We are all guilty of speaking too quickly at times, of not realizing the weight of our words before it’s too late and the damage is done. Social insensitivity and/or inappropriateness is not taught in school, but thank God for blogs! A quick search can provide results in seconds; What not to say to pregnant women, What not to say to a man…if you want to keep him, things not to say to people who are depressed, and the list goes on and on.
Below you’ll find my personal list of 5 things that you shouldn’t say to people you barely know. It may be seemingly innocent on the surface, but can turn out to be really offensive or awkward. Keep in mind, these things might be okay to say to people you are cool with, but you might want to be more careful with those you barely now.
- “YOU LOOK TIRED” Every time someone has said this to me, I’ve mentally punched them in the neck. This statement is never good. Even if it’s true because you see this person on a consistent basis, I usually follow this motto: there’s no need to state the obvious.
- “ARE YOU PREGNANT?” Once again, I would follow the motto of not needing to state the obvious. Mostly because pregnancy is not as obvious as most would believe. A woman can be in some stages that ‘mimick’ pregnancy and there’s nothing worse than trying to recover from someone saying ‘No, I’m not.’
- “YOU WERE IN MY DREAM” I am not sure if I’m the only awkward person who does this, but I tend to have the most random people in my crazy dreams. The worst part is that most of the time, I want to share this information. I don’t know what kind of response I expect from people when I tell them, but most are just quiet and then quickly change the subject.
- If someone is sharing some unfortunate event, or seems to be ‘down’… “THERE’S ALWAYS SOMEONE WORSE OFF THAN YOU” Not exactly what people want to hear for encouragement. The bigger ‘picture realization’ is usually better received from someone the person is closer to.
- “YOU LOOK LIKE [INSERT UNFLATTERING CELEBRITY HERE]” Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Some women might be flattered by a comparison to Beyonce, another one might it utterly insulting. Don’t assume what might be a compliment to you, is the same for others. Women are very unpredictable, just know that we’d rather look like OURSELVES, as opposed to anyone else. On another note, if I had a famous older sister, would it be Sanaa Lathan? 🙂
What are some things to steer away from saying to people you barely know or have only met once or twice?