What is the difference between "me neither" and "me either"?

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I want to know the difference between "me neither" and "me either", are both correct?

Esmigol

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 467

6None of these would be used on their own. Could you please provide a context in which you want to use those constructions so that we can give you a meaningful and helpful answer. – None – 2014-09-15T17:46:19.757

2Me either is more common in most of the US. I think me neither is more normal in most of Canada and in the UK. You'd be surprised, though, how people react to this bit of dialectal variation. You'll find rather vocal people who despise me either and can't imagine it being said, even though it's extremely common. Both are fine, though―most people say one or the other, but some people use them interchangeably. They're both informal. – snailplane – 2014-09-16T01:53:31.077

Answers

35

In colloquial spoken language some people use me neither in place of neither do I.

A- I don't like getting up in the morning.
B- Neither do I. /Me neither.

In the US some people will also use me either in that case:

A- I don't like getting up in the morning.
B- Me either.

But this is very informal and not to be used in a learning environment where I would stick to neither do I.

You could find "me either" used in a sequence in a sentence like:

A- This does not seem very clear.
B- It doesn't seem clear to me either.


To answer subsidiary question asked in comment about the pronunciation of either and neither:
The letters [ei] in both words can either be pronounced /aɪ/ or /i/. And to my knowledge this is not a UK vs US difference, although I think /i/ is more frequent in the US, /ˈaɪðə/ and /ˈnaɪðə/ can both be heard in the UK. The question was asked a few years ago on ELU with lots of detailed answers.

None

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 4 934

Not to be used in a learning environment is unclear, If you mean learners should not learn about these expressions, then you have contradicted this by explaining the phrases. Too, there is nothing wrong with learners both learning and using these phrases in their proper context. – None – 2015-04-22T03:24:54.117

2@FumbleFingers: All I can say is "Nor I." ;-) – Brian Hitchcock – 2015-04-22T09:46:35.573

Is "Not me either" used? – ypercubeᵀᴹ – 2017-02-10T13:31:15.660

@user6951 I would assume it means not to be taught as a "correct" option. Personally when teaching English I think it's valid to teach certain colloquialisms in a sort of "in the informal speech of X dialect, you may hear non-standard expression". Not as a model to emulate, but so that encountering such an expression in the wild doesn't throw the student for a loop. (something like "I got" instead of "I've got/I have" being a good example of one to mention so that student isn't confused by song lyrics/movies etc.) – Some_Guy – 2018-07-12T19:57:15.173

The difference is formal versus colloquial. They mean the same thing. There really is no objection one can make to this answer. – Lambie – 2019-12-14T15:19:42.180

9I think "not considered as correct by everybody" might be something of an understatement! Perhaps things are different from an AmE perspective, but "Me either" is certainly not normal in BrE. – FumbleFingers Reinstate Monica – 2014-09-15T18:40:46.603

@FumbleFingers I was trying not to shock people from the US. I'm being too soft... I would never ever use "me neither" either. ;-) – None – 2014-09-15T18:48:09.137

4All I can say is "Nor* me!"* :) – FumbleFingers Reinstate Monica – 2014-09-15T18:50:13.737

@FumbleFingers It doesn't sound right to me, either. – James Wood – 2014-09-16T00:47:13.763

2May I ask if "me either" is supposed to be pronounced "ither" or "aither"? – Pierre Arlaud – 2014-09-16T07:48:30.447

@PierreArlaud: I've edited the answer to answer your question. – None – 2014-09-16T09:00:51.603

9

As stated in the other answers, “Me neither” can be used instead of “Neither do I” or “Nor I”. It's the equivalent of “Me too” or “So do I”, but used after a negative sentence. It's used to change the subject of a sentence to the speaker.

In most cases, “Me either” isn't a phrase in its own right. Usually, the two words are separated by a comma or pause. “either” works like “also” and “too”, but again is used with negative sentences. It's a discursive marker.

“Me neither” can also be considered equivalent to “I don't, either”.

Here are some examples:

A: I don't like her.

B: Me neither.

and

A: She doesn't like me.

B: She doesn't like me, either.

If B says “Me neither.” in the last example, they are at risk of sounding as if they are saying “I don't like you, either.”. Probably, the sentences that use “I” to replace the subject (“neither do I”, “I don't either”) are safer to use for an English learner than those that use “me” to replace the subject (“me neither”). The opposite rule goes for replacing the object.

James Wood

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 199

5

Either and neither are very similar and very different at the same time. Either and neither both give option between two choices (ie. I can take either this cookie or that cookie. Neither of the cookies look tasty). The big difference is that neither is the negative form of either. Where either is inclusive, neither is exclusive.

Imagine it like this (I will borrow from one of the other comments for the examples):

A- I don't like getting up in the morning.

B- Neither do I. /Me neither.

In this case the statement is negative for the narrative (No I don't like getting up in the morning). Additionally you can look at it as exclusive. You are excluding yourself from the group of people who like getting up in the morning.

A- I don't like getting up in the morning.

B- Me either.

In this case me either is colloquially correct but technically wrong because the statement is negative

A- This does not seem very clear.

B- It doesn't seem clear to me either.

Statement A here is positive because you can agree (yes, it does seem to be not clear) In this case either is correct because you are including yourself in the people who think "this" does not seem very clear.

Bradley Scott Memmott

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 51

1Hi Bradley, Welcome to ELL! Nice post. Small tip, it can be quite useful if you put words you're talking about in a different font or in quotes: neither for example - or "neither". Also capital letters keep the niggly people from making daft comments under your posts! Have fun :) – Araucaria - Not here any more. – 2014-12-13T00:13:54.243

2

I am English and prefer to say "me neither" because it is much more logical than me either. The N in neither indicates "No".

I think it sounds better but this is what I have been used to living in England for 57 years.

Alana Stone

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 21

1And yet your countrymen commenting on the top answer claim to have never heard this! – bubbleking – 2018-10-19T19:30:38.563

2

There's not a huge difference – they both mean about the same thing and can be used interchangeably in most circumstances. A look at the Google Ngram results for them I think shows that their history is closely tied together between they pretty much mean the same thing.

While usage varies between speakers and regions, of course, generally if the statement being agreed with is a response to a question or request, me neither is used:

Question:

Terry: Would you like coke or pepsi?

Alex: Neither, thank you.

Kris: Me neither.

However, if the response is in agreement to a negative statement, then me either is more common, generally.

Negative statement:

Terry: I didn't like the movie last night.

Alex: Me either.

dantiston

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 803

This is downright wrong. – bubbleking – 2018-10-19T19:29:29.447

6What is your basis for this answer? Because it seems completely wrong to me. To me, "me neither" is equivalent to "neither do I", and doesn't fit in your first scenario at all. (Alex: "I don't want any soda at all." Kris: "Me neither.") And "me either" sounds nonstandard in any context. – Ryan M – 2014-09-15T21:39:07.560

I'm confused about what you disagree with -- are you saying (Alex: "I don't want any soda at all."; Kris: "Neither do I.") is ungrammatical? That sounds exactly right to me. As I mentioned, usage varies between speakers and regions, so I wouldn't be surprised if we disagree. – dantiston – 2014-09-15T21:57:10.457

1No, the example I gave is what sounds right to me; sorry for the lack of clarity. In your first example, it's not used to mean "neither do I", and that's what sounds way off to me. – Ryan M – 2014-09-15T22:05:22.330

1

The response "Me either" seems incorrect to me. It's makes no sense as a negative response. For example, in this scenario:

Terry: Would you like coke or pepsi?

Alex: Neither, thanks.

Kris: Me either.

If I were Terry I would be serving Kris either a coke or pepsi before they could say anything about it! ;-))

Neil Gibson

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 27

Welcome to the ELL :-). It was nice of you to contribute, but consider this: if a construction doesn't work for one example it doesn't really mean that it is incorrect in general, right? Some (cited) research might be more helpful for the OP ;-). – Lucky – 2015-04-22T01:47:08.057

1This is similar, however, to the use of "me too" to respond to something like "I like you." And the person responds with "me too," meaning "I like you too" rather than "I like me, too." I can't stand this response, but its out there alive and thriving. – None – 2015-04-22T03:27:12.350

0

"Me either" should be slapped out of someone's mouth, if using the same way as "me neither".

It may be more common in some places than in others, but that doesn't make it correct, OR acceptable!

The comma example would be an acceptable exception; even though it would still sound weird.

I.E.

"Would you like a Coke or a Pepsi?"
"Me, either."

Still seems it should be separated into

"Me? Either."

Steve K.

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 1

0

I have learned that you should use "either" when there is already a negation in sentence. E.g. "I don’t like it either." Don’t is a negation so either would be used. On the other hand if I want to say a shorter version. "... me neither." You convey negation with the word "neither" as there are no other elements in your sentence with the negation of your statement. That is the one simple and logic explanation in grammar that always stuck to me.

Juan

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 1

-2

Either is really only ever used if you're making a decision, and you're content with all choices given to you. Example:

Subject A. Would you like Apple Jacks, or Fruit Loops?
Subject B. Either of them are fine.

Same example except used with neither this time, Subject B would reply with "Neither. I would rather have Cinnamon Toast Crunch."

Subject A. I really don't want to go to work today.
Subject B. Me neither.

Because neither of them want to go to work today. I was taught a method to remember the difference between the two. The one with the N (neither), means no, none of them. The only time the two words, me, and either, should ever sit side by side in a sentence are times like, "it's either me, or him/her." Me should always come after either, at least in the Americanized English language. "Me either" is not a phrase in its own right.

user82135

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 1

Please use proper spelling, punctuation, and capitalization to the best of your abilities. Avoid using abbreviations. Please see the Contributor's Guide (answering). You can find formatting tips here.

– Em. – 2018-09-13T07:24:36.540

-2

We can also use "me either" to respond on positive matters, and it can be used as a same conjunction with "me too" or to replace it.

Example

A: I enjoyed watching the movie last night.

B: Yes, me too / me either

Here, me either is mostly used in US rather than UK, and in most cases it is informal.

Starchild

Posted 2014-09-15T16:21:41.077

Reputation: 1

No. I challenge you to find one example of someone saying "me either" to mean "me too." Also, you reference "here" but don't say where "here" is, only going on to reference both the US and UK. – bubbleking – 2018-10-19T19:32:33.550