This article originally featured in the February 2022 issue of Connect.


Hey all! Welcome to February. This month’s Japanese pun is pretty apt for the Valentine’s season, though I hope all your love is requited.

片思いで肩重い (kataomoi de kata omoi)—Unrequited love is heavy on my shoulders

For this month’s vocabulary, I’ll go a bit into the different kinds of chocolate given, though it is unfortunately up to you to figure out which type to give to whom!



バレンタイン, varentain, Valentine

彼氏, kareshi, Boyfriend

彼女, kanojo, Girlfriend

恋人, koibito, Gender-neutral romantic partner

告白, kokuhaku, Confession

デート, deto, Date

友チョコ, tomo choco, Friendship chocolate

義理チョコ, giri choco, Obligation chocolate (for your boss and coworkers)

本命チョコ, honmei choco, “True romantic feelings” chocolate

逆チョコ, gyaku choco, “Reverse” chocolate (given by a boy to a girl)

自分チョコ, jibun choco, “Self” chocolate (chocolate bought for yourself—the most important kind)


Photo by: Debby Hudson