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Why You And Your Girlfriend Need To Learn Another Language

A new language is like a secret code.
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Maybe you got a C in high school Spanish. Maybe you’re a polyglot who already knows six languages. Or maybe you’ve never even thought about learning anything but English.

No matter where you fall on that spectrum, you and your girlfriend should learn another language together. It will bring you closer, spice up your love life and transform date nights into creative adventures.

Okay, you say. But how?


1. It’s a Project

Learning a language requires hours. Several hundred hours, in fact. But these hours will fly by when you’re working on something with your girlfriend, and you two will bond over the challenge of picking up a new tongue.

Learning a language is a long-term project that requires consistency, so the two of you can work together to decide how much you want to invest. If you’re a native English speaker, then French, Spanish or Afrikaans will be easiest to learn. If you want a challenge, choose a language that doesn’t use a Roman alphabet, like Arabic or Chinese.

When you’re learning a language, the whole world becomes your classroom – and a romantic date spot. What does a typical night for you and your girlfriend look like? Netflix? Take-out dinner? Homework?

Instead, picture you and your girlfriend sitting by a fire, learning to write love letters to each other in Japanese. Picture you both watching a black and white French film while sharing chocolate-covered strawberries. Or dancing the night away at salsa and bachata classes in Spanish. Or making a dozen new friends at an Italian conversation meet-up. When you’re learning another language, the ordinary – letters, movies, dancing, conversation – becomes a romantic and interesting date idea.


2. It’s a Secret Code

Your girlfriend looks particularly attractive today, and you want to tell her all the naughty things you want to do. Unfortunately, your parents are sitting across the table. Solution? You could wait until you and your girlfriend get home. Or you could switch to Swahili and say, Nakutaka – I want you.

It’s gratifying to share something with your partner. You’ll start to text in a mixture of English and another language. You’ll send each other funny cartoons or idioms. You’ll develop your own inside jokes. It’s almost like the language is just between you and her.


3. It’s a Gateway

If your girlfriend’s family speaks another language, the best way to earn their approval and demonstrate your commitment is to ask her to teach you that language. That’s also the best way to truly learn about her culture. Without knowing the language of her family, you’ll always be missing a key part of who she is.

Sure, you’ll mispronounce words and incorrectly conjugate verbs and confuse subject-adjective agreement. But the point is that you’re trying. The more you try, the more you will learn about her and the closer you will become.

Discouraged? Consider setting up a reward system. Every time you say something correctly, she gives you a kiss. Every time you don’t, she gives you a naughty punishment…


Ready, set, go!

Here are some free and fun resources to help you get started.

  • Duolingo offers twenty languages languages, everything from Spanish to Ukranian to Esperanto. It works on a game-based system, so you won’t even realize you’re learning. Compete against your girlfriend for the highest score. Loser has to do dishes.
  • Language Zen only offers Spanish, but will add more languages soon. This revolutionary program teaches you through songs and personalizes itself based on your language goals. The goal is to take the anxiety out of learning a language. With Language Zen, learning it has never been easier.
  • Fluent in Three Months may sound hardcore, but this course proves that anyone can learn any language with ease through immersion. This website offers guidebooks, blog posts, newsletters and a helpful community of thousands of people, so that you and your girlfriend can connect with others.

Happy language-learning! Viel Glück! (Good luck!)

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Author
J. Marie graduated from Duke University with a degree in International Relations and dreams of being a creative writer--dreams she's now realizing as a musical theatre writer in NYC. She's passionate about global black identities, black representation in media, and leather-bound notebooks. She also loves backpacking through a new country at a moment's notice, and speaks Spanish, Swahili and Standard Arabic.

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