Forum Rocket Spanish Spanish - Grammar Amo a mi familia, pero tendrán que vérselas sin mí este año.

Amo a mi familia, pero tendrán que vérselas sin mí este año.


I love my family, but they're going to have to do without me this year.

I don't seem to be able to get my head around "vérselas". I am guessing that "verse" refers to seeing each other but I have no idea what the "las" refers to (and I see nothing in the surrounding context that would refer to this). Maybe this is some sort of set formula?

(btw, this phrase was taken from the Spanish Travelogue course.)


Hi, Verselas is the Spanish name for a french town. I googled it, but it wouldn't hurt to check it out in  the My Vocab section of My Tools. I hope that it helps.


Hi. As it turns out, the name of a french town wouldn't fit in this context but thanks for passing on your observation.

Google didn't help much but turned up some helpful translations. As it turns out, this phrase corresponds to some very useful expressions (in English):
- have to cope with
- have to deal with
- have to contend with


"Vérselas" might be a French town... but in regard to Spanish dialect it is an idiomatic expression, i.e. has no direct English translation and secondly, the word's origin "versar" (meaning to "be about something")  has evolved to vérselas.  This translates roughly to "to deal with",  "to cope with- often unfavorably".  If you take the 2nd person subjunctive form of versar or "verse", add the direct object "las" to create verselas... then add the accent to maintain the integrity of the root word thus forming the imperative "vérselas".   If it were NOT idiomatic it would translate to "it is about/in regard to, them (them being fem plural).  Again however, it IS idiomatic thus our English-speaking angst always wanting a word-for-word translation just won't be satisfied here.  You can't overthink it- it just means "to deal/cope/work through" [something- most likely an undesirable situation].


Do we have a new Spanish expert on the forum? Welcome!

I missed that the root verb was versar. Thank you, CMcHan.


CMcHan, that was very helpful.  I just worked through that lesson myself, and while I gathered it was idiomatic, I had my own way of working out "vérselas" in my head, and it turns out I was not anywhere close.  LOL.  So...thanks!  

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