Is love dead?

While it’s not a universally held sentiment, some people will tell you that love hurts. It turns out that in Japan, for a surprising number of young people, love can also just be a pain.

Japanese matchmaking service Partner Agent recently polled a total of 1,960 men and women between the ages and 20 and 29 or 40 and 49. Among the questions asked were “Do you want to have a romantic relationship, or do you think that romance is an inconvenient pain?” Among the 20-29 demographic, 24.5 percent were of the latter opinion.

While they didn’t specify exactly what made romance seem like a bother, at least part of their reasoning seems to be a lack of enthusiasm about actively trying to meet a special someone. Almost half of the young adults, 47.5 percent, said that it’s best to just wait to naturally meet your eventual spouse, compared to 24.8 percent, who favored actively looking for a lifelong partner, and 27.6 percent who were undecided. In keeping with roughly one in two young survey participants taking the passive approach, 53.7 percent of the young adults said they’ve never been to a gokon, a Japanese group date in which an equal number of unattached men and women, with most meeting for the first time, go out to see if they’re compatible with anyone else in the group.

But if love is a pain to some of the respondents, at least it’s not particularly expensive. 40.1 percent of the young adult participants said they spend less than 10,000 yen (US$91) a month on dating expenses. That might be connected to the fact that 40.9 percent said they’d prioritize their personal time over spending time with a romantic partner, as opposed to 32.3 percent who said their lover comes first.

Still, all this doesn’t mean that romance is dead in Japan. 57.8 percent of the young adults said they still hope to fall in love. It’s also worth bearing in mind that singles are generally more likely to fill out dating surveys, and while some extroverts genuinely enjoy playing the field, for a lot of people mingling and trying to meet new people is an intimidating chore, so for those saying love is a pain, part of the reason might be because they’re simply not at the fun part of a relationship yet.

Source: PR Times via Livedoor News via Jin
Top image: Pakutaso
Insert image: Pakutaso

Follow Casey on Twitter, where he’s happy to see that even zombies are smart enough to know that Yokohama’s Minato Mirai neighborhood is a great date spot.