Dating apps have done well in Japan, where even the government is looking into some AI magic to boost its birth rate. Nowadays, singles, young and old (and free spirits), have all dipped their fingers into the world of online dating.
But not all dates are worth the time or energy. Some may even be creepy enough that you’ll want to delete your app asap.
Akari (@akarirenai77) is a university student who tweeted about her experience with finding a boyfriend after matching with 200 men through dating apps. In a recent tweet, she shared the four worst guys she unfortunately encountered on her journey to find love.
The worst four
— あかり@レンアイ研究専攻 (@akarirenai77) April 1, 2021
“Based on my personal experience, here’s a summary of the worst men I’ve met through dating apps.
The moral harasser who made rude remarks for over an hour on our first phone call.
An 18-year-old high schooler.
The guy who ate my food without asking on our first date.
The guy who ambushed me at the nearest station to my place pretending it was a coincidence.”
Let’s talk about stalking
The first three profiles are definitely not soulmate material, but the last guy is a potential stalker. Stalking is not specific to Japan, but it became recognized as a serious issue after the murder of Shiori Ino.
Cases such as this led to Japan’s Anti Stalking Act, and since then, authorities have been collecting data. The number of cases has steadily increased since 2002, but it can be a sign that victims feel more and more comfortable to speak up. In 2018, the Japanese police reported 21,556 stalking cases and 87.9% of the victims are women. The Japanese law has roughly defined eight categories of stalking behaviors under the legal expression つきまとい等 (following, pursuing, etc.).
Go directly to a central police station and with a friend if possible.
Stalking (ストーカー行為) is characterized by the repetition of these behaviors towards one person. Ambushing you near your home, following you to work, emailing or calling you repeatedly, sending you nasty packages or any other one-sided action displaying the pursuit of an intimate relationship is a criminal offense punishable by imprisonment and fines.
If you believe you are stalked, open up to people you trust. Take note of every event in a chronological journal and protect yourself with these practical tips for dealing with a stalker. If you are comfortable with the idea, contact the Japanese authorities. You can go to your local police box (こうばん), but police have been known not to take stalking seriously. If you feel this is the case, go directly to a central police station and with a friend if possible.
Essential vocabulary to know
Here are the eight categories of stalking behavior and associated vocabulary.
- Following a person
|立ちふさがる||tachifusagaru||Block the way|
|見張る||miharu||Guard, watch a place|
|押し掛ける||oshikakeru||Intrude (a workplace, at school…)|
- Letting a person know they’re being watched
|監視される||kanshi sareru||Being monitored|
|告げる||tsugeru||Tell (by phone, letter, email…)|
- Request to meet and date
- Violent speech and behavior
|怒鳴られる||donarareru||Being yelled at|
|乱暴な行動||ranbouna koudou||Violent behavior|
|粗暴な内容のメール||sobouna naiyou no meeru||Email with rough content|
- Repeat use of communication tools
|無限電話||mugendenwa||Silent phone call|
|連続した電話||renzoku shita denwa||Consecutive phone call|
|何度も電話をかけてくる||nandomo denwa o kaketekuru||Make phone calls many times|
|執拗に嫌がらせ||shitsuyouni iyagarase||Relentless harassment|
- Sending offensive package
|動物の死体||doubutsu no shitai||Dead animal|
|嫌悪の情を催させる||keno no jyou o moyoossaseru||Making one feels disgusted|
|名誉を傷つける||meiyo o kizutsukeru||Hurt one’s reputation|
- Sexual misconduct
|わいせつな写真を送る||waisetsuna shashin o okuru||Send obscene picture|
|卑わいな言葉を告げる||hiwaina kotoba o tsugeru||Tell foul words (by phone, letter, message…)|
|初電話||hatsudenwa||First phone call|
|初デート||hatsu deeto||First date|
|最寄り駅||moyori eki||Nearest station|