How is it that naive people can make such hurtful comments about others and not even realize how rude they actually can be?I know someone who makes very childish comments about everything. They are...

How is it that naive people can make such hurtful comments about others and not even realize how rude they actually can be?

I know someone who makes very childish comments about everything. They are always complaining about others being immature yet they are always the first to make rude and immature comments. This person has made comments about disabled people and how they find it funny and all sorts of aweful comments. I seriously need to find a way to talk to her without flying off the handle and possibly hurting her feelings.

Expert Answers
catd1115 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Sympathy and empathy are very important skills in relating to others successfully. Unfortunately they are also learned skills to a great extent. If a child is not taught to empathize with others not like them and to feel sympathy for those who are hurting, then it will be obvious.

My suggestion is to speak from your heart. You clearly don't want to hurt her feelings and that is admirable. Try to teach her about empathy. (How would you feel? etc) Talk to her about the fact that any of the people situations she makes fun of could just as easily be hers. She could be disabled. She could be poor. She could be different, or whatever else strikes her as funny. Remember that being someone admirable doesn't make you better than anyone else. Try to convince her that she wouldn't like it if it were her. Make her understand walking in someone else's shoes. Also be honest: tell her what she says offends you and you find it immature. I agree with the above post about lack of self esteem. Try to help her find value in herself without putting down others.


wannam eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is often difficult to see flaws in ourselves.  Your friend might criticize others as immature without realize that she herself has trouble with maturity.  It may also be that she lacks self-esteem (as suggested above).  Or, it might be that she doesn't understand why these comments are not funny.  For someone who has been around a disabled person and hasn't experienced what their life is like, they might find things funny that a more knowledgeable person wouldn't find amusing at all.  You might try speaking with her one-on-one sometime.  Calling her out or embarising her in front of others isn't going to solve the issue.  But speaking to her privately about how you feel and how her comments make you feel might help.

dano7744 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Unfortunately, you are right, people do make hurtful comments that are unnecessary. I think a large part of this is due to maturity. As we get older and mature we tend to take peoples feelings into consideration more so than when we were younger. It is a shame though because some of us never seem to learn this--how to think before you speak.

rrteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It's kind of cliched to say this, but it seems to me that many people like this suffer from low self esteem themselves. Because they are insecure, they attempt to put other people down. The other thing is that I believe many people simply struggle to empathize with people and to see things the way they do. 

just-s | Student

People generally speak without thinking..but still it is not our duty to criticize anyone rather correct them nicely and before looking at others look at yourself and correct your faults first. rather worry about ourselves that about others because it will not benefit you in any way but if you worry about yourself it will help you to become a better person.

always see from where the person is coming from and what makes a person behave in such an odd manner. maybe that person is having some difficulty or problems in their life and find it difficult to express themselves in any other way!