584 - ~させる (ended up making)

This is our fifth and final ~させる lesson.

If you've already read all of the following:

- [NDL #575] - JLPT N4: ~させる (let)
- [NDL #581] - JLPT N4: ~させる (make to do)
- [NDL #582] - JLPT N4: ~させる (induce to)
- [NDL #583] - JLPT N3: ~させる (cause)

...then お疲れ様です!(おつかれさまです!


JLPT N2: ~させる (ended up making)

~させる [the causative form] as we use it in this lesson is for talking about something that you feel responsible for doing.

I'll say that again: You use this lesson's ~させる when you feel responsible for causing some unwanted result.

An example:


お雑煮をたくさん作りすぎて、結局あまらせてしまった
おぞうに を たくさん つくり すぎて、 けっきょく あまらせて しまった。
We made too much o-zōni, and now some is (unfortunately) left over.
Literally: “o-zōni + を + a lot + make too much (and), + in the end + ended up being left over / ended up having too much.”
Note: お雑煮 (おぞうに) is the mochi soup that you eat on New Year's day in Japan.

The above sentence would sound pretty odd if we translated it literally:

We made too much o-zōni, and in the end we (unintentionally) made it be left over.

Eww, a literal translation. Gross!

Our verb here is あまる (kanji: 余る), which means "to remain," "to be left over," "to be in excess."

We put that into the causative form, giving us あまらせる, "to make remain," "to make left over," "to make (something) be in excess."

(Note: As in our previous ~させる lesson, in the above sentence we're changing an intransitive verb into a transitive verb by putting it into the causative form. If that doesn't make sense, go back and read the previous lesson.)

We use ~てしまった with あまらせる in order to give the nuance that we did not intend or desire this result.

あまらせてしまったunintentionally caused (it) to be left over → (made too much, and... it) is left over.


It is possible to use this grammar when talking about an action that you regretfully made another person do, as in this example:


わたしの看病のために仕事を休ませちゃってごめんね。
わたし の かんびょう の ために しごと を やすませ ちゃって ごめん ね。
I’m sorry that you had to miss work to take care of me.
Literally: “I + の + nursing (a patient) + の + for the purpose of + job / work + を + (unfortunately) made (you) be absent (from work) (and) + sorry + ね.”


You might be thinking, isn't this just "made you take a day off?" In other words, isn't this the "make VERB" type of ~させる that we saw in this lesson?

Well, not quite, because the speaker did not say, "Miss work to take care of me! (Or else!)"

Instead, the speaker just got sick (or injured) and inadvertently made the listener miss work.

休む(やすむ // to be absent; to take work off
↓ ↓ ↓
休ませるやすませる // to make [someone] be absent; to make [someone] take work off
↓ ↓ ↓
休ませてしまうやすませてしまう // to [inadvertently / regretfully] make [someone] be absent; to [inadvertently / regretfully] make [someone] take work off

(💡 If you're studying for N2, then you should already know this, but ~ちゃって is a casual shortening of ~てしまって.)


One more:

大勢の前で夫を非難して、恥をかかせてしまった
おおぜい の まえ で おっと を ひなん して、 はじ を かかせて しまった。
I criticized my husband in front of a lot of other people, and I ended up making him lose face.
Literally: “many people + の + in front of + で + husband + を + criticism + do (and), + ended up making him lose face / ended up making him embarrassed.”
Note: 恥をかく (はじをかく) is a common expression meaning "to lose face" or "to be (rightfully) embarrassed."


This usage of ~させる might seem a bit complicated, but you've probably heard it before.

If you've ever lived in Japan, then I guarantee you've heard it before.

Specifically, it is used in this common phrase:

待たせしてすみません。
おまたせ して すみません。
I’m sorry to have kept you waiting.
Literally: “keep (you) waiting (and) + excuse me / I’m sorry.”

If you're not already familiar with the above sentence, then burn it into your brain. Quick!

You will hear this one.

待つ(まつ // to wait
↓ ↓ ↓
待たせるまたせる // to make [someone] wait


Notice that our above example used ~させる in the following pattern:

~させ (=ます-stem of a causative-form VERB)する

Here's another example of this...

A:
お財布は見つかりましたか。
おさいふ は みつかりましたか。
Did you find your wallet?
Literally: “wallet + は + was found + か?”

B:
はい、上着のポケットに入っていました。騒がせしてすみません。
はい、 うわぎ の ポケット に はいっていました。 おさわがせ して すみません。
Yes, it was in my coat pocket. I’m sorry for making such a fuss about it.
Literally: “yes, + coat + の + pocket + に + was inside of. + make a fuss about (and) + excuse me / I’m sorry.

騒ぐ(さわぐ // to make noise; to make racket; to make a fuss; to lose one's cool; to be excited
↓ ↓ ↓
騒がせるさわがせる // [Uh... the causative form of all those ↑ ↑...]
↓ ↓ ↓
騒がせして...(おさわがせして... // [This really doesn't translate well in isolation. ^^]

It's really hard for me to say お騒がせして properly. I need speech training or something. I should probably say it 861 times with the help of a native speaker in order to perfect my pronunciation and build muscle memory in my mouth. Instead, though, I think I'm just gonna avoid saying this.

...But you should be, well, less lazy...


You've now made it through all of our ~させる lesson. Have some cookies and milk as a reward. Or a giant glass of Pinot Noir.

Or carrots or something, if you're on a diet...

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