No idea how to phrase this differently, please help


According to grammarly preposition at end of sentence is no good. Can't find a synonym for get through to that will fit the context.

See example:

A particular instance occurred where Natalie helped me calm a very aggressive, emotional patient that no other residents could get through to.
asked Sep 19 '13 at 08:37 Natalie Rodziewicz New member

2 answers


I am so tired of people saying, "NEVER END A SENTENCE WITH A PREPOSITION!"


The spirit of the rule has been lost in the application of the rule.


Prepositions are traditionally used to link a noun or pronoun to the rest of the sentence.



I ran to the store.  "to" is linking "store" to the predicate--Where did I "run"?

Since "to" is, in effect, a "linking" word, linking "store and "ran", you cannot simply say:

"I ran to."


In this case they are correct because the object of the preposition being linked is omitted and you have an incomplete thought.


However, in your sentence the Object of the Preposition has already been established and the preposition "to" is BEING USED AS AN ADVERB AND NOT AS A PREPOSITION to clarify a verb that would not otherwise make sense.


"other residents" could not get through "to?"

If you placed the object of the preposition after "to", your sentence would like like this..

"...a very aggressive emotional patient that no other residents could get through to the emotional patient."


One final time:  When a preposition is being used adverbially, such as it is in your sentence, and not prepositionally, such as it is supposed to be in sentences when people cry "DON'T END A SENTENCE WITH A PREPOSITION!", then it is ok to end the sentence wth a preposition just as it would be ok to end the sentence with any other adverb.

link comment edited Sep 19 '13 at 11:37 Aaron Prejean Expert

Well, now we know one of Aaron's pet peeves!  ;-)


I don't use Grammarly's software and I am not an employee, but I'd like to add a note about what the software tells you.  Software does not understand context any better than your toaster. The grammar checker flags potential errors based on a large set of rules that has been input.  This particular software commonly flags the passive voice.  It is not a grammatical error at all, but students are often required to write in the active voice.  Since Grammarly has a significant number of students as customers, the program flags it to say, "Hey, you might want to check this sentence."  Grammarly's Handbook takes the stance that ending a sentence with a preposition is perfectly acceptable in conversation or informal writing, but not in formal writing.  It doesn't discuss the preposition as part of a verb phrase.  I do agree that there are much more formal-sounding ways to rewrite such sentences. 


In your search for a synonym, think about what you are trying to say.  Natalie calmed him.  The other residents could not.


A particular instance is a moment in time, not a moment in place.  Change where to when


A particular instance occurred when Natalie helped me calm a very aggressive, emotional patient after no other residents could.

link comment answered Sep 19 '13 at 19:48 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

Your answer

Write at least 20 characters

Have a question about English grammar, style or vocabulary use? Ask now to get help from Grammarly experts for FREE.