free website hit counter

What do Japanese call their loved ones?


In this article, we will explore the terms of endearment used by Japanese people to address their loved ones. Japanese culture is known for its strong emphasis on respect and honor, and this is reflected in the way they express affection. From family members to romantic partners, there are various words and phrases that convey love and affection in Japanese.

Family Members

Japanese people have different ways of addressing their family members based on their age and gender. The most common term for father is “otousan,” while mother is “okaasan.” Elder brother is called “oniisan,” and younger brother is “otouto.” Similarly, elder sister is referred to as “oneesan,” and younger sister as “imouto.” For grandparents, the term “sofu” and “sobo” are used for grandfather and grandmother, respectively.

Japanese Snack Box


Japanese people use different terms to address their significant others depending on their relationship status. One of the most common terms used for a spouse or partner is “koibito,” which means lover. However, it is not as commonly used as other terms like “danna” for husband or “tsuma” for wife. Another term used for a boyfriend or girlfriend is “kareshi” and “kanojo,” respectively.


The word used to address children in Japan depends on their age and gender. For young boys, the term “otoko no ko” is used, while girls are referred to as “onna no ko.” When addressing a child respectfully, the term “kun” or “chan” is added to their name. For example, a boy named Taro would be referred to as Taro-kun, while a girl named Hanako would be called Hanako-chan.

Pet Names

Japanese people often use animal-inspired pet names for their loved ones. For example, the term “kitsune” (fox) can be used to refer to someone who is sly or cunning but also cute. Similarly, “neko” (cat) is used for someone who is playful yet mysterious. Other animal-inspired names include “usagi” (rabbit) for someone who is cute but shy and “tora” (tiger) for someone who is strong-willed.

Formal Terms of Address

In formal situations, Japanese people use specific honorifics to address others with respect. For example, the honorific “-san” can be added after someone’s name to show politeness and respect. Similarly, “-sama” is used to show even more respect towards someone who holds a higher rank or position.

Non-Romantic Terms of Endearment

Japanese people have various non-romantic terms to show affection towards friends or colleagues. For example, the term “nakama” means comrade or friend and can be used to refer to someone who you share a close bond with. Similarly, the term “tomodachi” means friend and can be used in both formal and informal situations.

Cultural Significance

The use of specific terms of endearment in Japanese culture highlights the importance of respect and honor towards others. By using specific words to address loved ones, Japanese people demonstrate their appreciation and admiration towards them.

Comparison with Western Culture

Compared to Western culture, Japanese culture places a greater emphasis on respect towards others. This is reflected in the way they express affection towards loved ones. While Western culture tends to use more generic terms like “babe” or “honey,” Japanese culture has specific words for each relationship.

The Role of Gender

In Japanese culture, there are specific terms used based on gender when addressing family members or friends. This highlights the importance of gender roles in Japanese society and how it influences language use.

Evolution of Language

Like any language, Japanese has evolved over time with new words being introduced into mainstream usage. As such, some terms of endearment have become outdated or less commonly used than others.


In conclusion, Japanese culture places great importance on showing respect towards others, which is reflected in the language they use when addressing loved ones. From family members to romantic partners, there are various words and phrases that convey love and affection in Japanese. Understanding these terms can help visitors better understand Japanese culture and build stronger relationships with their loved ones.

What do Japanese people call the person they love?

The Japanese term Koibito (恋人 / こいびと) means ‘sweetheart’ or ‘lover’ and is composed of the characters for love (恋) and person (人). It is a term that can be used to refer to either a girlfriend or boyfriend, or even a spouse, regardless of their gender.

How do Japanese people address their loved ones?

In Japan, it is common to address someone by their family name followed by “San,” which is equivalent to “Mr.” or “Miss.” As relationships become closer, the use of “San” may be dropped. In contemporary Japanese media, it is not uncommon to hear characters referring to their partners by familial titles rather than first names.

What name can I call my lover?

In a romantic relationship, it is common to give your significant other affectionate nicknames such as bae, baby, my love, boo, or sweetheart. While these endearing terms may seem silly, they can actually play a significant role in strengthening your relationship.

What is my love mix up called in Japanese?

Kieta Hatsukoi is a manga series written by Wataru Hinekure and illustrated by Aruko, which was published in Bessatsu Margaret magazine from June 2019 until June 2022.

What do Japanese call their wife?

In Japanese, the word for ‘wife’ is often referred to as okusan (奥さん / おくさん), but there are also other words like tsuma (妻 / つま) and kamisan (上さん / かみさん) that are commonly used.

What is lover in Japanese language?

Koibito is a Japanese word meaning lover, while “koi ni ochiru” means falling in love, and “hitomebore” refers to love at first sight. Kanojo is the Japanese word for girlfriend.

It is worth noting that the use of terms of endearment in Japanese culture can vary depending on the region or dialect. Some areas may have their own unique terms or variations of commonly used ones. Additionally, the context and tone in which a term is used can also convey different meanings.

In recent years, there has been a shift towards more gender-neutral language in Japan, including the use of gender-neutral terms of endearment. For example, the term “koibito” (lover) can be used for any gender. This change reflects a growing awareness and acceptance of gender diversity in Japanese society.

While terms of endearment are commonly used in personal relationships, they are not typically used in professional settings. In formal situations, it is more appropriate to use respectful titles and honorifics to address others.

Finally, it is important to note that while using terms of endearment can be a way to show affection towards loved ones, it is equally important to express that affection through actions and behavior. Simply using words without genuine emotion or intention behind them may come across as insincere or superficial. In Japanese culture, actions often speak louder than words.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Ads Blocker Image Powered by Code Help Pro

Ads Blocker Detected!!!

We have detected that you are using extensions to block ads. Please support us by disabling these ads blocker.