it with Japanese students might be a challenge
By MYNIPPON Team, (With help from John M at University of
all Japanese students in the US are exactly above average by Japanese
standards. In fact, many of them may have come here to study
poorly on the college entrance exam in Japan and couldn't get into
the college of their choice; so they came to America where entrance
requirements aren't as strict.
Entering a good Japanese university is extremely competitive
and only the best can get in. The
ones that cannot have a very poor future ahead of them, as they will
end up low-end jobs for the rest of their lives.
While the educational system in the US aggressively pursues
older men and women to continue to study, and many actually return
to college and complete their degrees, such system in Japan is
they cannot handle living in Japanese society, therefore; many feel
that they can cast off all restraint and do things they would NEVER
get away with in Japan.
simply not serious about their education or have no direction as to
what they want to do with their lives.
are some reasons why many Japanese come to the US to study though many
are extremely bright students and come to the US for the same reason
that the brightest students from India, China, and many other countries.
men on campus
a woman can behave like a Japanese woman, then she is more likely to
attract Japanese men. These men tend to
feel intimidated by
American women because they do not understand English well, nor do they
understand American women like they do Japanese women. Some
openly say that they prefer Japanese women, but if they could understand
and speak English perfectly, they would want an American woman.
Japanese young men LOVE
American girls (by 'American' they mean one with
blonde hair, blue eyes, and looks like
Britney Spears--many of them seem
to think that there is an 'American' race and
other with American passports are actually not ‘American’), but many
of them do not seem to like the personality of these women –
confident, open-minded, independent, etc. However, some of them
may not always care about personality anyway--they just see the body
that is there for their gratification. (Related article: Foreign
language words in Japanese)
Japanese language from Japanese students
Many of these people,
understandably so, who come from Japan do not seem to
be interested in teaching Japanese--they just want English practice.
A few of the biggest frustrations when learning Japanese at a
university in the US are:
I speak in Japanese, I get a response in English”. This is not a
natural way to use a language.
teach you Japanese”. Many
of these students came here for the purpose of improving their
English, so they feel it is a waste of their time and money to try
teaching some dumb
gaijin how to speak their language.
Perhaps those words “I'll teach you Japanese” are spoken
with sincerity in the beginning, but when the Japanese person
realizes that teaching Japanese is no fun and might actually make
them lose focus on their goal, they give up on this fake Japanese
person (or a gaijin actually) and revert to speaking Japanese
with real Japanese.
speak Japanese very well”. PLEASE
do not take this compliment seriously. It does not matter
whether you can say 2 or 3 words in Japanese, or whether you can
speak fluently. Inside, they are really thinking, “This
person is not Japanese and while I am glad he is trying he or she
has a long way to go”. If they really believed that your Japanese was good,
they would speak to you in Japanese.
the opposite gender
is probably one of the biggest problems for men, though the problems may
be different if you are female.
a man has a female Japanese friend, he always has to wonder what her
motives and intentions are. Some of these girls are looking
for a gaijin boyfriend because they think it's cool. Others
may just want to try to use him for free English lessons or a free
ride to the beach in his car. Many American men find
that these girls often wind up being “dead-end friends”. This
means that for some reason or other they do not wish to invite him
to activities with their other Japanese friends. This could be
because they don't want the other Japanese friends to get the wrong
idea (i.e. “What’s she doing with this gaijin?
I thought she already has a
boyfriend in Japan).
The end result is, men often find that when she returns to
Japan they never hear from her again or she is simply not committed
to a meaningful relationship. She might even say romantic words to keep the
relationship as long as it is convenient for her but then she just
wants to go back to her Japanese beau not to upset the social
is a difference between the way women and men speak in Japan. If
one learns Japanese from a person of the opposite gender, he or she
will sound strange and not gain respect in Japanese society.
also find that they cannot be seen with more than one Japanese woman
even though he might just think of them as friends. This is
because of a very negative stereotype about gaijin men and Japanese
women. Many gaijin men like the
Japanese women because they look
cute and are supposedly an easy lay. These men have a hobby of
picking up Japanese girls and using them for intimacy.
is always difficult to learn a language in a country different from the
one where it is spoken. You
can see the terrible English the Japanese people had when they have
learned it in Japan. To
really master Japanese you need to live and study in Japan.
In fact just living in Japanese countryside is good enough an
opportunity to master Japanese. So
if you can find a way to work in Japan for a while you should grab the
chance. Even in Japan, the
language exchange programs do not necessarily work because the Japanese
women who join them are basically trying to hang out with a gaijin to
practice English and do not mind sleeping with him if this is what it
takes. The best way to
learn Japanese is to make friends with Japanese who do not speak a word
of English and in order to do so you will need to find interests other
than just language. So if
you have hobbies like music or pottery or anything else you might want
to use that as a way to connect.
are not discouraging sincere students committed to learning Japanese in
the US (for many students it is a great way to
prepare for their trip to
Japan) but are essentially providing a reality check so that their
expectations are more in line with the reality.
Recommended links: Finding a Japanese boyfriend - Advice for foreign women
of making friends in Japan
Heather Schmidt speaks Urdu
How to make Japanese friend