Interested in Language
May I start the following sentence with 'to live' instead of 'living'? Would the change bring a difference in meaning?
Living alone is tiring.
In many cases, the gerund (-ing form) and the infinitive (to form) have identical or nearly identical meanings.
I love to eat ice cream
I love eating ice cream.
I some cases, the two forms have very different meanings.
On the way to the doctor's office, he stopped to smoke. (had a cigarette)
On the way to the doctor's office, he stopped smoking. (gave up cigarettes)
In some cases, the two forms have subtle differences. In those cases, the infinitive form is more theoretical and the gerund form is more real.
I would put your sentence in the third category. "To live alone is tiring" is more theoretical for me than real, whereas "living alone is tiring" is more real than theoretical.
Pope of the Dictionary.com Forum