I think it is worth it.

Sarah-Betty

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Despite the fact that starting a family involves a big commitment, I think it is worth it.

I think the first it refers to "starting a family". How about the second it. Is it dummy it?
 

Charlie Bernstein

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Despite the fact that starting a family involves a big commitment, I think it is worth it.


Good question. No, it's not a dummy it. The second it refers to a big commitment: Starting a family is worth a big commitment.
 
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Phaedrus

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Sometimes we use "it's worth it" even when the second "it" doesn't refer to a previous noun phrase. I think the second "it" can be interpreted as referring in a vague way to the consequences. The sentence "I think it's worth it" reminds me of a scene from the film The Insider (1999), staring Russell Crowe as Jeffrey Wigand, an ex-tobacco scientist who blows the whistle on a major tobacco company. At the conclusion of the 60 Minutes interview that lies at the film's heart, there is the following exchange between Mike Wallace and Jeffrey Wigand. It's a powerful moment in the film.

Mike Wallace: And do you wish you hadn't come forward? Do you wish you hadn't blown the whistle?
Jeffrey Wigand: Yeah, there are times I wish I hadn't done it. There are times I feel compelled to do it. If you asked me, Would I do it again? Do I think it's worth it? Yeah, I think it's worth it.
 
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