How would you say each one? I know that to hurt someone in the emotional sense is blesser. Would it make sense to say:

  • Je me suis blessé

To mean I hurt myself almost in a metaphorical way? As in, I got involved with someone I shouldn’t have, and I got hurt, but I knew better, so I did it to myself.

As opposed to:

  • Je me suis fais mal

Which I think means I got hurt in a physical sense.

1 Answer 1


If you say "Je me suis blessé" to a french person, he will understand that you got hurt in a physical sense. There's no doubt about it. And paradoxically, if you say "Je me suis fais du mal", it means that you hurt yourself in the emotional sense. In fact, "blesser" is not only in the emotional sense, it can be both, like "faire mal". And "faire du mal" is mainly about motion.

  • Tu m'as fait mal quand tu m'as pincé.

  • Quand tu as dit toutes ces méchancetés, ça m'a fait mal / ça m'a blessé.

  • Tu m'as fait beaucoup de mal à la fin de notre relation.

  • Je me suis fait mal / Je me suis blessé en tombant.

  • Je me suis fait du mal en tentant de la reconquérir.

  • That’s super interesting; gotta love the nuances, exceptions, little rules and such. :) Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 7:31
  • 1
    You can see the nuance about "blesser" here and the nuance about "mal" here. You've got more interesting examples.
    – purerstamp
    Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 7:36

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