Spanish Language Blog

How to say “I’ve been doing something” in Spanish Posted by on May 27, 2011 in Spanish Grammar

Hey, there! How’s it going?

Sometimes we need to adapt some structures in English and Spanish to get our meaning across. That happens when we say we’ve been doing something for some time in Spanish. Read some examples:

I’ve been telling you this for a year, but you don’t pay any attention.
Durante un año te he estado diciendo lo mismo pero tú no me haces caso.
Llevo un año diciéndote eso pero tú no me haces caso.

Notice that we can use the Pretérito Perfecto Compuesto Progresivo (haber + participio pasado de estar + gerundio) or the expression llevar + gerundio. More examples:

I’ve been studying Spanish for a year.
He estado estudiando español un año.
Llevo un año estudiando español.

I’ve defended these principles all my life.
He estado defendiendo esots principios toda mi vida.
Llevo toda mi vida defendiendo estos principios.

He’s been waiting for two hours.
Ha estado esperando dos horas.
Lleva esperando dos horas.

How long have you been studying Spanish?
¿Cuánto tiempo hace que has estado estudiando español?
¿Cuánto tiempo llevas estudiando español?

Eso es todo por hoy. Nos vemos prontito.

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About the Author: Adir

English / Spanish teacher and translator for over 20 years. I have been blogging since 2007 and I am also a professional singer in my spare time.