Proverb – El Salvador

“Dime con quien andas y te dire quien eres”

“Tell who you are with and I will tell you who you are”

“Tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are”

My dad told me that he learned this proverb when he was about eleven years old. He said that this proverb is mostly used to tell people that they get associated with the people they are around. This proverb is used to teach kids that they need to careful when choosing their friends and stay away from bad people because they might get confused as being bad. My dad told me that it is usually told to kids when they are hanging around bad people. Parents and other adults say the proverb to indicate that they could easily be mistaken of being bad. He first heard the proverb when he was spending time with older kids who liked to cause some trouble around the neighborhood. They would be loud and play jokes on other people. His parents told him to watch out and to become a better person. He also told me that it is a great proverb as it teaches you to become more careful with your decisions.

I agree with my dad with the meaning of this proverb. I think that this is a great lesson to teach anyone. If you do not want to be mistaken as a bad influence, you should not be around bad people. In other words, surround yourself around winners and you will become a winner. The proverb indicates that I can tell you who you are, just by knowing who you friends are. I have also seen this proverb being used here in the United States. I remember when people would tell me that I should be around good influences and follow their example in order to succeed and to stay away from bad influences. This is a great lesson and so it is found in El Salvador, other Hispanic countries and the United States. I was able to find this proverb written in a Mexican proverb dictionary.

Annotation: Glazer, Mark. A Dictionary of Mexican American Proverbs. New York: Greenwood Press: 1987. Page xiv