5 Tips for Handling Blunt People

5 Tips for Handling Blunt People

Are Blunt People Honest People?

Billy Joel famously wrote and sang in his song, Honesty, “Honesty is hardly ever heard, but mostly what I need from you.” We need honesty, right? We need people to tell us the truth in all things, whether it’s how we look in an outfit, if the meal we made tastes good, or if they think our partners are being unfaithful. And who do we turn to for honesty? Often, it’s our friends and loved ones, but some of them are better at being honest than others. They may tell us what they think we want to hear, or they may be blunt to the point of being hurtful. Some people just have a way of not sugarcoating something, and even if they never intend to be malicious, their words can still be hurtful. If you value someone’s honest opinion, but can’t stand the way in which they deliver it, this article is for you. Here are my five tips for handling blunt people.

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Personal Attack or Pattern?

When someone says something hurtful to you, even if it’s the truth, you probably feel attacked. You probably feel like they singled you out. But do they reserve their blunt approach for you, or is that just how they talk to everyone? Before you get too insulted, observe how this blunt person speaks to their other friends. Are they just as blunt with them? If they are, know that their bluntness is not a personal attack on you, but rather, it’s how they talk to people. You might feel less insulted and hurt if you know you aren’t the only person they talk to like that.

Filter Their Words

It may be challenging to find the care and concern in the words of a blunt person. It’s easy to feel judged, but carefully consider their words. They may not be good at saying they’re concerned, so they say something seemingly judgmental instead. Do they bring up a good point? Are they addressing something significant that you’ve been avoiding? Maybe what they’re saying hurts you because there’s some truth to it.

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Address Your Discomfort

If their blunt words are making you uncomfortable, you need to address your discomfort. In order for any type of relationship to last, whether it’s a romance or a friendship, there needs to be compromise. This means that you both have to give a little. So confront your blunt friend and let them know how their words make you feel. Ask them to be kinder in the future. And then promise to be less sensitive. If they care about you and your feelings, they will acknowledge the hurt they’ve caused, and promise to do better in the future. And if you care about your friendship with them, you will strive to develop a thicker skin.

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Don’t Ask Them for Advice

If you’re soliciting advice from a blunt person, and you’re hurt by their delivery, consider not asking them for advice anymore. If you keep asking them for advice, and they keep hurting you, do you keep asking them for advice because you think it’s going to be different the next time? It won’t be. And some blunt people like to share unsolicited advice. If that’s also hurtful, you need to nip that in the bud. Tell them you aren’t interested in their opinions and don’t confide in them again.

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Reduce Contact or Totally Disconnect

Some blunt people are always going to be blunt, and they aren’t capable of seeing how they’ve hurt you. If you’ve expressed your feelings, stopped seeking their advice, put the kibosh on their unsolicited advice, and you don’t see an improvement, it’s time to reduce contact or totally disconnect. When you’ve had enough, you’ll walk away.

Life is often challenging and harsh. You deserve a little comfort and a soft place to land, and if you can’t get that from friends and loved ones, who can you expect to get that from?

6 thoughts on “5 Tips for Handling Blunt People

  1. CDizzle

    Some of this is okay but the last section is crap. Blunt people call it how they see it. Period. If you deduce that that is just who they are and you still get your feelings hurt then maybe you need to genuinely assess your own insecurity. If you ask me how your shirt looks and I say, “it’s the color of cat vomit” but you like the shirt, wear the damn shirt! Don’t duck me because you asked my opinion and I gave it to you. What the hell kind of friend lies? People want their feelings protected more than they value honesty and that’s the sad truth.

    Reply
  2. jula

    There is a difference between blunt honesty and abusiveness. Some people are control freaks
    and like to put you down to feel better about themselves. Try being blunt back and see how
    they like it. Step away from the relationship if they continue to attack and if they ridicule you.
    For sure, we need to get a thicker skin with people in general and not allow others to abuse
    you and manipulate you.

    Often when you attract critics, it’s because of our own low self-esteem and it will only erode
    our confidence to associate with hyper-critical and judgemental persons.

    Often we are our own worst critic and should be gentler on ourselves!

    Reply

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