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I found three similar idioms in the Internet, which is right Once my on-line friend wrote - you pushed my button. He meant that I touched his painful theme. Yesterday I was trying to use this idiom and to be more confident made up my mind to check it out in the Internet. I found 3 of them- Push someone's button Push someone's right button Push someone's wrong button Which is used by native speakers?
Jun 11, 2013 4:31 PM
Answers · 7
All three are used. "Push someone's button" means to "elicit a (strong) emotional response from someone," and it could be either good or bad depending on the context. "Push someone's right button" means to "elicit a (strong) emotional response from someone" but is used strictly for a positive (good) response. For example, commenting on the various attractive physical attributes of a woman, a man may say "gosh, she's pushing all the right buttons for me!" (sorry for this sexist remark! :D ) "Push someone's wrong button" means just the opposite, in that you elicit a negative (bad) response. For example, you could say, "Don't mention the word 'nose,' in front of Cyrano - it will push his wrong button!"
June 11, 2013
In real life, it would go like this. She's pushing my buttons./He know how to push my buttons. I don't use, push right buttons/wrong buttons. But if you happen to say use them people would know what you mean. You don't have to say right or wrong buttons because when you use this idiom people know what you mean by your tone and expressions. I hope this helps.
June 11, 2013
Native speakers say (for example) "He is pushing your buttons." OR "He knows which buttons of yours to push." As George said, it is not idiomatic to say "wrong buttons" or "right buttons." Although people can push or have a "panic button," but that is a different expression.
June 11, 2013
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