When you use the phrase "help him with X" or any other similar phrase, you also imply that you're also doing the same thing and you're receiving help from another person, but what if you're not? What phrase would you use then? Let's say you said "Albert helped him restrain Robert", but only Albert was restraining him, while you were trying to feed him medicine, what phrase or word would you use to say that Albert restraining Robert was an act of help. You can just say he restrained him, but you can't also add the idea that he was helping you without making the implication that you were also restraining him.

For example:

Albert was ____ with restraining him while I was trying to feed him medicine.

  • Dealing, tasked, preoccupied? Responsible for? ...doing the restraining, while...?
    – user3395
    Apr 6, 2019 at 11:21
  • But they don't imply that he was "helping" me. The problem is that as soon as you use a word like "help" it also comes with the implication I was helping with restraining Robert.
    – Sayaman
    Apr 6, 2019 at 11:21
  • (a) They do imply that, sort of, by virtue of restraining's being a more peripheral sort of action, and (b) it doesn't necessarily. He was helping me with X while I was doing Y can be used to say he was doing X, and thereby helping me, while I was doing Y. Your question as written is somewhat unclear/tangled. Do wait for an actual answer.
    – user3395
    Apr 6, 2019 at 11:43

1 Answer 1


You can rephrase

Albert helped him restrain Robert


Albert helped him by restraining Robert

which shows that Albert was providing help with a different task, that they were not both restraining Robert.

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