The Best of The Grammar Diva
Originally published May 3 2013
You probably remember someone once saying Me and my friend went… Or maybe it was even you who said that. And you probably remember being corrected: No, it’s “My friend and I went…”
And that is true. However, it seems that people have now overcorrected themselves by using I even when the correct pronoun is me.
So, how do we know which word to use? Well, let’s look at this sentence:
Him loves I.
Well, unless you are Tarzan perhaps, you would never talk this way. You would say He loves me.
The pronouns he, she, we, they, and I are the ones we usually use at the beginning of the sentence, or before the verb (action word). They are the subjective forms of the pronouns.
The pronouns him, her, us, them, and me are the ones we usually use if they appear after the verb and are not the doers of the action, but the receivers. These are the objective forms of the pronouns.
We usually know which pronoun to use. It’s when we add another subject or object that we get confused. l Here are some examples:
Jack and me went out last night. Well, you might say this. However, you certainly wouldn’t say Me went out last night.
To get your pronouns correct in this situation, just take out the other person, and see what makes sense. For example:
Jack gave the tickets to Sally and I. Take out Sally. Would you say Jack gave the tickets to I?? Of course, you wouldn’t. So you wouldn’t’ say Jack gave the tickets to Sally and I either!
Pretty, simple, huh? Here is another, slightly different, example:
Us students are holding a fundraiser. You wouldn’t say Us are holding a fundraiser. So, the correct way to say this is We students are holding a fundraiser, because you would say We are holding a fundraiser.
Another common misuse of I is in the expression between you and I. Just remember that it is between you and me. Always. Likewise, it is between him and her, between him and me, and between them and me (the objective forms on the pronouns).
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