So I've been taught to use reflexive verbs whenever the subject and object of a sentence are the same, like in je m'appelle, il se lave etc. But today i saw the sentence "Est-ce que Tu M'Aimes?" how can the subject and object be different yet the relfexive still be used? Am I missing something or is this sentence just wrong?

  • 1
    You are confusing reflexive pronouns and direct object pronouns. Do you love me? Est-ce que tu m'aimes. m' is a direct object.
    – Lambie
    Oct 30, 2021 at 18:01

4 Answers 4


The only pronoun that is always reflexive is se; the pronoun me is only reflexive if it's used with the subject je.

For example, il s'aime means "he loves himself", ils s'aiment means "they love each other", je m'aime means "I love myself"—those verbs are all reflexive—but Il m'aime means "he loves me" and isn't reflexive. You wouldn't say je s'aime; you'd say je l'aime to mean "I love him" (or "her").

You have to be careful with reflexive verbs. While for many French verbs, it's not hard to figure out the reflexive meaning from the non-reflexive meaning and vice versa, there are a few verbs where the meaning changes substantially when you make them reflexive; e.g., taper and se taper can mean quite different things. (But note also that some verbs are only reflexive and some verbs are never reflexive.)


Reflexive verbs imply the subject and the object are the same. Verbs can also be used with a pronoun as complement and in such case are not reflexive.

Je me lave. Reflexive verb se laver

Je le lave. Regular verb laver (Je lave "lui/ça")


Right, something must be confusing you: there is no reflexive verb in this sentence. Here is reflexive use.

Je m'aime, tu t'aimes, il s'aime, nous nous aimons, vous vous aimez, ils s'aiment

For the reflexive, the person of the pronoun has to be the same as that of the subject.


No reflexive verb is used in this sentence. The verb is aimer.
m' is the direct object of the verb and it represents the person who is asking the question. In the answer the same person is represented by je (subject pronoun) and the subject of the question tu is the object in the question: t'.

  • Est-ce que tu m'aimes ?

Now let's imagine an answer to the question:

  • Oui, je t'aime.

The m' of the question has become t' is the answer. m' and t' respectively stand for me and te in which the e has been elided because it stands in front of a vowel.

Here's a sentence where aimer is used reflexively:

  • Je m'aime bien coiffée comme ça.
    Je and m' are the same person.

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