Hi,

Would you tell me the meaning of this "stand to," underlined? I assumed it was like, accept or bear, but I feel something wrong, that they won't perfectly fit in the context. Is there any idiomatic usage?

(excerpt from a book by David Sedaris, homosexual, and he is talking here about his childhood.)

There was the lisp, of course, but more troubling was my voice itself, with its excitable tone and high, girlish pitch. I'd hear myself ordering lunch in the cafeteria, and the sound would turn my stomach. How could anyone stand to listen to me?

Thank you,

M
'Stand to do' is used with the usual meaning ('tolerate, accept, bear') here. The writer thinks that no one could bear listening to his terrible lisping, squeaky voice.
Thank you for the reply.

Let me rephrase the underliened part. I would like to make sure if I'm understaning it corrextly.

I can't believe someone could stand to listen to me. (he actually saw this type of people in the cafeteria.)

Correct?

Thank you,

M
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
I can't believe anyone could stand to listen to me.
Thanks again for the reply.

I'm going to explain what's confusing me.

"how could you do that to me!" means "someone actually did a terrible thing to someone else."

So I suppose:

"how could anyone stand to listen to me" sounds like "someone actually could stand to his voice, and he has no idea how they did it." Maybe they were not paying as much attention to his voice as the writer did, I can only guess the reason, but anyhow, from that part, I feel like he saw the people who seemed to have accepted his voice.

Would you explain where my understanding is broken?

Thank you,

M
How could you do that to me!

How could anyone stand to listen to me?

Notice that the first is an exclamation while the second one is a question.
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
OK, thanks.

M