Self-centred, demanding, materialistic and arrogant: how to steer clear of the Kong Girls
Luisa Tam says Hong Kong’s ‘princesses’ have become less conspicuous recently, so if you’re not sure how to spot one, here are some handy tips
An Italian friend of mine once complained to me that he couldn’t get his head around Hong Kong women’s mentality. He said many of the women he had dated quite bluntly declared what they were looking for in a relationship – happiness (and lots of it).
Of course, there is nothing wrong with seeking happiness in life, but as my friend put it, “Not on the first date while we are still sussing each other out and deciding whether there should be a second date. What’s wrong with just going with the flow and having some fun first?”
Many of my non-local male friends have complained about how difficult it is to bridge the cultural gap when dating Hong Kong women.
There is a derogatory term in local slang, “Kong Girl” or gong nui in Cantonese, to describe the type of Hong Kong women who are self-centred, demanding, materialistic and arrogant. Worst of all, they seem to lack the self-awareness to realise they are the embodiments of such undesirable traits.
“Kong” is short for Hong Kong, which also emphasises the locality, but it doesn’t insinuate that the entire Hong Kong female population are Kong Girls. Another way to better understand this Hong Kong phenomenon is that Kong Girls have the so-called “Princess Syndrome”, the symptoms of which are narcissism and egocentrism.
Interestingly, Kong Girls have become less conspicuous recently, so if you’re not sure how to spot one, here are some handy tips to keep in mind.
When someone asks you what you do for a living, or where you live, or if you drive to work or even where you went to school, you could assume that these are standard, innocuous questions for a first date. However, when a Kong Girl asks these questions, she’s mentally piecing your answers together to figure out how much you make (and essentially, how much you’re worth to her).
You might think that she wants this information because she is genuinely interested in getting to know you, but a more cynical outlook is necessary for sniffing out Kong Girls.
Here comes the next stage. When they start showing interest in your family and fishing for details regarding what they do and where they live, that should definitely set off alarm bells. Another telltale sign would be when they ask whether you are the only child because if you are, the assumption would be you need to keep the family line going, which means popping out babies.
Kong Girls tend to view the idea of bearing children as a personal Armageddon, because that means waving goodbye to their figure and their youthfulness, and no more self-indulgence.
If you think you can steer clear of these predatory Kong Girls, then think again. By the end of 2015, there were 571,700 more women than men in the city, with the biggest difference in the 30-44 age group. This imbalance in the sex ratio doesn’t seem to bother Kong Girls because if they can’t find a local man, they can always delve into the city’s significant expat population.
So, should you, as a foreign single male, write off the local scene as a dating wasteland? Well, that’s up to you to decide.
A word of advice though: all Kong Girls have Princess Syndrome, but not all women with such narcissistic personality are Kong Girls. Just keep your radar on and give a wide berth to those, Kong Girls or not, who demand that you pay for everything because that’s how they derive their own personal happiness.
Luisa Tam is a senior editor at the Post