• My family - Our family
  • My company - Our company
  • My school - Our school
  • My team - Our team
  • ...

When talking about a group of people including myself to someone who is not part of that group, it seems to me that both my and our can be used interchangeably, as they will always carry the same meaning. Is there any guidance on how to choose?

  • I think it's entirely a matter of opinion (which may differ for any specific context) whether the less common plural conveys any subtle nuance. FWIW there are less than half-a-dozen written instances of our family were poor in Google Books, as compared to several hundred instances of my family were poor So if you just want to be "normal", stick with the (singular) crowd. Feb 10, 2016 at 18:44
  • 1
    Of course, in the US, it would be normal to say "Our family was poor" or "My family was poor." In fact, we were so poor, we couldn't even pay heed! Feb 10, 2016 at 18:46

1 Answer 1


I don't think my and our are necessarily the same. If I say Our family eats turkey New Year's Eve, I mean that my family including me but if I say My family eats turkey New Year's Eve I may be referring to the rest of my family but not me. Our implies a potentially closer affinity between the speaker or writer and the group.

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