Como esta or Como estan tu familia?

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Which one is correct? Thank you

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updated JUL 24, 2009
posted by Polyglot1day

7 Answers

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"¿Cómo están todos'" is "How is everybody'" (Literally, "How are all'", but nobody talks like that in this country anymore.) It may or may not have anything to do with the family. ¿Cómo están todos? (de la clase) ¿Cómo están todos? (atrapados en una mina)

"¿Cómo están todos [del]en[/del] de tu familia'" is not the same as "¿Cómo está tu familia'" Why change the question just to have one that uses a plural verb? (In English the singular verb is used in both cases ... "How is your family'" "How is everybody in your family'", since very few would say, "How are all in your family'")

The question "¿Cómo está tu familia'" is asking about the unit. The family unit could be fine while some or all of the members are sick, for example. "¿Cómo están todos de tu familia'" is asking about the members of the family. If you want to make up more sentences, you could also say "¿Cómo está cada uno de tu familia'". Now you are not asking about "everybody,"but about each individual member of the group. Ad nauseam.

Interesting side note ... not too long ago there was a thread about this same kind of thing, collective nouns. I think it was something to do with "The Rolling Stones is/are coming to ..." It seems that in Britain the plural verb is sometimes used with collective nouns. Someone from Britain commented on that thread that they would say (something like), "My family are all well."

updated JUL 24, 2009
posted by hhmdirocco
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Not to take away from Heidita (because she is absolutely correct), you could be referring to your family memebers and say están.

Such as ¿Cómo están todos (en tu familia)?

The point is, are you referring to the family as a whole, or to the individuals? That will make the distinction.

So, as you wrote your sentence, only [del]¿Cómo está tu familia'[/del] makes sense.

Sorry, Nathaniel, but the sentence still sounds crap: "todos" is plural, but "estas" is singular, and "familia" is singular, so you must say "está"; no compromise.

There are a few cases where these things are possible (although strict agreement is preferable grammatically speaking): when the noun is collective and singular, the preposition is "de", and the complement is plural. See examples below:

La mayoría de los clientes es/son...

La mitad de los clientes es/son...

I'm not sure why you crossed out ¿Cómo está tu familia? Also, ¿Cómo están todos? (When referring to the family) is perfectly acceptable and something that I have heard native speakers say many times.

updated JUL 24, 2009
posted by Nathaniel
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Not to take away from Heidita (because she is absolutely correct), you could be referring to your family memebers and say están.

Such as ¿Cómo están todos (en tu familia)?

The point is, are you referring to the family as a whole, or to the individuals? That will make the distinction.

So, as you wrote your sentence, only [del]¿Cómo está tu familia'[/del] makes sense.

Sorry, Nathaniel, but the sentence still sounds crap: "todos" is plural, but "estas" is singular, and "familia" is singular, so you must say "está"; no compromise.

There are a few cases where these things are possible (although strict agreement is preferable grammatically speaking): when the noun is collective and singular, the preposition is "de", and the complement is plural. See examples below:

La mayoría de los clientes es/son...
La mitad de los clientes es/son...

updated JUL 23, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
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Not to take away from Heidita (because she is absolutely correct), you could be referring to your family memebers and say están.

Such as ¿Cómo están todos (en tu familia)?

The point is, are you referring to the family as a whole, or to the individuals? That will make the distinction.

So, as you wrote your sentence, only ¿Cómo está tu familia? makes sense.

updated JUL 23, 2009
posted by Nathaniel
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The same is true for "gente" which for me was a little strange at first.

Actually in English we use family the same way you would in Spanish

¿Cómo está la familia?

¿Donde está la gente'

updated JUL 23, 2009
posted by Lezipo
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Thank you once again .

updated JUL 23, 2009
posted by Polyglot1day
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Hola poliglot: Lo correcto es está, familia se considera una unidad.

¿Cómo está tu familia'

updated JUL 23, 2009
posted by 00494d19