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わたしはおこられた。Someone got mad at me. (I was being mad.)

This answer was given here by what I presume to be a native. http://yesjapan.com/YJ6/question/840/what-is-the-difference-between-suru-and-sareru.

Do the brackets mean it has two possible meanings that you have to discern from context or is the bracketed meaning an explanation of the first (which would make the unbracketed statement a bad English transtlation)?

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  • "I was being mad" は間違いだと思います。She probably tried to change the voice of "Someone was mad at me"
    – chocolate
    Apr 10, 2018 at 12:31
  • Sorry still confused. So which is the correct one again? Can it go both ways or not?
    – shoryuu
    Apr 10, 2018 at 14:45

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わたしはおこられた。Can it mean both having gotten angry and that someone was angry at you?

No, わたしはおこられた means "I got yelled at (by someone)", and not "I was being mad".

Active: 「XXさんがわたしをおこった(≂しかった)。」
"XX-san yelled at me. / scolded me."

Passive: 「わたしは(XXさんに)おこられた(≂しかられた)。」
"I got yelled at / was scolded (by XX-san)."

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  • Thank you! I was thinking it was one of those things that required context to determine who the subject was. Think I got mixed up with determining potential form from passive when they are the same for certain verbs. Was thinking it could be yourself getting mad because 私は怒らせた seems to convey the same "I made (her) mad" meaning too.
    – shoryuu
    Apr 10, 2018 at 19:41
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    @shoryuu I think "I was being mad" might have been a failed attempt to write a passive example in English corresponding to the Japanese. It's hard to express the same thing in English passively. "I was gotten mad at" might get the meaning across, although this English sentence would be unnatural in most contexts (if anyone is interested in why, see The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language p.1446).
    – user1478
    Jun 13, 2018 at 16:22

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