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You've had five marriages dissolve

Grammatically, should this sentence be "You've had five marriages dissolved?" Just like the structure "I got my hair done"

Well, here's a flash for you. We're all desperate to be relevant.

In this sentence, what's the meaning of "to be relevant"?

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You've had five marriages dissolve

Is correct, the analogous example would be

I had my hair cut.

not

I had my hair cutted.

For your second part,

to be relevent

means "to matter", "to be important" and have "social stature" where people will ask you for or listen to your opinion.

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  • "cut" can be a noun. Is "dissolve" a noun here? – Zhang Jun 4 '18 at 3:29
  • @马化腾 Cut is not a noun in Peter's example. Dissolve is not a noun. – Andrew Jun 4 '18 at 3:50
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Recognize that this is not the perfect tense had dissolved. This is the perfect tense of have (have had) implying ownership or experience

She's had her life take some unexpected turns lately.

This structure is also akin to the passive tense. By making the marriage the subject, it implies no fault -- no one actively dissolved the marriage or had someone else do it. It just happened on its own. Another example:

You've had your house increase in value lately, haven't you?

implies the increase is something that happened "on its own". Compare this with

You've had your house repainted lately, haven't you?

which implies that I took action to have someone else repaint the house.

To be relevant is, I think, a somewhat modern idiomatic expression that means to be of importance or of significance to some group.

As our children become adults we have to acknowledge that we inevitably are less relevant to their lives.

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You've had five marriages dissolve

Having a marriage dissolved implies a judge has ruled it ended and/or annulled.

Having a marriage dissolve implies a judge may have ruled it over, or maybe it is only effectively over. Maybe it dissolved on its own... there is no hope of it recovering... but the divorce is not legally final.

So maybe... he had four marriages dissolved and the current one is in process.

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You've had five marriages dissolve

From Carl

Having a marriage dissolved implies a judge has ruled it ended and/or annulled.

I believe it is using dissolve as a metaphor, for coming apart, disapearing.

so it is the same as the sentence "you have had five sugar cubes dissolve"

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