3 not 2
"family" is a 3-syllable word, not 2
"company" is a 3-syllable word
"different" is a 3-syllable word
"difference" is a 3-syllable word
"favorite" is a 3-syllable word
"theater" is a 3-syllable word
"memory" is a 3-syllable word
"insurance" is a 3-syllable word
"medicine" is a 3-syllable word
Mispronunciation of these nine words always grates on my nerves…makes the hair on my neck stand out.
It's common suburban-mother-speak to extoll the virtues of "faamlee" in a whiney, shrill voice. Likewise the less-common "comp'ny" when talking about businesses. And to hear someone say "differnt" or "fave-ert" or "fave-rit" or "theeter" or "memry" is appalling. To hear Texans say "INshernce" is probably not surprising, however quirky. But hearing the Brits (gold standard English-speakers) pronounce "medcine" is very troubling.
They are all 3-syllable words; let's do our best to articulate…hear the syllables in proper pronunciation. "What is a syllable?" you ask. Dictionary definition below for your convenience; even though it doesn't help my understanding — and probably doesn't do much for yours, either!
Take particular note of the television commercials for products made by SC Johnson, a household products company in Wisconsin. The audio sting at the end of each spot says, "SC Johnson, a family company," often mispronouncing BOTH of our target words.
a unit of pronunciation having one vowel sound, with or without surrounding consonants, forming the whole or a part of a word; e.g., there are two syllables in water and three in inferno.