Have you ever been in a relationship with someone who speaks a different language than you? Was it something you bonded over or struggled with?
One woman didn’t tell her boyfriend she knows how to speak his native language, and when he found out, he was very angry with her.
She’s 27 and has been with her 29-year-old boyfriend, Jake, for a few months. Jake is Mexican-American but moved to Berlin, where she’s from, for work.
They speak English together, although she often hears him speaking Spanish around the house. What her boyfriend didn’t know since the start of their relationship was that she speaks Spanish too. He never asked her.
“I’ve heard him speak Spanish on the phone many times and inquired about this, but he’s never asked me if I speak it,” she said.
“It just felt weird to mention it when he didn’t seem to care enough to ask if I spoke any other languages apart from German and English.”
Jake has witnessed her watching telenovelas before bed but has never stopped to ask what she knows about the Spanish language.
Recently, Jake had a friend from the United States over to Berlin, and they all had dinner together. At the table, Jake and his friend started speaking Spanish in front of her. Jake’s friend asked her if she knew how to speak Spanish or if she wanted him to switch to English.
Jake answered in Spanish for her, thinking she wouldn’t understand what he was saying. He was quick to shut her down and told his friend, no, she doesn’t speak Spanish.
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