JLPT N3 Grammar – ~てもかまわない (How to say “It doesn’t matter if…” in Japanese)

Posted by on April 7, 2021 – Japanese Study

We have another companion blog for you!  In this entry, we review Nami-sensei’s video above, where she teaches the JLPT N3 Grammar point: ~てもかまわない (~te mo kama wa nai).  Meaning: “It doesn’t matter if…”/”I don’t mind if…” in Japanese

You know the drill – first watch the video, then review with this article!  And don’t forget to subscribe to our channel 🙂

How to Use JLPT N3 Grammar point: ~てもかまわない

First of all, let’s review the polite and casual ways to use this grammar point.

~te mo kamai masen

~te mo kamawanai

The verb is 構う (kamau) – which means “to worry” or “to be concerned about”.  And as you have learned previously, 〜ても (te mo) means “even if~”.  So put together, xyz ~ても構わない/構いません means “Even if xyz, it doesn’t matter” or “I don’t mind if xyz.”

There are many different ways to use this word.  In Nami-sensei’s video above in particular, she teaches how to ask for permission.

It can be made into a question easily → 〜ても構いませんか? “Do you mind if~”

This is like a more polite way of 〜てもいいですか?

Let’s look at some examples!

JLPT N3 Grammar ~ても構わない Examples

Example 1

Student: 辞書を使ってもいいですか?
jisho o tsukatte mo ii desu ka?
Can I use a dictionary?

Nami-sensei: はい、分からない言葉があったら辞書を使っても構いません。
hai, wakaranai kotoba ga attara jisho o tsukatte mo kamaimasen.
Yes, if there are any words you don’t understand, I don’t mind if you use a dictionary.

In this example, the student is asking about using a dictionary for the grammar test.  Nami-sensei responds politely with “I don’t mind if you use a dictionary if there are any words you don’t understand.”

It has the same meaning as 辞書を使ってもいいです。Only the nuance is a bit more polite!

Let’s look at another example.

Example 2

sumimasen, koko de denwa shite mo kamaimasen ka?
Excuse me, do you mind if I make a phone call here?

In this situation, Nami-sensei uses this grammar point to ask if there is a problem with using her phone.  The grammar point asks “Do you mind if…”  or “Would this bother anyone?”

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