In many love songs, the singer calls their partner 君 (きみ).

But is this used by couples in real life, as of 2013? Should this word be considered obsolete, or is it still seeing some use outside of the pop world?

Note: I have heard きみ used in conversations between junior/senior, but here I am referring specifically to couples.

  • I've heard it in anime as recent as 2010, but I've only heard the man call the woman 君. – Ataraxia Dec 16 '13 at 15:35

In real life in 2013, not many people address their partners as 君. It is certainly not obsolete but only a small minority of us use the pronoun. You will hear it much more often in fiction such as song lyrics, manga, dramas, films, etc.

Most of us use first names or nicknames instead of pronouns. Some use pronouns like お[前]{まえ}(men to women) and あなた(more by women), and even fewer people would use 君.

Pronouns in general are NOT used by us native speakers nearly as often as Japanese-learners may be lead to believe.

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    ...Japanese-learners are generally specifically told that pronouns are not commonly used (to refer to other people; they are sometimes used for the first-person "I" or "me" for clarification). At least, that's my experience, and it seems to be generally the case. – V2Blast Dec 21 '13 at 2:28
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    別にそういうつもりで言っているわけじゃないと思いますが、東京名古屋さんが日本語を母語とする者全員を「us」と呼んでいると、私は少し不快に感じます。言うと何か自分の資格を一々誇示しているような感じです。(もちろん、これは東京名古屋さんの回答に感謝をしていないというわけではなくて、ただこういうなことはコメ欄以外のどこで言うべきなのかがよく分かりませんので。) – Darius Jahandarie Jan 10 '14 at 6:24

My boyfriend is Japanese and he's called me 君 twice now, both times in written communication. Each time it was kind of to emphasize that I'd said something kind of outrageous/surprising (that's how I interpreted it, anyway). Usually though, he calls me by my name.

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