Cont. from: A response to The Expat's slam on Korean Sentry, Part I.
The other place where you see his stereotypes creep on in, despite his protestations that he has Korean male friends who are not like this!!! is in his characterization of the position and values of Korean men. Apparently, they are momma's boys who have everything handed to them, who Korean women only put up with because they have to. The Westernization, and therefore impending dateability of a Korean man depends on his ability to change this fact about himself. That's what his super special male Korean friends have done. Which is why they succeed with Western women.
The only thing I have to say about that, is that I don't know where this person lives or what Korean men he has been associating with to leave him with the impression that any part of that is true. Again, he claims that the people he actually knows aren't like that. So why it's become a banner for The Way That Things Just Are for him is a little puzzling to me.
But it's kind of just his word against mine, I guess, for those who haven't had the experience to know firsthand. But let me just talk about what I've seen, in general, to be my idea and impression of The Way That Things Just Are:
Korean men are, generally speaking, very close to their mothers. And, usually, their entire family is important to them. They value family, and family obligation. Their parents do sacrifice a lot for them when they are growing up. Which is why, at some point in their lives, it becomes time for them to step up to the plate and pay it back. Korean men are under a lot of pressure to secure high paying, stable jobs in an extremely competitive society, so that they can not only provide for their future families, but also because, at some point, they will be providing for their parents in their old age as well. Korean men go through a grueling high school experience that often involves returning home past midnight most nights, only to stay up for a few more hours studying even longer. They wear uniforms every day and have to keep their hair cut to strict standards. After high school, they enter the army, where they face a brutal masculine hierarchy the likes of which most Western men will never encounter in their lifetime. They shave their heads and wear nothing but army fatigues for the better part of two years. They live on a small allowance that provides for little more than cigarettes, snacks and train fare for their trips home.
The brief years surrounding their army service, which are spent in university, are a very valued time in their lives, when they can wear their hair and clothes however they want, enjoy some amount of free time and lounging around, and date girls for fun without having to think about the high standards of marriageablity requirements on either end. They make the most of it -- you better believe they do. Hence the flowerboy phenomenon -- the flashy outfits and wild hair. The, at times, childish behavior.
The second they finish university, the fun and games are over. It's back to a strict regimen of suits and ties, short and neat haircuts, and grueling working hours. With the added pressure of having women now sizing them up for their potential to provide for a family in a society where living, housing and education costs are certainly nothing to sniff at.
I would actually like to see the reaction of a panel of dead average Korean men to the characterization of them having women practically handed to them with no effort, and Korean women not having a choice in their marriage partners. I imagine it would be something akin to hysterical laughter.
But that's beside the point. My point is, I don't see anything about those values and experiences that put me off an un-Westernized, Korean-Korean man as a potential dating and marriage partner. What I see when I look at the average, stereotypical Korean man is not a lazy, spoiled momma's boy -- it's a man who values family and is accustomed to responsibility and living up to expectations. It's a man who is used to putting others before himself, when the situation calls for it, and not doing everything that he wants to all of the time. A man who understand that sometimes what you want to be doing is not what you should be doing.
But that's just me. I've only dated a few dozen of them, been friends with a couple dozen more, worked with probably close to a hundred, and been in a relationship with one for nine months. My closest friends in this country are Western women who date and are married to Korean men, and Korean women who date and are married to Korean men. What do I know, compared the The Expat, about what Western women, or any women, look for in Korean men? Probably nothing.