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Showing public affection in Japan

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Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/25 23:16
Me and my fiance is going to visit Japan in a few years. Where we live it is not uncommon to show affection between couples in public but I heard it's rather rare in Japan to do so. So I wonder what is accepted over there, like holding hands, kissing, hugging each other when we are in public or if we should keep that private?

I have seen young Japanese couples in Tokyo holding hands but nothing more than that. I don't want to create a commotion if you see my point so I want to be a bit careful visiting different cultures and so...

by Jo (guest)  

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/26 07:40
Holding hands is no problem, but kissing and hugging should be kept private.
by Uji rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/26 13:51
It is considered tacky, except holding hands male-female, female-female.
by amazinga (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/26 13:52
As Uji pointed out: Holding hands is absolutely normal and Kissing&Hugging should be kept private.

But noone will stare at you if you give your fiance a hug or a short kiss! This might not be common but it is certainly not forbidden either.

by Diggy (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/26 16:04
Lots of people will stare at you descreatly if you're kissing or hugging in public. But some people don't care being stared at. That's all there is too it ;)
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/26 18:42
Considering you see about every 3rd japanese couple below the age of 40 holding hands, standing arm in arm or even (o-ho!) kissing in the metro station waiting for the last train to arrive - Descreate staring must be one of the most popular activities in the area where you live Uco!?
by Diggy (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/27 17:11
Diggy,

I suppose you can say that. We sometimes gossip about it. Nothing bad about it, btw.

by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/27 18:15
You gotta love all these silent haters and gossipers...
by Diggy (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/29 11:47
I'm from the US and I find it tacky and annoying when people slobber all over each other in public. Even if you turn so as not to look it's still audible. My Dad avoided going into a coffee shop because the couple out front made him uncomfortable.
by K (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/3/29 14:47
There are no rules, everyone has their own opinion as to what is acceptable.
However, if you want to be respectful and not make some people feel uncomfortable then try to refrain from stong displays of affection in places where people
cannot avoid being around you (such as in a coffee shop). Wide open spaces away from people such as a park etc would be considered completely normal
and nobody is going to complain at seeing a couple in love from a distance kissing in the sunshine... you may get a few grumpy unromatic types that believe
anything more than holding hands should be kept indoors, but you get them in any country.
by gilesdesign (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/4/4 12:34
It's becoming more common with young people, especially in Osaka (where I live).

I guess it's your choice. No one's going to come up and arrest you for it, but some old people might give you odd looks.

My wife personally doesn't like it.

However, the rule in Japan also is "if it doesn't involve me, I don't really care." So nobody's going to make snide remarks if you do so.

by Cenobite rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/4/5 15:58
some people are even too shy to kiss at their own wedding
by pastor Ralph rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/4/8 10:09
I concur that it is best to keep kissing private but I did have a pleasant shock to see a very old couple (maybe 70 yrs old) on the train to Tokyo once. The lady sat while he stood and he held her bags. The old man was flirting with his very embarassed wife. He even kissed her cheek and tried to pinch her bottom! He seemed to love her so much and she was blushing. He looked at my husband and I and smiled because we were new together. I hope when I am old my husband and I still feel such feelings like this couple. My husband tries to flirt with me in public and I also blush from embarassment (but secretly I love that he feels that way!).
by hirosumi rate this post as useful

Re: Showing public affection in Japan 2012/4/8 12:15
Japanese people & couples do all sort of things in private like everybody else does in the world. The same. But they tend to wear a complete official face as soon as they are out in public. Young couple might act as if they are just friends, acquaintances or co-workers once they are in public. Japanese people probably tend to think Japanese people who do kissing and clinging too much in public kind of uncool.

But if you look non-Japanese or obvious tourists, Japanese people probably donft care about you much, they probably are indifferent to you. They think you are from different country or culture and are different from them. Maybe you donft need to worry so much.

by Maybe... (guest) rate this post as useful

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