In learning Spanish using immersion (which means putting up a Spanish bubble around you where you get Spanish input); chances are great that you will be encountering problems with people in your household.
In this post we will talk about ways of how to deal with that. Basically according to experience- it’s either one of the two:
1. Your family members get you to quit or:
2. Your family members end up getting to like Spanish as well BECAUSE OF YOUR INFLUENCE
Heck with the second scenario they might even end up learning Spanish as well.
What I learned about this is that this is only a matter of commitment on your part and acceptance on theirs.
What you need to remember is this: Adult family members will get freaked out at first; you just have to accept that fact –knowing that, you can now proceed with ease no matter what you get from them.
You will get social pressure from your family; you will get weird looks, insults, negative comments and discouragements like how you’re wasting your time and how all of your efforts will be for naught.
I bet for most of you this is already happening, right?
And who can blame them; learning Spanish can indeed look weird. Basically you’ll watch, listen and read stuff that only you (or not even you – at least at first) can understand. Off course the familial concern kicks in and they will instinctively try to stop you from what they think is “making you weird or odd”. They kind of unconsciously feel that you’re becoming some sort of a freak and an outcast.
You will feel like this rabbit with your family when learning languages:
It’s just like starting out a business- you will get nasty treatment from your friends and family because they think you are setting yourself up for broke but the truth is you just want to escape from the employee-life.
But what can you do?
Simple; JUST IGNORE them and CARRY ON!
You know better; you know that they are just reacting as they should. – They are just being “normal” but you- can you be just “normal”? NO! That is the last thing that you would want to do. You have a goal; you need to carry on, you need to fulfill that goal; the mission- learning another language.
SO CARRY ON, SOLDIER!!
While continuing, your family members who were very negative and skeptical at first might even get influenced by your efforts and interests.
They will absorb the power of attraction in you and they will react by responding positively to your Spanish (or Japanese or Portuguese or etc) bubble.
I find that the easiest to influence are the kids since kids (couldn’t care less about what you were doing in the first place – they will never be the one to get freaked out) basically don’t care about understanding the words but they just sit back and have fun (this is how most Asian kids learn English by the way) with the show and probably you are now on the stage of watching cartoons in Spanish so more or less the niños would probably relate to that and end up watching alongside you, laughing, and enjoying the show with you all the way.
As of this moment me, my daughter and my 10 year old nephew are enjoying Rosita Fresita (Strawberry shortcake). So far it’s going well and were all having a blast.
Probably the other adults would even be impressed by that fact but it doesn’t matter to you since impressing them is not the goal anyways –the goal is learning and getting Spanish input.
Continue with what you are doing if you really have a goal. If this is not important for you – then I won’t blame you if you tap out from studying Spanish (or any language you are learning) due to your family member’s nagging.
But if this is important for you- if you already know the value learning a language can bring to your life – then it don’t matter what nobody tell you. Remember you are not here to please anybody; you are here to fulfill your mission! Que Dios le bendiga.
But enough about me – How about you?
Have you been experiencing problems with your household? What is your experience regarding this and if it happened in the past: What did you do and how did you manage to keep on going? Please answer these on the comments below.