Grammar pop quiz: Me, Myself, and I
Updated: Jun 16, 2021
We tend to overthink and overcorrect when we use "me, myself and I" pronouns.
The correct answer is "c) Give the report to Terry and me."
The long explanation has to do with objective, subjective, and reflective pronouns, which you probably don't care about. I'll be happy to pontificate if you're interested.
The short explanation is: Take Terry out. Now who are you asking the report to be given to? "Give the report to me." Adding Terry to the request doesn't change who you are. ROCK the "me" and wear it proudly!
Bonus round! Want to know when to use "I" and "myself" if it's not in this example?
"Terry and I want the report by Monday." Again, if you're not sure, take Terry out, and then "I want the report by Monday." For our example, try "Give the report to I," and you'll hear that what you really want is for your listener to "Give the report to me."
"Myself" never stands alone and will always accompany "I" as an emphasis on you, yourself. Test? Leave "myself" out of the sentence and it should still work. "I wrote that report myself" also works as "I wrote that report." Or let's get snooty: "I myself need that report" emphasizes the all-important "I" but you can leave it out: "I need that report."
Try our example above: "Give the report to myself." That sounds a little off, doesn't it?
Extra credit! Want to know which is objective, subjective, or reflective pronouns?
"I" is the subjective pronoun. It's who is doing the action. "I wrote that report."
"Me" is the objective pronoun. It's the recipient of the action. "Give the report to me."
"Myself" is the reflective pronoun. "I myself need that report." It reflects and emphasizes the subjective pronoun.
If you made it this far, you've earned a coffee break from all that report-giving! ☕️