Can someone clarify how 困る is used in Japanese ? The dictionary definition of 困る is given as:

to be troubled; to be worried; to be bothered; to be embarrassed; to be stumped​

and I would expect that a intransitive verb, with a definition similar to it, to be used as a state ("am/are ~") in the form of ~ている. However I've seen it being used as both ている form and dictionary form with similar translations:


It's because you always come at times like these that I'm troubled


I'm troubled too

In English there is "I am worried" which I would expect to be the 困っている stative form, and there is "I worry" which seems like it would be a continuous form in Japanese, and not the dictionary form. Is there a difference in how it is naturally said in Japanese, i.e. they don't use states or continuous form for "worry"? If both work what is the difference in nuance between them, e.g. does one mean that the person turns worried and the other that they are being in a state of worry ?

  • As I know it, 困る is the simple verb meaning "to trouble, to bother" etc. 困っている refers to the act of "being troubled or bothered" by something else. An internal worry or troubling usually requires the use of the verb 悩む / 悩んでいる instead
    – psosuna
    Jun 23, 2017 at 19:48

2 Answers 2

  • 困ってる means the subject is presently or actively troubled about something. It emphasises the state of being troubled.
  • 困る emphasises the speaker's anger or annoyance. (困るよ or 困るんだよ)
  • 困った can be used when you realise you're in trouble ('uh oh' or 'oh dear' - 困ったなぁ), or in a similar way to 困ってる.
  • Could you give some sentences ? Jun 28, 2017 at 15:07

I want to share my opinion about your question.
first of all, for further information you can search for 'The stem of verbs' (-ru,-u). you can check here how to study verbs. thats not mine but it will help you

困る and 困っている are same.

The different is :

困る are stem form of verbs.
困って are te-form.

This sentences its a non formal sentences.
its indicate the word あんた mean 'you' but in rude way.

And this sentences is -te form. its refer to 'present perfect tense'

Im not sure its right or wrong, but i try to help and thats what i get for studying japanese. and forgive me for my bad english.
Feel free to correct me.

  • 3
    私も困っている And this sentences is polite form The polite form (丁寧形) of 困る is 困ります, and the polite form of 困っている is 困っています, no?
    – chocolate
    Jun 24, 2017 at 4:14
  • ah yeah i misspeled. i refer to -te form. thanks for advice. And youre right 困っています is polite form because います are polite form from stem verbs
    – Dreadhis
    Jun 24, 2017 at 4:54
  • 1
    I think the asker probably already understands that these are two different conjugations of the same verb, but I believe what they're asking about is the difference in meaning and usage between the two. Jun 24, 2017 at 5:00

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