Dear visitor, if you know the answer to this question, please post it. Thank you!

Note that this thread has not been updated in a long time, and its content might not be up-to-date anymore.

English girl with half-Japanese baby 2004/2/9 18:44
What is the reaction to foreigners in Japan who have children with a Japanese person? I'm an English girl and my baby's father is Japanese.
by Jennifer Brett  

Nothing too special, I presume 2004/2/10 22:29
Foreign women with half-Japanese babies are not rare at all at least in the cities. You may get the normal reactions as a foreigner who stands out, and you may get the normal reactions as a young mother with an adorable baby, but I don't think people will especially see you differently just because your baby is half-Japanese.

But you may want to try comfirming at the following "Tokyo with Kids Forum".

by Uco rate this post as useful

Thank you for the advice 2004/2/16 07:51
Thank you for your advice, Uco. In England people do look a little, especially because I live in a fairly small town, and I sometimes find it very embarrassing.

The website you mentioned is very good, thank you, I'll look at it
by Jenny rate this post as useful

to Jenny 2004/2/18 01:50
maybe people look because they think "What a beautiful baby!" :)
by Bomber rate this post as useful

mexican girl with a half japanesse boy 2006/1/6 01:14
I am a mexican girl with a half japanesse boy, working in a japanesse company in Mexico. the japanesse staff was very surprised because I have a japanesse boy, however they like my baby and everytime we make a party or dinner they put a special attention to him and try to play with him and joke.
I never see his father again, even we were dating for 4 years, I hope he is ok and happy.
by arsu rate this post as useful

don't worry 2006/1/30 19:02
I live in Okinawa, Japan. There are alot children here that are half Japanese half other races, and I have never seen anyone respond badly to any of the children or there parents. The only thing the people in your hometown should be embarrassed by is themselves. Don't give someone who is looking down on you or your child a second thought, it is sad if they don't have anything better to do than give you a hard time. good luck
by sylvia rate this post as useful

sorry for the bump 2006/9/24 11:39
sorry to bump this after to long, but I had a similiar question and didnt want to start a new question.

What is common in Japan for naming half-foreign babies and what are the reactions to those names. For instance if I were to have a half-japanese child and my wife and I were to name her say Emily or Rachel or any normal American name. How would the Japanese react to the name (Im not sure if that makes sense), what I mean is would they see it as flaunting her foreignness or think nothing of it.?

And what if it was an unusual American name, something hippyish, like Sunshine or Raene, or something musical like Rhapsody, Coda, or Cadence?

For that matter, what is the general custom for naming children in Japan, is it like America where there are some rare names but mostly there are standard names, or is there no standardization of names?
by Casey B. rate this post as useful

names 2006/9/24 20:27
There are quite a few name related threads on this forum. Try some keywords.

Anyway, Japanese children today have really unique names. Having a school boy at home, I always wonder how much trouble teachers go through trying to read the new students' names correctly every year :)

But foreign sounding names like Naomi, George (Joji), Lisa (Risa) and Ken have been normal for decades, and I know children with readable foreign-originated names like Mike (Maiku), Ryan (Raian) and Emily (Emiri).

A lot of parents with multi-cultural backgrounds also name their children with a foreign middle name and a local first name or vice versa.

I think that one thing parents need to keep in mind when naming our children, whether foreign or not, is that the child needs to write that name every time (s)he files an official document or takes a small test at school. Also the child will need to say that name whenever (s)he introduces her/himself or whenever (s)he makes a reservation. So pronouncable and easy-to-write names do help.

Another thing to keep in mind when naming foreign children is the romaji spelling rule. For example, names like Lawrence must be written as "Rourensu" on official documents like his passport.

Btw, just a few days ago I saw on TV a 7 year old Shiokaze (Sea Breeze) with an Italian family name.
by Uco rate this post as useful

names 2006/9/25 17:19
I have come across all kinds of different names for half Japanese babies. One little half Italian, half Japanese girl I know is Luna- not a Japanese name but easily pronounceable for Japanese people. Another Japanese friend with a Dutch husband has called her baby girl Yuzuki Matilda, an English friend with a Japanese husband has called her daughter Aya Rose, my Australian boss's son is Kai John, an American I know has called his two kids Emiri and Rei. As you can see a lot of people go for a mix of Japanese and international. I know a university student whose mother is Japanese but the daughter's name is Jenny Williams- no sign that she is half Japanese there!

I believe children with a non-Japanese parent are allowed a middle name, whereas ordinary Japanese are only allowed two names, not three.

A friend who is a quarter American, three-quarters Japanese is Mae, which she has to write Mei in her passport as the hiragana used for her name are ߂- me i.
by Sira rate this post as useful

to be exact.. 2006/9/25 18:44
- I believe children with a non-Japanese parent are allowed a middle name, whereas ordinary Japanese are only allowed two names, not three.

This is a bit mis-leading. The truth is this:

There are countries that allow official middle names and there are countries/cultures where it is even natural to have multiple names.

Say one parent is an U.S. citizen and the child owns an U.S. citizenship. This child can have his/her middle name registered in his/her U.S. birth cirtificate.

Say the same child's other parent is Japanese and the child has a Japanese citizenship as well. This child cannot register any middle names in the official Japanese registeration (koseki). Typical options are to put the first name and middle name together and register it as one first name, or another option is to simply register the first name and family name only and keep the middle name as something unofficial.

For example, all Japanese Christians (I don't mean half-Japanese) have baptismal names other than the first name. Almost all of them do not register this baptismal name at the city hall, but treasure the name and use it in Christian rituals.
by Uco rate this post as useful

names 2006/9/26 13:17
Thanks for clearing that up Uco
by Sira rate this post as useful

middle names in Japan. 2006/10/21 01:52

I have three children, all of whom are half-Japanese, and all of whom have middle names, even in Japan. We had no trouble registering them.
by GC rate this post as useful

Half Japanese genes 2006/12/8 07:03
Hi I would like to say that the reaction you get may be good because of you baby's looks. This is an example I am saying this is because when you have a child with a Japanese person it dose not mean that they will have European eyes. If you look at British history we have been invaided a lot. So in a way we have the genes from the Romans, Normans and imagrents during WW2. So in a way Europeans do not have the same eye shaped, colour etc; and remember the Japanese have only started inter mixing with other races just recently so they do have strong genes and therefore a half Japanese child can have slanted (Japanese) eyes. The next child you have could well have slanted (Japanese)eyes with light brown hair.
by Black Pony rate this post as useful

Passport info 2006/12/20 16:09
My wife and I gave our son a japanese middle name and used it as his first name on his japanese passport and his full name on the american passport.
by Rick rate this post as useful

Eye shape 2007/9/16 07:06
sorry about my other comment on here what makes the shape of the eye is the epicanthal fold
by Black Pony rate this post as useful

English girl with half-japanese baby 2007/9/29 05:47
How about half Thai or Philipino? I think they might have a hard time in Japan! As Japanese are westerniser than ever before. They're tend to look down on Southeast Asian. Right or wrong?
by lovetosaysomething rate this post as useful

I'm half japanese 2007/11/23 11:25
I'm half japanese and my name's Emily, ive grown up in England though so its a little different i guess but the way i look is more what draws attention rather then my name when i'm over there!
by Em rate this post as useful

Im Half 2010/5/21 12:12
I'm half japanese and Colombian-american
and i think it was hard for my parents to choose a name for me... my full name is Honda Brian Masaki

personally i know the name Masaki is way to japanese lol but what can i say i was born in japan and not in colombia or america

anyway when im in japan i use Masaki as my first name and when im in US or Colombia i use Brian... and having to names is not bad! just try to come up with a good name!
by Masaki Honda (guest) rate this post as useful

in the long run 2010/6/7 17:41
Japan is changing. I read back in Uni, that while a half-Japanese has no problems legally (registration, naming, schooling, etc.), culturally, they are not considered 'Japanese' (in the colloquial sense that his or her parents were not both Japanese) and will still be treated differently in the eyes of a 'homogenous' Japanese society. I now think that is only half-true.
I believe it 50% because I think Japan is still a country where you gotta be Japanese 100% in order to say, "I am Japanese". It's different for Americans since our country was born from immigrants and the intermixing of different peoples. No one in the US will look at your funny for saying you're American when you're Asian, black, etc. They'd probably believe you more so even if you had polka-dot skin and a prehensile tail. Not true in Japan. You get a white guy who says he's born-raised Japanese, the only thing guaranteed to happen is disbelief (among Japanese) and laughter (and probably an invite to Akashi Sanma's Karakuri TV show).
The other half that makes me think otherwise is: Japan needs more babies and they know it, and need to accept the fact that if half-Japanese babies are a needed to lead the country 50 years from now, then all those cultural and social misgivings can go out the window. Most of the Japanese I know are so accepting of mixed-born Japanese that it makes me wonder why even have a course on Japanese society teaching how it's so homogenous and pure and Japanese won't accept anything less than 'Made in Japan'.
Be proud of your half Japanese baby and don't let anyone throw strange looks, treat them differently at school, or praise them for being that way. Id like to live to see Japan's population to be 50% pure Japanese and 50% "i dunno what I am". Mothers of half-Japanese are making the future of Japan, really! (that is, if you stay)
by jmarkley rate this post as useful

Re: English girl with half-Japanese baby 2013/2/24 18:35
My cousins, who live in Japan, are half-Japanese and they have middle names. I sometimes feel sorry for them because they've been bullied enough for their different looks and foreign surname (the foreign parent is my uncle, so they have his surname) and I think it'd just be an even bigger burden on a kid who's already an easy target for bullies due to their foreign blood, since it just makes them look even more foreign if you know what I'm saying.

My one female cousin doesn't have it too bad since she has a name that's used in both Japanese and English and a Japanese middle name but the older boy has a slightly longer English first name with a short form that's used as a Japanese name and the younger boy has a name that's pronounced slightly differently in English and Japanese. Both have middle names that are unfamiliar to the average Japanese person.

So their names are somewhat similar to:
Naomi Sakurako Smith
Kenneth Wolfgang Smith "Ken"
John Alistair Smith "Jun"

...Yeah, not exactly the best names to have on a Japanese passport, unless their Japanese passports just say Naomi, Ken and Jun and their Australian passports have their full English names.
by haruka (guest) rate this post as useful

reply to this thread