I would say English language is way too difficult because of its grammar.

For example, we have to conjugate many different tenses.

Other languages such as Vietnamese do not conjugate tenses.

For example, we say "I have been working for ABC for 10 years", "I went shopping yesterday", "She has just gone shopping"

In Vietnamese, we say "I work for ABC for 10 years", "I go shopping yesterday", "She just go shopping"

In Vietnamese, we rely on adverbs & context to differentiate tenses.

Can English people understand my English even if I do not use English grammar, but just words, adverbs and context?

2 Answers 2


What is your goal?

If it's merely passing through as a tourist with your "Tarzan English", yes, people will understand you. They will possibly need some time to adjust to how you mangle the grammar ("I no can" instead "I cannot" is confusing at first, but for a native speaker, it's possible to adjust to it after some exposure).

If your goal is to be fluent or interact with English speakers on a professional/business level, then you will have to spend time learning proper grammar. And yes, learning grammar from books is not fun (for most people), but you can absorb grammar in a more fun way: reading books, watching movies, and speaking.

BTW, judging by your question, your (written) English is quite good, so you just need more practice speaking (and not being afraid of making mistakes and correcting them). This might be a cultural problem (in some cultures, making mistakes is "losing face", in others, you just shrug it off).

BTW2: English is my L3, and even after many years of living in the USA, I still sometimes do make mistakes, like not using articles correctly, or not using correct tenses, but those minor mistakes haven't prevented me from keeping a job (or answering questions on SO :-) )


Disclaimer: I'm a native English speaker (British English).

Yes, English speakers will eventually understand what you're trying to say by inferring it from the context, but since it's grammatically incorrect it will result in slower communication and a lot of confusion.

I'm going to demonstrate using your examples. Let's say you said "She just go shopping" instead of "She has just gone shopping." Without any context, this seems to mean "The only thing she has done is go shopping" (as opposed to going shopping and doing something else).

However, if someone asked you, "Where did she go?" and you said "She just go shopping," the listener will infer from context that she's just gone shopping, as you intended.

Again, an English speaker would understand just fine if you replied "I work for ABC for ten years" when asked "How long have you worked at ABC?", even though the sentence on its own, with no context, is difficult to make sense of.

On the other hand, if you started a conversation by saying "I work for ABC for ten years", then it's going to lead to the English-speaking listener asking questions to clarify what you mean - "When? Do you already work for them, or will you start in the future?" - because there isn't any context to what you're saying.

If you aim to communicate purely through adverbs to indicate tense, I recommend picking ones which are unambiguous, such as 'yesterday', 'tomorrow', 'soon'. Words such as 'just' have multiple, non-time-related meanings which need to be differentiated by context.

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