10 ways that studing languages ruins your life

10 ways that studying languages ruins your life

All posts, Languages, Student Life and Erasmus

‘Study a language’ they said, ‘it’ll be fun’ they said…

  1. The ‘mental block’ becomes your daily torture (in native and learned languages alike)

mental block

Brain: Knows more than one language –> refuses to find the correct word for the language you are speaking in.

  1. You have to decide between sounding pretentious or pronouncing it wrong when you order foreign food

pronunciaton

You refuse to pronounce it ‘choriTSo’ but your beautifully pronounced ‘chorizo’ with a rolled ‘R’ will leave the waiter silently judging you

  1. All roads lead to teaching

lead to teaching

As much as you try to avoid it, at some point, you will become a teacher of your native or studied language. In fact, when people find out you are multilingual, they are likely to assume that teaching is your profession. On the bright side, you’ve always got that to fall back on!

  1. Monolinguals don’t appreciate the struggle

appreciate the struggle

Your compatriots think it’s a hobby, and native speakers of the languages you have learnt make your life difficult; JUST SLOW DOWN.

  1. The subjunctive

subjunctive

‘Nuff said.

  1. You have several keyboards activated on your smart phone, making conversation-switching a nightmare

keyboards

… studying languages every single second of your life…

  1. You find yourself constantly on the move

speaking language

Speaking languages makes you travel; travelling makes you learn more languages; and so the circle continues, endlessly. Your mother will have something to say about it.

  1. You become a habitual eavesdropper

habitual eavesdropper

It can happen anywhere. You’re just casually grabbing a coffee and then BAM; someone speaking the language you’ve learnt sweeps by, and you freeze, listening in. Whoever is having a coffee with you will be confused by your blank expression and coffee mug hovering halfway towards your face.

  1. Friends and family use you as a translation resource

you as a translation resource

“Could you just have a read through my CV in English?” “I want this part to be in French as well, can you just quickly translate it?” PEOPLE. This stuff takes time and effort and it’s not why I’m studying languages!!!

  1. You suddenly find your native language inadequate to express yourself

Native language

So many words are required to describe something for which there is not a term in your native language. It gives your speech a certain je ne sais quoi.

This is the fate you have chosen for yourself. But hey, when they said that languages would open doors for you, they weren’t wrong!

Gifs from giphy.com

16 comments

  • Being multilingual is only impressive in countries that are stuck with just one option. Most parts of the world have at least two languages they speak – it’s not even considered that special or much of a deal really!

    • Hello Marina! You’re completely right, which is why this post is so relatable! There are so many multilinguals in the world, and so many of them experience these issues 😛 We hope you enjoyed the blog!

  • 10 ways that studying languages ruins your life for a native english speaker. Because for everyone else on the planet, well, you have to at least learn english, or some other colonial language like german, french, spanish.

  • Just want to make clear that the “r” in chorizo is not rolled! The main issue here is the “z” which should be pronounced like a “th” 🙂

  • In Poland when you want to give a sign to the other party that you listen to what they’re saying, you say; “No” or “Aha”,but in Chinese you just make a throuty sound “n(g)”. So when I came back to Poland and my best friend was telling me about drama in her life I was saying “n(g)” all the time, and she asked whether I have a cough, which totally confused me, ’cause the sound was so familiar to me that I didnt even notice that I was doing it. And my Polish sounds retard now.
    Go learn languages, they said. You’ll see the world, they said. It’s true, but sometimes I just want to say: Not gonna move my ass from home for 2 years”, but nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

  • I guess I could learn a song in an unfamiliar language using the Internet in the time necessary for writing this article.

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