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    #1

    I could have had you

    I heard the following dialogues in a movie.

    Woman: How old are you?
    Boy: 18 (The boy wanted to be in love with the woman who was 49)
    Woman: Do you know how old I am? I could have had you. (The woman thought she was too old for the boy)

    I wonder if it is incorrect to say "I could be your mother" in place of "I could have had you." Could anybody tell me similar expressions like this,please?

  1. Amigos4's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: I could have had you

    "I could have had you" is awkward and ambiguous.
    "I could be your mother" is more natural.
    "I am old enough to be your mother" would also be a natural response to the woman's question.

  2. tzfujimino's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: I could have had you

    Hello.
    May I ask a question here?
    (I'm sure it's a strange response to the boy, since Amigo thinks it's awkward and ambiguous.)

    Would it be incorrect to interpret the sentence as:

    [If I had been much younger,] I could have had you. (The if-clause in the bracket is omitted/understood.)

    Thank you.

    (Edit)
    On second thoughts, my version is strange.
    It should be "If I were much younger, I could have you." or "If I had met you when I was much younger, I could have had you."
    Last edited by tzfujimino; 21-Mar-2014 at 08:47.

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: I could have had you

    It depends on what you think "I could have had you" means, so I can't say if your interpretation is correct. If you think it means what it originally meant ("I could have given birth to you") then the "If" clause is incorrect. If you think it means "I could have had sex with you", then your "If" clause would work.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  4. tzfujimino's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: I could have had you

    Thank you, ems.
    I see. I didn't mean it to be "to have a sexual relationship".
    What I meant was "to have you as my boyfriend" or something like that.

  5. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: I could have had you

    "To have you as my boyfriend" has the same general meaning as "to have sex with you" - it refers to "having a relationship of a romantic nature". It does not mean the same as "to give birth to you".

    So if you meant the "boyfriend" interpretation, then your "if" clause is possible. However, I would word it something like "If I'd been younger, I'd have gone out with you" or "If I were younger, we could be boyfriend and girlfriend".

    The OP also needs to note that "I could have you" or "I could have had you" can be interpreted (in BrE at least) as "I could have [had] sex with you".

    "See that young girl over there? She's had eight blokes in the last six months!" - The young girl over there has had sex with eight different men in the last six months.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #7

    Re: I could have had you

    Quote Originally Posted by tzfujimino View Post
    Thank you, ems.
    I see. I didn't mean it to be "to have a sexual relationship".
    What I meant was "to have you as my boyfriend" or something like that.
    Hello tzfujimino

    I think "I could have had you" means "I could have given birth to you" in the movie. The woman thought she was old enough to be the boy's mother.

    Not a teacher

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