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Dating in Korea

Dating in Korea

Perhaps one of the topics that pops up pretty often is that regarding dating in Korea and no this isn’t a response to “How can I get an Asian girlfriend?” keyword searches. Rather, I  speak on behalf of my own experiences and from being in a relationship with my awesome girlfriend for eight months.

Let me begin with an excerpt from an email I received:

How has your experience been in dating Korean girls? I don’t want you to think I am just looking to get some. I actually really really like sweet, church-going, Korean girls with good morals to have a real relationship with. And part of me also thinks that if I study Japanese, it would be just to get some, because the Japanese don’t have as bigstrong a Christian community and they seem to be more casual when it comes to sex. there is a question buried in there somewhere I swear, or maybe you can take what you’ve read and give me some advice. I’d really appreciate it.

I don’t think I have much to say about the choice of words, but I will dab into this topic.

First off –  lets clear up the whole “sweet, church-going Korean girls with good morals” part.  There’s a lot of stereotypes and misconceptions regarding Asian girls and if you are an expat, you may be  annoyed familiar with people asking related questions. Still, it’s funny because I’ve noticed more women chasing Korean guys, but foreign men are the ones with fetishes.

What is like dating a Korean? Well, it isn’t the fantasy portrayed in dramas for women and whatever’s on men’s mind.  It is none of the above.  It’s really…normal with the occasional cultural mix up, and some tension from society for being different.  The experiences really have nothing to do with them being Korean but rather…them having a personality.

Yes there are those blogs that talk about how easy it is to pickup an Asian girl,   look at the context. Is that taking place in a bar or a club?  Then congratulations, you are bound to find a “girlfriend” or “boyfriend” for a few days or hours.  But are those relationships, or just flings? Of course, that is not always the case, I know some good couples that met on a night out to dance. Because yes, some people go just to dance. But statistically speaking, the likelihood of people going to clubs are bars go for “fun” is higher. This is the case worldwide though…not only in Korea.

As for experience dating outside a club or bar. It is an absolute mind wreck. It is not easy at all, in fact it will leave you frustrated.

Before my girlfriend was my girlfriend, there were others. I played the game, and the game sucked. If you are not familiar with miltang, then you will be. Miltang is basically push-pull and it involves Koreans going MIA here and there. It’s really awful. It is not exclusive to Korean girls – guys do it too from what I hear – even the gay ones.  When my girlfriend and I became interested in each other…the miltang began.  One day I told my girl straight out, “Quit the miltang or I’ll break up with you.” Smooth sailing ever since. So pro-tip, grow some balls and take control.

Things I have noticed differently though involve cutting off  friends of the opposite sex. My girlfriend says she understands I have many friends and trusts me. But the general feeling is that when two people are together. then hanging out with a friend of the opposite sex isn’t such a good idea.

There are some cultural barriers – it may be more difficult for your Korean lover since dating an expat is often looked down upon. There can be stares of malady or stares of pure curiosity. Communication issues that can take place, but that is a language barrier that must be worked out.

Something that sticks out though is the speed and progression of the relationship. It seems to me that things either go painstakingly slow, or pick up in pace quickly.  I admit that part of me was spooked when my gfs parents gf mentioned spending time with me at  trip, the first time marriage was brought up, and recently – wearing couple rings. Its nothing compared to the people face in this society, especially when if you aren’t married by 30, you are considered too old.

Besides what I have mentioned, having a Korean girlfriend is really nothing special. It’s as common as being with anyone else – so guys and gals…don’t get fantasies so hyped up.  We hang out, watch movies together, eat, snuggle…all that jazz. Her parents are coming around to accept me finally. We talk about the same trivial matters as any other couple do.

It is not easy, if easy is what you want – the quality will be equal to the effort.  Remember, these are people who more than likely have a higher education, standards, and goals. Who are going against the social norm – often stigmatized for choosing to date you as opposed to other Koreans. It should not be “What is it like dating a Korean?”, but rather,”What is it like for a Korean to date you?”


  1. very intersent article, i like korean girl maybe i go in visit in korea

  2. Very helpful!
    Helps me to understand my korean boyfriend more! :’)
    Lately I’ve been feeling worried about my relationship with him. He’s my first as well… >< Though, I'd like to know more about this 'miltang' because my friend told me that might be what he's doing. X(

    • well, theres a whole video about it on my youtube channel : ) it is just playing hard-to-get but really hardcore hard-to-get

  3. Good post. I really never knew there was a word “miltang” for the game playing, but I never experienced it with my fiancee. I never put up with the game playing BS in the states. We were pretty straightforward with each other.

    But everyone’s experience is different. Couple rings, couple tees, etc were never brought up by her, and in fact she doesn’t really like those things. Her mom has accepted me and working on the dad now.

    I know this post is almost a year old, but hope things are still going well!

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