First Meet Up

Japanese people also have the custom of asking someone they have just met how many children they have. It seems that foreign women sometimes feel this is an extremely rude question. But it is not an attempt to ferret out a persons’s secrets.

Since ancient times,the Japanese have considered home and family very important aspects of life. They believe that it would be a terrible thing if no children were born and the family line became extinct. This is the reason such questions are asked, and most Japanese answer them honestly. If one simply answers “Three children” the questioner will happily reply.”Oh, that’s good” or “You must be very busy with them”.

In the case of one child, the normal answer is “We still have only one child” and the response is something like,”You must be very lonely” or “You should have at least one more”. Japanese people understand that such questions arise from feelings of concern for their families,so they do not feel offended.

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