Activism, Health & Wellness

We’ve Seen These Backhanded Compliments All Over Social Media – They Need To Stop!

backhanded compliments

Have you ever been feeling incredible and then someone says something that throws you off? Like, someone technically complimented you but it feels weird like they actually insulted you? They had such a chipper demeanor and even seemed genuine, but something feels sour about it. That’s exactly what a backhanded compliment does to you. And sadly, most of the time, people don’t know they are giving a backhanded compliment. They say something, hoping to be positive and to make you feel good, but it actually makes you feel horrible because of the hidden meaning. I’ve not only been granted a few myself before, but I’ve also seen some really weird backhanded compliments online. Let’s dive into ones I am sick of seeing, that need to be put to a stop ASAP.

“You’re so brave to wear that!” “I wish I had your bravery!”

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Stop telling plus size, mid-size or any woman that they are brave!!!! When you see a plus-size girl posting a picture in a bikini, your first thought should not be to comment “you’re so brave!” with some heart eyes. I understand that you might be trying to compliment them for feeling happy, confident and like a badass in their own skin! That’s awesome. But, saying that they are “brave” for wearing something is not a compliment. Would you ever comment on a skinny girl’s bikini post that they were brave? No, you probably wouldn’t. This article explains it all! Instead of telling her she’s “brave,” tell her she’s beautiful, tell her the color she’s wearing looks amazing on her! Stop commenting on someone’s weight, in general.

“Oh my god, you look amazing! Did you lose weight?”

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Once again, let’s agree to never comment on someone’s weight. EVER. Even if you are trying to be positive and helpful, it’s not. It never is. For one, you never know what someone is going through. Someone you know might be dealing with disordered eating, depression, or another mental health crisis that is causing them to lose weight. They might even have a physical condition that is causing them to lose weight. When you comment on how amazing someone looks, because of the weight they lost, you might be the final straw in a long battle they are facing. Even if you know someone is working toward a weight loss goal, you can still change your language to be more positive. “You look so strong!” is an option that will actually help motivate them to continue their goals for the right reasons.

“You’re So Articulate” “You Speak So Well”

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Never say this to anyone. Most of the time, these awful “compliments” are racially charged or used to minimize a disability. First of all, by saying that someone is more “articulate” or “well-spoken” than you thought they would be, it means that you thought they wouldn’t be in the first place. This is a microaggression and can make someone feel like they don’t belong. It is not your job to appraise someone whose first language is another one, or someone who has a disability you don’t understand.

“You look so much better now!”

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I look better now… I mean, thanks? But what are you trying to say? You didn’t like how I looked before? What a really strange way to say that you like my new haircut. This is such a weird way to compliment someone because you are bringing up that you didn’t like the way they looked before whatever change was made. Even if that is true, why would you ever need or even want to say that to someone?

What other backhanded compliments are you sick of seeing on social media? Let us know in the comment section!

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