I and me may mean the same thing but add a you and we face an age-old issue of you and me versus you and I. 

Which one to use and when to use it has had people confused for as long as anyone can remember. For those of us who have learned the correct usage and wince when you read it used incorrectly, rest assured it’s a mistake we see all the time

What exactly is the rule of thumb for when to use you and me versus you and I? Well, it depends, of course, on the sentence structure. 

One of the easiest ways to determine if it’s I or me is to remove the you and from the sentence. 

For example, here are two sentences:

“Kelly said she wanted to go with you and me to the store.”

vs.

“Kelly said she wanted to go with you and I to the store.” 

If we take out the you and, it would read: 

“Kelly said she wanted to go with me to the store.” 

vs. 

“Kelly said she wanted to go with I to the store.” 

When you remove the you and it makes it much easier to insert the correct word.

“Kelly said she wanted to go with you and me to the store.”

Now, for those of us who like to have a deeper understanding—and who never outgrew the two-year-old stage of, “but why?” Let’s dig in, shall we?

It becomes a matter of subject versus object. We use I when it is used as the subject of a sentence and me when it is the object of a sentence.

I went to pick up my dress from the dry cleaners. (I is the subject of the sentence.)

He brought me my favorite chocolate chip cookies. (In this instance, me is the object.)

For example:

“When you and I go to the movie, let’s get popcorn.” 

vs.

“When you and me go to the movie, let’s get popcorn.”

In this sentence, I is being referred to as the subject. If we also apply the simple rule from the beginning, it would read: 

“When I go to the movie, let’s get popcorn.” 

vs. 

“When me go to the movie, let’s get popcorn.” 

So the correct usage would read:

“When you and I go to the movie, let’s get popcorn.” 

To give an example of me as the object would be:

“Keith brought gifts for you and me.” 

The rule of removing you and would give us:

“Keith brought gifts for me.” 

vs.

“Keith brought gifts for I.”

So what happens when we add a preposition? Such as “between you and me” versus “between you and I”? In standard English, a preposition (in this case between) should always be followed by an objective pronoun (such as me, him, her, and us) rather than a subjective pronoun (such as I, he, she, and we). Simply stated, it’s grammatically correct to say, “between you and me” and incorrect to say, “between you and I.” 

Oh, the joys of grammar! If only we could all go back to grade school and pay a leeetle bit more attention when they were teaching us all these fun rules in the English language. 

But don’t worry, even Shakespeare didn’t get it all right, and apparently his editor missed his use of between you and I…in a mere major piece of writing. He needed me. I kid. But in all seriousness, between you and me, we’ll just have to hope to make a difference, one grammar lesson and kind correction at a time. 

Or should it be between you and I? 

Well, after this article, you tell me. 

Happy Reading!

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