I learned that usually I should use "any" and not "some" in questions and negative sentences. But I also learned that sometimes I can use "some".

Can I say like this:

I don't like to meet someone.

or should I always say

I don't like to meet anyone.

I would like to mean like this:

I don't like to meet a person.

I feel too strong of an emphasis when I use "anyone" here, like I'm saying "I don't like to meet any one of the people."

How can I say that?

2 Answers 2


"I don't want to meet someone." would be an unusual phrasing. I'd assume if it wasn't a mistake (and you meant someone) that you mean

There is someone that I don't want to meet".

(but you don't want to tell me the name of that person for some reason)

Simlarly "I don't want to meet a person" is a strange phrasing. I'd guess you mean "There is one particular person that I don't want to meet".

Normally, for the sense of "I want to meet zero people" use the "I don't want to meet anyone" expression. Using "someone" is not correct for that meaning.

Now, I've just noticed your question uses "like" not "want". In this case you should not use someone nor anyone. What you probably mean is "I don't like to meet new people" or "I don't like making new friends". Neither "someone" nor "anyone" is correct.


Actually you can, but it depends on your context. If you don't like somebody in particular, you can say "I don't like meeting someone", or you just don't want to meet someone during a certain time e.g.:

I don't like to meet someone when I am rushing

If you don't like meeting everyone and anyone, then "I don't like meeting anyone".

  • It would sound more natural if you added some explanation of what kind of person you mean, such as "I don't like to meet someone I don't know when I'm hurrying home on a dark night." Jul 27, 2022 at 7:31
  • In a positive context, some can be specific or general. In a negative context, any is used for the general sense, but some can still be used for a specifc meaning. To make sense, the "specific" meaning is usually explicitly delimited.
    – Colin Fine
    Jul 27, 2022 at 10:53

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