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Expressing Emotions - Pleasure and Sadness

How to say happy or sad in Japanese


Expressing your emotions is an important part of communication. Adjectives are used when expressing emotions.

  • Ureshii うれしい --- glad, happy

  • Shiawasena 幸せな --- happy, fortunate

  • Zannenna 残念な --- unfortunate, disappointing

  • Kanashii 悲しい --- sad

  • Sabishii さびしい --- lonely

    Emotions are usually expressed straightforwardly, therefore informal speeches are widely used. Here are some useful expressions. Click here to learn about the sentence ending particles. ("naa", "nee" etc.)

  • Ureshii naa. (Male speech) うれしいなあ。 --- I am glad!
    Ureshii wa. (Female speech) うれしいわ。

  • Shiawase da naa. (M) 幸せだなあ。 --- I am happy!
    Shiawase da wa. (F) 幸せだわ。

  • Zannen da naa. (M) 残念だなあ。 --- I am sorry to hear that.
    Zannen nee. (F) 残念ねえ。

  • Kanashii naa. (M) 悲しいなあ。 --- I am sad.
    Kanashii wa. (F) 悲しいわ。

    When describing someone's emotions, "~sou desu (looks, seems)" is added to the stem of the adjective.

  • Yuki wa shiawase sou desu. ゆきは幸せそうです。 --- Yuki looks happy.

  • Chichi wa totemo sabishi sou deshita. 父はとてもさびしそうでした。 --- My father seemed very lonely.
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