I was reading through a Duolingo discussion thread when I came across the question:

But why is it "me llamo" and not "me llama", but "me gusta" and not "me gusto"?

I was about to answer with "because gustar is not reflexive," but then I got to wondering if that was really true. I then got to wondering, How do I say "I like myself"?

So, I searched the web for an answer. I came across many a page that told me that gustar is not reflexive. I even went to the Diccionario de la lengua española, and sure enough, I got this:

enter image description here

Nevertheless, when I went to Reverso and searched for Spanish translations of "I like myself," I discovered at least 12 examples of some form of "me gusto" (which is what I had been expecting).

And as if that weren't enough, Google's Ngram shows plenty of examples of "me gusto":

enter image description here

So, while I want to answer this question, I am a little uncertain on how to go about it. I decided that posting this question here to get some insight from experts would be a good place to start.

Si "gustarse" no existe en la lengua española, ¿por qué "me gusto" ha llegado a la lengua?

Estaba leyendo un hilo de discusión de Duolingo cuando me encontré con la pregunta:

[Véanse arriba en la sección inglesa.]

Estaba a punto de responder con "porque gustar no es reflexivo", pero luego me puse a pensar si eso era realmente cierto. Luego me puse a preguntar, ¿cómo se dice "I like myself"?

Así que busqué una respuesta en la red. Encontré muchas páginas que me decían que gustar no es reflexivo. Incluso fui al Diccionario de la lengua española, y efectivamente, me dio esto:

[Véanse arriba en la sección inglesa.]

Sin embargo, cuando fui a Reverso y busqué traducciones al español de "me gusto", descubrí al menos 12 ejemplos de alguna forma de "me gusto" (que es lo que había estado esperando).

Y como si no fuera suficiente, el Ngram de Google muestra un montón de ejemplos de "me gusto":

[Véanse arriba en la sección inglesa.]

Así que, aunque quiero responder a esta pregunta, no sé muy bien cómo hacerlo. Decidí que publicar esta pregunta aquí para obtener la opinión de los expertos sería un buen punto de partida.

Por el amor del tiempo, traducción realizada, en parte, con la versión gratuita del traductor www.DeepL.com/Translator.

  • 1
    1. There are so many not-great translations of children's books, self-help books, etc., etc., and I think sometimes a not-great translations of an expression takes on a life of its own. This might be one of those cases. A notable exception is a children's book called "I Like Myself" by Karen Beaumont, which was published in Spanish as "¡Me gusta cómo soy! ." Except I have some doubts about the accent in como. 2. Accents frequently get left off by accident, so an automated counting program could easily come up with a miscount. 3. I think Reverso is a total waste of time. Jan 3, 2022 at 15:28
  • Yes, although one can say: Me gusto a mi mismo, who would say that?
    – Lambie
    Jan 4, 2022 at 18:12

1 Answer 1


You will not find gustarse in the DLE because verbs in the DLE are almost always cited using their basic infinitive form. When the verb admits a pronominal usage, if this usage has a different meaning, the DLE labels that usage as prnl. If the pronominal usage is a just a variant of the non-pronominal one, the DLE ends the entry with the label U. t. c. prnl. (“Usado también como pronominal”). There is only a handful of Spanish verbs which can only function as pronominal, like arrepentirse, which, accordingly, has its own entry in the DLE (there is no entry for *arrepentir).

Truly reflexive usages of verbs are not included in the DLE. There is no mirarse in the DLE because if I say, for example, “Me miro en el espejo”, this is obviously a reflexive statement: the subject and the object of the verb mirar are the same, or more correctly, their reference is the same (the 1st person singular). You do not need to know anything in particular about the verb mirar to understand this; it is just basic grammar.

“Me gusto” is a true reflexive statement. The subject of the verb (what is liked) is the 1st person singular, as is the indirect object (the person who likes the subject). The meaning of the reflexive form of gustar does not need a clarification, so the dictionary does not list it separately.

  • 1
    I started reading this answer and thought, Wow, this is brilliant ... who wrote this? And then I saw that it was you. You're amazing, pablodf76. You're one of the best things to ever happen to Spanish Stack Exchange.
    – Lisa Beck
    Jan 5, 2022 at 0:41
  • Thanks a lot, Lisa!
    – pablodf76
    Jan 6, 2022 at 0:01

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