It’s difficult at first, but after a while rendaku starts to seem natural, even obvious to the point where you think “How could I pronounce that any other way?!”
But of course there’s another way, it’s Japanese!
Sometimes I get blindsided by these exceptions - pronunciations that stick out like a sore thumb and make me feel like I’m saying it wrong (and of course turn into leeches).
Here are some that come to mind:
- 心底 really ought to be pronounced しんぞこ
- 公判 should be こうばん
- 勝敗 needs to be しょうばい
Do any other readings stick out to you like this? How do you think they ought to be pronounced?