1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: French
  4. >
  5. "I like you."

"I like you."

Translation:Je t'aime bien.

January 17, 2013

68 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

The answer given as correct for the translation exercise was Je t'aime bien which was completely new to me. I guess if you are saying you like someone that is a situation for using a familiar phrasing. This answer given here is different from the exercise and is closer to the one I gave. I was wrong anyway because of positioning vous after aime rather than before as it should be. Also I left out bien.

I wonder why the absolute requirement for bien. Isn't that more like "I really like you"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lukelbd

I saw this explained by an experienced member in another comment. It's because "je t'aime" usually means "I love you," so when talking about people, the distinction between "like" and "love" is made by adding something like "bien", which I suppose makes it more polite/general and therefore weaker.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

lukelbd

That is correct. My comment was written a very, very long time ago.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/T_P

I put "Je t'adore". I thought "adore" meant like and "aime" meant love.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/prijelanakole

actually it is the opposite. Adore means love, aime is ...less intense.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AshokKanet

T_P, a while ago Sitesurf had posted this in the discussion which I found very useful indeed.

HOME WORDS DISCUSSION LABS STORIES ASHOKKANET

TOPIC: FRENCH FOLLOWING DISCUSSION https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf TNs, Extra: Aimer, aimer bien, adorer, and other appreciation verbs.

Sitesurf

It is essential for beginners to learn about the grammar and, even more importantly, the meanings and uses of appreciation verbs. When it comes to feelings, nobody wants to goof-up, be misunderstood, nor hurt feelings or offend sensibilities.

Grammar

There is one important rule to know about the direct object of such appreciation verbs as aimer, aimer bien, adorer, apprécier, préférer, détester, haïr, respecter, admirer: Whenever the object is a count noun, a mass noun, a concept or a plural noun, the definite articles (le, la, l’, les) are most often used, not to specify the object but to generalize it.

J’aime le chocolat. — I like chocolate.

Je préfère l’histoire à la fiction. — I prefer history to fiction.

Je ne déteste pas les ordinateurs. — I don’t hate computers.

Je respecte les personnes âgées. — I respect older people.

Je n’aime pas la violence. — I don’t like violence.

These cover statements may also be understood as one-time opinions about specific things, so if the context allows, the definite article “the” can be suitable before the object.

Also remember that only indefinite (un, une, des) and partitive (du, de la, de l') articles disappear and are replaced with de in front of the direct object of a negated verb, as in Je n’ai pas d’ordinateur or Je ne mange pas de chocolat.

Another rule is that appreciation verbs can be followed by an infinitive without a preposition or a subordinate clause with a verb in the subjunctive mood.

J’adore regarder les oiseaux. — I love watching birds.

J’admire que tu sois si patiente. — I admire that you are so patient.

”I love you” is Je t’aime.

To properly express our feelings in French, we have two main verbs: aimer and adorer, which translate to “like” and “love”, depending on the object and other elements of the language, especially adverbs.

When you love someone, you say je t'aime.

When you like someone, you say je t’aime bien.

When you like something, you say j’aime ça or j’aime bien ça. When you like doing something, you say j'aime faire ça or j'aime bien faire ça.

When you love something, you say j’adore ça.

When you love doing something, you say j'adore faire ça.

Among human beings, l’amour is love and the verb is aimer. This applies to romantic relationships and family bonds, and extends to pets.

Cette femme aime sa fille, je le sais. — This woman loves her daughter, I know it.

Si tu aimes ton petit chien, nourris-le bien. — If you love your little dog, feed it well.

To clear any doubt, you can also use être amoureux/amoureuse to mean “to be in love”.

Je suis amoureux/amoureuse d’elle/de lui. — I am in love with her/him.

If the feeling is not love, the verb aimer needs an adverb like bien or ​beaucoup to weaken aimer and thereby state that the feeling is not “love” in the romantic sense. However, this does not preclude sincere commitment and affection.

J’aime bien notre comptable. — I like our accountant: as coworkers, we get along well.

J’aime beaucoup mon ami Fred. — I very much/really like my friend Fred: we are good friends.

J’aime énormément mes tantes et mes oncles. — I very much/really like my aunts and uncles.

Je t’aime beaucoup. — I like you very much (Not “I love you very much”).

To evidence the difference between aimer and aimer bien when the object is a person, we can quote the song from Zazie, « Chanson d’ami »:

Je ne t’aime pas : je t’aime bien.— I am not in love with you: I like you.

When it comes to animals and things or concepts, aimer and aimer bien are not significantly different and several adverbs can be added to better qualify our feeling.

J’aime (bien) ton blog. — I like your blog.

J’aime vraiment/beaucoup/énormément cette émission. — I really like/like this show a lot/very much.

Adorer for exaggeration

In ancient times, adorer was the verb of choice for gods or idols. Nowadays, using adorer mostly denotes enhancement, magnification or embellishment of an otherwise milder feeling.

Ma femme, je l’adore. — I adore my wife.

J’adore ta nouvelle cravate ! — I love your new tie!

J’ai toujours adoré les fourmis. — I have always loved ants.

J’adorais Michael Jackson. — I loved Michael Jackson.

Je t’adore quand tu me fais rire. — I love you when you make me laugh.

Other appreciation verbs

Préférer is synonymous with aimer mieux but their constructions are different.

Je préfère le vin à la bière. — I prefer wine to beer.

J’aime mieux le vin que la bière. — I like wine better than beer.

Détester and hair are synonymous, but due to its somewhat difficult conjugation, haïr has become uncommon. Another synonym of détester is avoir horreur de, which does not imply any fear, unlike the faux-ami “to have a horror of”.

Je déteste / Je hais / J’ai horreur des épinards. — I hate spinach.

Important: If you find any errors in the Tips and Notes, have questions related to the grammar points above, or would like to discuss the topic in depth, please feel free to comment below. We ask that you keep your comments on topic so that this post stays educational and everyone can benefit from them. Any spam or unrelated comments will be deleted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OliverMolb

Then why does Duolingo stick with "I love you"="J'adore"??? I would guess adore means adore and not love. ther is a conceptual difference between devotion ( love) and speechless amazement ( adore).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/liveforcookies42

Actually you could say someone look at something in lovingly


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/malhalmol

Why je t'aime is wrong? Can anyone tell me...(¬_¬)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GabeDC

Je t'aime means "I love you," although on a literal level, it reads as "I like you." In French, the verb aimer means "to like" unless the object is a person or an animal, in which case the intent becomes "to love."

In the context of aimer meaning "love," using bien with aimer acts as a softener, turning "love" into "like."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/booklvr44

In French, I know that "Je t'aime" means I love you.

But in English, we have "I like you" which is kind of romantic but not as serious as "I love you." We also have "I like you" in a non-romantic sense.

Is there a difference between "I like you" (romantic) and "I like you" (as a friend or person)?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/InvertedGo

Are you asking about English? If yes, then only context and intonation would let you know which one is meant.

If you're asking about French, I'll leave it to someone else to answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Agonisti

Don't worry, feeling frustrated is how learning French feels. A gazillion silly little rules, half of which don't even pretend to make sense - and the only solution is to keep on suffering and just try to memorize it all. :]


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cynsanity

ha i agree learning a language can be frustrating, but still i enjoy it. duolingo doesn't do a lot or enough to minimize the feeling of frustration


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Enekpe

Agreed, much like learning English or any language probably.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JerryChandra

I had a 'choose the correct words' activity... It had my answer correct but it said i wrote 't' aime' (i didnt get a choice) and that i shouldn't have spaces after apostrophes. What's with that?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Clayton1224

this is too hard!!! For me!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YyChen1

Why not Vous me plaisez?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/oldkyrgyz

It is my understanding that "Je t'aime" directed to person means "I love you" (in a romantic context) but directed to anything else mean "I like you". To say "I like you" to a person we must say "Je t'aime bien". That's French for you, and they tell me not to ask WHY?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/yadira569497

Isnt this transelated better to

You pleased me


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lemniscatarum

It might work like manquer or an idiom.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EdUC6R

"Bien" is part of "I like you"? This defies the translation Duolingo provided earlier in the lesson.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Leso_varen

For me, Je vous aime bien = I like you well, whereas je t'aime = I love you . Correct me if I'm wrong, though :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cmswahoo

I believe that you are correct. My (big) French dictionary has like (verb): aimer (bien). If you didn't add the bien, it would be understood as love.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SourireCache

Oh, I wasn't sure & just put regular je t'aime but from now on I will try to remember to add bien. [:


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laetitia_Lalila

I think this is a very interesting observation. Can anyone please clarify?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PonyVu

I think "I like you" is not the same with "Je t'aime", this is "I love you".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/werekitty

I remember this sentence being in the lessons earlier and it was simple "J'aime vous", so why is it wrong? why must "bien" be added?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

French J'aime can be general = I like or I love

French J'aime bien is specific = I like

English I love is specific = j'aime

English I like is specific = j'aime bien.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RoyK.

what's wrong with; J'aimez vous ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/prijelanakole

"je" is the first person of singular, therefore the form of the verb is "aime" not "aimez". And the pronoun ("vous") has to come before the verb. so: Je vous aime.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/malhalmol

Why vous aime Not aimez


[deactivated user]

    Read the comments above. If you answered, "J'aimez vous." then you got it wrong because "aimer" needs to conjugate with "je" and not "vous". The correct translation would be, "Je vous aime.".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ChicagoAmal

    I wrote je t'aime. It gave je t'aime bien as the correct answer. The English translation was not I like you very much, it was I like you.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

    Bien has the function of reducing the intensity of aimer. Therefore aimer bien is like instead of love. It is just how it works with that verb.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Charles74306

    Why don't we use "Je t'aime"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

    In the particular usage you are suggesting, the meaning is I love you. There are various ways of saying I like you. that make it clear you are not saying I love you. This Duo example is one of them.

    But a French speaker will take je t'aime to mean I love you every time. If that is what you really meant to say, no problem. But if it isn't you may be surprised at the result, pleasantly or not.

    If you listen to French music, you will hear je t'aime mentioned quite often. They are not singing about how they think their boss is a great guy, a particular bus driver always makes them feel welcome when they get on the bus, some one they just met at a party or any such.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RakeemMoses

    I'm anbit confused to the direct translation here Wouldnt this sentence come across as "You please me," in the English language? Also i didn't know aime could've been used in French to mean "love," pretty interesting tidbit


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bethen_Mist

    I put je t'aime and it told me the correct response was je t'apprecie . I have never in my lessons seen it written like that.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

    Je t'aime is incorrect as a way to say I like you. Correct answer for Duo is je t'aime bien. A less common answer is, as you were advised, je t'apprecie.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KobusingeMK

    Same dilemma i am in now


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eowyn11

    This one should be in the bonus lessons Flirting


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/unique52

    Why is "J'aime vous" not acceptable?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GabeDC

    The words have to come in a particular order—here, subject–object–verb instead of, as in English, subject–verb–object. Your example would then be "Je vous aime bien." (Without bien, the meaning becomes "I love you" instead of "I like you.")


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Harman01

    "Je vous aime bien" not acceptable, throws incorrect


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jayparts1

    I put "Je vous aime bien." Does it have to be "t'aime" not "vous aime?"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Harman01

    Same case with me


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hilary526728

    I'm just learning how to do the Gallic shrug now.........


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ro8ert

    I put 'je vous aime bien' and was marked as wrong. Im not sure why?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

    Not sure what Duo's reasoning is but I would be surprised to see an expression of affection finished up with a formal style of address.

    The English equivalent would be something like .... I like you, sir.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ninszy

    Why add bien though?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/carolekolb

    Aimer bien "weakens" the verb aimer (not sure why), so though 'aime'means love, 'aime bien' means like. In my mind I think of it like this: I like you WELL enough.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mmepouletlapoete

    That is totally news to me!!! I am a teacher of French! Pls fix!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaulDeNice1

    Duo is correct. Je t'aime = I love you. Je t'aime bien =I like you. Also the French can add another word which mean I like you a lot, but still not love. Je t'aime beaucoup = I like you a lot! The added word "dilutes" the love to like. Remember "tu" is the French form for "you" for personal friends and family where "vous" is formal.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ruth708450

    it seems to be random whether aime bien or just aime is the right answer. Any logic?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/julie630717

    i don't understand when you would use "bien"....


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

    Because it is French.

    There are multiple explanations of how it works with the French language on this page.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaulineDav765422

    Why do we have to say aime bien for like?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Estefania55231

    It should be je t'aime


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/geomaster15

    What's wrong with Duolingo?

    "je t'aime" and "je t'aime bien" are both correct Isn't it?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/northernguy

    Adding bien softens j'taime from I love you to I like you.

    F.W.I.W. ... You might want to try reading the comments before saying Duo is wrong about some point. Duo does have some annoying translations sometimes but most often it is the student who is wrong when challenging Duo's accuracy. That is especially true in the early stages of the tree.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaulDeNice1

    Adding 'bien' to Je t'aime actually reduces "I love you" to "I like you" . Remember that French does not work the same as English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichellePe25

    Why not j'aime bien toi


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zahra770150

    Why not: "j'aimé toi"

    Learn French in just 5 minutes a day. For free.