Are you struggling with whether to write ‘relate to’ or ‘relate with’? This article will cover that as well as how to use the phrase appropriately.
The short answer is that ‘relate to’ is the correct way to say this phrase. Though both of these phrases are technically correct, it’s grammatically correct to say 'relate to' most of the time.
So, how do you know when it's acceptable to use 'relate to' versus 'relate with'? Let's take a look at both cases.
The most common way to use the phrase is to say ‘relate to.’ You’d use the phrase ‘relate to’ when the meaning of the verb is about connections. For example, you might tell someone you relate to each other because you have a few things in common. You might also tell someone you can relate to their pain because you’ve experienced something similar to theirs.
On the other hand, when the verb is about communication, you’d typically use the phrase ‘relate with.’ It can also be used when ‘relate’ is expressed repetitively.
Let’s quickly define the term ‘relate to.’
According to Merriam-Webster, the term ‘relate to’ can be defined as “to connect (something) with (something else),” “to understand and like or have sympathy for (someone or something),” “used to describe how someone talks or behaves toward (someone else),” “to be connected with (someone or something): to be about (someone or something).”
Cambridge defines the term as “to find or show the connection between two or more things.”
As you learned in the previous section, ‘relate to’ and ‘relate with’ each has their own place in the English language.
In some cases, it’s okay to use ‘relate with’ instead of ‘relate to,’ which we’ve touched on briefly in previous sections.
Understanding prepositions means knowing exactly what they are. A preposition can be defined as a “function word that typically combines with a noun phrase to form a phrase which usually expresses a modification or predication.”
In simple terms, a preposition is a word or group of words used before a noun, pronoun, or noun phrase to show direction, time, place, location, or spatial relationships or to introduce an object.
Let’s look at some examples, so you know exactly what we mean.
Some examples of prepositions include words like:
Prepositions can be tricky. Do you say interested in or interested on? On Friday or in Friday? Unto or Onto?
Prepositions that give direction are words like “onto,” “on,” “into,” and “in.”
Preposition words that describe places are “over,” next to,” “underneath,” “over,” and “at.”
Prepositions that discuss time include words like “at,” “on,” or “in.”
Prepositions that describe spatial relationships include words like “toward,” “around,” “behind,” and “among.”
Now that we’ve got a bit of background information on prepositions and how to use the phrases correctly, let’s look at some examples of how to use them in a sentence.
Check out examples of how to use ‘relate to’ in a sentence:
Now, let’s see some examples of how to use ‘relate with’ in a sentence:
To recap, using ‘relate to’ is the phrase you might hear most often, although it’s still correct to say ‘relate with’ in some cases.
Remember, you’d use the phrase ‘relate to’ when the meaning of the verb is about connections. However, when the verb is about communication, you’d use the phrase ‘relate with.’
For example, you’d say, ‘I relate to Anna really well.’ Or ‘I relate with this book so well.’
If your brain farts prevent you from remembering this info in the future, don’t be afraid to come back and check out our library of confusing words. We’ve got you covered on dozens of topics, words, and phrases.
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