wants us to love her, (wants) to feed us

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nicole110

Senior Member
chinese from Taiwan
Hi, all

My roommate wrote such a sentence: My mom only wants us to love her, (wants) to feed us until we are independent enough. I know that she used brackets to tell us the word “wants” in the brackets can be omitted. Without the word “wants” in the brackets, can the sentence be misunderstood as “My mom only wants us to love her, wants us to feed us until we are independent enough”?
 
  • dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    Yes. That is exactly the problem.

    Your roommate wants the sentence to say two things about her mom. She makes two parallel "to" infinitives, which is common. But she wants "mom" as the subject of the second infinitive (to feed us) and has made "us" the subject of the first one (to love her). So she has a problem. With one subject and two "to" infinitives, the same subject is meant for both.

    There are several ways to re-write the sentence to fix the problem. She could have added "wants" without the brackets (and deleted "only", which no longer makes sense now that she is mentioning two things). Or lots of other things.
     
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