Which is correct:
"we had a discussion" or "a discussion was had"?

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we had a discussion

This phrase is correct and commonly used in everyday language.

This phrase is used to indicate that a discussion took place among a group of people. It is a simple and direct way to convey this information.

Examples:

  • We had a discussion about the project yesterday.
  • They had a discussion about the budget cuts.
  • I think we should have a discussion about our future plans.
  • Let's have a discussion about the best way to proceed.
  • Having a discussion can help us reach a decision.

Alternatives:

  • We discussed the matter.
  • We talked about it.
  • We conversed on the topic.
  • We exchanged ideas.
  • We deliberated on the issue.

a discussion was had

This phrase is correct but less commonly used in everyday language.

This phrase is more formal or literary and emphasizes the occurrence of a discussion without specifying who was involved. It can be used to give a more detached or objective tone to the statement.

Examples:

  • A discussion was had on the matter, but no resolution was reached.
  • In the meeting, a discussion was had about the new policy.
  • After much debate, a discussion was had and a decision was made.
  • Throughout history, many discussions were had on this topic.
  • The issue was resolved after a discussion was had among the stakeholders.

Alternatives:

  • A discussion took place.
  • A discussion occurred.
  • There was a discussion.
  • A discussion happened.
  • A discussion ensued.
Both phrases are correct, but they are used in different contexts. 'We had a discussion' is more commonly used in everyday language to indicate that a discussion took place among a group of people. 'A discussion was had' is less common and sounds more formal or literary, emphasizing the occurrence of a discussion without specifying who was involved.

Last updated: March 24, 2024

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