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What is the usual way to say something along the lines of "when I was young, petrol was cheap" or "when I was a kid, my family lived in Mexico".

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

You can say:

  • 当我年轻的时候,...
  • 我年轻的时候,...
  • 年轻的时候,...
  • 年轻时,...

In these cases, you are talking about the time when you were a young man (note: not a kid nor a teenager). Perhaps you are now in your 40s/50s/60s etc, and you are talking about your 20s/30s.

You could also say:

  • 当我年幼的时候,...
  • 当我还小的时候,...
  • 我年幼的时候,...
  • 我还小的时候,...
  • 我小时候,...
  • 小时候,...

In these cases, you are talking about the time when you were a kid or teenager.

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In spoken Chinese, just say 我小时候. – coolcfan Feb 14 '12 at 3:04
Can one use 年幼? – tao Aug 10 '13 at 5:49
not sure what the deal is with all the pedanticisms... 小时候 will work just fine. – user3306356 Apr 7 '14 at 10:13
@tao ,年幼 is more of written Chinese. – zsf222 Aug 26 '14 at 13:56

I'm not a native speaker but I have seen it as:


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我小时候 means you were younger that 10 years old, more or less. – hylepo Aug 21 '14 at 14:08

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