“I don't appreciate being left to do all the hard work.”

It’s different from just saying “I don't appreciate doing all the hard work.”; the idea of “being left to do” is important. Someone else leaves the speaker to do all the hard work, and the speaker doesn’t like it.

With this in mind, how would you express the sentence above in colloquial French? Merci beaucoup.

4 Answers 4


To express both "being left" and "hard work", I would use one of thoses (basing on Stephane and Nico's answers):

Je n'[apprécie/aime] pas [qu'on/quand on] me [refile/refourgue] tout le sale [boulot/travail]
Je n'[apprécie/aime] pas [qu'on/quand on] me laisse [faire] tout le sale [boulot/travail]

Note that "refile" and "refourgue" are familiar.

  • Thank you. Regarding the word "familiar" in your answer, do you mean that the verbs 'refile' and 'refourgue' should both be used only when you are on "familiar" terms with someone? Jan 7, 2016 at 14:08
  • "refiler" is a less familiar verb than "refourguer", but both sound pretty familiar.
    – Nico
    Jan 7, 2016 at 14:33
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    @pourraitpuet-etre I mean you must use it when talking to a friend, not when talking to your boss (except if you are very angry and want to emphasis that) :)
    – Random
    Jan 7, 2016 at 14:58
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    @Random Merci. I have a few questions: « Je ne supporte pas qu'on me laisse faire tout le sale boulot. » Is "ne supporte pas" a stronger expression than "n'aime pas"? Also, is the "laisse" in this sentence the Subjonctif form of "laisser"? Jan 12, 2016 at 9:07
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    @pourraitpuet-etre You're totally right ! "Je ne supporte pas" means "I can't stand", which is stronger than "I don't like".
    – Random
    Jan 12, 2016 at 9:36

French is actually one of the most versatile language when it comes to complaining :p Here are a few examples :

  • J'ai horreur de me coltiner tout le travail
  • Je n'aime pas devoir me taper tout le sale boulot
  • Je déteste me farcir tout le travail
  • Je n'aime pas me palucher tout le boulot

Please note that although this is very familiar language, one of my coworkers uses some of them quite often. In case you don't want to sound too familiar, I've ordered them from the most polite one to the least polite one ;)

  • I was under the impression that the use of the verb "laisser" would be crucial, but it seems that you can translate this sentence without it as well. Thanks. Jan 7, 2016 at 12:55
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    @pourraitpuet-etre indeed, the "being left to do" part is not really represented here...
    – Random
    Jan 7, 2016 at 13:04
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    The idea of this sentences implies that someone leaves you with "le sale boulot". "Me coltiner", "Me taper", "Me farcir", "Me palucher" all show a very annoying situation which implies you are not supposed to do this work alone. French user here, believe me :(
    – Nico
    Jan 7, 2016 at 14:08

French would not use a passive construction in this case. The best to insist on “someone” leaving the work to you is to use laisser together with the unspecified pronoun on as a subject.

Je n'aime pas qu'on me laisse faire tout le travail.


Je n'aime pas quand on me laisse faire tout le travail.

  • Although your first sentence is very correct, I think your second one misses the point of what OP wanted to say. Your second sentence would translate to "I don't like when one lets me work". You miss the idea of hard work, and the idea of being left alone. In my opinion, of course.
    – Nico
    Jan 7, 2016 at 12:44
  • @Nico: In some contexts you might be right, the question was not about this particular point anyway. Jan 7, 2016 at 12:50
  • From what I understood of the question, this was precisely the point to emphasize. Being left to do some other people's work in addition of yours, "all the hard work", "left to do"... But anyway, let's let the OP choose the correct answer :p
    – Nico
    Jan 7, 2016 at 12:52
  • @Nico: The question is: How to express “being left to do”. Moreover the OP makes clear later that “being left to” and “someone else” are the important parts. Jan 7, 2016 at 12:54

You can translate like this :

Je n'apprécie pas qu'on me laisse seulement les tâches les plus compliquées.

I don't appreciate that we give me only the hard work... :

Je n'apprécie pas qu'on m'attribue seulement les tâches les plus compliquées.


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