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それで傷ついた心が少しでも癒えるのであれば ひとときの夢物語としてお子さんの話に付き合ってあげるもの悪いことではないと思います

お子さんの話に付き合ってあげるもの悪いことではないと思います I think going along with a child's story isn't a bad thing

The general sentence seems to be akin to "If it heals a wounded heart even a bit, going along with a child story isn't a bad thing, I think"

However how is ひとときの夢物語として being used? It does feel similar to "even" in this context but I am not sure "as; in the role of ~" nuance of として works?

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夢物語 ("dream story") is sometimes literally the story that you had as a dream, but it often means "convenient story" with a nuance of unrealisticness.

In this context, 「として」 is employed to state that the situation (of the mother going along with the child's story) will play a role of 「ひとときの夢物語 ("unrealistically convenient story that won't persist") from the child's position.

Or as another less likely but still possible reading is that the doctor just rephrases「お子さんの話」as「ひとときの夢物語」in order to recommend the mother not taking the child's story as a serious one.

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  • As far as I know, the pattern you're describing is "AをBとして" (or する). Which means "to treat A as B." Now, let me try to rephrase your words the way I understand them. Correct me if I'm wrong. Your first interpretation is, "...であれば[the childがthe situationを]ひとときの夢物語としてお子さん...", but "the childがthe situationを" is never said explicitly. The second interpretation is that the clause is right dislocated (not sure if this is possible in this manner), that is the object is after the verb (and the subject changes): "...であれば[the doctorが]ひとときの夢物語としてお子さんの話に..." But in this case に marks the object, not を?
    – yk7
    Commented Jan 15 at 5:15
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    Aとして just means "as A" but you can analyze "who treats/takes what as A?" from the context. It seems you got my first interpretation correctly; THE CHILD takes THE SITUATION(= the mother hears and goes along with what he talks) as ひとときの夢物語 (= comfortable story) for him. And in my second interpretation, I intended that THE MOTHER takes THE CHILD'S STORY as ひとときの夢物語 (= not serious story).
    – rk03
    Commented Jan 16 at 6:39
  • Oh, I apparently was misled by you mentioning the doctor in your second interpretation. Anyways, from the grammatical point of view して looks like する in the て form, which connects it to the next clause. And the next clause ends, I guess, with 付き合ってあげる: {ひとときの夢物語と}して{お子さんの話に}付き合ってあげる. So grammatically there are 2 clauses here: the one where someone treats something as ひとときの夢物語, and "go along with the child's story". In the first case the subjects are the child (the first clause) and the mother. In the second the mother in both clauses. Is that correct?
    – yk7
    Commented Jan 20 at 0:01
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    Your understanding looks good. By the way, when として takes only a noun, N + として is sometimes considered as N + particle(-like phrase) rather than a clause. From this viewpoint, the original sentence just says "If ..., [the mother's] going along with the child's stories AS ひとときの夢物語 isn't a bad thing," and what we talked about is just which part of the sentence associates with "as" in this context (and semantic interpretation of ひとときの夢物語). I think, even in English, it can be interpreted in multiple ways, can't it?
    – rk03
    Commented Jan 20 at 5:04
  • To sum it up, we have a sentence "As such if the wounded heart heals even a little, X isn't a bad thing, I think." At least in this case Nとして means that something is considered as N. Who considers and what is considered are inferred from the context. There are 2 possible interpretations: a) "the child considers the situation (the mother going along with the child's story) as ひとときの夢物語" (the child likes that the mother goes along with his story), b) "the mother considers お子さんの話 as ひとときの夢物語" (the mother doesn't consider the child's story as something serious). Then X is:...
    – yk7
    Commented Jan 25 at 13:20

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