I've got a sentence that I would like to translate into Italian. I have a very, very limited knowledge of the Italian language so I'm a little stumped, ha, ha.

The sentence I would like translated is: "I struggle but I'll survive". It's to be used as a standalone sentence in a tattoo.

Google Translate translates this to "Faccio fatica ma io sopravviverò". Is this accurate? As I know GT can't really be trusted.

Thank you, Andy

  • 2
    The translation is roughly correct. Some more context would be useful for a more idiomatic translation. Moreover, aren't requests for translation off-topic for this site?
    – Denis Nardin
    Commented Feb 20, 2016 at 18:08
  • 1
    See meta.italian.stackexchange.com/questions/12/…
    – Denis Nardin
    Commented Feb 20, 2016 at 18:10
  • @DenisNardin No because I've already provided the research I've already found. My question is more like the second part of that link - the on topic rather than the first off topic section. This is to be a tattoo so it's just this sentence Commented Feb 20, 2016 at 18:15
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    At the very least, I'd remove the subject io: «Faccio fatica ma sopravviverò». Then, faccio fatica means indeed “I struggle”, but conveys more the idea that you are tiring, panting, sweating, more than, say, a fight against destiny or whomever. Is that the right image? Can you paraphrase your sentence? Is it something on the lines of «It won't be easy but I'll survive»?
    – DaG
    Commented Feb 20, 2016 at 18:28
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    I'd say something more like Sarà dura, ma ce la farò (It will be hard but I'll make it)
    – Denis Nardin
    Commented Feb 20, 2016 at 18:47

1 Answer 1


I'm not sure this is worth an answer, but here it is.

While not uncorrect the translation from Google translate has some points that mark it as a little unnatural:

  • Using the verbal form Faccio fatica has a connotation of physical or mental effort that, while also present in the English I struggle, is more pronounced in Italian. I think it would be a good translation in sentences like I struggle with grammar or He even struggles to walk.

  • The subject is often omitted in Italian when it is a pronoun. Again, this is not a mistake, per se, but it disrupts the flow of the sentence, putting more emphasis on the subject

  • The verb sopravviverò (I'll survive) is not what I'd use. I do not have any good rationale for this, but to me at least it has some undertones of "shrugging" (like someone said Oh well, I'll live in English). It is a personal interpretation and I'm sure other Italian speakers will disagree strongly with me on this.

The most idiomatic translation I'm able to make is

Sarà dura, ma ce la farò

that literally means It will be hard, but I'll make it.

  • I am an Italian speaker and completely concur with your take on sopravviverò. Farcela is much better. For a tattoo one could even go with barcollo ma non mollo, which unfortunately could be interpreted either as too tongue-in-cheek or, due to the regrettable history of the verb mollare, as - ilventennio.it/barcollo-mollo-p-30.html
    – LSerni
    Commented Jan 25, 2017 at 21:49

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