[The following is one of dozens of cases I come across on a daily basis]
By accident, I have recently noticed that the phrasal verb go through (as in experience) -- which I've been using so far in my IELTS writing essays -- is associated with a connotation of negativeness (suffering, unpleasantness, etc). Flipping through dictionary pages I'm finding out they do not agree with one another over the level of negativity. Some have dismissed the negativity component very lightly, while others have fundamentally/thoroughly attached it to that concept. Others, though, have used parentheses. (Making a good decision in such case takes on added importance when I have, for instance, used go through in my essay, and after questioning its correctness I have ended up paging through dictionaries.)
To clarify, here's where I'm finding myself locked in:
Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary [11th]: go through: 2.EXPERIENCE; UNDERGO.
The American Heritage Dictionary (5th):2. go through: To experience; Undergo
The online ones:
Collins English Dictionary: 4. (preposition) to suffer [end of story?!]
oxford dictionaries: Undergo (a difficult period or experience)
the free dictionary: 2. To experience
McMillan dictionary: 3. [TRANSITIVE] go through something: to experience something difficult or unpleasant
I cannot reasonably take the most comprehensive meaning (maybe the Amr. Hert. Dict & Oxf. Dict.s, in the case on hand) all the time, under the assumption that the others have left something out, because a lengthy definition isn't necessarily the best one. Using only one perfect dictionary? There is no such dictionary out there, or else the need to set up brilliant communities like this would have never made itself felt. Come here and ask? I guess this has to be the best answer, but the need is too frequent and it takes me a long time. Googling? Yes, that works in some cases. But It's not reliable enough, I think, since you can't tell if the writer was a native speaker. Plus the fact that not each and every composition/collocation of words exists there, whereas the Googled term IS actually true (I say this out of a couple of such experiences).
Q 1. What should I do (if anything at all!)?
Q 2. What does go through really mean? In other words, should I use it only when something unpleasant/bad/difficult is involved?
Q 3. Are the editors of the community erasing thanks?