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Rudeness
Is it ever acceptable?


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#1 CCLady

Posted 19 December 2012 - 10:59 PM

And if so, in what circumstances? And I mean blatantly rude, not ill-mannered.

I just had a rather interesting phone call tonight and this person was SO RUDE to me! It's a situation that just didn't need to be rude, irate or aggressive and if I was the type to buck up we would have had a full on yelling match over the phone. This woman set the tone as soon as soon as I answered the phone. She was irate and it seemed like she was ready for me to bite and fight with her.

When does assertiveness become rudeness?  Why do people think they can just be so rude to others when there is no need?!

Anyway I avoided a huge blow with her by remaining calm, offering solutions to what she had a problem with and not being rude back to her. I completely believe if I had have come back at her it would have been extremely distressing for me.

I just come across rude people so much. I would hate to be seen as a rude person, and I am fascinated by people who don't give a rats if they are so rude.

Thoughts?

#2 SeaPrincess

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:05 PM

By definition, if its rude (offensively impolite or ill-mannered), it's unacceptable.

#3 erindiv

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:11 PM

You can't just not tell us what it was about... Tounge1.gif

#4 Liadan

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:13 PM

Working retail, I come across some absolute pearlers.

The best one I've had recently was my first customer for my shift a couple weeks back, attempted to pay, and the chip on his card wouldn't read, he wanted me to override the system so he could swipe, I got midway through trying to explain that I cannot override it until he has made a certain amount of attempts when he interrupted with "I get the message! I won't be shopping here again".

He started again when I asked to check the signature on his card (which he had put away). "The last lady didn't need to check, why do you?"

He then went and complained about me... probably because I told him that I love it when my first customer of the day is grumpy (it shot out my mouth before it got filtered).

But, to be fair, he was a grumpy sod. I was pleasant and polite to him from the moment he shoved in front of another customer in order to get out of the store, apart from me calling him grumpy (HEY! someone has to call them out!)

#5 Delirium

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:13 PM

The only way rudeness could be acceptable is if someone is in danger e.g. you scream at someone as a warning or shove them out of the way if they're going to be hit by a car.

#6 nup

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:13 PM

Are you talking about people who don't understand your boundaries or where your limits of acceptable lie? I think they're just too self absorbed to realise that their behaviour negatively affects the way they interact with others. In their minds they are victims of everyone else being aggressive rather than owning their behaviour. JMO

#7 CCLady

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:14 PM

Oh sorry, it's a work issue.

I just wanted to know really why people think they can be rude!? Why some people think it is actually acceptable to be rude!

I wonder if there is an ex-rude person on EB, who has seen the polite light and kicked rude away... and will fess up and tell me.

#8 *Lib*

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:17 PM

I am constatly shocked by how rude people are on the phone when they are needing my help.

#9 CCLady

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:18 PM

QUOTE
I think they're just too self absorbed to realise that their behaviour negatively affects the way they interact with others. In their minds they are victims of everyone else being aggressive rather than owning their behaviour.


This is a good explanation actually. And maybe to an extent they do know how their behavior affects others but just don't care?

#10 CallMeFeral

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:24 PM

Dunno. I'm considering being pretty rude to my SIL.
She's a lovely lady but FRIG her communication style needs some work. She's an expert on EVERYTHING. She cannot listen to anyone any longer than it takes to figure out what advice to give them, and then discount whatever they say.
I think it's an insecurity thing, but honestly, it's ridiculous and drives me nuts. It was terrible when I was pregnant, she'd go on about how everyone would give me advice - and then proceed to lecture me more than anyone! Even more ridiculous was when I was preggers the 2nd time around.... "Oh wait till he goes on solids..."
I said "I do have one already, you know"
She backpedalled with "oh no but you know two of them" yada yada


So I'm trying to line up some very concise but firm lines that could stop her in her tracks and make her realise how ridiculous she's being. I suspect many of these will be rude.

For instance we were offerred to go stay with some friends on their week away, they are a family of 4 and hired a 2br apartment, and said we could stay in the other room for a night or so if we came up. She starts up with "How can they have another room. There's four of them. Sweetie. They're using both rooms..." etc etc
What I said was something like "ok well ANYWAY they say we can stay with them etc etc"
When I'd really have liked a concise version of "Well actually, I'm not interested in your opinion on their sleeping arrangements and how many rooms you think they need - THEY said they had a spare room and wow, I'm going to believe the people who actually made the statement, are doing the trip, and who will bear the consequences. Astounding hey."
But she'd never listen for long enough for me to get that out.

So I'm thinking of something shorter but ruder, like
"Actually - not that interested in your double-guessing of their statements"
Or, on various topics
"You know, you're not ACTUALLY the expert on this"
or
"Imagine how much more you'd know if you actually listened to people"
or
"SIL. Giving advice is not actually compulsory"

etc. etc.

All of which are pretty rude, but it's either that or wring her neck.


#11 erindiv

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:25 PM

Sometimes rudeness can be delightfully subtle.

Like the person who called me recently trying to get me to donate to something-or-other.

"Oh but don't you CARE..."

"ANYONE can spare a few dollars..."

"It's a shame you don't think it's WORTH IT..."

I just hung up. Which I guess makes me rude too Tounge1.gif

#12 la di dah

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:44 PM

I disagree that rudeness is always unacceptable by definition. And I don't mean just yelling to warn them of danger.

If someone can share a disgustingly hateful racist opinion, for example, I can tell them they're ignorant and repulsive, and I have done so without being polite as there's really no polite way to say that. Admittedly it's unlikely to make them see the error of their ways, but so is playing nice-nice and letting them think they can be gross without even the mildest of social repercussion.

Now it would be very silly for me to then collapse in tears if they're rude back, but I really think the idea of one-must-never-be-rude-at-any-cost is a weird and burdensome thing women are conditioned to do often to their own detriment and sometimes grave harm. Nobody ever died, on the other hand, from being told to **** off.

On the other hand, unprovoked rudeness is just unkind. It's usually either an attempt to get over on somebody or simple temper tantrum. I have a temper but I try not to do that, even mild rudeness. I don't do that even when I'm tearing my hair out, if I can help it. Today I had a huge bureaucratic run-around about Medicare and my visa and all because someone told me the wrong thing and then had me on hold for 30 min. straight and then I had to sort it all out online myself and get back in the same queue I started in... and I stayed nice and thanked the lady at the desk for her time. Abusing low-level office workers, retail-workers, and waitresses for life's frustrations is mostly just being a blowhard. It's usually easier and more effective to be civil.

Edited by la di dah, 19 December 2012 - 11:54 PM.


#13 Mamma_mia

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:53 PM

I get worked up about little things like people pushing in front of me at the shops, and have very rude things i want to say, but then don't. Then later i'm so glad i didn't and can't believe i actually considered saying them. Also i live in a smallish town and i think how embarrassed i'd be if i saw the person again eg. At ds' school. Counting to 10 before reacting is a good thing to do!

#14 lizzzard

Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:59 PM

My DH can be very rude with service staff when he's frustrated. It drives me crazy and I always give him 'feedback' when it happens . Over the years he's actually become much better - I honestly think when he was younger he didn't realise that his indulgent, self-absorbed anger was usually counter-productive to solving the problem he had!!

Edited by lizzzard, 20 December 2012 - 12:00 AM.


#15 LambChop

Posted 20 December 2012 - 12:01 AM

QUOTE
So I'm trying to line up some very concise but firm lines that could stop her in her tracks and make her realise how ridiculous she's being. I suspect many of these will be rude.


You don't need to say anything at all, just smile and nod, then do whatever the hell you like... why do you need to convince her to change to make you right ?

The need for the judging person to change the error of their ways, and actively support you, is more about your insecurity than their meddling.  You just roll your eyes and move on, I mean, it's not like she's about to change personality....

#16 BlondieUK

Posted 20 December 2012 - 12:05 AM

I have been intentionally rude - to the family who lived in the flat below me who thought it was OK to have the tv blaring at midnight every night and to have Bollywood blasting at 3am. Oh, and the drunken fights......



#17 BadCat

Posted 20 December 2012 - 05:21 AM

Some people deserve rudeness.

For example, if I ever came across one of those "Christians" who are saying the shooting at Sandy Hook happened because they don't pray in public schools I'd be extraordinarily rude to them.

Some people are rude without apparent cause though.  Who know what their problem is?  Maybe they are stressed to the eyeballs about a divorce or a sick parent or a job loss.  Or maybe they are a*s*holes.  shrug.gif

#18 adl

Posted 20 December 2012 - 05:31 AM

I have been guilty of the occasional rudeness then realized and apologized saying I know it's not you, but it's incredibly frustrating...I guess it came with being older and working in different areas ... I do try not to eat stupid bank people for breakfast when they lost all my money and said oh it's the system... And tried to BS me as of we are all stupid and cannot understand


I now vent to someone else have a good laugh about what I want to say and  try and remain calm , but really there are often just too many stupid people out there that  should know better..., biggrin.gif

I work in a conflict driven area, but that doesn't include bad manners, it's supposed to be professional and that really gets me when they can't be professional or actually admit they don't know what they are talking about..so yes I will admit to being rude .....or maybe it's more subtle  cool.gif

#19 Feral timtam

Posted 20 December 2012 - 05:38 AM

Tact doesn't come easily to some of us. I have a bad habit of opening my mouth before thinking so have often been rude to people. That's why I like online communications, I can delete what I say before anyone gets a chance to read it.

I've said so many rude things without thinking in the past that I now keep my mouth shut unless asked a direct question. Because I am so careful of what I say these days thanks to having dug myself into the poo so many times in the past I'm still often seen as being rude!

#20 gabbigirl

Posted 20 December 2012 - 05:54 AM

We're all human, and get tired, frustrated, etc and sometimes that comes out as rudeness.  I never do it intentionally but in the deep throes of sleep deprivation, and now I have pneumonia I can come across as rude.  I am just trying to get through the day to be honest.  I do think that rudeness to service staff is terrible, but sometimes, like other posters, I talk before I think. So no it's not ok, but it happens.  Now that I have children I am so conscious of setting an example I am getting better at managing my impatience and what comes out of my mouth...

When service staff are rude to me, I have diffused situations by trying to empathise...they are generally tired, underpaid and have to put up with the public...tough gig..

#21 bebe12

Posted 20 December 2012 - 06:13 AM

Hi,

I have been rude over the phone before, mainly when you call a company and explain what you need help with, the person then transfers you, you expalain again what you want help with. they say they will fix problem so you go.  A day/week/month goes by depending on problem to find its not fixed and then you are told that they don't have a record of the problem, so you explain again, transferred again, explain again etc.

The main organisation that do this are telco's and centrelink.
I do feel sorry for people when i am rude, but it is the frustration that is coming through and also a reaction to their lack of responsiblity to fixing the problem.

#22 casime

Posted 20 December 2012 - 06:18 AM

I'm a fairly say it like I see it person.  But I'm more likely to do it to call someone out on their behaviour.  I'm a vicious defender of service staff just doing their jobs.  I've often told a customer to chill out, or to put a civil tongue in their heads before speaking to staff, and I'll say something to people shoving others, or pushing in.  And if I see someone getting out of a car in a disabled spot without a sticker, well then I'll tell them what I think.  I do try not to open my mouth sometimes, but I have a pretty low tolerance for stupid and can't help myself.

#23 Azadel

Posted 20 December 2012 - 06:21 AM

I don't know.

When it's flat out at work, I help out on the phones. If I say "how can I help you?" and the first thing I hear is "do you know how long I've been on hold for?" it instantly gets my hackles up, flags you as a "difficult caller". Yes, we bloody know it's busy. Do you think we sit around listening to the phone ring and saying "answer it" "I answered it last time, you answer it?".

Of course I'll still do my utmost to provide good customer service, but...I've policies to follow, threatening to go to our competitors doesn't change that. I know the service can be cruddy, but if you want to make a difference, then after your issue is handled, ask to make a formal complaint. b**ching to the poor sap who answered your call isn't going to change things. ETA, and whilst I personally hate to see people doing it - it only means an even more irate customer calling back later - being rude on the phone does tend to increase your chances of being "accidentally" disconnected.

Edited by Azadel, 20 December 2012 - 06:28 AM.


#24 Tarantara

Posted 20 December 2012 - 06:29 AM

I don't know if rudeness is ever acceptable - I think there is usually a better way, and rudeness is not really the most effective solution.

People are rude for all sorts of reasons, in my case, I'm apparently rude to people in shops when in the throes of self -absorbed navel gazing depression. I don't think of myself as rude, but people close to me have pointed out that refusing to make eye contact, mumbling, grunting and ignoring questions or giving closed answers to open questions is pretty rude.

I also get irrationally agitated when I'm forced to converse with a machine, and it usually takes a couple of sentences back and forth with an actual person to calm me down.

Recently, I was rude to a teenage guest in my home when she answered for the umpteenth time with 'I don't know, I don't care' when asked what she would like to do / eat / visit. I was responding in frustration, and was upset for a myriad of other reasons, and it ended up coming out as an abrupt, rude statement. It wasn't acceptable though, and I still regret my immaturity and inability to rise above my irritation.

Anyway, I wish I could always have a more effective response than rudeness. Although I'm not sure if sneering superiority is necessarily 'not rude' wink.gif

#25 Kay1

Posted 20 December 2012 - 06:31 AM

QUOTE
Now it would be very silly for me to then collapse in tears if they're rude back, but I really think the idea of one-must-never-be-rude-at-any-cost is a weird and burdensome thing women are conditioned to do often to their own detriment and sometimes grave harm. Nobody ever died, on the other hand, from being told to **** off.

On the other hand, unprovoked rudeness is just unkind. It's usually either an attempt to get over on somebody or simple temper tantrum. I have a temper but I try not to do that, even mild rudeness. I don't do that even when I'm tearing my hair out, if I can help it. Today I had a huge bureaucratic run-around about Medicare and my visa and all because someone told me the wrong thing and then had me on hold for 30 min. straight and then I had to sort it all out online myself and get back in the same queue I started in... and I stayed nice and thanked the lady at the desk for her time. Abusing low-level office workers, retail-workers, and waitresses for life's frustrations is mostly just being a blowhard. It's usually easier and more effective to be civil.


Very well said LDD! cclap.gif

I don't know the answer to this. I have an aunt who is a wonderful person, charitable, selfless, community minded, hilarious and a barrel of fun to be around. But she speaks quite rudely to any kind of service staff. Its so weird. I don't get it and it makes me very uncomfortable. I am always polite and friendly to people as a first instinct. If they are unreasonable or rude I will usually show my disapproval by walking away or hanging up. Even racist or otherwise acceptable behaviour I will call politely, pointing out that its unacceptable or offensive.

My DH and his family on the other hand will arc up immediately so they tend to be more on the confront side of things which I sometimes find rude.




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