Lo que soy hoy en día se lo debo a mi padre.

German Translation

Ich verdanke das, was ich heute bin, meinem Vater.

I believe “se … debo” stems from “deberse”.

“Lo que soy se lo debo a …” as I currently understand it would then mean something like “That which I am is due to …” (I could be wrong though).

How do you understand this sentence?

No, this is actually le + lo becoming se lo.

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Thank you for the feedback! Could both points be true? Or, asked differently, why is “le” necessary?

Could it be that “deber” combined with a pronoun (“le” in this case) means “to be due to”? This is the point I wanted to make. To express the meaning of this sentence, you need to add a pronoun to “deber”.

But, as you say, “le” combined with “lo” makes “le” change to “se”.

Thanks for helping out a beginner. :slight_smile:

I think you should rephrase the question as “why is le used”? My non-native answer is that it’s not necessary but it’s idiomatic. To understand this sentence, you need to know that one basic meaning of deber is “to owe”: “I owe it to my father what I am today”.

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If it would stem from “deberse”, wouldn’t it become “me lo debo a mi padre”?

Theoretically, yes, but deberse is only used impersonally, and it doesn’t take an object.


I did not know that. That’s helpful! Thank you @morbrorper :slightly_smiling_face:

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