By sakat38 - 14/03/2016 04:39 - Japan

Today, it's White Day, a tradition in Japan where men buy gifts for women. A coworker walks in with gifts, hands them out to the local women, explains the holiday to a new guy, and walks out. I'm the only person in our office who didn't get a Valentine's Day or White Day gift. FML
I agree, your life sucks 18 938
You deserved it 1 443

sakat38 tells us more.

OP here. Idk how to get the op tag. I'm an American in Japan. I wasn't expecting a gift and really didn't care about today being White day until the coworker, an American who overseas everyone, came into our office and handed out gifts in front of everyone. Then because one of the Americans in our office didn't know what white day was, he explained that out of all the Americans sitting there, I would have been the only one to get a gift on White Day because I'm the only female, then walked out of the office. I think it's just the hormones that are causing this to be bigger then it should be. I've never cared about Valentine's Day before. I did buy my own chocolate when I got off work.

Add a comment

You must be logged in to be able to post comments!

Top comments

Wow, not even an obligation gift? Are you the only foreign worker or were you just mysteriously left out? That's just cold.

It would especially messed up if the dude got a White Day gift and you didn't. White Day is a thing in Korea, too, and it is equally as dumb. OP, don't beat yourself up over it.


Wow, not even an obligation gift? Are you the only foreign worker or were you just mysteriously left out? That's just cold.

White day is the thank you gift a month after valentine's, if I remember correctly. I may be partially wrong

You're right, but I was under the impression even if a girl didn't give you chocolates, it's polite to get women in your life an obligation chocolate. If OP didn't give him an obligation chocolate, that'd explain why she didn't get anything, but it still seems a little rude.

That and also telling the lady you like her too. Or if the lady didn't give you chocolates, you give her some on White Day to tell her, you fancy her. Long story short, White Day is Valentine's Day for men. Also Black Day is for us single people. I like Black Day.

It would especially messed up if the dude got a White Day gift and you didn't. White Day is a thing in Korea, too, and it is equally as dumb. OP, don't beat yourself up over it.

Well there's always next year!

rldostie 19

I'm sorry--that really sucks. I loved the traditions surrounding Valentine's Day in Japan. It seems rude of the person to give chocolate to everyone but you. I can only guess that they forgot as opposed to being blatantly rude. That's my hope, at least. Did you give out chocolate for Valentines Day? Because if so, one would think he would reciprocate at least to be polite.

White day is where women buy gifts for men it's a month after Valentine's Day so men have a day as well. It is also referred to ******** and steak day

That's what I was thinking, too. I'm pretty sure it's a day for the women to give the men candy or little trinkets, as a thank you for Valentines day. OPs signature says Japan which is really confusing me. Is OP a foreigner in Japan, as well as her coworkers?

rldostie 19

White Day is when men give women gifts/chocolate, not the other way around--at least in Japan. In Japan, women five men chocolate on Valentine's Day. It's also a big deal if you make the chocolate yourself and package it yourself.

@7 You got it a bit messed up. On valentine's day the woman are supposed to give the men in their life chocolate's. All the men. Depending on their importance in their life they are getting a small chocolate gift to home-made chocolate's or expensive packages. On white day, the men are supposed to buy their girlfriend one big gift. Some men give small gifts to all the woman in their life, but besides their mother it's not really expected.

hipposteve 21

I'm sorry, but don't expect gifts from other people.. if you enjoy flowers, buy them for yourself.

ulissey_fml 22

Why don't you politely ask a coworker about the tradition? This way, they will maybe realize that you have been left out and apologize or make up for it. Or they will add an explanation about this tradition that will make you understand why you did not get anything. If nothing works, you might want to read Nothomb's Fear and Trembling ( 1999) , about a foreign desk worker in a Japanese firm who is bullied and ostracized by her superior just for not being Japanese herself. I hope this is not the case; In any case, try and clear up the situation rather than worry about it.

On white day, the men will generally give thank you chocolates to the girls who gave them Valentine's chocolates. Perhaps OP did not give him any obligation chocolates on Valentine's day (the way she worded the FML indicates she was expecting to receive Valentine's day chocolates too, so she probably didn't realize that in Japanese tradition it's the women who give gifts on V-day). Obviously it still seems slightly rude to exclude one person so pointedly, but at least it would explain it as well as indicate his actions weren't meant to be malicious and hurtful.

If OP is a foreigner and didn't give out chocolates on Valentine's Day, the coworker might be assuming that she is avoiding Japanese traditions and is just acting accordingly. So it might be a simple misunderstanding.

Is there a "black day" for women to give gifts to men? Or is it just one of those double standards?

It absolutely is one of those double standards. While women *can* give men gifts if they're feeling generous, men are all but required to give them to women (at least if you have a girlfriend/boyfriend or something similar). The odd thing is that the Japanese place even more emphasis on piety and politeness than Koreans, so it actually feels odd that OP got left out, especially if she is a foreigner.

In Japan, on Valentine's day, you give chocolates to the men in your life. There's either obligation gifts, for men you're classmates with or work with, familial gifts, for your brothers and what have you, or "Honmei Choco" which is done to show affection or love. White day, which falls a month after, is a day men give women chocolate in a similar manner, usually to say 'thanks' for the chocolate they received the month prior or to reciprocate/reject a woman who gave him honmei chocolate. It goes both ways.

15: Is it really optional for girls? I always got the feeling it was sort of frowned upon to not do it, but I'm a foreigner so I might be misreading the atmosphere.

I'm speaking from the perspective of a person living in Korea who frequents Japan. And it just so happens that these sorts of "love holidays" tend to favor women in terms of the gift-giving process. I never said it's *never* mutual; in fact, I have had girlfriends give/make gifts for me (specifically for Valentine's). To put it simply, it's effectively an unwritten rule for guys to get their girls gifts (especially on White Day), but the women involved may do something if they feel obligated. And for the record, Korea is one of those countries that is actually very hierarchical and sexist (toward women, of course). In Japan, it is less so, and things tend to be a bit more on an even playing field ... which is why I found it more surprising that OP got excluded, especially since she is female.

Only women who gave out chocolate on Valentine's Day are supposed to get chocolate in return on White Day. Chances are your coworkers gave that person chocolate and he was just returning the gesture.