Dating – Rejected in Guangzhou

at local gz pub, stay positive olives
At local GZ pub, with olives. Gotta stay positive

Dating in China, blah blah. More often than not it was Rejected in China. Especially during my Guangzhou Year.

Everyone seemed to be doing fine hooking up, yet I always found myself to be wrought with challenges in this game.

People all assume that it’s so easy to be an expat in China. There are advantages to be sure, I admit my privilege. However, honestly I get rejected by local girls all the time.

What can I say? I really put myself out there. That means taking risks. That sometimes means embarrassing yourself, falling on the hard dirt face-first, and somehow finding the strength to do it all over again next weekend. Did I learn anything?

There was the girl who made out with me while my friend was visiting and texted me all the time, yet she would never make the time to meet one-on-one for a date. There was the second date with the Sandy when she slept over at my place and we massaged each other in the morning and then she told me she’s seeing someone else. There was the girl I approached outside in the street who turned out to run a bar in Panyu, and we as per usual made out in a club and then I went to her bar and I could never get her alone again. There was my cute Italian friend, one ambiguous friendship with that flirting tension in the air and nothing ever came of it. The American (from guess where, Florida) who was really into graphic cybersex with me and then by the time we met in person she was constantly talking about her new boyfriend. The Japanese language teacher friend who rejected my advances multiple times. The girl I met while backpacking in Tokyo, who liked me when we were chatting and showed me around in person but wouldn’t let me stay at her place during my travels. I even met a girl who owned a manga shop in Yuefu and I thought she just might be my soulmate, but she evidently thought there were no sparks at all; this was when I began formulating my theory that too much in common is not good for attraction.

Off the top of my head, two girls especially come to mind, of whose rejections were particularly hurtful–



Josephine. I really liked her. Slim and glamorous. She knew her fashion. A French major, a Europhile. She was meant for greater things than me…

I met her at the big nightclub in Zhujiang New Town. She wore a sexy black dress. I used a great opening line about looking like a drug dealer and pretending people were asking me if I was holding, wondering what she thought of my looks. She laughed, we exchanged numbers.

We had pizza for dinner one day and I bought her a stuffed animal, and she started talking about her boyfriend.

“Isn’t this a date?” I forwardly asked, though trying not to come across as resentful.


I never did get a goodbye kiss from her.

I tried to stay friends with her.

Somehow, her number got lost as I upgraded phones throughout the seasons and I no longer have her contact info. It would be nice to know what she’s up to. Just to be friends on Wechat, see her posts occasionally, not bug her all the time or anything.

Josephine, are you out there?



Probably the most drama I had in my entire Guangzhou era was with Seline.

Now, I met her indirectly through Couchsurfing. But let me assure you that I never ever use the crucial travel-and-networking website as a hookup thing. That is strictly against my code. This was the only time I kinda-sorta broke that code.

It’s just that I went to a Couchsurfing party and she was there. I didn’t chat her up online first or anything. It was one of those big dinners I used to go to, back when CS was a part of my social activity. My Austrian friend, the one I went skinny-dipping with, was there. The dinner party dwindled and the small group of us left staying out late decided to check out a new club.

Seline was gorgeous. Cantonese, very tall. Amazing legs. Recent graduate of Zhongshan U (the campus of which wasn’t even that far from my ‘distant’ Panyu pad). I was on fire with wit that night; I was funny and an epic conversationalist. I danced with her passionately, found a private corner for us, and teased her with kissing games until we were fully making out.

“I’m so happy you like me,” she actually said. I was quite proud of myself!

I really hoped we could be a couple. Somehow it was not meant to be.

We didn’t go home together or anything, but the next day we went to the mall and went to the artsy bar and made out some more. Still, she wouldn’t come home with me. That’s okay, a gentleman should be more patient.

Yet, all the other times we kept meeting in groups. It was getting fairly awkward for me at the Couchsurfing events. We went bowling and ate barbecue in Panyu, and I wanted to find someway to get her alone again but it wouldn’t work out. Social butterfly that she was, she preferred packs. Perhaps I simply don’t get along well with overly-social butterflies.

“Come on,” I said, nearly pleading. “We’re not far at all. Stop by my place.”

“Ho hum,” she wandered off.

Sometimes I don’t understand Chinese girls. I do get that that in the heat of the moment when you’re dancing and drunk, people kiss and there is attraction and then I get that it’s reasonable when the feeling can fade away days later.

But it would be nice to be more clear about what the terms are when you meet again those days later. These girls always seem to want to be friends with me, even when there is very palpable very obvious sexual tension. Do they want me as some sort of backup? Holding on to the chance that something might develop between us? Or are they totally oblivious and just want to be friends with the foreigner to practice English, even after said foreigner slobbered all over her face and she rejected him? It can get confusing. Frustrating. It would be almost cruel if I didn’t conclude it was more out of obliviousness than purposeful cockteasing.

Look, I don’t want to be one of those guys always complaining about being ‘friend-zoned.’ Recent studies have confirmed that this is largely a myth, and it’s quite common for women to enter relationships with men they were first friends with. I’m simply expressing the weirdness of being direct, getting as far as kissing, and then being rejected. And I’m not even complaining about it these days at all, back then it was an issue and today I’m totally content in this regard 🙂

Anyway. In this case with Seline, it really sucked. I liked her a lot, I was very attracted to her and I respected her and I had so hoped we could have something between us. When she finally overtly rejected me, she didn’t even use the excuse the excuse that she had a boyfriend. Only the “let’s just be friends.”

Fine then. The last time I saw her was at another club, hanging with some extremely douche businessmen types. Being that this brand of expat is my natural enemy, I couldn’t help but feel furiously rejected. I got rather pissed off, drunkenly yelled, and continued the drunken yelling on the phone the next day. It wasn’t becoming of me at all. Sorry.

I think today I know better than to get in such situations. I don’t know why my year in Guangzhou was so frustrating. I did have some fun, a lot of fun in fact. It’s not to say I never hooked up, I did an obscene amount of dating that year. It’s just that all the ones who liked me back simply weren’t girlfriend material. And the ones who I liked the most kept outright rejecting me. Life is funny that way sometimes.

I should be more grateful. Am I too negative? Truthfully, I needn’t complain here. There were indeed a lot of girls who liked me, and a reinterpretation may be in order. I mean, I could be more positive couldn’t I…?


Next: My humble successes 

35 thoughts on “Dating – Rejected in Guangzhou

  1. Keep picking up Asian girls. You’ll figure it out eventually. This is not absolute but most of them respond well with indirect approach rather than offering them cock directly. Instead of asking them to go directly to your place, tell them that you want them to see your book collection or something. I’m not saying you should lie. You just have to work on presentation. Don’t worry, they know what’s happening. They just prefer it unsaid, because they think it’s more romantic.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Hi Ray,
    I’m reading your blog with interest and this article captivated me. I don’t believe in that expression “let’s just be friends”, I think i’s just a cover for the lack of courage to get involved (at different levels, of course). When attraction is obviously present…how can two people be “just friends”? The two girls you wrote about…I sensed a lack of honesty in both of them.
    I think is hard to feel rejected, I’m sorry you felt this way. In my opinion, they didn’t rejected you, they just denied themselves a chance to be with an amazing guy. How does this sounds? 🙂
    I didn’t had the chance to thank you for following my blog, so I’m doing it now. I’m honored and I’m looking forward to read more about you and your adventures.
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I think the girls know the “game.” And sometimes they do mean what they say. So it might help not reading between the lines. But of course, my culture differs a lot from Chinese. I feel you… its always the case. We don’t have that kind of luck with people we like being around. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Maybe it’s your BO! Just kidding lol looking forward to your Humble Successes!
    And I agree with the first commenter, Asian women usually don’t say yes to “let’s do it”, it has to be more subtle. “I have a great bottle of wine at my place” or something like that is good too! Though it seems this was all old news 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sometimes we are not game and people feel it, it’s under your skin. I have the sensation that you were going through a transitional year and most girls don’t want to get involved with someone not stable or still uncertain. Anyways, good reading as usual.


    • Now there’s an interesting perspective. Perhaps you’re on to something. I kept telling myself I wanted a girlfriend, and sometimes I actually meant it, but honestly deep down….


  6. Couldnt have said it better!
    I agree on all points wholeheartedly except cui ling. You can’t tell someone to be with someone else! Just because you think ‘no one in the world compares to her’ doesn’t mean everyone else feels the exact same. Every person is an individual who has their own thoughts, opinions, differing levels of attraction and history with people and makes their own choices. It sounds like you need to explore and work out *your* feelings for her 🙂

    Ray there’s plenty of awesome girls out there, just have fun meeting new people because basically that’s all it is. If everything goes swimmingly and something eventuates then its a bonus 😉 And if these stories are from 2011 then I’m keen to see where you’re at now!


    • Can you please stop writing comments! Frankly it is grossing me out. You are sharing way too much, I do not want to hear that pro shit. Even I have my limits.

      Funny how you read this and think you know anything about it. For the Nth time, this is from 2011 and how do you know if I’m single now?? Which is none of your business, I share what I want to share about my past (which is plenty) and my current life private and you have no right to make assumptions.

      Look up the ‘About Me’ section above and get my email address and write to me privately. I give you a day to see this reply and then I’m deleting all your comments.


    • Some people find a suitable partner quickly and easily, the rest of us find a LOT that aren’t compatible. But in the long run, who cares? I don’t believe the meaning of life is to find partners, that’s just a bonus. As long as you’re happy within yourself and are living the life you want, then that’s all that matters.

      If my friend couldn’t pick a shoe, it wouldn’t matter. The fun is spending time with the friend, regardless of if a shoe was chosen or not. If he/she found a pair of shoes then its a bonus on the good day we’ve already had.

      Yeah if its just for sex then prostitutes solve that problem, but I have a feeling ray is smart enough to know he could go down that road if that’s what he’s after 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Interesting read here. From an Asian perspective, it occurred to me that it could be that they are not used to be very forward with their intentions.

    On the other hand, I do know that there are also those who behave differently when it comes to foreigners so I don’t think I can just generalise this perspective.

    So I shall say instead that it’s just that you have yet to meet your match so good luck in your explorations…:)


  8. Look, I’m not seeking advice here. Especially not on a certain subject that is extremely inappropriate of you to bring up. Whatever you say is falling on deaf ears. So please just stop.


  9. Okay, thanks everyone for your thoughts. I’m glad that this is a topic that engages so many.

    But I’m not into looking for pickup advice these days… I’m only sharing my memories, my feelings at the time, telling some personal stories yet all without any specific relevance to today.

    This is old news. I’m fine now. Been fine. Well, mostly. Really!

    Carry on.


  10. Hi Ray,

    Three comments:

    Firstly, I like the blog, although its a little strange when I know the people behind the pseudonyms.
    Secondly, I can’t help but wonder about this phrase, “It’s just that all the ones who liked me back simply weren’t girlfriend material. And the ones who I liked the most kept outright rejecting me.” I wonder if some of those girls that weren’t girlfriend material felt the same way about you…outright rejecting… them. Viscous cycle.
    Thirdly, the comment about the douche business man type being your natural enemy seems a little excessive. I hope you didn’t feel that way about me (although I was never douche) ;D

    Keep on writing.



    • The strangest is when I know that people know who is behind the pseudonyms. Who do you mean? Email me. I know I’m sharing too much but it’s too late now and I might as well continue this blog at least up to a certain point…

      Vicious cycle indeed. In the next installment I will acknowledge my own asshole part in all this.

      No you aren’t the kind who is my natural enemy, not really. While pretty much all male foreigners in China seem to be creeps on some level, you were never that bad. You know Mandarin and interested in the local culture, you’re cool, no not that bad at all. My natural enemy type is a far higher level of oblivious douche picking up the naive and gold diggers. But I shouldn’t focus so much on the negative.


  11. Now, y’see Ray, the way to attract a woman is to smear honey over a piece of meat, and hang it from a tree in the forest. Then you gotta get downwind of that sucker and hole up in a tree. Eventually, a woman will smell the honey and come lumbering over to investigate which is when you shoot her with a tranquilizer gun, tag her, and release her back into the wild.

    Hey man, that’s just how the pickup game works!


  12. Pingback: Dating in Guangzhou – The end… my humble ‘successes’ | Ray H to the C

  13. Pingback: Dating – visitors and friends, others | Ray H to the C

  14. Pingback: DATING IN CHINA – MY GUANGZHOU YEAR | Ray H to the C

  15. Josephine…i find it very disturbing when someone goes out on a date with you and then remember they are in a relationship. I believe they use dating as a way to boost their ego or triangulate you with their partner to present themselves as being high demand. We are not starring in a harem anime…just sayin


  16. Pingback: Dating in China | Ray H to the C

  17. Dating is all about getting to know people. Sometimes the more someone knows me, the more they find out they don’t like me as much as they thought they might, & vice versa. Despite all the hardships, its good to hang onto integrity. I agree with what you said on another post about needing to be honest & decent/

    Liked by 1 person

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