Present Continuous Usage 6: With stative verbs

We don’t normally use Present Continuous with stative verbs.

I can see a group of people crossing the street

Now I understand why he did it

However, in present-day English, the outlines of this rule are becoming more and more vague. For example, when speaking about an unexpected new pattern or a changed behavior that is in progress:

“For the first time in my lifetime I am seeing people rolling up their sleeves in way that I haven’t seen and really trying to figure this out, and that’s the source of pride I was talking about,” she continued.

“What I am seeing is devastating – these women and children have risked everything to come to this Somalia camp, just to get food,” Jackson said. “They need our help.”

Again, I have no direct knowledge of this, but this is what I am understanding.

When I play online games, I always hear native speakers say:

Are you seeing …? I’m not seeing …

Also on Present Continuous:

Back to: Present Continuous Tense, also Present Progressive

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