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Talking About Your Family - IELTS/TOEFL

Basic Vocabulary for Talking About Family

When you're networking or connecting with other colleagues, talking about your family is a safe topic and a great way to build relationships. People love when you remember details about their children or their family; and you can begin by telling people about your family. If you have children, don't be afraid to mention them. You can say something like:

  • I have two children, both girls!

  • I have three children, one son and two daughters. Do you have kids?

  • I'm a new Dad/Mum, so excuse me if I'm a bit tired.

  • I have a teenager and an 8-year-old. Do you have any children?

  • My husband and I have twin boys.


If you don't have any children, you can simply mention your partner or your spouse:

  • I just got married last year to my husband/wife.

  • My wife and I moved here three years ago.

  • My partner and I love it here. There is so much to do.

  • My girlfriend and I go swimming every weekend.

  • My fiancé (male)/fiancée (female) loves nature. We love living near the mountains.


You should be careful about asking people if they are married, or if they have a boyfriend or girlfriend. They could get the wrong idea and think you're interested in them romantically! It's best to wait for the other person to bring it up. If you are married, your partner's family can be referred to as your 'in-laws':

  • We are very lucky. Our in-laws help out with the children a lot.

  • My family live quite far away, but my in-laws are just an hour's drive from here.


If you're not sure what to say, you can keep things general:

  • I come from a small family in the United States.

  • I have a big family in the U.K., and I'm the oldest of five!


Or maybe there's something interesting about your family:

  • My father is a scientist too.

  • My mother worked in a bank all her life.

  • My brother used to work in the White House. He has some great stories!

  • My parents run the coffee shop in town. Maybe you've been there?

  • My sister started her own company online, it's very successful.


Family businesses can also be very interesting for people to hear. Talking about how long a business has been operating shows that it is resilient, and that the company has stood the test of time:

  • We've been in this business for five generations.

  • My grandfather started the business, and since then, we've been going from strength to strength.

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