우리 as “my” (also 네 and 저희)

In Korean, 제 (“my”) isn’t used for things you don’t actually posess (such as people and buildings like house/school/bank etc)

When I was a beginner, I learned that spouses, children, pets, and 친구 were exceptions. You could use 제(저의) for those.

When I received tutoring, I learned that this wasn’t completely true. When writing, those are exceptions; however, when speaking, you should still use 우리.

When I was reading “나보다 우리” (“our” over “my”) from “Reading Korean with Culture book 3”, It said the same thing. The author was confused why their friend was saying 우리 남편 instead of 내 남편. (This goes with what I had learned about exceptions existing in writing vs speaking) and the Author also mentioned how 우리 can be added in front of individual names too to show closeness and affection.

This is also how 우리 is explained in the “Learn! Korean with BTS” series. They explain that they say 우리 아미 because 우리 shows affection.

So while you may learn that exceptions exist with 우리, they exist in the written language rather than speaking (at least from what I have been encountering)

.

-> when you want to refer to someone elses “posession” that would use 우리 rather than 제 when speaking in the first person, you use 네.

애들린네 아빠 Adelyn’s dad

우리 친구네 집 my friend’s house

etc. but in some cases (like 애들린네 아빠), it may be more natural to drop the 네. (I was told 친구 집 and 친구네 집 are both used)

.

저희

-> This is the honorific/more polite form of 우리. This is used when you are speaking in more formal situations or to someone way older for example. The usage of 저희 vs 우리 depends on who you are talking TO, not who you are talking about (when it’s being used as “my”)

I think 123learnkorean may have explained it better so here is theirs

.

Let me know if you have questions or see any mistakes!

~ Shelbi

Published by Hannah & Shelbi

We are just 2 students who wish to share the love and joy of learning language through lesson posts and translations! We are doing this for fun, based on our experience and questions we ask native speakers. We are not fluent! Just passionate  ~ Hannah, Shelbi, and Jordan

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