However, when asked about the satisfaction level of their sex life, the majority of Japanese seem to be content with the status quo. A factor frequently overlooked when discussing the presumed, non-existent sex life in Japan is the participation in less conservative acts of sexuality, such as casual sex, masturbation, non-heterosexual relationships, extramarital activities, or paid services.
Dating habits in JapanHow do busy singles meet in Japan? The ones looking to find a partner have several options at hand, from traditional to digital.
Japanese opting for matchmaking services, so-called omiai, are usually doing so with the intention of finding a spouse. Nowadays, an agency will most likely function as the go-between to select and introduce marriage candidates. This was a very common practice in the past, however, modern singles often choose more informal meeting opportunities over a traditional omiai.
A popular and pragmatic way to meet potential partners in Japan is through professionally organized dating events, known as konkatsu. Oftentimes, konkatsu agencies advertise their events by targeting a very specific customer base, who fulfill or are looking for a specific set of requirements, such as income, occupation, or age. During the konkatsu party, participants are invited to interact with each other over a selection of food and drinks, reassured that every potential marriage candidate fits the anticipated criteria.
Gokon meetups, on the other hand, are usually more casual and can be described as group blind dates. In this setting, the same number of female and male participants meet for drinks and informal mingling. Usually arranged by a group of friends or colleagues, this get-together aims at connecting singles with similar backgrounds through mutual acquaintances.
While not as widespread as in Western countries, online dating is the latest approach to finding love in Japan. Matchmaking apps and services, which are domestically developed and therefore tailored to the needs of the Japanese marriage hunting market, enjoy a larger reach than internationally successful providers.
Loopholes of the Japanese adult entertainment industryThe Japanese pornography market is among the most active in the world, releasing a broad spectrum of adult videos (AVs), printed publications, and corresponding merchandise. The domestic porn industry is subject to strict censorship, typically through bowdlerizing the explicit display of pubic hair or genitalia. However, manga and anime avoid such restrictions via artistic license, for example by a simplified depiction of genitalia or by portraying sexual intercourse with non-human characters.
Paid coitus with an unspecified (unacquainted) person falls under the Japanese Prostitution Prevention Act and is, therefore, considered illegal. Sexual services in exchange for monetary compensation excluding coitus, such as oral or anal sex, as well as paid intercourse between specified (acquainted) persons are not covered by bespoken law. This legal limbo of paid sexual services allows several adult entertainment businesses to flourish in Japan. A prime example of successfully utilizing suchlike gray areas are so-called soaplands. Clients pay to enter facilities, which offer bathing and massage services. By participating in said services, clients and ‘soap girls’ have the chance to get acquainted. Based on the Japanese law, this makes any additional, paid-for sexual interaction, theoretically, legal. While soaplands primarily target male customers, some businesses started to cater to female patrons.