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staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/10 03:38
Last summer i went to Japan and met some nice Japanese people there. I have a lot of contact with a girl i met there and i am going back to Japan this winter. She asked me to stay at her house, so I'll be staying there with christmas and new year! :D

The problem is, i don't really know much about Japanese family life.. I'm a guy staying at a foreign girl's house, and i'm kind of worried that i will do anything that would be unpolite.. I do know Japanese to some extent. Of course, when i talk to her i talk in the impolite form. Everyone at home will probably do the same because they are family right? But i am not and i am a guest, so i guess i should talk in normal -desu/-masu and so?

Furthermore, i guess i should take some presents, because that's usual in Japanese culture. What kind of thing (and in what price range) would be ok? And should i take a gift for everyone individually?
Also since i will be there with christmas and new year, is there anything i should do with that?

Last but not least, there are of course some Japanese cutsoms i should keep in mind. Any tips on that?

I want to give a good impression and i really appreciate them letting me stay, so i hope someone can give me some help with this ^^
by Sjakieee  

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/10 11:41

It is proper and common to use keigo such as -desu/-masu to anyone who is older than you. Typically, you should use keigo to her parents, and if she has siblings not too older than her I can say that it's okay to use impolite form to them.

You can bring along gifts in any form you want, but I suppose that if you bring something for each person, that would give it a "just for you" kind of thoughtful tone.

If you are a young person with less income, the gifts don't have to be anything that costs much. Plus, anything too expensive would be a burden for them. But if it wasn't for her, you might have had to spend money on hotels.

The end of the year especially New Year's Eve is supposed to be the busiest time of the year for the Japanese, both men and women. Offering help around the house is a must. If they say you don't have to do anything, that is that.

On the other hand, Christmas is not that big here in Japan. If you come from a Christian environment, perhaps it's a good time to share your custom so that the family can enjoy something authentically yours.

Last but not least, there are of course some Japanese cutsoms i should keep in mind. Any tips on that?

Not really. Just try to be humble but natural and ask your friend for advise. Things like not draining the bath tub might be new to you.
by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/11 21:52
Thanks a lot for your answer! :)

I hope i will do allright.. The switching between keigo and normal seems kind of difficult. But i'll try my best :P

I guess i will take some small gifts from my country for everyone then. She does have quite a few siblings, but i guess i'll find something!
by Sjakieee rate this post as useful

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/16 05:29
I would suggest reading up on basic customs and etiquette about being a guest in someone's house-

Such as basic manners for eating meals together, understanding toilet slippers, and other little things.

I'm sure it'll be okay if you slip up once or twice on something though - it's a different culture after all and they know this.
by Rozemaiden (guest) rate this post as useful

two things.. 2011/11/16 18:13
When I first came to my girlfriend's house she gave me two very important rules:

1. Shoes off!
2. Don't pee standing!

I still laugh when I think about how serious she looked when she said that.

Anyway, it would be good if you bring presents for each family member individually, but if she has a lot of siblings this might become hard. In that case you might just bring something for all the family to enjoy (like food, confectionery).

Other than that I wouldn't know any specifics. My gf's parents are very laid back people. Not very strict and formal. It will depend on each family.

Btw, are you dutch? From the name i would say so. :)
by Dutchman (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/17 12:09
Dutchman wrote;
Don't pee standing!

I'd just like to remind people that this is not common among most households, although not a rare rule.

by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/17 22:13
Thanks for the replies!

I guess the dinner customs are most important, so it might be best to read up on that a little.

Haha, yeah Dutchman, i'm Dutch xD
About the peeing thing, don't worry, i have heard that before, even over here.
So, do you live in Japan now?
by Sjakieee rate this post as useful

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2011/11/18 22:52
Dinner etiquette is always good to know. I practiced my chop stick skills before I went to Japan for the first time, and boy was I happy to come prepared!

No I don't live in Japan but I will visit in december/january again.
by Dutchman (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: staying at Japanese girl's house 2012/1/20 05:27
Okay this can be a tricky thing if your not careful. What is the relationship with this girl? Is she just a friend or is there something more. This is very important!! If she is just a friend then there shouldnt be any problems. However, if this is a more then friends kind of thing or it may turn into it PLEASE WALK CAREFULLY. If you are just friends dont be too close dont touch her in a way that makes it seem you are close very important not to do in front of parents most of all. DONT SPEND alot of time alone behind close door with her even if you do like her. This can give her parents the wrong idea, and they may find it rude. If you do like her in more the just friends dont come on strong, dont sleep in the same room even if just friends. If you do like her dont just say hey I like you. Get to know her and be very kind and respectful to her and her family. Yes share what you do for holidays but make sure that they want to do it dont just push it on them. Take care of your own. This meaning wash your own clothes, clean up after yourself, Help out by paying for dinner, wash dishes, ect. The kinder you are the better and even more so if you like the girl. If you like her the stacks are even higher and you have to be more careful then anything but weather or not you like her it is still important you do your part and always be respestful to her family. Use lots of bows and ALWAYS POLITE JAPANESE. Its important and will make their judgement of your better or worse depending on what you do. Make sure you do learn about the does and do nots of Japan culture and if you like this girl its even more important you do this. If you start of bad their will have to work to like you if you start off good then you have more of a chance to come back again or to have a chance with their daughter. If you do like her dont tell wait till the last day and sit down in front of them and tell them thank you for all the kindness and with them and her tell them that you have taken a liking to her but have not told her because you feel that you should get their approve to like her and tell her before you did. This will show your respect for them and her. GOING BEHIND THEIR BACK IS OUT OF THE QUESTION. If you dont like her that way there is not use for that but I felt the need to state it so you know and anyone else you may find themselves falling for a cute Japanese girl....which isnt hard to do. I can help if you need it and can try to answer anything you may want to know or want advice on...Ja

by Yume (guest) rate this post as useful

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