Question mark after “I don’t know what you want from me.”?

I’m getting mixed messages on which of the following punctuations is correct:

I don’t know what you want from me.

I don’t know what you want from me?

It seems to be both an indirect question, rhetorical and even a halfway actual question. Is there a generally preferred way to punctuate such a sentence?

The sentence occurs during a conversation where a man is berating his girlfriend. She is listing all these fun things they can do on their anniversary, “I can make you dinner”, “We can go skiiing”, etc. After each suggestion, however, he puts her down with statements like, “You’re not that great a cook” or “You’d probably break your leg skiing“. She gets irate and responds with the above sentence.

It’s part of a larger thread in the story showing him increasingly distancing himself from her.


Your question is an indirect question in any context I can think of. As such, it takes a period. I don’t believe there is ambiguity in your example. You can try different intonations, and it doesn’t sound right as a direct question.

I don’t know what you want from me.

The direct question form of this is:
What do you want from me?

Source : Link , Question Author : HME , Answer Author : Stu W

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