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Translation Problems #002 – I’m being molested

Marta points to her 40 year old P.E. teacher and says “He molests me.” I smile a little bit and laugh.

The problem here starts with the fact that:

  • “Molestar” in Spanish means “to bother” or “to annoy”
  • “Molest” in English means “to sexually assault”

And it continues with the fact that

  • Every 12 year old on the planet loves to call people annoying
  • Hearing a 12 year old say they’ve been sexually assaulted is one of the most alarming things in the world

But I feel that this specific moment is my fault, because I’ve gotten so good at reading between the lines when Spaniards speak to me in English that I hardly even notice a mistake is being made.

Sorry, I’m not a miracle worker.

Helen Keller

“He annoys me. Annoys, you can say it, Marta!”

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