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What age is considered too old in Japan?

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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby bishoujo » Wed 05.20.2009 8:48 pm

Sorry for asking a vague question. Doki doki...I meant how old is too old for young people in Japan. I want to go there and teach english but that will probably be when I'm 24. I was wondering if people will call me old....
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby astaroth » Wed 05.20.2009 9:24 pm

I don't really know, but I think it depends. It also depends on how old you will look like -- don't forget it's very hard to judge one's age if one's not accustomed to some characteristics of age: I'm Italian and when I moved to US 6 years I was thinking everybody was 5~10 years younger than what they really were.
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby chikara » Wed 05.20.2009 10:49 pm

What age is considered too old in Japan?

Who said there is no such thing as a stupid question? :P

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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby Sairana » Thu 05.21.2009 12:44 am

bishoujo wrote:Sorry for asking a vague question. Doki doki...I meant how old is too old for young people in Japan. I want to go there and teach english but that will probably be when I'm 24. I was wondering if people will call me old....


It's not that it was vague, it's that the question is.... subjective. I'm 30-ish, but my kids think I'm ancient, and have for the past 5 years. When my son was 4, he asked me in a completely serious manner if I had ever seen a dinosaur.

You're going to have children calling you old if you're significantly outside their peer range. You'll have other people calling you an inexperienced child if you're below their peer range. Honestly, if you're so self conscious that the idea of children thinking you're old bothers you...... teaching is going to be a big eye-opener.

Children will always find every single character flaw you have and point it out in the most painful way possible, ESPECIALLY when you are in a position of authority over them.
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby keatonatron » Thu 05.21.2009 3:06 am

The average life span in Japan is (as far as I know) the longest in the world. In the US, when talking about ages that people die at:

50 is way too young
65 is a shame
70 is "got the short end of the stick"
85 is normal
95 is "wow!"

But in Japan, I think it's more like:

65 is way too young
75 is a shame
85 is 惜しい
95 is normal
110 is 頑張ったね!

I don't mean to say that the average life span is 95, but if you go at that age no one seems to think anything of it one way or the other :wink:

But really, the original question is absurd. 25 is too old to be attending high school, but other than that people generally do things later in life than in the US. It's perfectly normal to get your first driver's license when you're 25, live with your parents until you're 27, get married when you're 35, and (really) retire when you're 80.

Of course all of those things are more dependent on the cost of living than anything else. :?
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby furrykef » Thu 05.21.2009 3:31 am

Sairana wrote:When my son was 4, he asked me in a completely serious manner if I had ever seen a dinosaur.


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keatonaton wrote:It's perfectly normal to get your first driver's license when you're 25, live with your parents until you're 27, get married when you're 35, and (really) retire when you're 80.


I suppose my life might be more normal if I were in Japan, then... :lol:
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby Harisenbon » Thu 05.21.2009 4:15 am

keatonatron wrote: get married when you're 35,


not in inaka. ;)
My wife was considered to be cutting it close getting married at 28. :lol:
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby keatonatron » Thu 05.21.2009 6:30 am

Harisenbon wrote:not in inaka. ;)
My wife was considered to be cutting it close getting married at 28. :lol:


Well, where you live there's nothing to do but have babies :lol:

Also, Inaka is very roomy so people get (need) driver's licenses sooner, and rent is cheaper so people can easily move out at a much younger age.

Basically, Japan's Inaka is just like the US :roll:
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby JaySee » Thu 05.21.2009 6:35 am

astaroth wrote:I don't really know, but I think it depends. It also depends on how old you will look like -- don't forget it's very hard to judge one's age if one's not accustomed to some characteristics of age: I'm Italian and when I moved to US 6 years I was thinking everybody was 5~10 years younger than what they really were.


I agree. Many Japanese people tend to grossly overestimate the age of white people (which I guess is because white people generally really do tend to look older than East Asians). When people in Japan asked me how old I was, I would always reply "how old do you think I am?". I was 20/21 at the time, but most people thought I was at least 26 or 27. One girl even thought I was in my fourties and married, then when I showed her I had no ring around my finger she exclaimed "Eh!? You're divorced?!". I'm almost 24 now and I'm going back to Japan in October; let's hope this time people won't start asking me where my wheelchair is :P
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby astaroth » Thu 05.21.2009 7:40 am

keatonatron wrote:It's perfectly normal to get your first driver's license when you're 25, live with your parents until you're 27, get married when you're 35, and (really) retire when you're 80.

Wow, sounds like Italy! :)
Except for the driving license which people usually get at 18 and I was considered weird because I got it when I waited till I was 20.
JaySee wrote:I agree. Many Japanese people tend to grossly overestimate the age of white people (which I guess is because white people generally really do tend to look older than East Asians).

Indeed, I had a friend back in New York who is Chinese. The first time I saw him I thought he was some kind of child prodige as I thought he was much younger than I. Only later I discovered I was older than he.
It's not easy to judge one's age. Most Americans I know have no or little facial air and usually their face looks a bit chubby (I wasn't my intention to offend anyone in here) so I overly underestimated their age. I was talking with a friend, who is American, and I seriously thought he was roughly my age ... he is 10 years older ...
Last edited by astaroth on Thu 05.21.2009 8:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby keatonatron » Thu 05.21.2009 8:14 am

When I showed a picture of my younger brother to my Japanese friends, they all thought he was my dad just because he has a big beard.

Japanese facial hair is usually so thin, that if I don't shave for just a week people start to think I'm 10 years older than I am.
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby furrykef » Thu 05.21.2009 6:53 pm

That would make for some interesting possibilities... like if you're filming a movie in Japan, you could play a dual role. Shoot a bunch of scenes with a beard on, shave, shoot some more scenes... you could play a guy and the guy's kid! :lol:
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby Harisenbon » Thu 05.21.2009 7:59 pm

keatonatron wrote:When I showed a picture of my younger brother to my Japanese friends, they all thought he was my dad just because he has a big beard.


Because of my beard, everyone thinks I'm around 10 years older than I am. Even people who know my age default to the "oh, I know he's around my age, but I think he's a year or two older" even though I'm the youngest of all my friends.

Three years ago my wife's co-worker thought I was 38. I was 25. :/
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby becki_kanou » Thu 05.21.2009 10:51 pm

I find that I generally think Japanese people are a lot younger than they really are as well. When I first met my husband I thought he was the same age as me, but he's actually 9 years older.
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Re: What age is considered too old in Japan?

Postby tōkai devotee » Thu 05.21.2009 11:05 pm

bishoujo wrote:Sorry for asking a vague question. Doki doki...I meant how old is too old for young people in Japan. I want to go there and teach english but that will probably be when I'm 24. I was wondering if people will call me old....


You certainly won't be called old at just 24 years of age. In my experience Japanese people have a great deal of respect for teachers, irrespective of their age. In one of the EIKAIWA places I worked at in Japan, there were teachers ranging in age from early 20's to in their 50's and they were treated with equal respect. I don't think that age really matters that much. Of course, if you're older, you have more experience and might be a better teacher because of it.
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