Have you ever had the experience where someone says something rude or mean or disparaging to you and then they immediately follow with “I was only kidding”? Their words still sting as they tell you they were kidding and it was a joke. Well truth be told, t was not a joke nor were they kidding. They were showing some passive-aggressive hostility towards you.

Deep down they really don’t like you or they are angry with you about something. They may also be jealous of you and feel self-empowered. to take you down a few notches by their rude comment.

As the late psychoanalyst, Sigmund Freud used to say” there are no jokes- only truths. ” If the person makes a habit out of cutting you down and then telling you they were kidding, know that their deep feelings of hostility towards you are evident.

You may want to directly confront them and ask them why they feel it necessary to make such ugly comments . If they still reply that they were kidding and that you take things so seriously and can never take a joke, know that they are gaslighting you. You may want to finally open the floodgates to see what your relationship or friendship is really all about.

Tell them that you understand that when people make nasty comments on such a consistent basis it reflects how they really feel and that the “I was only kidding statement” reflects cowardice. It’s cowardly not to tell another person what bothers you and instead uses cutting comments to display their hospitality.

Then ask them point blank what it is about you that upsets them so much. If they say nothing bothers me or still accuse you of being humorless, you may want to take a look at why you would you want this person in your life.

If you chose to have them in your life, know that there is some underlying hostility towards you. You may want to distance yourself.

On the other hand, this direct communication may be just what was needed to allow them to finally open up to you and tell you how thy really feel and what is bothering them. In this case you can have an open and meaningful communciation and resolve any underlying issues. It may even make your relationship stronger.

The bottom line is that you need to set boundaries and let them know that they can not say hostile and mean things to you and then try to cloak their meanness and hostility toward you by telling you they were only kidding. If they have a problem with you, they need to speak up and refrain from this passive-aggressive type of behavior.

You may tell then


1 thought on ““I WAS ONLY KIDDING” Syndrome

  1. Here’s how I handle it: I block them from my phone, and my life. No loss. If that’s the nature of our relationship – it’s best to be disposed of.


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