You and I / You and me

One of the most often asked grammar questions is about the difference between “you and I,” and “you and me?”  The problem is that there are two ways to refer to myself (I / me), and only one word for the person you’re talking to (you.)  Surprisingly, even native speakers of English make mistakes with this grammar.  Here is the rule with examples:

Use you and I before a verb.  Remember that the verb is always plural.  This usually happens at the beginning of a sentence.

You and I are going out tonight.
• Sometimes you and I argue, but it’s never serious.
• Maybe you and I should get an apartment together after we graduate.
You and I often agree about politics.
• Next, you and I will visit the botanical gardens.

Also use you and I at the beginning of an independent clause followed by a verb.

• When we were young, you and I used to walk to school together.
• After you get home, you and I are going to go shopping.
• We went to high school together, and then you and I went to different universities.
• Our friends are often late, but you and I are always on time.
• Because we like the same things, you and I should become friends.

Use you and me after a subject and verb.  This usually happens in the middle or at the end of a sentence.

Your sister saw you and me kissing last night at the party.
The teacher gave you and me a math problem to solve.
It took them more than a hour to find you and me.
• Remember when our parents let you and me sleep outside in the backyard?
• They thought their lies would make you and me fight, but they were wrong.

Also use you and me after a preposition.

• The manager wants to talk to you and me after work today.
• This is between you and me.
• Our friends are throwing a party for you and me.
• She needs a ride, so I invited her to come with you and me.
• Remember that couple who was sitting next to you and me in the theatre?

An easy way to know whether to use you and I or you and me is to drop “you and.”  The sentence should still be correct.

Is that cake for you and me?
Is that cake for me?

She knows because she saw you and me together last night.
She knows because she saw me (together with you) last night.

You and I have to go.
I have to go.

When you and I get busy, we get a lot done.
When I get busy (with you), we get a lot done.

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© 2013 Ambien Malecot