has always loved chocolate vs. has always been loving chocolate

Hi, please help about the below

  1. Jack has always loved chocolate.
  2. Jack has always been loving chocolate.

Can I use both of them equally or one of them isn’t allowed by grammar?
(This has nothing to do with lyrics)


As far as I have understood, both the sentences are meaningful (with some slight difference between the present perfect and the present perfect continuous tense constructions) and acceptable except for the related fact that the word ‘chocolate’ would need to be in plural since it is a count noun used in general, i.e. without any specificity.

Hi, please forget the “chocolate”.
In a test, I opted for 2).

The teacher said it was grammatically incorrect because we do not use stative verbs with continuous/progressive verb tenses.

I agree with his statement, but partly only.

In my humble opinion, we should say we usually don’t use stative verbs with continuous verb tenses.
So, sometimes, we can use such verbs with continuous verb tenses but whether we will use it or not, depends on the context.

In this case, it is the present perfect continuous with which I used a stative verb “love” together with the adverb “always”. “always” supports a fact that I describe something which has been existing during someone’s whole life, since the one was born to now, and now at the time of speaking. It is some kind of a state to me, not action.

How I see these two tenses?
I see the present perfect as a past tense, but with consequences to the time of speaking, sometimes as a perfected tense that describes continuation in the past but always up to the moment of speaking, sometimes as a perfected tense which result we are interested in; we are not interested in when the action happened in the past.
11) I have used English for 10 years now. (continuation)
12) I have made a few mistakes. (here, a result is what I am interested in)
Contrary to how I see the present perfect, I see the present perfect continuous tense as a present tense with its tails from the past. So, the focus is on the moment of speaking but the past is taken into account too.
The present perfect continuous tense describes what the continuative present perfect simple tense and the present continuous tense describe together.
I’d like you analyse and correct what I’ve said and also explain the subtle differences in meanings between the two, which you mentioned in your first post under this topic.

I agree with you on the logic explained. Good! Yes, your teacher was right about stative verbs. But, as you say, the context is more important. After all, if what you say conveys what you wanted to say, the communication is complete. That’s the purpose of language. (If ‘hope’, ‘wonder’ etc can be used in the progressive form, there is no reason why ‘love’, ‘like’ etc cannot be used to effectively transfer your thoughts in certain contexts)

The use of the present perfect continuous with the adverb ‘always’ makes it difficult to follow because of the clash of the two time frames. It is acceptable to use ‘always’ with the present continuous as this is a way of showing irritation with that continuous action as in - He is always complaining about the noise - this suggests that you wish he would stop complaining.


Thank you, Alan. I’ve noted it though, of course, I see sentences like ‘He joined us last year but has since been (coming) late to the office always’.

For what it is worth, my wife thinks that “been loving” shows a more active type of love. Maybe “I’ve been loving chocolate” means not only do you really like it, but you actually eat it every day. I think this is why “I have been loving you” is so common in song lyrics, as it is implies a more active kind of love than “I have loved you”. I know you said this has nothing to do with song lyrics, but how can it not?


I just wanted to say, in song lyrics, one can use language without respecting grammar.