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Using ser (not estar) to describe relationships

When we want to talk about relationships, such as family ties, friendship or romantic relationships, we use the verb ser (not estar).

For example:

María es mi madre.
María is my mother.

Él es mi hermano.
He is my brother.

In the examples above, we use ser to talk about family ties.

Laura es su amiga.
Laura is his friend.

Ramón y Marcos son mis amigos.
Ramón and Marcos are my friends.

As you can see above, we use ser to talk about friendships.

Marta es mi novia.
Marta is my girlfriend.

Daniel es tu marido.
Daniel is your husband.

In the examples above, we use ser to talk about romantic relationships.

See also Conjugate ser in El Presente (present tense)

Learn more about these related Spanish grammar topics

Examples and resources

Marta es mi novia.
Marta is my girlfriend.


Ramón y Marcos son mis amigos.
Ramón and Marcos are my friends.


Él es mi hermano.
He is my brother.


Laura es su amiga.
Laura is his friend.


María es mi madre.
María is my mother.


Daniel es tu marido.
Daniel is your husband.


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