1. MeLlamoGodzilla Junior Member

    Indiana
    English
    Buenas,

    It's difficult for me to understand why in some situations "se" is used with reflexive verbs.

    For example: "Se me cae el pelo."

    An example without the "se": "Me duele el rodillo."

    Wouldn't it be just as good to say: "Me cae el pelo"?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Quique Alfaro

    Quique Alfaro Senior Member

    Santa Fe, Argentina
    castellano
    Hola:

    El verbo es caerse. Referido al pelo: desprenderse. No es propiamente un verbo reflexivo (no se puede agregar se cae a sí mismo), sino verbo pronominal.

    El pelo se cae.

    La rodilla duele. El verbo es doler. Generalmente se usa con el objeto indirecto (la persona que sufre el dolor). La rodilla me duele / La rodilla le duele.

    Si se le cae a uno: El pelo se me cae.

    Si dices el pelo me cae, sonaría muy raro y se entendería que el pelo te está cayendo encima (on you), no desprendiéndosete (off you).

    Sí podrías decir, el pelo me cae sobre la cara y me tapa los ojos.
     
  3. duvija

    duvija Senior Member

    Chicago
    Spanish - Uruguay
    Y además, el rodillo es lo que llevo en la mano (en mi avatar). La parte del cuerpo es 'la rodilla'.
     
  4. juan082937 Senior Member

    español
     
  5. Milton Sand

    Milton Sand Modómano, 'mano

    Bucaramanga, Colombia
    Español (Colombia)
    Hello,

    Please, review previous posts dealing with the same subject, by looking up the terms in the WR Dictionary:
    cae pelo (the search engine shows results using both terms)
    duele rodilla (shows: a veces me duele la rodilla) (see "knee" to be sure of the Spanish word)

    And be sure to familiarize with the forum Rules, tricks & tips.

    As for your query, the reflexive pronouns in Spanish are called like that just because they match with the subject, not necesarily because the direct object (receiving the action) and the subject (performing the action) should be the same being.

    Some intransitive verbs in Spanish take a (pseudo-)reflexive particle to indicate a sense of "experience" (a usage called voz media); the reflexive particle itself has no translation but modifies the meaning of the verb. Common sense makes it clear. Other types of verbs takes reflexive pronuns to get other kind of senses; but those are subjects for separated discussions. (This reminds me of we Spanish speakers having to learn the phrasal verbs that change their meaning according to a preposition).

    El pelo le cae con gracia sobre los hombros. = Her hair falls gracely over her shoulders.
    El pelo se le cae sobre los hombros. = Her hair is falling off on her shoulders.

    Regards,
    ;)
     
  6. RicardoElAbogado Senior Member

    SF Bay Area, California
    American English
    The most important thing to learn is that the term "reflexive verb" is a misnomer; it misleads learners. It's best to think of them as "pronominal verb," which, as the name suggests, means verbs that come with pronouns.

    Quejarse means to complain. There is no such verb as quejar. There is only quejarse. And I can't think of a less reflexive verb than to complain!

    As Milton and the others have commented, a pronominal verb may have a different meaning from its counterpart without the pronoun. So far as I know, there is no shortcut to learning how the meaning changes when a non-pronominal verb becomes pronominal. I have a book "750 Spanish Verbs and Their Uses" and studying that is the closest I have come to finding a shortcut. (And some Spanish verbs change meaning according to their prepositions too! It's just not fair to us English-speakers :mad: )

    [Paragraph setting out an interesting secondary question, deleted by moderator. Sorry for the inconvenience. If you wish, you may open a separate thread. MS]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2013
  7. Quique Alfaro

    Quique Alfaro Senior Member

    Santa Fe, Argentina
    castellano
    Hola:

    La partícula se forma parte del verbo.

    arrepentirse, fugarse, obstinarse, portarse (behave), ufanarse, desgañitarse y muchos otros al igual que quejarse se usan sólo como pronominales.

    ir: to go
    irse: to leave.

    ocurrírle a uno: to happen to someone
    ocurrírsele a uno: to come to someone's mind

    ahogarse, hundirse, levantarse.
     
  8. Pitt Senior Member

    Germany
    German
    Se me cae el pelo.
    el pelo = sujeto
    se = componente del verbo pronominal intransitivo caerse
    me = complemento indirecto

    Me cae el pelo. :confused:
    En mi opinión para una acción involuntaria se usa caerse, no se usa caer.
    Ejemplo: Se me cayó el lapiz.

    Me duele la rodilla.
    la rodilla = sujeto
    me = complemento indirecto

    Un saludo
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  9. Milton Sand

    Milton Sand Modómano, 'mano

    Bucaramanga, Colombia
    Español (Colombia)
    hi,
    [Deleted reply to deleted comment]
    Pitt, "Me cae el pelo" is actually correct. It means, "The hair falls on me" (imagine yourself crouching down under a hairdresser chair.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  10. Pitt Senior Member

    Germany
    German
    Thanks! I think in the meaning "loss of hair" (caída del cabello, médico = alopecia) is used "se me cae el pelo".
    Se me cae el pelo = I am losing my hair. Is this correct?

    Regards
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  11. Milton Sand

    Milton Sand Modómano, 'mano

    Bucaramanga, Colombia
    Español (Colombia)
    Indeed! Let's say "caer" means "to go and/or slope downwards involuntarily" while "caerse" has a sense of "to lost a permanent/stable position and then to go and/or slope downwards... involuntarily".
    :D
     
  12. juan082937 Senior Member

    español
    A reflexive pronoun with nominal function is different from a Reflexive pronoun with NO nominal function ( pronominals the 'se' is just a marker for such verbs).
    Juan se lava las manos (reflexive pronoun with nominal function)

    Juan subject is the agent-Patient of the actión and se= IO manos= DO.

    Juan se durmió en la conferencia, here the subject is just a patient of the action dormirse ( pronominal verb) if the verb is transitive it is detransivized with 'SE'
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  13. Pitt Senior Member

    Germany
    German
    Se me cae el pelo ( 'SE') reflexive pronoun with nominal function (se=IO Pelo= DO)
    Caerse is a TRANSITIVE VERB. #4

    Lo veo así:

    Se me cae el pelo.
    el pelo = sujeto
    se = parte del verbo pronominal intransitivo caerse
    me = complemento indirecto
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2013
  14. MeLlamoGodzilla Junior Member

    Indiana
    English
    Thank you all for you great responses!

    I think I understand this now. It was so troubling for me for a long time, and I'm glad I finally know.

    Thanks!
     

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