Sarcasm is like jazz- you know it when you see it. I have heard people say sarcasm is the lowest form of wit but I am also aware that this does not stop it from being embarrassment at its best. Sarcastic people can be hilarious, but when their barbs are pointed at you it is outrageously annoying. Everyone of us has that someone in our lives who is fond of this sarcastic mode of communication. Most often it’s a close friend. This person believes he is funny and sarcasm is well meaning. But this friend is not smart. I call sarcasm sugarcoated bullshit and thinly veiled meanness. Since you are here , I can safely assume you are fed up with a friend who is always sarcastic towards you and you want a revenge, or maybe you are here because you are too polite to seek revenge and you just want to save yourself from going insane. What you need is a way to resist the urge to sling it back and instead to confront sarcasm in a way that will help and not hinder your relationship.
Here are the ten tips you need if your friend is always sarcastic.
10. PRETEND YOU JUST DON’T UNDERSTAND
Take the sarcasm literally. Sarcasm when taken literally is usually the opposite of what was actually intended. Recognize when the people are laughing with you, and when they’re laughing at you. It will drive that friend crazy when they see that their sick remarks just don’t seem to work on you. I have used this tip personally and it works like a charm.
THEY -“I am sure you know all about it.”
YOU-” I am really glad you think so , but actually I still have a lot to learn. ”
Perhaps the opposite strategy is to bite back with sarcasm of your own – this way you can make your friend forget his sarcastic comment and instead focus on yours. There is nothing better than coming up with a funnier comment which will save you from embarrassment and furthermore if you can make your sarcasm biting enough then you may make that friend think twice before using sarcasm against you in future .
THEY – “You look funny in that t-shirt.”
YOU – ” I believe I don’t look as funny as your hairstyle.”
8. ALWAYS BE CIVIL
Respond in a civil manner even if you believe that they have insulted you. If you choose to retaliate don’t be outrageously sarcastic . It doesn’t matter if you don’t sound genuine in your “stupidity”, the most important thing is to let you friend understand that you refuse to play their hurtful game. You could actually use this as a way to let your friend know he is being a pain in the ass.
THEY – “I never forget a face, but in your case I’ll be glad to make an exception.”
YOU – ” I am sure I will be seeing you again.” ( Smile , wave and walk away )
7. AVOID AND IGNORE
Another way of escaping sarcasm is just ignoring it. Like it does not exist and you can’t figure it out. In Greek, sarcasm means to ‘rip flesh’. Just like ripping flesh your friend’s sarcasm might sometimes overwhelm you. And the only best thing to do in this situation is to walk away. This is not weakness but one of the smartest thing to do for yourself. Ignore the remark and show no reaction. You don’t have to stoop down to the same level and live a little for yourself . If that friend thinks he can keep trying you by using sarcasm then you need to show them that they are wrong and look after you reputation without letting him step on it.
6. TAKE IT VERY NON-SERIOUSLY
Life is too short to take sarcasm seriously. Be inane if you please. By using an inane comeback you leave no avenue for retaliation and at the same time you demonstrate that you really don’t care. Laugh about it and don’t give a second thought to how you should be reacting. Taking sarcasm seriously means that you are giving your friend a chance to hurt you. Why do that to yourself?
5. POINT OUT THEIR MOTIVES
If your friend is being sarcastic towards you , there is no way he is not hiding something. Maybe he is angry, envious or upset. You deserve to know what troubles him ( there is a possibility your friend is enjoying it , but then he might not be aware but he needs help). Confront your friend and ask him to be upfront.
”Tell me what your problem is.”
“Could you please rephrase that so I can understand what you want to say to me? ”
When the bullshit meter goes of the charts you should always be clear about what you want in that moment. Evaluate the feel of the conversation and try to observe what your friend’s mood is like.
4. TURN THEIR WORDS AROUND
A sarcastic person’s weakness is that he hates taking sarcasm right back . Your friend might expect you to accept and react to the comments like a wimp, but you are so much better than that. Turning your friend’s words around does not necessarily mean that you have to argue . Just prove that you are smarter than your friend believes and escape the claws of embarrassment. This is just one of the many advantages of understanding the way words work. For example:
THEY – “I really like your new hairstyle.”
YOU- ”Oh thanks, and I really like YOUR new hairstyle” (In a more sarcastic tone, even if they don’t have a new hairstyle)
3. STOP, STARE AND MOVE ON
There are times when you just don’t feel like having a conversation and want to escape the situation without actually confronting it . It is completely okay. All you need to do is put your poker face on, stop and look at them with furious eyes , throw some more glances till you create an awkward situation and then walk away. Let them know what they said was not welcome and you are happy with your life. This also works as a hint for letting them know they are just being stupid and need to let go of this annoying habit.
2. CORRECT THEM
Sarcasm becomes a customary habit of your friend and you get so agitated with the monotonous sarcasm that you feel the undying urge to let your friend know how stupidly he is behaving.
Make their comment look pretty and churlish by putting forward your original point. For Example:
YOU – How did you get here?
THEM – I flew.
YOU – I was asking because I was informed you missed your train.
1. TELL THEM
Your friend must be important to you and there must be a lot of moments when you actually wish to save the relationship you share with your friend. In a situation like this, you need to be honest with him and let him know his sarcastic remarks bother you . People respect you when you are honest with them. If they are a good friend and you draw their attention towards something that is upsetting you, they should just stop. But if this behavior continues and affects your relationship negatively , I assure you that you will be better of either cutting ties completely or by giving them some time to work things out .