When to use "bum someone out" And when to use "annoy someone"

I have searched the meaning of both the phrase on the internet but I am little confused when to use "bum someone out" . I know a little about the usage of "annoy someone" but I am confused when to use "bum someone out" instead of "annoy someone"

I think "to annoy someone" means to irritate someone and "bum someone out" means to irritate someone, bore someone and a kind of ruin someone's fun (means rain on someones parade).

And I also feel that "bum someone out" is of higher degree and quite more effective or kind of more offensive.

  • See here. Also see the meaning of the noun “burnout”.
    – user3395
    Commented May 1, 2016 at 11:41
  • @user2684291 I made the same mistake at first. This font kind of makes "bum" look like "burn". But he's asking about BUM someone out, not BURN.
    – JamieB
    Commented Jun 30, 2016 at 19:41
  • @JamieB Oh, right, I apologize.
    – user3395
    Commented Jul 1, 2016 at 18:20

1 Answer 1


You are correct that to annoy means to irritate, but to bum someone out means to make them sad or depressed.

For example, let's say you and I are going on a trip somewhere. I plug my .mp3 player into your car's stereo, and the first song to start playing is YMCA by the Village People.

You say, "Ugh! Shut that off or change the song! I don't like disco music, and I can't stand the Village People."

I might say:

Sorry, I didn't mean to annoy you.

The next song that comes up is Cryin' by Aerosmith. You used to enjoy dancing to this song with your ex-girlfriend, but the two of you just broke up three weeks ago. You tell me, "That's better – I generally like Aerosmith. But Tara and I used to dance to that song a lot, and I don't think I'm ready to listen to this right now."

I answer:

Sorry, I didn't mean to bum you out.

Epilogue: the next 12 songs that come up on my .mp3 player are all happy and upbeat; they turn out to be excellent driving music. They don't annoy you, and they don't bum you out. It turns out to be a good road trip after all.

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