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Which are correct and is there any difference in the meanings of these sentences:

1) I have decided that I am not going to clean my son's room so that he will be obliged to do it himself.

2) I have decided that I am going not to clean my son's room so that he will be obliged to do it himself.

3) I have decided that I am  going to not clean my son's room so that he will be obliged to do it himself.

Gratefully,

Navi

Original Post
@navi posted:

Which are correct and is there any difference in the meanings of these sentences:

1) I have decided that I am not going to clean my son's room so that he will be obliged to do it himself.

2) I have decided that I am going not to clean my son's room so that he will be obliged to do it himself.

3) I have decided that I am  going to not clean my son's room so that he will be obliged to do it himself.



Hello, Navi—Among the phrasal modals (semi-modals, quasi-auxiliaries, whatever term you like), "BE going to" does not work with negation in the middle, between "going" and "to."

"Have to" is another one that doesn't work like that: It's the weekend. *I have not to go to bed early tonight. But "used to" and "BE supposed to" do work: "People are supposed not to litter." "My son used not to clean his room."

In your example set, (2) does not work, but (1) and (3) do. I find (1) much more natural than (3), in which "not" separates infinitival "to" from the following verb—something which tends to be unidiomatic.

I recommend adding a comma before "so." Even the correct sentences can be read as implying that it is not for a certain reason—causing the son to be obliged to do it himself—that the speaker is going to clean his room.

Last edited by David, Moderator

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