More so than Westerners, many Chinese view dating as a pragmatic affair.
Without hesitation, I categorized past partners along racial lines, and referenced a time when I’d also dated within my own race. My frustrations with casual charges of yellow fever aren’t unique—I’m sure many of the points I’ve raised, here, also apply to other kinds of relationship-shaming.
But I wrote this essay because the term is becoming more popular.
For example, although many men get married without a house and a car, Chinese women will often say that they’re looking for these things because that’s the sort of person who probably has a stable career and will be able to provide for her and their future children in the long-term. As one contestant on China’s most popular dating show put it, "I’d rather cry in a BMW than laugh on a bicycle." Every parent is different, of course, but in general Chinese parents expect to be more involved in their children’s relationships.
It’s not uncommon for parents and grandparents to set their children up on blind dates with suitable matches they’ve found.
That’s because, one, they wouldn’t have doubted my feelings for these women had they been white, and two, they’re implying that these women date men who only value them for their skin color.