Parent Conversation Guides

Why do people say mean things?

Why do people say mean things?

The purpose of this discussion is to help your child explore motivation for meanness – and be prepared to respond.

  • Ask them if they have ever heard someone say something mean about someone else. Can they tell you about it?
  • Together, think of possible reasons they did that. Possibilities like …
    • They were angry at that other person and wanted to hurt them
    • They felt what they were saying was true
    • They wanted you to stop liking that other person – and like them instead.
  • For each possibility, see if you can come up with something to say that helps – and stops the meanness. You can even be a little silly and then pick the best answers
    • I don’t think that is true. And I wish you wouldn’t say it.
    • it hurts my feelings when you talk about my friend that way …
    • You can stomp your foot and leave the room
    • etc.

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