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20 English phrases for talking about relationships

There are many ways to talk about relationships. In this lesson, you will learn some expressions to talk about different kind of relationships from being friends to dating, or married, or even divorced.

Not in a relationship

  1. Just friends

You have a friend and you are not dating to him/her. You are just friends. You can say.

He is not my boyfriend. We are just friends.

  1. Single

When you are not married to anyone, you’re still single.

A: Are you married?
B: No, I’m single.

  1. platonic

A platonic relationship is a more specific and formal way of saying “We are just friends”.

A: Is he your boyfriend?
B: Well, our relationship is only platonic.


Learn more: Talking about life


Beginning of Relationship

  1. Ask someone out

This is a very traditional way of asking someone to go on a date.

I want to ask her out. What do you think?

  1. Fall in love with someone/ be into someone

You are falling in love with someone means you love that person. You can also say that you are “into” someone.

I’m falling in love with her now. But I don’t think she’s into me.

  1. Seeing someone.

Use this phrase to describe when you have already on a date with someone for a few times. It means you go out on date with the person you are seeing regularly. But the relationship might not be closed very much.

A: Do you have a girlfriend?
B: No, but I’m kind of seeing a classmate.

  1. hook up

The relationship is always very complicated. When you are interested in dating someone, you can use this phrase. Or more than that, you can use this expression when you have a sexual experience with someone before dating.

Hooking up with Jane yesterday night was the sweetest date in my life.

  1. dating

To be in the early stage of relationship, you go out on dates to find out what each other like.

James and Mary are dating.


Learn more: Can I make an appointment?


In a relationship

  1. Boyfriend/Girlfriend

Now you begin a relationship with someone.

She is my girlfriend. I love her very much.

  1. in a relationship

A formal way of saying that you have a boyfriend or a girlfriend.

We are a in relationship.

  1. get engaged

Before you decide to marry each other, you get engaged.

A: Are you married
B: No, we’ve just get engaged.

  1. married

You have a wedding with someone and legally being husband or wife.

Finally, we are happily married.

  1. newlyweds

The first year or the second year after the marriage is called newlyweds.

The newlyweds got married last month.

  1. partners

Two persons live with each other but never get married. They have a serious relationship but they might think marriage is not necessary. Or they are gays and they are not allowed to get married in some countries …

My partner and I decided to move to New York city.


Learn more: Have you got any brothers and sisters?


End of Relationships

  1. separated

When a married couple don’t want to live with each other. They separate and live on their own.

We are now separated. She took the kids and moved back to her home town.

  1. divorced

When a married couple separate legally.

Jane and I are divorced.

  1. broke up

When you end the relationship with someone you are dating?

A: Why don’t Jane come here with you?
B: Well, we broke up.

  1. dump (someone)

When someone breaks up the relationship with the other. It means he/she dumps the other peron.

I’m so sad. I can’t believe Jane dumps me.

  1. through

When you have an angry break up, we talk about it this way.

We broke up last month. Jane was through with me.

  1. ex/exes

When you divorce or break up with someone, that person is your “ex”: ex-boyfriend, ex-wife…

My ex-husband got married to my best friend.

Her ex-boyfriend is dating with me now.

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1 thought on “20 English phrases for talking about relationships”

  1. Talking about Life and commitments and relationships :: is very interesting,
    thus, it is so important to notify me with such information and what is up-to-date in English.
    Really, I benefit from these subjects to make my conversation better.
    Thank you.

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