There are many reasons why some people ask deeply personal questions to which they expect an answer. One reason is that they feel hostile toward you and want to push you against a wall. However, sometimes people don’t realize that what they’re asking may make you feel uncomfortable. So it’s up to you to let them know that you are in no way answering their question.
Bright Side would like to share 8 methods that can keep nosey people out of your business.
1. Turn your answer into a parallel question.
Questions about your marital status or about your personal life, in general, aren’t only intrusive but also insulting. Instead of getting defensive and starting a passive-aggressive conversation, you can simply ask a parallel question. You shouldn’t feel the need to defend your personal choices to people who are simply nosey. A parallel question will shift the attention to them, and they might realize that their life decisions weren’t as great as they thought.
2. Be direct and straightforward, even if that makes you rude.
Answering in a very clear tone can be perceived as rude by some people, but it’s a way of showing your true feelings. So, if you think the other person is stepping over the line, you can tell them that this is none of their business. Be confident in your manner and the other person will definitely understand that they have to drop the topic of conversation. This way, they’ll probably learn never to ask personal questions in the future.
3. Ask them why it’s so important for them to know.
An uncomfortable question might come from someone who cares or wants to know your personal experience. Asking them why they want to know something specific about you will reveal their true intentions. You don’t need to be aggressive or suspicious unless they give you a clear sign that they’re being a busybody. Keep your voice light and friendly since you don’t want the other person to get defensive or insulted if their intentions are genuine.
4. Reframe the question.
This is a way of creating a “bridge” from an awkward question to a more comfortable area of discussion. You basically direct the conversation to a point that you have no problem talking about. And that’s perfectly logical if you’re not ready to talk to others about your thoughts and feelings on a certain subject. Not only can you avoid answering directly, but you can create a different topic that might lead you to something else to talk about.
5. Give a piece of advice instead of a direct answer.
Talking about your recent breakup can be pretty difficult and emotional, but curious people will still question you about it. You can jump out of the difficult position by offering up some personal advice that helped you get over the painful time. This way, you don’t have to give too many details about your relationship, but you create a more generic conversation. Other people can jump in and share their own advice and experiences that helped them during similar situations.
6. Jokingly shame the other person, just a tad.
Let’s be honest, those who want to stick their noses in other people’s business deserve a little bit of shaming. It’s not the type of shaming that will insult them, but instead, make them realize that they are being too nosey. You can simply answer with: “Wow, you are quite the curious one, aren’t you?” and walk away. By doing that, you stop the conversation from going any further and avoid any possible unpleasantries.
7. Avoid answering by giving a compliment.
Many people love compliments and will gladly accept one and talk about something that involves themselves. So, when you get asked the famous question, “When will you have kids?” you can simply complement the other person. Start talking about their kids and how wonderful they are. You can take it even further by praising them for the marvelous job they’ve done at raising them to be perfect little humans.
8. Answer ambiguously.
Ambiguity leaves no space for the other person to ask any further questions since they’re not getting any definite answers. That works when you don’t want to answer a question or when you just want to think about it. Therefore, you create a veil of mystery, and the other person realizes that they can’t get a clear answer. And that’s definitely better than creating a fake story that will sooner or later reveal itself.
Have you ever been asked a deeply personal question? If so, what method did you use to get out of the awkward situation?