Don’t Call Me BROTHER!! – Malaysia v.s Japan Brother Culture

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Hi guys!! It’s me again. Shen Lim TV – When Malaysia meets Japan series ^^

Some people asked me
“Shen, why do you make vlogs?”
The answer is simple.

“Because I have something to SAY!”

Nowadays, internet allows us to express ourselves more easily than before. And vlogging is a very efficient way to let people speak out their mind on internet. Think about ourselves. Students like us don’t get chances to stand on the TED talk stage and be introduced after the big screen with “Idea Worth Spreading”, we don’t get chances to publish book or be interviewed on a TV show. So what can we do?


Vlogging! If you said the right things, the video will spread itself for you.


So today, I have something to SAY again. lol To put it short….


Don’t Call Me BROTHER!!

Have you seen this kinds of BROTHERS around you?

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mean they are bad people. You know, sometimes they are just joking. Don’t apply my video to every brother situation, ok? :p


Why Japanese people don’t call you brother easily – 2 Japanese idioms

Why japanese people dont call you brother easily? Malaysian vs Japan

Here let’s remember 2 idioms that I think it’s related to the culture of “Japanese people don’t call you brother easily”, which means they tend to keep a certain distance with you.

親しき仲礼儀あり Shitashiki Naka Reigi Ari

Means we have to keep good manners even between best friends.

Living in Japan, you may have realized that “why I always feel distance between me and Japanese people?” Yes, I’ve experienced that too. But if you understand the culture behind their behavior – keeping good manners between friends, or even family is a virtue – then you won’t feel strange any more. That is why they don’t become too close to their friends, like in Malaysia one could call another “BROTHER” randomly.


夫婦は他人 Fufu Wa Tanin 
Means even between a married couple, one should respect each other as an independent individual.

I have noticed many Malaysian married couples that, often, they get too close to each other that they forgot to keep good manners such as “Saying thank you” or “asking for a favor politely”….etc.  In Japan, even after marriage, one should still keep a certain distance so that good manners remain in the relationship.

This explains pretty well why they don’t call you brother easily, because they keep distance even with their significant one.


What about 兄貴 Aniki?

Yeah, good point that you have realized! There is a term 兄貴 Aniki in Japanese, meaning “Brother”. So why do you still insist that Japanese people don’t call you brother?

Of course, if you are familiar with Japan Yakuza culture, we all know that Yakuza has strong brotherhood culture. In Yakuza case, they call their superior Aniki. But nowadays, it’s not usual to hear Aniki among young Japanese generation.

But sometimes we still can hear Japanese say, “This is my Aniki. He has helped me a lot when I was having a bad time.” Yes, some people still form Aniki relationship, but only with the people they are really close to, or they received help from. Compared to Malaysia “Brother culture”, it’s virtually different. 🙂



When Malaysia meets Japan series vlogs are intended to spread Japanese and Malaysian culture & value, and to find a balance point between these two very different cultures. As I usually say, there is no good or bad about culture, but only understanding about it.  Hope you got something new from my 5 min video 😀 Peace~



Shen Lim
A Chinese Malaysian, Blogger, Vlogger on YouTube, Tour Guide in Japan. He believes 1 day his videos can bring Japan and Malaysia together. マレーシア華人、ブロガー、YouTubeクリエイター、日本にいるツアーガイドです。いつか自分の動画は日本とマレーシアを繋げる架け橋になると信じています。 Read more ABOUT him.

This Post Has 53 Comments

  1. Ester Maria Martins

    Nyaaa ~ until finally your video! I was eager to see what would get ready!
    Rsrs Neh brother? And put more videos in the week! I really like your
    channel! (^ ^) / Kisses for you

  2. ShenLimTV

    意味的には伝えたいことはそれだと思いますが、私の解釈でいうと、夫婦は他人とは 「夫婦っていうのは元々は他人同士なんだから
    育ってきた環境や価値観が異なるのは当然のこと。 それをお互い理解して認め合って行きましょうね。」 ということだと思いますね 🙂

  3. ShenLimTV


  4. Yihui Yeow

    Hey 学长!Remember you did a sharing session on studying in Japan at Pay Fong
    last year? I was there listening. ^ ^ Happened to find your Youtube channel
    via Facebook. I like Japanese language and culture a lot and I have to say
    you’re doing such a good job at promoting Malaysian and Japanese culture !
    Not to mention your videos are really funny 🙂 I personally love watching
    Youtube videos and I’m glad to see more and more Malaysian Youtubers
    emerging. Stay awesome ! I subscribed. 😉

  5. ShenLimTV

    Hi Yihui! Of course I remember it 🙂 It was my first time sharing in Pay
    Fong. But sorry I don’t remember where you were sitting >< Thanks for watching my videos, and all the compliments ^^ Keep up your Japanese language learning ya! Don't give up! It will pay off someday 🙂 Thanks for subscribing! Hope you will like my other works too ^^

  6. stuka918

    真的很喜歡馬來西亞人的mandarin accent,是華人之中最有活力的那種~~~ And I do think that it is common
    in the Chinese culture to name someone else as brothers for taking
    advantage of you XD Shen Lim加油呀,識睇廣東話嗎??

  7. ShenLimTV

    好開心聽到你講你鍾意馬來西亞嘅中文口音 ^^ 其實我自己心中一直有個疑問,「點解馬來西亞華人見到台灣人同中國人都要特登配合人地改口音?」
    我覺得馬來西亞嘅華語係一種優美嘅文化,我地應該挺起胸膛同其他國家嘅中文口音一起交流,俾更多人認識我地嘅口音 ^^
    所以我係自己嘅video裡邊一直都用緊馬來西亞口音 😀 如果有聽唔明嘅地方,請你多多包涵啊~~ 你嚟到馬來西亞一定好受大家歡迎 ^^
    再次多謝你支持我嘅channel 🙂

  8. kjpopgirl95

    很有趣的短片!^^ 谢谢你让我认识到日本的日常生活上的一些点滴。 有个问题想问问你。请问你花了多久的时间才能够把日语说的那么流利? 用了什么方法呢?

  9. ShenLimTV

    哈罗谢谢你支持我的视频 ^^ 不客气~我也很开心能让更多人了解日本的生活。 我的日语并没有很流利。马来西亚的口音还是很重的 ^^”
    我2008年开始学日语的,在东京学了1年日语后考取日语能力考试1级。主要的用的方式是读日本书,看日本电视节目,用日文写部落格 ^^”

  10. Weewee Mah

    哈哈哈 回答你的問題 爲什麽馬來西亞人到台灣或中國要特地改口音 不改的話他們聽不懂 你還要解釋多一次 所以省力才跟他們口音講話囉
    我跟比較熟的台灣朋友就直接用馬來西亞華語講了 他們聽久就習慣了 哈哈

  11. ShenLimTV

    赞同~我们讲我们的口音的话很多时候别人听不懂 @@

  12. Kurayami Hikari

    sadly, there’s no maimai facebook page XD but they are clans around KL
    though, i am one of the clan leaders :3 facebook .com/Jr.Clan <-- this is my clan's facebook 😛 btw, u should try it out and make a vlog for it since u're in japan 😀 I WOULD LIKE TO WATCH IT XD

  13. ShenLimTV

    @Kily Aramori
    なるほど!Hey sisterと呼ばれたんですね。おもしろいw
    日本にもbrother sister 文化が少しずつ流行り出している気がしますけど、どうですか?@@

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