Funny Responses to Rude People

Find the humor when someone is rude by poking fun at yourself.
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It's often said that there is a sucker born every minute -- but that's only the half of it. There is also a jerk born every minute, and chances are he's in your gym class. Instead of letting him get to you, have a witty comeback ready for his insults. Humor will help ease the tension and show him you are in control.

1 White Noise

In gym class, you find yourself targeted by the class bully who says, "Wow, you gained a lot of weight over the summer." Instead of lowering yourself to his level, take the high road, advises the Redbook Magazine article, "How to Handle Rude Questions." Try: "What's that? I was humming a tune inside my head and didn't hear you." Using this low-key approach will take the sting out of his insult, and you don't have to acknowledge that you heard it.

2 Throw it Back

Sometimes people ask questions that are rude because they are intrusive. For example, a new acquaintance might inquire, "Is that your real hair color?" Find the humor in the situation by choosing a question that mirrors what the other person has said -- but takes it a step further. For example, you might respond, "Yes it is. Is that your real nose?" Be sure to keep a lighthearted tone and make it obvious that your remark is sarcastic. Your goal is not to hurt the other person's feelings, as discussed in the Teen's Health article "What Stresses You Out About School," but to show her that the question was too personal.

3 Go Deadpan

During dinner with extended family, your nosy aunt pipes up, "So when are you going to get a boyfriend?" Though you might feel like slinking under your chair or mumbling "I don't know," a witty reply can show your humorous side and indicate that the question was too personal. For example, you might reply, "Hard to say. I am juggling so many guys right now it is hard to choose just one," or "Well, I've thought about it, but I'm afraid it would make Liam Hemsworth jealous. You know how he is."

4 Echo the Question

Some people are unintentionally rude. They may not understand that some topics are off limits, says psychologist Phil McGraw in the Dr. article, "Dealing with Rude People." Consider repeating the question to show how ridiculous it is. For example, if your friend asks, "Don't you get bored hanging out with your family on the weekends?" you can reply, "Are you asking if I get bored spending time with the people I love?" Add sarcasm to make your point: "Yeah, it's a total drag. Ever since Grandma got into bungee jumping, it's all we do." Keep things civil while addressing the issue, advises manners consultant Maralee McKee in the Manners Mentor article "How to Graciously Answer Nosy Questions."

Arlin Cuncic has been writing about mental health since 2007, specializing in social anxiety disorder and depression topics. She served as the managing editor of the "Journal of Attention Disorders" and has worked in a variety of research settings. Cuncic holds an M.A. in clinical psychology.