What if my name is San?

When I first looked up the Katakana version for Laura I was a little bit unhappy that every source was telling me it would be ロラ, since this is based on the english pronounciation and I never really liked how it was pronounced in english. I just kinda decided it would be ラウラ and later realized that it´s usually common to immitate the pronounciation of where the word is from.
So a Laura from the US would probably be written ロラ but I can still be ラウラ.
I remember once hearing that japanese people are a little iffy with foreigners spelling their names in Kanji, but I don´t know if this was a outlier or if is an actual thing.

3 Likes

Using kanji to spell a name that is not traditionally written with kanji is just adding a layer of potential confusion to a process that already has some friction. The other question is where would you be doing it? If it’s in a work or school situation, then you’re probably going to want to keep things close to your official documentation as possible and that’s usually going to mean the katakana representation of your name that matches the pronunciation. If you’re talking about an Internet handle or something, then I guess whatever goes, but that’s not really the thing most people are fretting about.

4 Likes

I’ve met people from Vietnam who were named サン before. Japanese folks would call them サンさん and no problem at all.

I don’t know how you plan on say your name in Japanese, but if it’s サン, let it be サン. Japanese people will be a lot less fazed by it than you would imagine.

5 Likes

you can literally pick whatever. You don’t need to listen to the internet or anyone how it should be written, it all comes down to your preference. I had people in class called Hannah, and every one of them chose a different Katakana transcription based on how they prefer it to be pronounced. so we had ハナ、ハンナ、ヘンナ

Some either went with the German or the English pronunciation of their names, like David and Silas are pronounced differently in German than in English, and some chose the English pronunciation because it’s wider known and some preferred to stick to the German pronunciation.

5 Likes

Thanks for all the help guys! Woke up with a lot of advice from you, and it’s fun to read all of your perspectives! I think I’ll go with サナ, because it sounds more positive to me than サネ for some reason haha. I’m going on a 3 week vacation to japan, so it’s nice that I can properly introduce myself now! :blush:

5 Likes

You can also introduce yourself with the proper pronunciation as well :wink:
Maybe like Sanneです。でも、サナで呼んでもいい! so maybe a Japanese person will pick up on the proper pronunciation, but if it’s too difficult, you can give them the option to use サナ as a nickname!

3 Likes

I would vote サンネ since very similar name Sanna seems to be サンナ. https://japanese-names.info/first_name/sanna/

Anyway enjoy your new name, whatever it will be.

1 Like

Most of the pages I found have サンネ but for some reason Sanne Cant has サンヌ :durtle:

3 Likes

Here’s another one

And a German girl

I made this simple tool a while back which finds how Wikipedia articles spell your name, if anyone wants to check their own name

6 Likes

I knew my name should be spelled like that but I let myself be peer pressured into changing it! :pouting_cat:

2 Likes

It’s pretty cool! It’s not a huge thing, but is it possible to get it to combine these ones that have extra tags on them into the main listing?

image

2 Likes

That should be simple enough in this case. I’ll see if I can’t get to it in a couple of days

2 Likes

in college we had a girl from somewhere in SEA (can’t remember where) whose name was Chan. One time we had a party and one of the Japanese exchange students was talking on the phone to another Japanese exchange student who was asking who all was coming to the party. He was like, “Daisuke, Hitomi, Chan…” and he started laughing since it sounded like he said Hitomi-chan.

The topic made me think of this and had to share.

6 Likes

Choose your favourite! My extremely common name is supposed to be ビリー but I just hate the elongated sound, so I’m always just ビリ. If you’re a friend you can write it 美理 but I would never put that on anything professional because it would cause trouble for others. I always think the name of the game is to be yourself (rather than trying to be Japanese-esque), while trying not to cause trouble for others.

サンさん is not awkward at all, if anything I think it’s quite cute and memorable. The only thing is, you’ll say you’re Sanne desu and people will say “oh! San-san? hohoho” all the time. Unless that would drive you crazy I think that’s great.

2 Likes

Everything in parenthesis is now stripped

2 Likes