The Free Dictionary  
mailing list For webmasters
Welcome Guest Forum Search | Active Topics | Members

Huston, I am having vs. I have a problem! Options
endre
Posted: Saturday, December 12, 2009 8:00:32 AM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 12/12/2009
Posts: 2
Neurons: 6
Location: Czech Republic
Ahoy,ahoya, can someone please help me: Is it gramatically correct to say "I am having a problem" when refering to a temporary situation, as contrasted to: "I have a problem" as a more permanent situation? Thank you! Endre
sandraleesmith46
Posted: Saturday, December 12, 2009 9:15:17 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 11/20/2009
Posts: 696
Neurons: 2,132
Location: Arizona's high deserts
endre wrote:
Ahoy,ahoya, can someone please help me: Is it gramatically correct to say "I am having a problem" when refering to a temporary situation, as contrasted to: "I have a problem" as a more permanent situation? Thank you! Endre


I generally use "I am having a problem" when speaking of an interpersonal matter, and "I have a problem" when referring to some other type of situation such as a problem with a mechanical device. Actually, I think they're pretty much interchangable, but that's a personal preference I have in usage, since "I am having a problem" denotes something within me is having a difficulty about another person, which doesn't imply it's the other's fault, where "I have a problem" tends to imply the fault is outside me personally, as in a malfunctioning device. I hope this helps, Endre.

fair winds and following seas
endre
Posted: Saturday, December 12, 2009 10:06:59 AM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 12/12/2009
Posts: 2
Neurons: 6
Location: Czech Republic
Sandra, thanks a lot! Happy Christmas!
pbrennan42
Posted: Sunday, December 13, 2009 8:46:59 PM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 12/13/2009
Posts: 3
Neurons: 9
Location: United Kingdom
In UK English "I am having a problem" has fallen out of favour for two reasons:

1. Brevity. "I have a problem" is always faster and easier to say and write. We do not infer fault with such a phrase, only the fact that you have a problem. This is because we still have the (sometimes erroneous) belief that sometimes things are not really anyone's fault, they just "are".

2. Cultural or Racial Stereotyping. Non-native English speakers can sometimes use forms that are either deemed archaic or just inappropriate usage for what they are trying to express. I think the nearest thing the Americans have to this is the phenomenon we all call "Engrish" - "I am having a problem" is now considered to be "Engrish" usage.
Users browsing this topic
Guest


Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.

Main Forum RSS : RSS
Forum Terms and Guidelines | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2008-2019 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.