Talking About Family in Korean: Essential Vocabulary, Titles and Cultural Norms

Of the third person pronouns, the feminine forms sound awkward and are mostly used when translating texts from other languages. 그 was originally used for both genders and still is in conversation. Same goes for your older brothers and sisters, the keun (큰) and jageun (작은) prefixes are added when there are several of them. An-saram (안사람) – dispensary in camden michigan referring to the wife while talking to other people, literally means ‘the inside person’ since wives stayed in the inner quarters of the house back then. Add 님 suffix after the term to make it sound respectful when addressing the maternal or paternal side of the family. In the example above, Claire has only one “oppa”, but Mary has two.

This can also be used when talking about your mother to others. You can also use this when talking about your father to others. In this blog, we will introduce some of the most commonly used Korean words and phrases that you can use in the… Let’s learn some important verbs that are commonly used when it comes to family. Check out more quotes about family at “Top 10 Quotes about Family” on our website.

The term or title used to address mother-in-law in Korean depends on which side of the family she belongs to. Mother-in-law in Korean for the husband’s side is called 어머님 or 시어머니 . People always talk about their family when it comes to self-introductions. Koreans value family a lot, and we love talking about our family. In this blog, we’ll teach you many useful phrases to describe your family, as well as essential family titles for you to study to expand your vocabulary skills. After reading this article, you should have no trouble talking about your brother in Korean, or letting people know about your family as a whole.

The only difference is that some are used in formal settings, and others in informal settings. If talking to someone younger than the speaker, one may use the person’s name. For example, talking to a teacher or certain other professionals (e.g. a manager), one may use 선생님 (seonsaengnim, “teacher”).

It’s so complicated that sometimes even Koreans struggle to remember all the titles. But don’t worry; you don’t need to memorize all the titles. Just try to memorize the most important Korean family titles, since they’re used every day. If you’re married and have a family, you need to know how to say how many kids you have, too. The most common words to say “son” and “daughter” are 아들 and 딸 , respectively. Again, you’d probably address your wife’s in-law parents with the standard 어머니 or 아버지 with the addition of 님 for respect.

One of these terms is 여보 (yuh-bo) which essentially translates to “darling” or “sweetheart.” This term is used exclusively by married couples. If a younger or unmarried couple uses this term, they’re trying to be cutesy or pretend to be married. To learn and practice family vocabulary, it’s a great idea to immerse yourself in real Korean media like Korean movies, K-drama and podcasts. These authentic learning materials will show you how native Korean speakers refer to their family members, while also teaching you about the dynamics of Korean families. If names are to be added to honorifics, then they’d be the surname, which would go before the honorific.

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