Word Choice – My wife and I/My wife and me
I have been out of the country for the past month and am still working my way through my emails. However, I am surprised at the number of readers who commented on the BizWritingTip regarding “texted” becoming a verb.
They felt that the sentence “My daughter told my wife and me …” was grammatically incorrect. It should have been “My daughter told my wife and I.”
Sorry, dear readers, but in this case “my wife and me” is correct. “I” and “me” are personal pronouns. “I” is used when the pronoun is the subject of the sentence. “Me” is used when the pronoun is the object.
My daughter told my wife and me. (The pronoun is the object in the sentence.)
My wife and I were told by my daughter. (Now the pronoun is the subject.)
The report was written by Sam and me. (The pronoun is the object.)
Sam and I wrote the report. (Now the pronoun is the subject.)
Are you still confused? If so, here’s an easy way to sort it out. Part of the confusion comes from the compound (two) subjects and objects. Therefore, drop the first part of the compound, and you’ll automatically get the correct answer. Then you can put the sentence back together.
My daughter told I. (This is incorrect.)
My daughter told me. (This sounds better.)
The report was written by I. (This is not grammatically correct and sounds pretentious.)
The report was written by me. (This is correct.)
Me wrote the report. (I hope someone else proofed it.)
I wrote the report. (Correct)
The rules for personal pronouns are not new. I think some people may just have misunderstood them.