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For Jay, "practising a lot self-love, practising a lot of empathy for others, and being around the right people" has allowed him to appreciate moments of intimacy for what they are, and feel real confidence.Dating coach Iona says finding role models and references to bolster your confidence is key to overcoming concerns or anxieties you might have around dating.His website was his way of showing this wasn't true.After a fittingly awkward goodbye, I never saw that man (or, concerningly, his website) again, but the unusual encounter stayed with me.But I also know that those thoughts and feelings come from the comfort of our relationship.So, I decided to start a long overdue conversation with other Asian men, to find out if I was alone in my anxieties."There's always this subtle pressure to fit in and assimilate, and when I was growing up, I thought the best way to assimilate was to date a white person," he says. They love beaches, they’re all blond, and all have sexy accents.While most of these are true, Aussie ladies are in fact, way more than those, and could be one of the best companies you can ever have.
A little taken aback, we told him we weren't together but had friends that might fit the bill."Oh, sorry," I remember him saying.
It's fitting that some of the people I spoke to have embraced their backgrounds as they negotiate the challenges that come with dating as Asian Australian men.
"I've tried not to make my race a burden and instead use it to make myself more interesting," Chris says.
I identified with Western values over my birth country of Singapore in almost every aspect of my life but food (rice At the time, I rarely felt that assumptions were made about me based on my ethnicity, but things changed when I moved to Melbourne for university.
In a new city, stripped of the context of my hometown, I felt judged for the first time, like I was subtly but surely boxed into an "Asian" category.
Chris agrees, saying the media plays an "important role in informing who we are attracted to".