Feeling romantic? Then perhaps you"re prepared to speak those three little words. But if you"re date a Japanese person, expressing her love in Japanese can get prettycomplicated. The truth is that there’s no simple way to say, "I love you," in Japanese as there is in English.

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for this reason what room your options?

In this article, we’ll describe why expressing your love verbally isn’t an especially common in Japanese society. We"ll then introduce four ways you have the right to say, "I love you," in Japanese and also give you four vital tipsfor as necessary expressing your love in Japanese.

Saying "I Love You" in Japanese: social Background

Before we introduce the various means to say, "I love you," in Japanese, it’s essential to know the social background as soon as it comes to expressing love in Japanese.

In truth,it’s not practically as common to say, "I love you," in Japanese as it is in English and also the West more broadly. The English sentence "I love you" is thrown roughly a lot more often and also a lot an ext casually than the equivalent Japanese expression (if you have the right to say there truly is one!). Because that example, in English, that perfectly common to phone call your partner that girlfriend love lock every day, or to end aphone call with a quick but heartfelt "love ya"—but this is hardly ever done in Japanese.

In general, Japanese—and by extension Japanese culture—is much much more subtle andindirect 보다 English and also Western culture.In various other words,Japanese civilization tend come abide bythe "show, nothing tell" rule when it pertains to expressing their love.

It’s far an ext common for couples, families, and friends in Japan to show their love because that one another through actions, rather than come verbally affirm it.This habit is especially true because that Japanese men, who an ext often have tendency to protect against extremely straight expressions that love.

There is likewise speculation that part (perhaps most) Japanese people feel that using the expression "I love you" too much will render the meaningless, which is why the far an ext important to show your love than it is to directly state it.

Finally, numerous people think that the principle of love (particularly ai 愛) in Japanese is merely too abstractfor ordinary world to have the ability to grasp. In this sense, love is nearly like a poetic appropriate instead ofan actual emotion one deserve to experience.

Nevertheless, Japanese world do periodically say, "I love you," in Japanese, so the is feasible to directly express your love in Japanese, even if doing therefore is a lot less common.

4 unique Ways to Express your Love in Japanese

In this section, us take a look in ~ four various ways you have the right to say "I love you" in Japanese.


#1: Ai shiteru 愛してる = i Love girlfriend (Deeply)

The word ai shiteru 愛してる is basically the default phrase for "I love you" in Japanese. The is additionally the one that arguably come closest in definition to the English expression "I love you."The character愛ai literally equates to "love," frequently with the connotation the romantic love.

Of all the ways you deserve to express your love in Japanese, ai shiteru isby farthe heaviest, many deeply felt method of doing so. In fact, ns would even translate the wordmore closely to something like "I love you deeply" or "I am deep in love through you."That’s how expressive this one word is!

Because of its heartfelt connotations—and due to the fact that Japanese culture dictates the love should be expressed through actions and also gestures quite than verbally with words—ai shiteru is seldom said aloud.

Normally, words is provided only between serious lifelong lover or once confessing her love because that someone because that the first time. Also in this cases, however, you"ll desire to be cautious not to overuse the word. It’s important not uncommon for married couples to never ever say, "Ai shiteru,"throughout their whole marriage!

Despite the weighty implications, you"ll regularly seeai shiteruused in media, such as TV dramas and pop songs, for dramatic effect.


Ai shiteru is express AYE-shee-teh-roo.

Note that the 2nd syllable (shee) is a lot shorter than it looks and also sounds much an ext like simply a rapid "sh" sound. This method that the entire word sounds an ext like three syllables.

In addition, do not pronounce the "roo" sound together you would an English "r." The Japanese "r" sound is more that a mix the the English "d," "r," and "l" sounds, similar to the way we express the "d" sound in the word"ladder."

The adhering to YouTube video explains exactly how to pronounceai shiteru:

UsageMost human being simply say, "Ai shiteru," however you could also say, "Ai shiteru yo愛してるよ," which translates to something more along the currently of "I love you, you know." The yo ending adds emphasis and makes the a little much more casual.Ai shiteru is a casual, reduce form of words ai shiteiru 愛している (or ai shiteimasu 愛しています), however neither the these forms is supplied often due to the fact that they’re both an ext formal and sound less organic when expressing her love in Japanese.

#2: Suki da 好きだ = I like You

The gender-neutral phrase suki da 好きだ is used a lot more commonly thanai shiteru. This phrase literally equates to"I like you," but it can have heavier implications depending upon the context, the person, and also the way it’s said. Together a result,it’s feasible for a expression as straightforward as suki da to typical "I love you" or miscellaneous closer to the English expression (though not as deep together ai shiteru).

Generally speaking, suki da (or the much more formal variation suki desu 好きです) is used to confess to someone that you favor them (and desire to day them). because that example, if you have actually a girlfriend you’d really prefer to date, you could say, "Suki da yo," come let them understand you"re interested in lock (I define the use of yo here in detail below).

Because of the romantic connotations that saying, "Suki da," come someone, youshouldn"t speak this come a purely platonic girlfriend or acquaintance,as it could imply you’d like to take your relationship to the next level. However, if you to be to say, "Suki da," to your romantic partner, this could an extremely well be analyzed as "I love you," despite the fact it literally means "I like you," particularly if it"s provided in a an ext serious,heartfelt way.

Ultimately, it’s approximately the two people in the instance in whichsuki da is being said to interpret its meaning.


Suki da is pronounced lot like just how it looks: soo-KEE-dah. However, note that the "u" sound ~ the initial "s" is very, really subtle—so much so that it’s often dropped completely, making the word sound an ext like the English word"ski" with a "dah" tagged ~ above the end.

UsageAs mentioned above, there are a pair of sports of suki da, consisting of suki da yo 好きだよ and suki yo 好きよ. The former is a an ext masculine and much more casual method of expressing your love because that or interest in someone, whereas the latter one (without the "da") is a very feminine expression.You could also use the phrase, "Suki desu 好きです," which is merely a more officially way of saying you favor someone (when directed at them).It’s perfectly natural to usage the adjectivesuki(like)to define your general likes (and dislikes). because that instance, you might say come someone, "Neko ga sukiネコが好き," meaning, "I like cats." There"s no implication below that you"re in love v cats or desire to date pets (which would absolutely be cause for concern!).


#3: Daisuki da 大好きだ = ns Really choose You

This next way to say, "I love you," in Japanese is pretty similar to the one we looked at above; the only distinction is the enhancement of the character dai 大, definition "big" or, in this case, "really (like)." because of the visibility ofdai,daisuki daisa small stronger and much more direct thansuki da.

By speak the phrase,"Daisuki da (yo)," come someone,you"re essentially saying, "I really prefer you," "I prefer you a lot," or "I really prefer being through you."

But, together we discussed over with the adjective suki, daisuki dacan additionally mean something depths than simply "like"andcould it is in implied to typical something closer come the English expression "I love you" relying on both the context and person.


Daisuki da is express the same as suki da above, just this time you will do it be adding the syllable dai before it, which sounds almost identical to the English words "die" / "dye." for this reason the joint is essentially DYE-ski-dah. Be certain to put more emphasis top top the initial syllable dai.

UsageLike suki da, there room some sport ofdaisuki da:daisuki da yo 大好きだよ and daisuki yo 大好きよ.The former is a an ext masculine and an ext casual means of saying that you (really) favor and/or love someone, whereas the last (without the "da") is an ext feminine.The phrase daisuki da or daisuki is not minimal to romantic understand or people and also can be offered to express your enthusiasm for things such as food, objects, animals, activities, sports, etc. For instance, you could say, "Ryokō daisuki 旅行大好き," meaning "I really like traveling" or "I love traveling."

#4: Suki yanen 好きやねん = I like Ya

This final method you have the right to say, "Ilike you/I love you," in Japanese is fun and slangy. The expression suki yanen 好きやねん, i beg your pardon translates about into something favor "I like ya!" isfrom the Kansai, or Osakan, language in Japanese, i m sorry is recognized for being bubbly, direct, and also a little goofy.

Like the phrases suki da and also daisuki dawe defined above, you have to only say, "Suki yanen," to who you’re romantically interested in or desire to date; however, this expression is definitely less serious and therefore makes because that a much much more lighthearted means of expressing your feelings because that someone.


The pronunciation of suki yanen is nice much how it looks, other than with the suki part sounding much more like the English "ski" (as described above). Yanen is express yah-nen.

UsageIf the human you’re interested in is from Osaka or the Kansai an ar in general, it’s a for sure bet to usage the expression suki yanen, especially if you’d quite express her feelings in a much less serious way.Suki yanen is likewise the brand name of a renowned ramen in Japan, for this reason be conscious that if someone is making use of this phrase, they might be talking around a form of noodle—not confessing your love because that you!


4 vital Tips for Saying, "I Love You," in Japanese

Now that we’ve gone end the 4 main methods you deserve to say, "I love you," in Japanese, it’s time to offer yousome an essential tips on just how to normally express her love inthis amazing language.

#1: once in Doubt, usage Suki da

Even though ai shiteru is arguably words that is most similar to the English expression "I love you," that rarely, if ever, claimed in Japanese come someone and isn’t used on a casual, everyday basis.

This is why, in general, if you’re hope to express your love or romantic interest in someone, it’s best to go with either suki da or daisuki da,since this phrases are used a lot much more often and entail a range of emotions, indigenous a tiny crush come a big, passionate love because that someone.

So if you’re ever in doubt, usage a sports of suki da—and usage ai shiteru sparinglyor not at all.

#2: Err ~ above Casual

Japanesediffers native English in that it has several level of formality you can use depending upon the situation, the speaker, and the listener.

When saying, "I love you," in Japanese, you’ll most likely be speak it to someone you understand pretty well, for this reason it makes sense come stick with the casual creates of the native above (all words space written in your casual develops already).

You’ll usually want to stop using verb in their masu ます form.It’s far much more natural to say, "Ai shiteru," than it is tosay, "Ai shiteimasu," orthe slightly much more formal version of "I love you." The only time you might use this kind would be once you’reasking someone to get married you.

#3: don’t Worry around Pronouns

If you’re brand-new to Japanese, you can be perplexed by the paragraph above, which don"t contain any type of subjects, objects, or pronouns in them. The reason for this is that subjects and also often objects are typically implied in the Japanese language.As a result, girlfriend don’t generally need to specify whom you love. As long as you looking at the person and also saying the expression directly, her intentions will certainly be clear.

Even though Google interpret would literally translate the English phrase, "I love you" together "Watashi wa anata o ai shiteimasu私はあなたを愛しています," within watashi means "I" and also anata way "you," this is a very stiff, cluttered way of expressing your love in Japanese.

When that comes under to it, just emphasis on the verbs/adjectives, together these are what matter the most!

#4: learn to adopt Silence

As a final tip, remember that in Japanese culture—specifically once it comes to expressing feeling of love in Japanese—silence isn’t constantly bad. Often, it’s much more natural than saying, "I love you."

If she the shy type and don’t choose the idea of proclaiming your love so directly, you mightbe an ext successfulat reflecting your emotions v charitable, romantic, and also thoughtful actions. This is a quite "Japanese" method of expressing love, for this reason it’s certainly not abnormal.

On a comparable note, if you tell your Japanese partner you love them and they don’t respond at all or just say, "Thank you," don’t take the lack of one "I love you, too" personally. silence doesn"t necessarily average they don’t love girlfriend back—just the saying "I love you" might not in reality be the most natural actionfor them to take.

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