Advanced search

Why have people started using reflexive pronouns so much?

(310 Posts)
Flippetydip Thu 24-May-18 14:37:42

I seem to hear a lot recently of "what can I get for yourself?" or "could you send it to myself with a, b and c copied in".

You get something for yourself, I get something for you. I send something to myself, I send something to you.

Is this now considered acceptable English?

TrickyD Thu 24-May-18 14:49:12

No, it is not acceptable English, any more than the incorrect use of "I" rather than "me" is, as in V Beckham's wedding tweet about being grateful "for the invitation to David and I".

IveGotBillsTheyreMultiplying Thu 24-May-18 14:51:08

I often ask myself that.

Dhalandchips Thu 24-May-18 14:53:04

I used to work next to a woman who used to do it all the time. I think in an attempt to sound intelligent. It failed.

Eastcoastmost Thu 24-May-18 14:54:17

I find it’s estate agents who do it most! It’s like people are over compensating and trying to sound intelligent, but they’ve got it so badly wrong they actually just sound ridiculous.

ThisIsTheFirstStep Thu 24-May-18 14:55:13

bills version is fine.

The whole ‘just ask Linda or myself’ thing is fucking teeth achingly annoying.

ShotsFired Thu 24-May-18 14:55:35

It's people trying posh themselves up.


Trialsmum Thu 24-May-18 14:56:41

Yeah they’re just trying to be clever... and failing.

presentcontinuous Thu 24-May-18 14:58:51

I get the impression people use them to sound less direct and more polite confused

Some companies even seem to train their staff to use them, it's very very annoying.

BendydickCuminsnatch Thu 24-May-18 14:59:33

I almost can’t watch The Apprentice because of it 😄 cold callers are also terrible for it, makes me completely stop listening to them too. Somehow referring to me and ‘yourself’ sounds passive aggressive/sarcastic 😄

marchin1984 Thu 24-May-18 14:59:43

we should all be asking ourselves this question.

it's all over the place. In speech too. Don't know where it is coming from.

Eastcoastmost Thu 24-May-18 15:01:50

Yes - the Apprentice is a nightmare for this. The irony of course is that in a misguided attempt to sound ‘posh’, they’re actually revealing their ignorance. Shame they don’t grasp this, really...

MayFayner Thu 24-May-18 15:02:30

It's usually accompanied by an attempt to extract money of some sort ime.

reallybadidea Thu 24-May-18 15:02:37

It's aggravating, but I don't think it's a new thing; I remember moaning about it when DS1 was a baby and he's 18 angry

LadyOfTheCanyon Thu 24-May-18 15:02:58

Oh Christ, I hate this. It makes people sound thick as mince.

IveGotBillsTheyreMultiplying Thu 24-May-18 15:03:00

Once people hear it used incorrectly by others, they start to use it themselves.

I don't correct it when I hear it myself.


nauticant Thu 24-May-18 15:04:17

Myself don't know. Myself assume that themselves view the personal pronoun "me" as informal while the reflexive pronoun is formal and the "correct" form. Whatever it is, myself find it annoying.

Ohyesiam Thu 24-May-18 15:04:17

It’s such a nasty contortion of language. I think people think it makes them sound formal, but they just sound thick.

DadDadDad Thu 24-May-18 15:04:56

This is an old favourite on Pedants' Corner. You are being unreasonable to say "started" in your thread title - I can think back 30 years to people doing this (yes, so odd that I still remember it), and this thread is 9 years

Ohyesiam Thu 24-May-18 15:05:39

And yes agree it’s not new , my step dad used to do it in the 70 s . I’ve been cringing all that time.

ethelfleda Thu 24-May-18 15:06:43

I hate this too. Same with people saying I instead of me.

Although language has to evolve and change with time. The more people use the incorrect word, the more chance of it becoming correct!

Doesn't stop it being very annoying though.

pigmcpigface Thu 24-May-18 15:14:56

"I get the impression people use them to sound less direct and more polite"

I think so too. Apparently, this is also the reason for the high-rising terminal. I think both actually come over as passive-aggressive in reality.

MrsSchadenfreude Thu 24-May-18 15:15:55

It gets on my tits.

Caribou58 Thu 24-May-18 15:17:15

I think the worst example of this is "Myself and John are going to..."

MikeUniformMike Thu 24-May-18 15:18:47

Me and DP hate it too. wink

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: