IFY – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Are you looking for a casual way to tell someone that you totally get where they’re coming from — the shorter, the better? The abbreviation “IFY” may be a great solution if you’re messaging someone on the internet.

Here, we’ll take a look at what it means, where it came from, and how you can use IFY.

Meaning

The abbreviation “IFY”, which can be used on the internet or in text messages, stands for “I feel you“. The slang term is a way to let someone know that you understand, relate, sympathize, or agree.

The phrase “I feel you” and the abbreviation IFY are both most often used in response to someone who is complaining or struggling with something.

Alternatively, IFY can also be used to mean “I forgive you“, although this is much rarer.

An even rarer meaning is “I f**ked you“.

Example Usage

Those who would like to get a better feel for the meaning that IFY carries can best do so by taking a look at more common ways in which the abbreviation might be used. You can tell someone that you “feel them”, by sending “IFY”, in response to comments like:

  • It’s been super rough since I started college. I’m working two jobs and I don’t have any time for fun.
  • It just frustrates me when my parents won’t even listen to me, you know? It’s like they don’t get how important this is to me at all.
  • I’m hyped for the game, can’t wait!

You could use IFY on its own, or type these three letters out and then continue with whatever else you might want to add to make it clear that you really do get it.

Origin

The phrase IFY came from — “I feel you” — was especially popular in the United States during the 1980s, and even more so in the hip hop subculture. “I feel you” is now commonly understood to mean “I hear you”, “I empathize”, or “I can relate”, and even appears in the Cambridge Dictionary.

Although this phrase seems to have waned in popularity for a while, it has made a comeback as modern slang. It is hardly surprising that “I feel you” gained its own internet abbreviation, then!

The abbreviation “IFY” was first defined on Urban Dictionary as meaning “I feel you” in 2015. This indicates that it had a history of being used as such before that year.

While IFY is not among the most popular recently-created abbreviations, people who would use the phrase “I feel you” are likely to be familiar with it.

Phrases Similar to IFY

Instead of IFY, you could also say:

  • I feel you, bro.
  • I get it.
  • Relatable.
  • No kidding.

Phrases Opposite to IFY

Since IFY means that you understand, some phrases that mean the opposite could include:

  • I don’t get it.
  • WDYM? (“What do you mean?”)
  • WTF? (“What the fuck?”)

What Is the Correct Abbreviation?

The correct abbreviation is “IFY”, meaning “I feel you”.

Ways People May Say IFY Incorrectly

Because the abbreviation IFY strictly serves as modern internet slang, you would be making the wrong choice if you were to incorporate it into a formal email or to send it to someone of a different generation, who does not understand the latest slang words.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase IFY

The abbreviation IFY is fairly popular among younger people. You can use IFY to commiserate with someone or to tell them that you get it. IFY essentially works in any setting where “yeah” would also suffice, with the added benefit that IFY conveys support.

It’s best to use the abbreviation IFY among friends. In this context, you can use IFY in text messages, on messaging apps, or on social media platforms. If you are not sure if the recipient of the message understands the abbreviation, you can also opt to spell out “I feel you”.

 

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