isusbellus wrote:Well.. I can't ignore it anymore.. I have to learn some Danish. Swedish is not enough to understand Danish.
Where to start?
Shouldn’t it be a no-brainer for a Swedish-speaking person?
I don’t know how exactly you should approach it – maybe some Danish TV, Danish books, talking to a Danish person.
Why do you want to learn Danish?
Why don’t you just speak Swedish slowly and confidently every time you meet a Danish person, and ask them to speak slowly and using only Danish when they reply to you?
My Swedish is very basic, and my Danish has become better than it already, even though Swedish is so much easier to hear and understand sometimes. Just because I’m able to hear it, I can use my knowledge of other languages to understand it (Danish, English, German).
To me it’s really strange to be in Denmark at the moment – people say I speak great Danish, but that’s not at all accurate and indeed I have a huge problem hearing what exactly Danes say. That creates a barrier in communication, as I’m not comfortable not being able to express myself with fluency and not hearing half of what they say. At the same time, there’s this feeling that I already know this language, which discourages me from investing time and effort in it, as it’s so similar to English, and I don’t really feel like studying it, because it feels like a waste of time. I would rather study something completely foreign, like Arabic or Finnish.
For you it should be much easier, as almost any word will have an equivalent in Swedish, so with a little bit of ear training you should be able to recognise every word and get used to the very slightly different expressions.
I don’t understand why a Swedish-speaking person and a Danish-speaking one will ever talk to each other in English (like you could have written here in Swedish as well!) I even try to speak to Bosnian- and Russian-speaking people using Bulgarian sometimes, and believe me these three languages are much further apart from each other than Swedish, Norwegian and Danish are. But it was strange to watch last week how one Norwegian guy talked to my Danish colleague super confidently using Norwegian, and she got so awkward not being able or even making the effort to understand. He thought she was a complete douchebag, and I was the one who had to make things less awkward by telling the guy that I understood him without a problem (which I did perfectly, with my foreigner’s and basic level Danish).
One more thought on the topic – English is compulsory the first foreign language in every school in Denmark. It is not in my home country, which makes it that I already speak better English than most Danes, because I picked another language in school and therefore eventually learnt both. If I were to make the regulations, I would make Swedish and Norwegian compulsory instead, in order to encourage people in the country to learn and use the languages of their neighbours, especially when they’re that close, rather than use English as a universal quick fix.