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  1. #1
    sky3120's Avatar
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    Default Do not treat me like...

    Hello, here is a kind of easy but confusing sentence for me to understand, so could you help me analyze it.

    Do not treat me like your father!

    I know that it is an easy one but I think that I can understand it in two ways.

    1) Someone treats me, considering me to be his / her father although I am not.

    2) Someone treats me in a similar way his / her father treats me.

    Can I analyze the sentence like this or native English speakers do not think like that?

    I know that I should consider contexts first of all and I will but I want to open all possibilities. Could you help me

    out please.

    Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Do not treat me like...

    Do not treat me like your father! = 2) Someone treats me in a similar way his / her father treats me.

    Do not treat me as if I'm your father! =1) Someone treats me, considering me to be his / her father although I am not.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Do not treat me like...

    I think I can safely speak for 99.5% of native speakes when I say that if someone says "Don't treat me like your father" he means "Don't treat me the way you treat your father, or the way you would treat a father-figure."

    The idea that it would mean "Don't treat me the way your father treats me" would be a VERY distant second choice.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Do not treat me like...

    Now I have understood your reply. Thank you.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Do not treat me like...

    Could it also be 'Don't treat me like your father does'? (don't treat me in the same manner your father treats me)
    Not a teacher.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Do not treat me like...

    Quote Originally Posted by BrunaBC View Post
    Could it also be 'Don't treat me like your father does'? (don't treat me in the same manner your father treats me)
    See post #3

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Do not treat me like...

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    I think I can safely speak for 99.5% of native speakes when I say that if someone says "Don't treat me like your father" he means "Don't treat me the way you treat your father, or the way you would treat a father-figure."

    The idea that it would mean "Don't treat me the way your father treats me" would be a VERY distant second choice.
    Indeed Until about 60 years ago it was common for teachers to hold that that interpretation was simply wrong and that it 'should' be 'Don't treat me as your father does'. (My grandfather got particularly upset about the ad that said 'Winston tastes good, like a cigarette should' on the grounds that the 'like' should be 'as'.)

    Not many people observe this distinction any more, but I think it can be a useful one.

    b

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