Grow up/Grew up?

English grammar and usage issues

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Grow up/Grew up?

Unread post by Lone »

I was wondering why the below question was correct:

Did you ever think about what you wanted to be when you grew up?

Since it is a question asking about what you wish to do in the future, why shouldn't we change grew up to grow up?

I have troubles with the verb tenses and would be much grateful if you could give me some guidelines on the choice of tenses!
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Re: Grow up/Grew up?

Unread post by AlisonAM »

I think that it should be "grew up" because the actions are all in the past, maybe even the "grew up" bit too, in fact we are not sure of the exact timing of this....but I think this person has already grown up hence we have to use "grew up". I would say as a British English speaker "Have you ever thought about what you want to be when you grow up?" I would say this because I'm still growing up and so would say "grow" and not "grew".
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Rising Star
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Re: Grow up/Grew up?

Unread post by odyssey »

Also interesting to note - and not wishing to complicate things - but your initial wondering statement might want a tense revision :)

I was wondering why the below question IS correct

Assuming that the below question is indeed correct, which you apparently believe it to be, then it is correct yesterday, today and tomorrow (regardless of when you were wondering) and so the Present Simple is appropriate, rather like:

I was wondering why the earth goes around the sun.
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Re: Grow up/Grew up?

Unread post by kdammers »

This might be content creep, but here are my thoughts.

"Grow up!" is a command or disparaging statement addressed to someone who is considered to be acting immaturely.

Less common is the literal meaning, as in the title of a book, "Vertical Gardening: Grow Up, Not Out, for More Vegetables."
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