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When someone starts a sentence  “I hope you don’t take this the wrong way…” they are acknowledging there is a very real possibility there is a negative way to interpret what they are about to say; they are about to offer an insult.  Someone’s feelings are going to get hurt and you have not excused yourself with this weak proclamation  The fact that there is a wrong way to hear what you are about to say is, in itself, an affront  to the person you are addressing.

Why not stop and think about the “back-handed” compliment you are about to pay  and come up with a more positive way to word it or just say nothing at all?



13 comments on “The Wrong Way

  1. julieallyn says:

    Guilty as charged. I need to work harder to find a more constructive way to talk about something that really, in essence, is bothering ME or keep my big mouth shut! Thanks for the reminder Martha!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure I am guilty as well but will be more mindful since it happened to me recently. I will drop the first phrase and concentrate on how to say the rest in a more positive way…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. elainecanham says:

    But sometimes its not a back-handed compliment, sometimes you’re just trying to be honest and not hurtful

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good point Elaine, perhaps just a different wording would prevent the receiver from going to “hurt” before hearing the rest…


  3. Marie Keates says:

    Wise words. If you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, that would be the best tactic, Marie!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Don’t get me started! It all comes down to people wanting us to be their idea of who we are, rather than just accepting us the way we are. And they are only telling us these things for own good! It makes me crazy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, that blanket excuse of “for our own good…” You are so right, and as Marie said, “If you can’t say something nice…”


  5. Touring NH says:

    Tact is like common sense – not very common!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I can’t agree more, we as humans need to be nicer💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Annettemariebee! It shouldn’t be so hard to be nice, right???

      Liked by 1 person

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