A girl is worried and upset because she believes she is more excited and happy about the relationship with her boyfriend than he is. So she says:


I think the sentence means something like "It feels I am the only one who is happy...", with ばっかり meaning "only one". However, if my translation is indeed correct, wouldn't だけ (maybe even しか too, but that would need to have the sentence changed to negative form) fit better than ばっかり to express "I am the only one happy, not him but just me" ? Because I understood ばっかり rather means "there’s so much of something to the point where there’s nothing else"... and I am not sure said meaning fits here (or does it?)

Am I getting the meaning/nuance of ばっかりin this context wrong?

1 Answer 1


Your translation is correct. ばっかり (colloquialism for ばかり) in this sentence is indeed "only", and it's interchangeable with だけ here.

It's だらけ that only means "so much/many of something". ばかり has a wider usage.

  • 美しいものだらけだ。: OK, "so many beautiful things"
  • 美しいものばかりだ。: OK, "(almost) only beautiful things", "so many beautiful things"
  • 美しいものだけだ。: OK, "only beautiful things"
  • × お前だらけが儲かっている。: Wrong
  • お前ばかりが儲かっている。: OK, "only you"
  • お前だけが儲かっている。: OK, "only you"
  • Thank you. Just one question, if it's interchangeable with だけ here, are they totally equal in meaning in this context, or does ばっかり emphasizes her feelings more than だけ? Afaik, だけ is more emotionally neutral. Commented Jul 11, 2019 at 12:09
  • だけ and ばかり would be more or less interchangeable. I think ばっかり is, in addition to being more colloquial, also putting in more feeling into the sentence, so in that sense ばっかり and だけ are not fully interchangeable here, and ばっかり is probably a better choice.
    – Tuomo
    Commented Jul 11, 2019 at 14:11

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