During a discussion, a question occurred to me. If we want to get rid of something that is done to us, should we use Active voice or passive voice? Example: I have a fellow who talks too much. I am annoyed and want no more of his talking. Which one of the following two should I use?

I want to get rid of talking.

I want to get rid of being talked to.

  • I want to get rid of being to be talked with.
    – Zhang
    Mar 4, 2019 at 6:12

2 Answers 2


You can use any of active voice or passive voice, just use them correctly.

Active voice

I want to get rid of his / their / ... talking.

It implies that ONLY the talking is annoying.

I want to get rid of him / them / ... talking.

It implies that you might want to get rid of the people also, not only the talking.

Passive voice

I want to get rid of being talked to.

(It is correct already in your question)

However, I would recommend the use of to avoid instead of to get rid of.

I want to avoid him talking.

"To get rid of" implies that the object is physical, while that talking cannot be seen / touched.

It's time to get rid of this old sweater.


She finally got rid of him.

See Merriam Webster Dictionary


You can get rid of someone if you don’t want the person to be with you and thus to talk to you any longer.

We finally got rid of my little sister by telling her scary stories.
He annoyed me. I wanted to get rid of him.

Your 1st sentence looks obscure. Don't you want to talk at all? Your 2nd sentence doesn't sound right to me.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .