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Assertive types, how to deal with sly dig "jokes"..

(75 Posts)
Advicepleasefolks Fri 27-Jun-14 01:03:58

When about 50% of someone's comments to you are "jokes" at your expense how do you deal with it? At the moment I'm withdrawing but feel annoyed at my own avoidant behaviour. The joker is a popular type but sees me as a soft target I think. Sadly his wife is/(was?) my friend but this has led me to back off from her too.

ChubbyKitty Fri 27-Jun-14 01:05:38

Hope you don't mind but I'm going to stick around on this thread because I seem to be a bit of an easy target for this sort of thing!

No advice but a sympathetic ear at least smile

Trollsworth Fri 27-Jun-14 01:06:09

A long, silent, blank stare. An uncomfortable pause. ...... "Quite. Anyway, as I was saying..."

Suzannewithaplan Fri 27-Jun-14 01:11:56

it depends partly on how significant the person is, are they any kind of a threat to my wellbeing, what is the power dynamic, why are they using me to score points?

Understanding what is really going on beneath the surface can put you in a stronger position, perhaps try and suppress any knee jerk response?

Surely by being avoidant you are not 'taking the bait' and thats usually a good thing (?)

RockinHippy Fri 27-Jun-14 01:12:21

As it's a guy I would smile sweetly, look him straight in the eyes & giggle "my, my, we are feeling a bit insecure tonight aren't we, whats the matter, penis enlarger not working for you" laugh again & then look away & change the subject

Keep going ŵith similar jokey or even more blatant put doŵns every time he does it, things like "aw diddums, bad night for you again, feeling a bit insecure are we" & breezily change the subject

Keep a list in your head to fire back at him & watch how quickly it stops

Good luck

STOPwiththehahaheheloling Fri 27-Jun-14 01:12:45

Yes i was going to post what trollsworth said.

Bogeyface Fri 27-Jun-14 01:12:57

It depends on what he says tbh. But I tend to go for "it takes one to know one" kind of come backs.

So if say it was a dig about someone being fat or eating too much I would laugh along and then say "Seriously though, did you ever get your money back from Weightwatchers?" Or attacking your intelligence, again laugh along and then "Oh btw, did you get that village idiot job or were you over qualified?". Or comments on social ability "Hmm..I see the money your mum spend on your charm school was wasted".

All delivered dead pan of course wink

Bogeyface Fri 27-Jun-14 01:15:08

I dont go for "ignore it and it will go away" because it doesnt work ime. But joining in on the "joke" and then pushing it back at the "joker" means that others laugh too and they dont like that. They put you down to make themselves look and feel better, so if you put them down then they feel worse and stop picking on you.

wafflyversatile Fri 27-Jun-14 01:21:26

It depends on what they are saying and what you think you can handle doing.

As a PP said a long silent appraising look up and down then turning back to the convo may work well if you are not good at coming up with ripostes.

If it's the same dig all the time or there is a one size fits all mantra you can practise then go for that.

Smile indulgently and cooch him under the chin? 'you're such a dear child'.

kickassangel Fri 27-Jun-14 01:41:31

Thank you, such a kind comment.

WaitingForMyMam Fri 27-Jun-14 04:28:32

Yes, the long blank stare is a good one.

Or, asking them to explain the joke. "Sorry, what do you mean by that? Can you explain because I don't get it." Then they'll look like a fool trying to justify why they said it. If they say "it was just a joke, jeez!" You can say "Ah right. Well, no one laughed so you might want to rethink your jokes."

captainproton Fri 27-Jun-14 04:46:13

I have tried to develop a thick skin and sharp wit. Usually you can perceive what someone's vulnerability is. If some knob wants to have a go at me I try to come back at them focusing on that weakness. Dick at work he has a big nose and is very vain. He's also had some 'work' done on his eyes. He likes to randomly mock people, if it's my turn I take the piss out of him, he tries to come back with a witty retort, fails, I then mock him for not being quick witted.

I'm a probably not the best at keeping quiet and letting things wash over me.

I've always stuck up for myself, and I'm trying to tone down my sharp tongue. DH says I have one of those looks, which means I just glare at them in stoney silence trying not to blink. Yep I try to weird people out who try it on with me! God I probably need some help thinking about it...

Boss and I have had some right ding dongs (too similar) but we don't get nasty just passionate. I'm the same with anyone unfortunately, you shout at me or talk to me like crap I'm just not going to take it.

I think people like me who are quite defensive and ready to pounce back with snappy replies are probably a right soppy thing deep inside, and we've had to harden up due to life's hard knocks.

Wooodpecker Fri 27-Jun-14 05:20:19

Just ask what they mean. That is normally enough to make them squirm.

woodlandwanderwoman Fri 27-Jun-14 05:41:39

I'm interested in this too. My brother does his utmost best to humiliate me in this way at every opportunity and I hate it. I never react because I hate descending Into a stupid argument and usually see myself as the bigger person but inevitably, all that happens is I feel shit and he thinks he can get away with it so it keeps happening.

If anyone has anymore good one liners (I've tried "did you mean to sound so rude" and he laughed in my face and said "yes") I would love them. I know he has a chip on his shoulder and is insecure in many ways but that doesn't make it ok.

woodlandwanderwoman Fri 27-Jun-14 06:12:01

Woodpecker if I said "what do you mean?" to my brother he would reply "exactly what I said" and then gleefully take the opportunity to repeat and rubbish me all over again.

jaynebxl Fri 27-Jun-14 06:20:47

I recently heard someone in this situation retort with "Do you need some salt for that chip on your shoulder?" Which I thought was quite a neat reply.

If it's a repeated dig, you might try something like, "Really, you should try another line; you've been flogging that one since we met and it continues to make you look like a stone eedjit."

WilliamShatner Fri 27-Jun-14 06:35:59

"Grow up".

Repeat as necessary. If they challenge you as to why you've told them to grow up, tell them that everyone finds their childish remarks tiresome but are too embarrassed to say so. Except for you.

If they persist in making more remarks, a withered look and, "You really are turning into a crushing bore with your juvenile comments".

Get other people in on it by after him or making a remark, turn to another person and say, "There he/she goes again with the rudeness."

Other remarks that may come in handy...

"You're like an annoying fly! Buzz off!"

"Have you been reading Les Dennis 'How to be funny' book?"

If you want to be equally as horrible, get in first.

As you walk by them, snigger "Nice shirt/top! Didn't know they had come back into fashion!"


"What is that stuck in your teeth?"

"OMG! Get a tissue and wipe your nose!"

"Jesus Christ! What the hell have you eaten?" As you recoil from their breath.

Or the insidious friendly approach

"Hi, I know this might upset you but it's been noticed that you have B.O. I had to tell you so you can buy a better deodorant". Smile sympathetically and walk away.

Try to stifle a large yawn when they start talking to you and let your eyes glaze over or look over their shoulder and mumble, "Sorry, I'm not really listening" and walk off and be very enthusiastic towards someone else.

FunkyBoldRibena Fri 27-Jun-14 06:47:08

OP, what sorts of things do they say to you?

Doingakatereddy Fri 27-Jun-14 06:50:35

'Have you finished attention seeking at my expense?'

Ainmnua Fri 27-Jun-14 07:01:03

What Doing ^^ said.

ExCinnamon Fri 27-Jun-14 07:01:21

I'd like to develop a few witty replies to comments that are not openly rude (I can deal with those) but those very sneaky, wrapped up in a half compliment put downs.
I have one friend who does this and so far I have done the stare and ignore thing, and it doesn't warrant a snappy reply. It requires a witty one which tells her I'm confident enough to ignore her comments.
If I get snappy it would mean she hit her target.

The more I think about it, the more I realise I should probably lose this friend.

Watercolourfootballs Fri 27-Jun-14 07:06:10

If you can get someone else on side to help you, a good way is to nod significantly at the other person after every comment and laugh (with them not at the snidey person). If you can manage a laugh a nod and a broad smile will do.
Then turn back to the problem guy with a amused look and a mock innocent expression. These kind of people usually like the feedback of everyone laughing at their joke/you getting upset. If you are plainly not upset but instead clearly amused (in a condescending way) often puts a spoke in their wheel.

If you don't have a friend to help then looking away slightly at the ground with the same expression and then back up can work too.

Never explain to the offender what you are alighting about (it will drive him crazy).

As an alternative whisper in your friends ear laughing every time he makes a dig (doesn't matter if you just say 'laugh!') works the same way.

It's a useful method as it doesn't rely on witty comebacks (which can sound aggressive)

Also I would only engage with this guy where you have to in public. No need to even speak to him if it's just the two of you. Just walk way.

MellowAutumn Fri 27-Jun-14 07:06:47

Fix him with stare and say ' you really are an insecure wanker aren't you?' Or ' if only your dick was a big as you ego I'm sure your wife would be happy' - 'oh dear I'm very sorry you have me confused with someone' and they say who/what do you mean - and you say ' somone who gives a shit about your opinion' as I don't swear very often they tend to have shock value as well. Unfortunately I hardly ever get to use them as I give off don't fuck with me vibes smile

ipswichwitch Fri 27-Jun-14 07:27:25

Last time someone did that to me I put on a loud, hysterical obviously fake laugh, complete with fake tear wiping. Then when he opened his mouth again I shrieked "ooh look he's going to say something totally hilarious again!" Then the next time, "oh stop it, you're too funny it's killing me!" with more fake giggling. With everyone staring at him waiting for the most hilarious joke known to humanity (by the time I'd "bigged it up" so much), he clammed up obviously having run out of witticisms to share. Twat.

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