Indirect Object Pronouns
(yo)me = to or for me
(tú)te = to or for you
(él)le = to or for him, her, usted or it
(nosotros/nosotras)nos = to or for us
(ellos/ellas)les = to or for them or those things
(ustedes)les = to or for all of you
Indirect object pronouns are used to express to whom or for whom an action is for. In English you can write: “I write the answers for John”. You could also write that substituting John for “him”. John is the indirect object. Using the indirect object for John it will be: “I write the answers for him.” In Spanish it works the same way. For the sentence “I write the answers for John.” Is “Yo escribo las respuestas para John.” Using the Indirect object you would say “Yo le escribo las respuestas.” In Spanish you notice that the indirect object (le) comes at the beginning of the sentence. Below are a few more examples:
1. Ella canta la canción a Mary y William. = She sings the song to Mary and William.
Ella les canta la canción. = She sings the song to them.
les = them (Mary and William)
2. Ellos compran un regalo para Silvia. = They buy Silvia a gift.
Ellos le compran un regalo. = They buy her a gift.
le = her (Sylvia)3.Yo te digo la verdad. = I tell you the truth.
In # 3 “te” is the indirect object, which in English is “you”
4. Ella me toca una canción.= She plays me a song.
“Me” is the indirect object meaning “me” in English.
5. Ellos dan el dinero a Juan y yo. = They give the money to Juan and I.
Ellos nos dan el dinero. = They give us the money.
nos = us (Juan and I)
If you have a sentence with two verbs, with one of them not conjugated, you can put the indirect object pronoun at the beginning of the sentences or you can stick it on the end of the non conjugated verb. You do this when using the present progressive and the future tense with ir + a + verb (not conjugated).
I am buying you the car. = Te estoy comprando el carro. or Estoy comprándote el carro.
I want to buy you a car. = Quiero comprarte un carro nuevo. or Te quiero comprar un carro nuevo.
She prefers to write him a card. = Ella le prefiere escribir una carta. or Ella prefiere escribirle una carta.
They will send us money. = Ellos nos van a madar dinero. or Ellos van a mandarnos dinero.
We are serving them coffee = Estamos sirviéndoles café. or Les estamos sirviendo café.
You need to ask me a question. = Necesitas preguntarme una pregunta. or Me necesitas preguntar una pregunta.