What Asian-Australian Men Need to Accept When it Comes to Dating

asian dating
This article was originally published on Medium and reposted with permission.

I don’t need to see all the dating statistics to be convinced that Asian men have it worst when it comes to dating. I have more than enough evidence from experience, living in Australia for the past 16 years as an Asian man.

The fact is plain and simple. We are stereotyped, perceived as lower status and less desirable by all women — yes, including Asian women. This phenomenon is so ubiquitous that Columbia University was able to put a dollar figure on the attractiveness gap between Asian and White men. With all other factors normalized (e.g. physical attractiveness), an Asian man would have to earn an additional $247,000 (USD) to stand on equal footing with his White counterpart.

Following on from this logic, the natural solution to Asian men’s dating problem is to become crazy rich as quickly as possible. But they must also beat the onset of their hairline receding, at which point the attractiveness gap widens to $3 million.

Just kidding about that last part.

Jokes aside, every now and then especially in multicultural cities like Melbourne, you’ll start to notice more Asian men dating attractive women outside of their race. And these guys aren’t crazy rich either! Which begets the question — what do they know that most Asian men don’t?

Whether naturally or through trial and error, a small group of Asian men has figured out that despite the negative social stigma attached to being Asian, women will still find them attractive as long as they consistently display traits which are considered attractive, i.e. “Alpha male” traits.

If you Google “Alpha male traits” you will find a list of things men need to become good at in order to be more attractive — from being a leader to being emotionally grounded, to being assertive, and risk-taking.

But for a lot of Asian men, working on these alpha male traits will yield little to no results, because they haven’t yet addressed the elephant in the room.

When it comes to dating, the thing that Asian men need to accept first, is their own Asian identity.

Until you can fully accept and be confident in your own values and identity, all those alpha male traits will come off as inauthentic. And women can sense that from a mile away.

Confidence in your values

Confidence is not about how you behave, because behavior is just a manifestation of what you believe. Confidence is an inner state in which you are aware of your own values and act in complete congruence and in full acceptance of who you are.

Be non-apologetic for being you. If you personally agree with traditional Asian values such as hard-work, being considerate, or being respectful of elders, then don’t be shy about it! Don’t jeopardize your authenticity in order to win someone else’s approval.

If you are able to be grounded in your own values, you will naturally be non-needy, fun and care-free. And by the way, these are all very rare and attractive social traits, not just for women, but literally for everyone.

Confidence in your identity

Asian men struggle to accept and feel confident about their racial identity because they are repeatedly reminded by western media that being Asian means that they’re not sexually desirable.

When everything around you, from TV series to Hollywood films reiterate the same message that you, an Asian man, are perceived by the west as socially awkward geeks (and sometimes Kung Fu masters), you naturally accept those things to be true without even trying to dispute them.

Whether consciously or subconsciously, most Asian men carry a belief to some degree that girls are not attracted to them because they’re Asian.

When you carry negative beliefs like that about a part of you that cannot be changed (e.g. your race), it will leave you feeling helpless, stuck, and extremely frustrated.

So how do you change your belief?

Start building awareness of your internal dialogue, and stop feeding yourself negative, self-defeating bullsh*t like “I’m not good enough for women ‘cause I’m Asian”.

Start reminding yourself about things you appreciate about being Asian — like the fact that you age very well and will look hot until you’re 65. Hells yeah!

Look for evidence that calls a bluff on your negative beliefs. Find real examples of Asian men who are crushing it in life. Here is Kevin Kreider — an Asian-American model and fitness coach. Kevin was adopted by an American family and struggled to reconcile his racial identity as he was growing up in a White community. He’s now an activist for redefining Asian masculinity in the west.

A note on looks

Looks do matter to a degree. And I want to make a quick note here because, in my opinion, you have to approach confidence holistically.

Improving your looks requires minimal effort and makes a big impact on how you feel about yourself. It’s an easy win.

Women are biologically wired to find physically fit men more attractive.

So hit the gym hard, fix up your posture, buy yourself some nice clothes, get a good haircut, groom your beard (jokes, we can’t grow beards), and cut down on boba consumption (it’s hard, I understand).

You’ll find that putting effort into your looks not only will make you more physically attractive, it’ll also contribute to feeling more confident.

What about height? I hear you ask.

I know that many Asian guys are insecure about their heights. I used to be one of them.

Yes, women do find tall men more physically attractive. And if you’re Asian, especially Southeast Asian like me — I’m 170 centimeters (5 feet 7 inches) — then you’re probably shorter than your White friends.

What Asian men don’t realize is that being short can work wonders in their favor. What!? How?

This is something I discovered by accident.

Being short, especially if you’re Asian, amplifies THE SHIT out of your perceived confidence.

Why? Not many people expect short Asian men to be confident. And when you happen to be one, people disproportionately perceive you to be way more confident than you actually are.

I’ve had multiple instances where girls and guys at bars responded and reacted to me like I’m a living oxymoron.

“Holy shit! I did not expect you to be so confident.”
Me in my head: “That’s a little racist, but thank you.”

Final notes

Two things wind up happening when you are unable to accept your own identity — you either become depressed, or turn into a hater, or both. My advice is to never ever compare yourself to others. Don’t hate on your White friends for stealing Asian baby girls. Don’t hate on girls who reject you and say, “Sorry, I’m not into Asians.”

Focus on what you can change. Focus on things you are grateful for. If you consistently work, day-in-day-out, on accepting every part of you, on being ever more authentic, then you’ll find that most women are totally fine with you being Asian, as long as you are too.

P.S. I mentioned Kevin Kreider earlier because he is truly inspiring. He’s given an amazing TED Talk about his journey to accepting his Asian identity as an adoptee who was bullied for his race growing up. He goes deep into how it’s affected him and what he did to overcome it. Check it out.

About the Author: Niam Sun is a proud Asian-Australian. He writes about: Asian Masculinity, Asian Identity, Confidence, Dating and Social Dynamics.

Featured Image via Henri Pham, Instagram / @henri.pham

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