Doing some translation work for a comic and I'm trying to come up with a good alternative for ma'am. The specific context of the scene is a cop arriving at a crime scene and asking a woman, "Ma'am, are you okay?"

To my understanding, Japanese doesn't really have any direct equivalents to Ma'am/Sir, so I'm unsure what word/expression to use, especially in this context of what a police officer would use to address a civilian of similar age while also maintaining politeness and police professionalism. Thanks

1 Answer 1


Assuming this is a story set in modern Japan and the cop does not have some peculiar personality, it's best to ignore "ma'am" and just say 大丈夫ですか. If you really need a word to draw her attention before it, it would be あのー ("hello") or すみません ("excuse me").

ご婦人 might be used if the story is set in the Taisho period (see this), but this is virtually obsolete in modern Japanese. お嬢さん might be another option when the woman is relatively young, but it's not common anymore, either.

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