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tell me please how to use:"I was""I have been"

For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Language

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    As Ali pointed out, you are asking about the difference between the simple past and the present perfect. When something is completely finished and in the past, we use simple past (e.g., "I was at a restaurant last night"). When we started something in the past and it continues until now or is not finished, we use the present perfect (e.g., "I have been working for my company for two years"—you started two years ago and still work there today). We also use present perfect to talk about experiences in our lives that perhaps will be repeated (e.g., "I have been to London twice"—it is possible you will visit London again before you die, so we don't say "I went to London twice").

     

    When you want to talk about something which happened in a DEFINITE time, you have to use was/were. these are called auxiliary verbs.
    eg=>I was absent last session.(singular)
    eg=>We were at the party last night.(plural)
    But (I have been) is present perfect(before now) and used when an action happened in an INDEFINITE time.
    eg=>I have been mr.Smith's student once.(in this example I don't know when exactly)and sure thing there are 2 other usages of this type of tense.

    Aleksey:

    Here are some examples:

    I WAS sick last week, but now I am feeling fine.
    I HAVE BEEN sick since last week. (I am still sick.)

    I went to the doctor's office yesterday, I WAS there for only 45 minutes, The doctor gave me some medicine, and I went home.
    I am at the doctor's office now. I arrived at 1 p.m. It is now 2 p.m. I HAVE BEEN here for one hour, but the doctor still has not seen me! I am very angry.

    Tom WAS a journalist for 40 years. He is now retired.
    Mona HAS BEEN a journalist for 12 years. (She started in 2000.) She hopes to be a journalist for many more years.

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