[JLPT grammar] Don’t Use 〜たい for Third Person

Today I am going to share the homework correction quoted from my JLPT course!
The student’s sentence is not correct. Can you find the mistake?


[Student’s sentence]





[My correction]

→ 兄は新しい車を買いたがっています
My elder brother wants to buy a new car.


When you talk about the third person, “Someone wants to do something. , you can’t use 〜たい. 〜たい is used when you talk about your own desire to do something or when you ask the listeners if they want to do something.

When you see someone showing a strong desire to do something, you describe that person’s feelings with 〜がる instead.

Your elder brother is a third party, not even a listener, so if he makes it clear that he wants to buy a car, you should say 買いたがっています(using 〜ている to indicate the current state).


You can also phrase it in these ways, depending on the situation:

It seems (looks) like my elder brother wants to buy a new car.

I heard my elder brother wants to buy a new car, but I’m not sure if it’s true.


I hope my explanation helps you. 😊


The above correction is just a taste of what my JLPT all-in-one course has to offer (today’s is from the N4).

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