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SOOO Much Confusion in new cross-cultural relationship! Help!


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Hi all,


I've been reading through as a guest and thought maybe I could find some help here.


I started talking to a Japanese man who moved here three months ago for going on about three months now. He met on a dating app and started to hit it off right away. There was a minor language barrier, but we've been going strong and have had very few issues communicating. We started out texting and nonstop and I was talking to multiple people and eventually stopped talking to everyone but him. I asked that he do the same and he had no problem. He told me I was the only one he had been messaging with "passion and consistency and I was the only one by whom he hoped to be loved" (much more open about love in Japan). We started video chatting after that and did that pretty regularly. We met after a month. We had talked about what we wanted/ I told him I wanted something serious and long-term, he said he wanted the same. I told him I didn't have sex early on and I took it seriously. He said the same, but that he wanted to because he felt strongly for me but that he didn't consider it a game either. We told each other that we took each other seriously etc. yes, there were some sexual messages and chat moments but it was pretty obvious that neither of us were all that experienced with it haha.


So when we met everything went awesome. He told me I was better than he expected and was so happy we were finally meeting. We had a low key night, made dinner together at his place, played some games, read a book together and I helped him with his English, and just talked for a while. We did end up making out but nothing happened further than kissing and light touching. No pressure from him at all. He ended up doing what Japanese call "confessing" and told me he wanted to "be by my side from now" meaning be my boyfriend. I said yes that was fine and stayed the night. No sex. We saw each other may 7 more times and things went just as well. We went out on dates, movies, dinner, walks, did little things together, shopping, laundry, brunch. cooking. All the while good consistent communication. He went away for work and sent pictures and messaged when he got the chance. Then visited some friends in NY and again messaged and sent pics throughout his time there.


There were only a few times where I felt weird vibes. Sometimes when I'm sleeping I'll wake up and see him texting/reading news/on his phone. He never acts weird just says, "Oh you woke up," and cuddles me. But the frequency I've woke to that makes me uneasy because he sometimes will "fall asleep" and text me a 2 am or so and say I fell asleep sorry. So almost makes me wonder if he's doing that with other women too. But then I remember that he's away from home and I've seen him using the Japanese texting app. So it's pretty likely that he could just wake a lot and text friends in Japan who have a 12 hour time difference. And the second thing is his FB still saying single. I get it and don't. We've been together a month so it's still new to change. But past circumstances kind of make me nervous about it. But the biggest thing has been since this past weekend.


When we first started talking he told me that "it may be too early to mention, but I will be away to visit Japanese friends in Cali and NY for Christmas and NYE" again no worries. Told me super early so I wasn't even suspicious. Again normal loving affectionate consistent behavior. Went out to dinner a couple of days before went shopping so he could hiking boots. No making out. Went out the whole time and only holding hands and a kiss when he left. So we wanted to see each other before he left and he told me he was looking forward to seeing me, we were happy etc. So I went to see him Friday. Again made dinner, had some wine, read, cuddled...and had sex. To be honest, I kind of knew I wanted to. We've been talking and getting to know each other over two months and apparently together for one. I felt okay about it even though I was breaking my own 4 month rule. He told me he loved me right before we started {no not the first time}. It was good but a little unfamiliar like any first time sex with someone new is. Told me he enjoyed it and I did too. Fell asleep in each other's arms. Cuddled all night. Had sex again the next morning. And this time he asked me to stay another night since he would be away and wouldn't see me. We had a great day together. Lots of laughs and affectionate etc. Made him food for the week played games together. He was on his phone a little more than usual but it was Christmas Eve so to be expected, even though it's not a holiday there like it is here. I ended up getting a headache and he completely babied me. Had me lay down, gave me medicine, offered a massage, told me to relax in his apartment whlie he cleaned the snow off my car and walked to the store for something with caffeine for me...complete sweetheart. Didn't have sex again that night. Didn't ask. Just some light making out and falling asleep cuddling again. But woke up to lots of phone time on his end, but again Christmas eve and time difference. So next day we cuddled he told me when he would be back and that January is busy for work (which he'd told me right when we started talking when he told me about NYE) and wanted to see me the 6th and "many times" after and he would make time. When I left he told me he would miss me and I texted him later asking him if he wanted to go to a museum exhibit because I'd wait if he did. Said he'd love to. Then he left.


And stuff started getting weird. We went from communication throughout the day to maybe 30 texts this week total. No pictures of this trip no text when he has time. Totally different vibe. Even leaving my messages on read but not answered a couple times. I know he had problems with a flight delay and fell into one of the creeks in Yosemite so some his phone didn't work for a couple hours (my messages weren't getting delivered, I could see that ) but after two days I asked what the drop in communication was due to. He apologized and said he was out of service area in Yosemite and his phone had to be powered off because of the water so not much time. But there was a 6 hour span where he could've answered. I said if there was something wrong I'd rather he told me. He apologized again for the miscommunication and that was that. Then the next day he flew and lost his bag with all his credit cards and ID etc. so I got there stress there. He asked me to cheer him up later and we exchanged a couple of joking messages and I felt a little better. But then today he was back to weird behavior. Sent me a brief good morning message with a silly pic from our joke last night, told me he would do some sightseeing and fly to NY. I told him to text me when he landed. No response and no text yet. But he's been on the messaging app. He always tells me right when he lands. This is so unlike him. He's initiated most of the messages but there's not much flirting, has been very brief, hasn't mentioned the sex or missing me or looking forward to seeing me when he gets back. Nothing. But why make plans for when he got back and say that he wanted to go together to the exhibit and ask to stay the second night and not initiate sex? Just doesn't seem like he was just trying to get it then...but now this is making me second guess everything.


Am I freaking out for no reason? His behavior seems so out of character. Did I get played? Should I say something else or wait until he gets back? I don't think it's right that he's basically ignoring me but it's hard to say anything when he's away. He could've at least told me he landed...I guess I need a third party to weigh in on whether I'm being crazy. I just really care for this man and I've been very careful about who I give my time to. I don't really think I could deal with this let down right now...


Thanks for reading this incredibly long post.

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I don’t think you got played. You chose to have sex with him and when you did he said he loved you - assume he was being genuine then. You only knew him for a short time in person. It’s possible he likes the thrill of the chase better than when he gets his “prize” - sounds like he moved very fast in the beginning and you went to a private home with him the first time you met him which maybe sent a signal that you were not that careful with your own safety who knows. If might Ben he’s needing some space form you. Give him twice the space he seems to need and see if he returns in an enthusiastic way. I know it’s challenging to wait and be patient.

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Thanks for the input. I am trying to give him some space for now, but if he tries to cancel our date we have set there will be an issue. And I also plan on going over some things we haven't talked about yet, such as expectations, and I'm going to invite him to have dinner with my friends. I feel like that will help to feel out his reaction and maybe encourage him to do the same if he's up for it, that is. Of course, this all depends on how normal he is acting. He's also previously expressed concerns that he won't know how to treat an American in a relationship and isn't certain how to act and was worried about not meeting my expectations. Is it possible he's thinking I'm being distant or awkward? Or maybe thinks I was unhappy with something so is giving me space? I admit to checking out some of the things he told me to see if he was being honest. Like his flight times that seemed off since he'd told me he'd text when he landed etc. he always checks out. Honestly, deep down I don't think he's a liar. I think something is going on and he's not sharing what it is and that bothers me. Something that is distracting him...but still I find his distance and timing to be really awful and inconsiderate even if he isn't playing games.


I've only been responding to him and not double texting. He's seemed more normal today, but still a little distant. I got some pictures and he sent me reviews of a place he ate and the map on his phone. That is more what I'm used to from him. I think something is going on, but I'm not sure it is what I think it is. There's something on his mind but maybe he's not ready to talk about it? I know Japanese men are reluctant to talk about their problems so maybe that is what is going on?


Also, he's told me he loved me before we had sex, like a week or so beforehand. I don't believe it was a heat of the moment thing, because we were having sex regardless of whether he said it or not lol. And yes, we did hang out at his house first time meeting. But I'd also been back several times after and there was never any pressure from him. So I'm not sure that was necessarily an issue. It's extremely cold where we are right now so if you want privacy and quiet to talk you have limited options.

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