What? I miss you is tu me manques? But that’s all reversed how can that be?

It just is. And no matter how good your French is, I miss you is an expression that more or less everybody struggles with because, well, it’s all reversed. So today I’m going to help you with this and other versions too such as: you miss me, we will miss you, she missed me, etc. so you can finally feel more confident using this expression!

1- Casual I miss you

Let’s start with the straight forward casual I miss you that you would tell your partner, your friend, your grandmother, people you are casual with, close to.

I miss you = Tu me manques

That’s why I said it was all reversed. I am usually against exact translation because every language is original and unique but, today, as an exception to help you understand I say yes, let’s do a closer translation.

Think of “Tu me manques” as “You are missed by me”, at least until you get used to it.

Because when you hear tu me manques, it sounds like you miss me. But no, it means I miss you.

So write it on a post it note and look at it for as long as you need to:

I miss you = tu me manques

You miss me = je te manque

I know it’s counterintuitive but it’s important to get it right. Imagine you have a friend in France that you haven’t seen in 3 years.

You send her an email and write I miss you, or at least that’s what you think you wrote. If you make the mistake that 80% of people make you will write je te manque so you are in fact telling her you miss me, which sounds a little… self involved, ha ha!

Remember, post it note:

I miss you = tu me manques

You miss me = je te manque

When you are comfortable with this, no rush take your time and wash this as many times as you need, you can play with it!

2- Variations in the present tense

We miss you = tu nous manques

I miss you to a group of people let’s say your family = Vous me manquez

You miss her = Elle te manque

They miss us = Nous leur manquons

See how you can play with the pronouns? It takes a little practice but it’s all very logical in the end.

3- Variations in the passé composé

I missed you = tu m’as manqué

I missed them = Elles (or ils) m’ont manqué

We missed you to a group of people = Vous nous avez manqué

4- Variations in the future tense

I will miss you = tu me manqueras or tu vas me manquer

Will you miss me? = je te manquerai? or je vais te manquer?

I will miss him = il me manquera or il va me manquer

What else can you come up with? Show me what you can do in the comments!

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