he likes her. If you
have special feeling to him, you cannot celebrate in that case because you love him, but he loves
other girl. You definitely feel jealousy, sadness, but happiness. Even if you have never thought you
love him, then you can notice your real emotions toward him.

Another example is whether you and he ‘have to’ confirm the relationship or not. Imagine when you
have new friends. Do you say ‘Are we friends now?’ or something? Maybe no, because there is no
need to say such thing when you are just friends. We can have friends very naturally. However, if
you are in love, you have to confirm the present situation because the relationship will chance into a
couple. Then, you should say to the other like ‘I love you’ or ‘I think we are in love’ to make the
relation clear. That is big difference of just being friends and dating with somebody.

4. Reasons of not dating

According to Japanese famous magazine, Josei Seven ( 女 性 セ ブ ン ), 65% women and
70% men don’t have the significant other in 2011, and because of that, our generation is called ‘ecofriendly love generation’. There are some reasons which made us so. First of all, in babble economy
in 1990, people wanted exciting and hot love , but now situation has changes into less passionate
toward love. Second reason is well-known, but boys have been modest and they are called
‘Vegetarian boys’. On the other hand, girls are called ‘predatory girls’ but they found
comfortableness with same sex friends. Therefore, they often enjoy girls meeting. One professor has
a little different opinion, and he says the young have a shallow friendship now which means there
are no clear differences between boys and girls. It leads the young generation to be just friends
without any troubles because being friends is more comfortable than dating. Moreover, because of
animation, they don’t need actual people, but enough with virtual ‘significant other’ instead. These
are recent trends.

Here is another opinion from the website, BLOGOS, which says the reason of not dating is just
simple. The young people don’t have enough money to meet someone. As the graphs show, students
today cannot use so much money compared with students in the past, but on the other hand, the fee
today in Disney land is the highest in this 30 years. This is so ironic because Disney land is one of
the most famous dating spots in Japan. Those elements make young generation don’t have the
significant other now.

5. Conclusion
These reasons are just opinion from one of people, but it is interesting to know various
thinking. Personally, I think the reason why they don’t date is because we can enjoy by ourselves
thanks to the invention of some IT devices such as smart phone. Now that we don’t need to see
someone directly to talk, so we don’t try to find somebody so often. We are satisfied with indirectly
relationship with friends or friends in remote places like foreign countries. This is just my opinion
but through this project, I feel it is obvious that not dating is the present trend which our society
made. Therefore, changing this trend to solve the declining birth rate is wrong and we have to accept
the attitude of young generation toward love.

No author, No date, 'How to Differentiate between Love and Friendship', Wiki How, viewed on 9th
December 2014
no author, November 17th 2011, '「余暇の多様化が若者を恋愛から遠ざけている」の意見出る
Itsuro. K, no date, '恋をしない若者を論じ、少子化問題に及ぶ', ASRead, viewed on December
Willy, October 13th 2014, '若者が草食化した本当の理由', BLOGOS, viewed on December 16th