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    #1

    John and Clare having children?

    "John and Clare having children?" "Don't go there!"
    -----------------------------------------------------
    What does the sentence John and Clare having children? mean?
    I need native speakers' help.

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    Is that the entire conversation?

    It's not "Are John and Clare having children?"

    Or is the person expressing surprise?
    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.

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    #3

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Is that the entire conversation?

    It's not "Are John and Clare having children?"

    Or is the person expressing surprise?
    That's the entire conversation (quoted from a dictionary).
    It's not "Are John and Clare having children?"
    I am not a native speaker. I don't know if the person is expressing surprise.
    I need native speakers' help.

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    Could you provide a link, please?
    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.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    Quote Originally Posted by sitifan View Post
    "John and Clare having children?" "Don't go there!"
    -----------------------------------------------------
    What does the sentence John and Clare having children? mean?
    The speaker is expressing both surprise and disapproval of John and Clare having children. The first part is the surprise. The second part is the disapproval.

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    #6

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    What's the difference in meaning between the following sentences?
    1. Are John and Clare having children?
    2. Do John and Clare have children?
    I need native speakers' help.

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    #7

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Could you provide a link, please?

    24 don't go there

    spoken informal used to say that you do not want to think or talk about something: 'John and Clare having children?' ' Don't go there!'
    'What if the two of them...' Don't even go there!
    http://www.ldoceonline.com/dictionary/go_1
    I need native speakers' help.

  4. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    Quote Originally Posted by sitifan View Post
    What's the difference in meaning between the following sentences?
    1. Are John and Clare having children?
    2. Do John and Clare have children?
    1. Is Clare is pregnant or are they thinking about a pregnancy?
    2. Do they already have children?

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    #9

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    John and Clare having children?
    This is a sort of shorthand for "what do you think about..." or "on the subject of..."

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    #10

    Re: John and Clare having children?

    I disagree that "Don't go there" is expressing disapproval.

    The second person may think it's a great thing but knows the first person does not, and does not want to engage in a conversation on the subject. Or, it could indeed mean the second person thinks it's a bad idea but doesn't want to talk about it.

    It means "I don't want to talk about it" (as the dictionary says) but not necessarily "What a terrible idea!"

    (I have had to say something similar when people want to talk about subjects on which we hold very different opinions and I don't want to hear them express their ideas (again!) that I disagree with when there is no hope that either of us will persuade the other.)
    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.

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