Do you know what the difference between reflective constructions and reciprocal constructions is? Discover it with the blog of El Rincón del Tándem.

One of the most frequent questions that the students of our Spanish school make us is about the difference between reflexive constructions and reciprocal constructions. These two constructions are very similar but have an important structural difference. Thus, in reflective constructions, the reflexive pronoun can be a direct complement or indirect complement. In contrast, in reciprocal constructions the reflexive pronoun has a reflexive function.

Reflective constructions

In reflexive constructions, subject and complement (direct or indirect) refer to the same person or thing. For example:

Me ducho por las mañanas = I take a shower in the morning
Lucía se acuesta tarde = Lucia goes to bed late
Marta se viste de una forma muy elegante = Marta dresses in a very elegant way.

Reciprocal constructions

In reciprocal constructions there is more than one subject that performs the reciprocal action, that is, there are more people doing an action to each other. See the examples below:

Isabel y Pedro no se hablan = Isabel and Pedro do not speak to each other
¿Cómo os conocisteis Ana y tú? = How did you and Ana meet each other?
Juan y Diana se han enamorado a primera vista = Juan and Diana have fallen in love with each other at first sight

And if you want to know more about reflexive constructions, we recommend you to read our previous blog.

We hope you like this post will be help you with your Spanish studies. Soon our Spanish school in Valencia will publish more posts about Spanish grammar and culture, so stay tuned!

Have a great day!