Japanese Slang: What'd you call a Mummy's Boy in Japanese? A Mazakon?

When you are learning a foreign language, studying slang is a nice and fun way to widen your vocabulary. Not only will you speak more fluently but you will also sound more like a native speaker and surprise your Japanese friends! It also provides an insight into the Japanese culture. Let’s learn the expression “mazakon”.

A Psychological Problem?
Talking about your Husbands
Talking about your Boyfriends

A Psychological Problem?

Oedipus complex, or more simply “mother complex”, is a psychology term that was invented by the psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud at the end of the ninetieth century. Directly translated by “マザーコンプレックス” (mazaa konpurekkusu) in Japanese katakana, the term gave birth to a Japanese English made expression: “マザコン”, “mazakon”.

Not far from the original meaning, the slang mazakon has for meaning an “inferiority complex”, in which “complex” could be very well replaced by “dependance” or “attachment”. In other words, mother complex means that a person has a strong attachment to his mother that continues into adulthood. The expression is used quite broadly by Japanese and mazakon can refer to the following kinds of people:

1. A person who is spoiled by his mother and cannot gain independence from his parents.
2. A person who cannot stand up to his mother and does whatever he is told.
3. A person who wants his female love interests to look like his mother.
4. A person who has romantic feelings toward older women who are close to his mother’s age.

As for a more polite but not less hurtful alternative to Mazakon, an expression known as “まま大好き”, “mama daisuki” can often be used. Daiksuki in this case, means to like / love something very much.

You would be surprised to know that this topic is very often brought by Japanese magazines and websites, wondering about Japanese men’ tendency to stay close to their mother! Indeed, it would seem that the “mazakon mentality” is commonly observed in Japanese men and women are very concerned about dating one!


Talking about your Husbands

【Jyosei no tomodachi doushi no kaiwa】
Uchino danna, itsumo jibun no hahaoya no mikata bakkari nano.
Gambatte gohan o tsukutte agetemo, itsumo “okaasan ga tsukutta houga oishii”tte.
Iishi. Hontou, haratatsu!
Eee! Sorewa atama ni kurune.
Deshou? Mou kanzen ni mazakon dayo!

【A conversation between friends】
A: My husband always takes his mother’s side in everything. Even though I try hard to cook food for him, he always says that his mother’s cooking tastes better. It really makes me mad!!
B: Wow, that must drive you crazy.
A: You see? He has a total mazakon!


Talking about your Boyfriends

【Jyosei no tomodachi doushi no kaiwa】
A:ちょっと、ちょっと、聞いてよ! 彼って相当なマザコンだったのよ!
Chotto, chotto, kii te yo! Kare tte soutouna mazakon datta no yo!
E ~, mazakon datta no?
Saikin issho ni kurashi hajimeta nda kedo, “kaasan dattara yatte kureru no ni” tte itte bakkari de, mou gaman dekinai!
A 〜, yappari mazakon wa chotto

【A conversation between friends】
A: Hey, listen! My boyfriend really is a momma’s boy!
B: Eh, he had a mother complex?
A: Although we recently started living together,  I am always told “if it was my mother, she would do it”, I cannot take it anymore!
B: Yeah, really momma’s boy… 

Credit CC BY-SA 2.0: A.L.P.H.A
Title: ママはどこだよ、食事はどこだよ
source: Flickr

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