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Can I use "scared" instead of "afraid" in this sentence?


I turned down the TV because I was afraid of waking him up.

For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Language



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    Best Answer - Chosen by the Asker
    Yes, you could use "scared" instead of "afraid." However, the two words are not always synonymous. "scared" brings to mind actual fear - a feeling of fright due to danger or some sort of approaching harm. "afraid" can mean the same thing. But "afraid" can often mean feeling regret or concern about something. Example: John: "2 + 2 = 5." Paul: "I'm afraid you're wrong". In the example, Paul does not feel fear just because John is wrong. He is not "scared." He simply regrets that John is wrong.

    In your sentence, "I was afraid of waking him up" could mean that "I" felt that something terrible would happen if I woke him up - he would have a heart attack. In such a sentence, "afraid" would be synonymous with "scared." But "afraid" could also mean that "I" was concerned about waking him up (just because it's not polite to wake people up, even though there was no reason to be fearful about it).

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