Valentine’s Day in Japan

How will you spend Valentine’s Day? I would like to write about  Japanese Valentine’s Day today. Do you know we have two Valentine’s Days? One is called ” Valentine’s Day” , and it is the 14th of February, and the other is called ” White Day” , and it is the 14th of March.

Our Valentine’s Day is for girls. Many girls, especially young girls are looking forward to the day because it is a good chance for them to tell someone in mind that they love the person. They usually prepare homemade chocolates, cookies, cakes, or handmade knits. Since my daughter love baking, she always bakes something for her male friends. ( I am not sure if she might have a boyfriend. However, she bakes some chocolate cakes every year for her father, grandfathers and someone else.)
When I was young, I loved knitting some sweaters for my boyfriend. I am wondering if my ex-boyfriends still have kept them, lol.

On the other hand, girls also prepare some chocolates for their colleagues and bosses. It is called “Giri-Choco” in Japanese. In this case the chocolates mean they are obligation chocolate without true love. It is just a diplomatic way in a social situation.

After girls give some chocolates or another things to their boyfriends, male friends, colleagues and bosses, girls expect to receive luxury stuff from them. That is our second Valentine’s Day, ”  White Day”. The day is for males. Of course, after males receive some gifts from their girlfriends, female friends and colleagues, they have to return some gifts that are their female friends’ favorite.
My daughter  receives some sweets with cards from her male friends every year.

If the Days are weekends, most of the couples spend together to see a movie, enjoy dinner and go to some romantic places.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Feb 14, 2011 @ 16:22:53

    oh, thanks for the info 🙂 i actually received some “virtual chocolate” and wondered when white day was. thanks to you, i now know 😀

    in germany, males give something to their favourite on valentine’s, we don’t receive anything. that would look very odd here, as we see women as precious beings that have to be treated well above anything else. we wouldn’t ever expect anything in return. that would cause “the one” trouble, and that’s something we’d like to avoid at any cost.

    as a male, you can give roses to women you like, but don’t intend to start a relationship with. usually very good and close friends, or girls you would date, if you wouldn’t have one you’re doing that with already 😉 but this connotation is subtle and … well, in fact a bit nihonjinrashii 😀 something you’d not speak out loud.


    • yumi
      Feb 15, 2011 @ 09:43:08

      Hi, thanks for the comment. The German Valentine’s Day seems to be better for females. I prefer Japanese Valentine’s Day to Western Valentine’s Day because while thinking of my boyfriend I can make something. It is extremely fun. I really loved knitting for my boyfriend when I was young. Today I chatted with my Texan friend, and I realized that in America Valentine’s Day is a holiday. Is is a holiday in Germany as well?

      I have to add one more thing. In Japan Valentine’s Day is only for young people. After couple become parents, most of them quit celebrating the day.
      Although I have been married my husband for 22 years, for a long time I haven’t celebrated the day. However, I still love him, and he knows it very well. So, it doesn’t matter for us.

      Did you celebrate the day with your wife?


  2. Feb 16, 2011 @ 15:05:53

    We don’t usually celebrate it here anymore when we marry. Nope, no Valentine’s holidays in Germany – we have to work, no matter what 🙂


    • yumi
      Feb 16, 2011 @ 16:43:13

      Thanks for the comment again, Andi. Same here. Valentine’s Day is not a holiday in Japan. In addition it is not a so bog event for everybody. I think it is important event for just young people here.


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