Christmas and Relationships in Japan – Maybe We Need Reminders of Happy Relationships

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Since when did Christmas become a day for couples, in Japan?

In Western countries which Christmas originally came from, most people spend Christmas time with their families. In those countries, instead, Valentine’s day and new year’s eve seem to be perfect occasions for couples to spend time together.

Maybe because there was already a custom for Japanese to spend time with families around the end of a year and the beginning of the new one, Christmas might fell into an event for couples. (I don’t really know the truth so this is just my assumption, though.)

Anyway, since people here think they should spend time with their boyfriend/girlfriend, around this time of year, people can’t stop talking about relationships. Whether they have someone to spend time with, if they don’t, how lonely and lame it would be… or things like that.

Not only that, some people still say (or think) that women are like Christmas cakes, meaning Christmas cakes are so popular until Christmas eve and everyone wants them, but after that, shops sharply discount the cakes and try to sell all the stocks as quick as they can, since nobody wants the cakes any more. (How terrible is this expression? Unbelievable!)

I suppose that this culture, which people believes that everyone is supposed to be in a relationship at a certain time, or get married before certain age, still exists all around the world, not only in Japan, more or less. And I always find it so pointless, disrespectful, and just disgusting, since it could push young people into a wrong relationships, and make it hard for them to get out of it.

I am not only talking about girls here. Boys may also be under silent pressure that they can’t officially be recognized as a responsible person before marriage, or without long-term relationship, even though people can’t be measured or understood by only these aspects.

Under those invisible pressure, people could jump into unhappy, unhealthy relationship, and I am worried about that since I don’t want any of my friend to suffer from this pointless trend.

Normally, being in a relationship is supposed to be something makes you happy. Something brings you joy. Something gives you opportunities to be better self. If not, you don’t necessarily need it no matter what other people tell you.

Our lives can change drastically, because of unexpected reasons.

And of course, relationships can be one of those reasons.

If your relationship makes you truly happy, you might start to think that you can do something you used be to too scared to try. You might find you a little more confident, or positive than you used to be.  Maybe you used to be too busy caring only about you, but you might start to care about others, too.

If any of you are suffering from those pressure, and you keep trying too hard to fit in what society defines as success, maybe you should think about if those people – maybe you don’t even know who they are – who tells you what you should/shouldn’t can be responsible for your happiness. Are they going to be there for you if you got hurt by doing what they told you to do? I don’t think so. You are the only person who can be responsible for your own happiness.

And here are some questions I want you to ask yourself, if you are feeling the pressure.

Does the person who you are with right now…

  • gets your back?
  • respect, trust, and encourage you when you are trying to do something important for you?
  • appreciate your beauty, and even make you realize how beautiful you are even you didn’t know?
  • support you when you failed or things are not working out?
  • laugh away and patiently accept your week points and flaws?
  • trust in your potential and cheer you up when you lose confidence and can’t find hope?

And, importantly – ares you also doing these things to that person?

These above may sound too naive, or too idealistic, and I also used to think that way. I still wouldn’t say it is easy to do all these things, but now I feel like it is possible, and I am really grateful that I can feel this way, and for the person who makes me to feel this way.

These values are just mine, they are never universal or common to everyone. What makes a person happy differs from person to person. However, if there is anybody lying to themselves and stuck in unhappy relationships, and can’t get out of them because they are too afraid of what other people might think – just like I did in the past – maybe you should reconsider what really makes you happy.

Wishing everyone is having a happy and relaxing holiday season.


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