But sometimes folks cross the line with it.
You know what I’m talking about. They joke about something that isn’t really joke material. Or they use it as a passive/aggressive tool to say something they would normally never say.
The thing is, we know they’re not joking. A biting comment, no matter how you play it off, is still a biting comment.
No matter how you dice it.
There are people who do not think before they speak. That filter seems to be missing. Is that an excuse to get away with saying things they shouldn’t? Perhaps but not always.
I keep my sarcasm under wraps most of the time because I try to be conscious of what I say. And sometimes – though not often– my inner mean girl can slip through my sarcasm. I really do try to keep her on a very short leash.
What do you do when a friend slights you with their sarcastic humor?
- Ask them if they really meant what they said the way it came across or the way you perceived it.
- Forgive on the spot and move on. If you can’t let it go, then you need to address it.
- Speak up. If it’s repetitive behavior that is hurtful, you need to speak up before resentment ad bitterness have a chance to set in.
How do you control your biting tongue?
- Pause before you speak. Don’t instantly jump into a conversation with something to say. Count to five or ten.
- Know your audience well enough to know if you should be joking. Not everyone takes sarcasm well. If they don’t know you well enough, they may get a really negative opinion of you.
- Pray for God to give you discernment for when sarcasm is appropriate and when it’s not.
- Don’t tease anyone for mistakes they’ve made – unless they find them funny too. That time the sneaker wave attacked you when your back was turned is probably still funny. Financial mistakes or painful mistakes, not so much.
- Apologize. If you think you may have offended someone, apologize for it!
Everyone enjoys laughing and having fun but let’s be good stewards with our words and make sure that what we say is received in a positive light. When we mess up, we own it.
The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. Proverbs 12:18
Have you ever been the victim of someone’s sarcastic joke? Do you think sarcasm is funny or hurtful? Share your experiences in the comments.