What is the difference between:

  1. end up with doing something

  2. end up in doing something

and simply

  1. end up doing something

Here is the context that triggered the question for me:

The net result is that they [= those long-term heavy users of the internet or computer] suffer serious loss of vision, back pain, and obesity. It is true that many people finally end up with struggling with deteriorating health.

My take is, the first one tends to involve a trouble one has to deal with, while the second one is about an undesirable situation where one has no other choice than what has just come up, and the third one is a general usage.

One last thing: I found a similar question here, but it is not identical to mine, although some answers seem to work.

  • 1
    You're quite right to consider this a largely separate question. I've checked various specific examples on the internet, but they don't back up the way I'd use your constructions. 'End up doing something' (eg 'end up going to Blackpool', 'end up fighting' can, as you say, be pragmatically unmarked, but often has a pejorative nuance ('end up worse off than we were before', 'Just look how he ended up'). 'End up with' often implies a planned closing event ('It always began solemnly, but ended up with singing and playing games') The verb-noun position of the -ing forms is not constant. Nov 4, 2014 at 12:16

1 Answer 1


I agree with Edwin above. First, "End up" generally means "in the end, we did [x]," where x refers to something that is not a favorable condition or is contrary to what had been expected. "How was dinner at the new restaurant?" "I got sick. We ended up staying home."

As for the differences between the prepositions in, up and with, my understanding is that the meaning is largely the same. End up (verb)ing : End up eating out. End up with (noun) : End up with a hangover. End up in (place or condition) : End up in jail! (or) End up in a terrible situation!

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.