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I've been told that the common English phrase "I'll miss you" would be best said in Japanese by:

寂しくなりますね

What I feel from this ね is that there is a sort of mutual acknowledgement assumed by the speaker.

My question is whether ”ね” can be replaced by for "よ” in this sentence. I thought it could, and if so would provide more of an emphasis (like maybe the other person didn't expect you would miss them). In fact, based on my (possibly incomplete) sense of ね vs よ I almost feel that よ matches up better with the common phrase "I'll miss you" (though maybe an exclamation would be required when written to match more closely".

Can someone please tell me whether よ (as in 寂しくなりますよ) would be appropriate, and if not why?

  • 「寂しくなるよ。」は自然ですもんね・・ – Chocolate Sep 20 '17 at 3:26
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Whether 寂しくなりますよ sounds natural depends on intonation.

  • 寂しくなりますよ? (rising tone): (You should/n't do something, or) I'll miss you. Are you sure of that?
  • 寂しくなりますよ↓ (falling tone): "I'll miss you * sigh *

So, the first one is not so much saying the speaker actually misses someone as warning for something. The second one is quite natural to express one's depression. That said, …なりますね will be much more common after all in conversation between native speakers.

な or ね are a marker that implies the speaker's impression is formed through observation. In this case, it conveys a feel that goes "Looking back on this and that, they still make me miss you after all". In addition, in this case it further fulfills the condition to use as a marker to seek sympathy as well (i.e sharing the observation). So, it incline us to use very much.

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I think the tone severely changes when it comes to phrases about personal feelings about someone.

As I'm sure you already know, ね as an ending particle is a light suggestion which invites understanding, similar to how in English we might end a sentence with "right?" or "you know?" よ as an ending particle is a stronger suggestion which expects understanding, similar to how in English we might assert our sentence with "you know." or with an exclamation mark.

So, think of these two variations on the same phrase in English:

I'll miss you, you know?
I'll miss you, you know.

  • Thanks for the answer. Your description about the nuance of ね is inline with my understanding. But given this, why do you think someone would say to use "ね” (and not よ) to represent English "I'll miss you"? – Locksleyu Sep 19 '17 at 16:57
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    I think it's a conversational tone thing. Think of simple phrases like すごいね or 素敵だね and such. Using よ in sentences like this is pretty forceful, like you have to convince the other person to feel what you feel. There's this, and then there's also what the sentence actually translates to directly: 寂しくなる is not directly "I'll miss you", it's "I'll become lonely/sad (without you)." Putting a ね here sort of softens the sentence a bit – psosuna Sep 19 '17 at 17:21

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