Barely half of Japanese men in survey will give thank-you gift to women for Valentine’s chocolate

Richer men in study found to spend less per-gift than their poorer counterparts.

In Japan, women give chocolate to men on Valentine’s Day, and not just to husbands or boyfriends. Platonic male acquaintances, like coworkers and classmates, also get what’s called “obligation chocolate,” as a general-purpose thank-you for kindness and assistance during the past year.

That might sound terrible one-sided, but a month later, on March 14, Japan celebrates what’s called White Day, when guys who received chocolate from a woman on Valentine’s Day are supposed to reciprocate by giving a gift in return. However, simple math tells us that this means that only in the absolute best-case scenario are women getting as much as they give, since it’s the ladies who make the first move, and some guys won’t be chivalrous enough to take the trouble of preparing a White Day gift to say thanks.

▼ “Hmmm…did you give me chocolate a month ago? I can’t seem to remember…”

Japnese job-hunting website iX, which specializes in high-level, well-paying employment opportunities, recently conducted a survey, receiving 645 responses from men about their White Day plans. Sadly, while all of the men had received Valentine’s Day chocolate, barely half of them intend to give White Day presents in return.

What’s especially odd is that while a mere 54.1 percent of the men said they’ll be giving thank-you gifts to women who gave them platonic obligation chocolate, even fewer guys, 51.3 percent, plan to give one to women who gave them what’s called “honmei” chocolate, or chocolate from a woman with genuine romantic feelings for the recipient.

▼ The lower figure could be a form of soft rejection by guys who were given chocolate as a unilateral declaration of love from women they’re not already in a relationship with, but in that case, not taking the chocolate in the first place seems like the nicer move.

Another surprise came when iX broke down some of the responses in relation to how much the men earn (it is a job-hunting website, after all). Broadly breaking the respondents up into two groups, men who make



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