27 March, 2017

10 struggles when learning Swedish

Before you move to another country, it is good if you have some understanding of the language, at least to a certain extent. We are so lucky that we have to learn the “easy” language that’s Swedish, which often isn’t that easy at all!

“Ju” is the vaguest word ever

You see it everywhere, yet there is not really a good description of what it means and Swedes can’t really explain it either. What does it mean?!

Confusion when you didn’t know “utan” sometimes meant “but”

Simple sentences could leave you very confused. “Kvinnan dricker inte te, utan kaffe”, the woman doesn’t drink tea without coffee?! Is that normal in Swedish culture?

It’s difficult to not laugh sometimes

Swedish always sounds adorable, but when you don’t know what the words mean it seems like it goes up and down even more!  As long as you don’t laugh at people speaking Swedish in person it’s all good! Although that can also be hard sometimes..

When you need to write “att” and when not is always a struggle


You think you know the language almost perfectly, until you’re actually in the country

Apparently there are still sooo many words you didn’t know. But no worries! Once you’re actually in the country, you learn it much easier as you’re surrounded by it constantly.

The a and å are so annoying

They look very similar, but Words have a totally different meaning if you write an a instead of an å. Super annoying and confusing! Jättesvart! Eller… svårt.

In your head you sound fluent, but when you say it out loud you sound like a potato

Even the most difficult words are no problem to pronounce in your head, but for some reason your mouth isn’t always able to make the sounds (Kungsträdgården.. I still struggle with that!)! Practice practice practice

When people ask you to speak Swedish…

“OH you’re learning Swedish!?”

” Yes :)”

“Ooh can you say something in Swedish?”

“Sure! Ehh.. Well *forgets entire language*”

It feels so good when you start to understand more and more

You can finally listen to a podcast and understand most of it. All the work is finally paying off! And it feels sooo good! Until you listen to the song Boten Anna and still don’t understand what they’re talking about..

Sometimes you just want to give up

It can be sooo frustrating! is it really worth it? they all speak English anyway.. But YES, it is worth it!  Just work hard, it’ll be easy at some point. Lycka till  🙂

Written by Lydia Hallie 

I’m Lydia, a 19-year-old Dutch girl living in Stockholm. I try to write many helpful posts to help younger people who recently moved to Sweden to get to know the country and how everything works here! 

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One Comment on “10 struggles when learning Swedish

23 January, 2018 at 20:21

“Kvinnan dricker inte te, utan kaffe” means the woman does not drink tea, but she drinks coffee.
In a negation statement, we use “utan” instead of “men” when we mean “but”.
Other example: jag gillar inte grönsaker, utan choklad = I do not like vegetables, but I like chocolate 🙂

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