What made you start Japanese?

I started learning Japanese after years of loving anime. It’s always interested me, but since I’m also learning Korean, I never tried both at once. Wish me luck!


I started watching anime last year (never really watched any before that) and by June I was already completely into it. That’s when I also started getting into visual novels. At that point, I learned hiragana and katakana just because and figured I would study the language to consume native material. I really don’t like to use translations if I can help it.

That’s pretty much it. Now I also read light novels, though, it’s great reading practice.


I always loved Japan, but I never really got too much into Japanese culture and the language aside from occasionally watching anime. I saw that there were language classes at my university and I wanted to try learning a language again, so I just decided to go with Japanese since it seemed the most interesting and difficult. I quit those classes after a semester since the teaching pace wasn’t right for me, but I fell in love with the language and I’ve been self-studying since.

For someone learning Korean as well, I’m sure one will make the other easier. I’ve done a bit of Korean while having a lot of Japanese knowledge, and my knowledge of Japanese grammar really helped. Generally, a lot of grammar is similar between the two languages, and you get the occasional word that is quite similar as well, but I don’t know how you’ll find it if you’re at the same level in both. Best of luck to you!



A love of anime and japan.

Also got tinnitus and which got me motivate to learn something. Made a bad thing into a good thing for me.

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manga and anime, but I think there is more! And good luck :sunny:

Also even if you feel that you are going slowly in the next levels, don’t give up, because going slowly is better than not moving at all! (From level 1-5 it took me 10 days each ; the previous level it took me 31 days. Now I feel I get pass through level 7 in 14 days) :thinking:

I always wanted to learn it as a kid/teen. When the Duolingo app, which I had used for Spanish, added Japanese support, I jumped right in. Turned out that was only about 5% of what I needed so I’ve been consuming other resources since then. :slight_smile:

I started learning because I was leaving in Japan at the time for work reasons. I since moved back to Europe, but now I continue because I found that I really like the language and Japanese people in general, so I hope one day to get rid of the language barrier.



It had three “alphabets”.


I got it confused with Chinese, and pretty soon it was too late to admit my mistake…


As a child I was mad interested in dance mats and pokemon. Then I grew up and got a degree in ceramics, which started my journey of interest into traditional crafts worldwide with a focus on Japan. An exhibition I visited in my third year on Japanese outsider art was incredibly interesting and increased my desire to visit again, having briefly been to Tokyo in 2009.

Spent 3 years protesting airport expansion at Heathrow, and in learning about other international airport battles I found out about the resistance to Narita.

Started making my own clothes and fell in love with traditional indigo dyed cloth.

Got into permaculture and got interested in the idea of growing rice on a small scale. Also might be getting a farm this year and we’re looking at the possibility of wasabi as a cash crop.

Want to be able to communicate in Japanese so I can talk to people about all these subjects.

I guess you could call me a renaissance weeboo


I needed more units to say a full time student so I could stay on my mom’s health insurance plan and I’d always liked learning languages and Japanese seemed interesting with its writing system, so I enrolled in a class and fell in love. :cupid:


When I was little I said I wanted to work in Japan but over time that fell on the backburner and I never even got round to beginning to learn even a single hiragana - I’m slowly approaching the end of the English education system and as I’ve been going through my first year at College and I’m thinking about university and the future I’ve been considering what I want to do, now and in the future.

I want to try and bring my dream back and I know what’s been stopping me before has been laziness and a lack of discipline - so I’m doing my best to learn Japanese now so that one day I can work over in Japan. I’ve been considering becoming a teacher over the last few years, so that’s one possibility, but we’ll really have to see. For now I just want to have the necessary skills so that when the time comes to decide what exactly I want to do I’ll have a headstart.

(On a lighter note I’d also like to play some games, read books and manga, and watch TV in the language they were made for - learning more about the culture will also help me appreciate what they’re trying to do more)


Truth be told, I got really into a Japanese band called BABYMETAL just over 4 years ago and kinda never stopped.


True fun fact: when I was in second grade, I found some Japanese language-learning CDs that my dad had for business reasons. …Looking back, I actually have no idea why he had them, because I can’t imagine the industry he works in has much call for Japanese xD He never actually used them much, if at all, either, as far as I know. He definitely doesn’t speak Japanese. In any case, I found them one day and thought that learning Japanese sounded like an unbelievably cool thing to do. I asked him if I could borrow them. …He told me to learn with his French CDs instead xD

So I guess the desire has always been inside me xD Growing up, I did have a lot of coincidental exposure to Japanese culture (I took karate, I loved Pokemon, my family watched the original Iron Chef on a regular basis, and I had a Japanese exchange student babysitter who taught me origami). But I kind of forgot about wanting to learn the actual language for a while (read: 15 years), and didn’t really think about it at all until my friend started talking about how she wanted to go to Japan. I ended up going to Japan (without her, ironically), and I thought it was the most beautiful place I had ever been. I wanted to explore it more, but it was obvious to me that learning the language would be something of a must to get off the beaten tourist path. I started learning after that, and…here I am now. Not having gotten all that far xD


Like for so many, I watched anime and decided I wanted to learn! But I actually didn’t originally watch anime in Japanese- I watched Inuyasha, the anime that go me into anime, dubbed for most of it!
I also got really into J-Pop and VOCALOID songs. I wanted to be able to understand the anime and the songs without relying so heavily on the English subtitles, so I started trying to teach myself through songs and some things I found online. When I got to high school I finally got to take some classes.

My mom thinks it helps a lot that I was into Pokemon and Sailor Moon when I was younger, but I actually didn’t know those were actually Japanese anime until much later. I guess because they were on TV with all the other cartoons, I must have assumed they were all American. Embarassingly, this makes me realize young me did not question Brock’s “donuts”…


I needed a foreign language for my major in university. I was going to choose Spanish, but since I took it in high school, they would have made me take a placement test. So instead, I asked the advisors without really thinking about a plan B…“What about Japanese?” and ended up grabbing the last spot. That decision changed my life (since I’m now living and working in Japan!).

But I suppose other motivators before that was wanting to understand and maybe participate in the Japanese fandom. I loved fanart/fanvids and reading people’s opinions on the media. The source material was usually translated but not so much the fan content.


Please tell me this is a real story :joy:


+1ing the anime theme, but for me it’s also because I just like languages and sounds. I was always particularly drawn to the way Japanese sounded because I’m a musician and I thought it was beautiful, so I wanted to learn it. The same applies to many, many other languages but I thought I’d get a jump on this one because it’s particularly difficult for native English speakers, LOL.

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I wanted to watch Naruto without subtitles and also really loved this song for some reason.