Dear visitor, if you know the answer to this question, please post it. Thank you!

Note that this thread has not been updated in a long time, and its content might not be up-to-date anymore.

About love, virginity, and marriage. 2009/6/11 10:39
Hi there; I have a few questions relating to the above for the sake of being as accurate as I can be in a short story I am writing set in modern time, and involving a Japanese couple. Sorry for the vagueness; I'm still figuring things out. I have tried researching for some answers, but I haven't found anything definitive yet.

If a woman in her mid-twenties is dating, loses her virginity in the process, and is left by her boyfriend sometime afterwards for whatever reason, does it affect her chances of finding another person/ being married? Is a loss of virginity seen as undesirable to potential suitors? Also, would her parents (who are traditional-minded) hold her at fault or be ashamed of her in any way despite this situation not being her fault? After this incident, would her parents possibly consider arranging a marriage at all, or would they (possibly) consider 'disowning' her and leave her to her own devices? Or, something in the middle? I'm open to suggestions.

Also... is there discrimination a person with disability faces in looking for a partner? This female character would be in the early stages of ALS, which means that she would steadily become more and more dependent on someone taking care of her as the disease advances. Because of her problems, do you think her parents would look into a marriage partner for her to spare her the trouble (and because it's the traditional thing to do)?

I'm really sorry for my ignorance, and hope it does not in any way offend anyone - I just want to have my facts straight, and I appreciate all the help I can get on these two separate issues. Thank you very much!
by Mac (guest)  

. 2009/6/11 11:16
I would say the answers to your questions are all no. But people are different and it really depends.

Someone here said something clever about writing a story about things you don't know...
by . (guest) rate this post as useful

Response... 2009/6/11 11:21

I know that writing about a subject one is unfamiliar with isn't the wisest thing to do, as one is generally told as a rule to 'write what they know'... This is why I hope to figure at least some things out before considering whether I'll go this route or end up writing something completely different. And who knows, I might just drop these ideas completely; I'm not married to them. Just curious about some aspects of culture, and I know I won't go about anything without having done at least a little bit of research.

Thanks nonetheless.
by Mac (guest) rate this post as useful

Modern Japan 2009/6/11 12:10
No, it does not put off most potential boyfriends/husbands that she has already had a boyfriend and is not a virgin in her mid-20s- that would be quite normal.

Her parents would be unlikely to blame her for her relationship ending or feel ashamed- a divorce would be a different story as it is still quite stigmatised here.

In her mid-20s they would be highly unlikely to arrange a marriage for her ("arranged" marriages here are really just arranged introductions- no one is forced to marry), and they would certainly not disown her over the situation you described..

I think you will find that Japan is a lot less conservative as far as sex goes than you might be thinking. Christianity not being a major influence there is no real emphasis on someone "saving themselves for marriage"- not that there is anymore in most western countries anyway.

A person with a disability here (I'm not familiar with ALS) would face similar problems in finding a partner as they would anywhere else.

Her parents would be highly unlikely to marry her off so she had someone to help her with her disability as traditionally men work very long hours here- she would probably be seen as better off staying with her parents by all concerned, as then she would have people with time to look after her- unlikely to be the case if she married.

I agree with the above- why not set the story in a culture you are familiar with? It sounds like you don't really know a lot about modern Japan, which is understandable if you have not spent much time here. It is likely that you will get a lot of the details very wrong.
by Sira (guest) rate this post as useful

Thank you - 2009/6/11 12:25
It's true that I will probably get details wrong, and that's a fear of mine, which is why I find myself less and less likely to try writing out this situation. About the story, I do have a few people who want me to go through with writing it - but yes, I'll definitely reconsider doing so.

Thanks for bearing with me, everyone; I've gotten what I've needed to out of this thread. It can be removed or ignored now, thank you. :)
by Mac (guest) rate this post as useful

I also have to add... 2009/6/11 12:31
That the above post really helped - thanks for letting me know about some major mistakes I could have made. I'm glad I checked in, and it has me thinking about holding off from attempting to write this. I don't want to screw anything up/step on any toes.

Again, I have taken what I need from this thread, so it can be deleted or ignored, whatever works. Thanks again.
by Mac (guest) rate this post as useful

Why stop so soon? 2009/6/11 18:28
Don't you want to hear other's opinions? If you are serious about doing research on this subject I would think it would be helpful to hear what a number of people say. There isn't just one answer to your questions, and people's opinions and experiences will vary.
by Sira (guest) rate this post as useful

. 2009/6/11 21:59
I know there isn't just one response to my questions; if I were still determined to write this, I would hang around to read more. I've decided to stop with the story because I just don't think it's best that I write about this particular subject, because my understanding (even with other people's help) would probably still be limited. I do still appreciate what you've taken the time to write, though.
by Mac (guest) rate this post as useful

ALS 2009/6/20 09:20
I agree the above poster--write about what you know. If not, you risk making a dire mistake or spending a lot of time and money doing research. ALS might not be the best "disability." My uncle was diagnosed and within months was unable to function on his own and died within a year. FYI--the human brain can compensate up to 80% of motor skills loss. That means once a person loses 80% of their muscle control, there is only 20% left. Usually most disabilities of that nature are diagnosed with only that short window of time open because patients do not notice any changes in their body. Hope this helps and makes sense.
by emi (guest) rate this post as useful

reply to this thread