Family is a very common topic of conversation since it often plays such an important role in everyone's lives. Knowing some questions about someone else's family members and how to discuss your own will help prepare you for future conversations in English. Take a look at the questions, phrases, and examples we've gathered for you in the tables below and get ready for some small talk!

Asking about the Family

In the table below we have gathered many questions and examples that you can use to ask about other people's families. Check them out and then jump into a conversation!
   
 
How is your family?
 
Do you have any brothers or sister?
 
Do you have any siblings?
 
Who's the oldest sibling in your family?
 
Do you have a big family?
 
What are your parents like?
 
What do your parents do?
 
Are you married?
 
Do you have any children?
 
Is your family close?
 
 
Do you have any brothers or sister?
You could also use Do you have any siblings? to ask this same question. By using the sentence pattern: Do you have any + NOUN ? you can find out what family members somebody has. For example: Do you have any cousins?. There's lots of ways somebody could respond to this. An example response is: I have two cousins that live on the other side of the country.
Is your family close?
A close family is one that enjoys spending time with each other and are open and supportive of each other. The opposite of this would be an independent family. You could respond to this question in a number of ways. For example like this: Yes, we are very close with each other.

Talking About Your Family

It's great to ask questions and get to know somebody else's family, but you also need to be able to talk about your own family. In the table below we've gathered some phrases to help you do this.
   
 
I have two sisters.
 
I'm the middle child.
 
She has three siblings.
 
I'm an only child.
 
My brother works as an engineer.
 
My parents are pretty adventurous; they like to travel every year.
 
My family is doing great! How is yours?
 
We don't have any children.
 
I'm a twin.
 
My sister is going to college and is studying French.
 
My grandparents live out west.
 
My sister is such a daddy's girl.
 
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
 
 
I'm a twin
Twins are siblings that were born at the same time. Oftentimes twins look almost exactly the same, but this is not always the case. If somebody says that they are a twin, then you could respond with something like: Do you have a twin sister or twin brother?.
My sister is such a daddy's girl
This sentence describes a sister who is particularly attached to or spoiled by her father. You could also describe a male individual with a similar relationship with their father as a daddy's boy. Or if the individuals have a close relationship with their mother you would say they are a mamma's girl or mamma's boy. In response to a sentence like our example, somebody might ask something like: Were they always that close?.
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree
This is an English idiom that describes a child who has similar or even the same habits or talents as their parents. Maybe a father and son are both naturally good at playing guitar, or a daughter and her mother are fantastic painters? Both cases are good examples of when you could use this idiom. In response someone might say something like: Yea, they sure are similar to each other!.

Answers to the Most Common Questions

What are the most essential English phrases for talking about family?
  • How is your family?
  • Do you have any brothers or sister?
  • I have two sisters.
  • I'm the middle child.
  • Who's the oldest sibling in your family?
  • What are your parents like?
  • My family is doing great! How is yours?
  • I'm a twin.

Show All Phrases
What are the different abbreviations for members of my family?
There are lots of different words for different family members. You could call your father: dad, daddy, papa, or even pops. Your mother could be called: mom, mommy, or mama. You might call your brother and sister: bro and sis. There's also many different words for grandfather and grandmother, like: pop-pop, grandpa, granny, nana, or grandma.

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