Me, Myself, and I

I don’t know if this is the case for all other English speaking countries, but here in the US, kindergartners know how to use “me” properly in a sentence.

For example, “Please call me if you need anything.”

We continue to use “me” correctly right up until someone, usually a teacher, tells us sometimes “me” should be “I.”

An existential crisis ensues. Suddenly, we no longer know when we need to use “me” and when we need to use “I.” Our sentences devolve into such abominations as, “Pick up Sandra and I at the mall at 4pm.” What’s worse, this grammatical travesty often sounds overly correct to the untrained ear.

Which is totally forgivable if said ear’s first language is not English, but all too often it is.

The abuse does not end there.

We enter the workforce and forget all about me and I. To our bewildered minds, the only word to denote ourselves in a professional email is the dreaded myself.

“Please call Bill or myself if you have any questions.”

“Send an email to myself at emailaddress@company.com.”

“You can turn the report in to Sandra or myself.”

Yes, we think. That sounds super professional and articulate. Now me will give I a pat on myself’s back.

Quick Grammar Lesson

Remove the other person from your sentence to determine which is correct.

Right: He came here with me and Sandra. (He came here with me.)
Wrong: He came here with Sandra and I. (He came here with I.)

Myself is used only in instances in which “I” or “me” is in the sentence as well.

Right: He left me at the mall by myself!
Right: I did this all by myself.
Right: After eating a Snickers, I felt like myself again.
Wrong: Email Sandra or myself the reports.

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