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These individuals, simply put, have the power to pick up a phone, call a higher up in the police station, and have the whole investigation shut down.
It seems highly unlikely that the cycle will ever break, given the deep rooted history of prostitution in South Korea.
One couple's adventures in wanderlust…
Why Do Men in Korea Think I’m a Prostitute?
These streets were made for walking…
I am waiting for the light to change while walking to my job as an elementary school English teacher when a young Korean man rolls down his window and yells this seemingly innocuous question. Immediately I am furious.
I’ve been told before that sometimes men in Korea will ask white women if they are Russian, which is an informal way of asking if they are a prostitute because there are so many Eastern European women in the sex industry here. But I’m in a smallish town, I’m dressed professionally, and I’m carrying my lunch. I really don’t think my appearance screams “prostitute!” But maybe I’m wrong…I mean, even prostitutes need to eat lunch. I glare at the man, and walk away, brushing off the incident as a one-time insult by an ignorant man.
A few months later, I am waiting at a bus station while Matt is in the bathroom. As I sit there playing with my phone, a middle Eastern man approaches me and asks me “Are you Russian?”
This time I just look at him and say “No.” I try to ignore him and go back to my phone, but he asks 2 or 3 more times. I repeat “no,” saying it in both English and Korean. I think he’s finally gotten the point, because then he walks away.
However, less than a minute later he returns with a friend and they eagerly asked me again “Are you Russian?” I say no again, and they switch tactics. “Are you Ukrainian?”
Getting frustrated I finally say “No! I’m American.”
“Oh, American.” They look disappointed. And then they walk away, which further proves my theory that they were not just interested in discussing my nationality. I was currently wearing a sweatshirt and sneakers, hadn’t showered that day (which I know is unbelievably sexy), plus I always wear my wedding ring, and yet somehow I was giving off the prostitute vibe. I’m not sure whether to be flattered or offended…
Do I look like a prostitute?
Have you ever been mistaken as a lady of the night or propositioned while traveling? I got the idea to write about this because of this post by a fellow traveler, so I know I’m not the only one. Right? Right? Guys, is this thing on?
Can’t say that’s ever happened to me but I can imagine how embarrassing and frustrating it must’ve been. Has anyone approached you while you were with Matt? I can’t imagine how women travel alone..I’d be so frightened. -Jo.
Both times I was alone…but honestly, I didn’t feel unsafe either time, just annoyed. Both times were fully out in public, where there were lot’s of bystanders. I just laughed it off as a crazy quirk of Korea…but Matt was pissed, especially the second time!
Yikes! You didn’t tell us this story.
It’s actually super common here…almost every white woman has a similar story. But it’s less scary than it sounds, it was just irritating mostly ?? Just people being ignorant!
Hi Andrea! This post cracked me up because a very similar thing happened to me once in Long Beach, CA. I was walking down the street on my way to teach English to Cambodian refugees (dressed very conservatively!) and a grandpa in a pickup truck pulled alongside and asked me if I wanted to go for a ride. At first I thought he was just being nice, but then he said “I have fifty dollars!” Oh my gosh it makes me laugh now but at the time I thought “You think you can get *this* for fifty bucks, old man?” (Also, this happened 900 years ago, when $50 was worth more than it is now. Ahem.)
Glad to know it’s not just men in Korea…I guess glad isn’t really the right word though, as much as I laugh and make jokes, it really does irritate me that men make those assumptions! Also, you should have told him to tack on another zero and you’d think about it and see what kind of reaction he had then! ??
Hasn’t happened yet for me, though I’ve been sort of braced for it. Some of my friends have had this unfortunate experience. I hear they pick on blondes most.
Yah, my co-teachers said the fact that I’m tall probably doesn’t help since a lot of Korean people think of Russian girls as tall and fair haired.
Nice hoodie. I hear that it’s the height of comfort.
Luckily it hasn’t never happened to me as I would be very frustrated. I can not understand why we can not walking peacefully without being annoyed by men.
Yah that was probably the most annoying part…I should be able to take a walk or sit at a bus stop without being bothered by a creepy man.
Luckily I’ve never experienced something like that and can imagine how frustrated you shouls have been. I really donit know why girls have to bear such annoying things!
#lingerie #bodysuit #bodystocking #perfectass #highheels #hourglassfigure