Compliments are actually meant to make the receiver feel good about themselves or at least commend them for something they do or possess.
However sometimes, either unintentional or not, it is easy to miss the line and deliver a derogatory statement rather than a flattering one when the statement is put under the scrutiny of a second thought.
Below are 8 statements that sound like compliments but are insulting when second considered.
You Look Very Beautiful Today:
This statement is actually meant to make the person feel on top of the world at that moment, considering they look stunning for how they appear that instant. However, when you think again, is the person trying to say you look ugly every other day but then managed to look beautiful only that day?
You Are Very Photogenic:
While this may make you feel good that you appear very well and beautiful on cameras and photos, it could also mean that you are not as pretty physically as you appear in photos. In clear terms, you are uglier in person! That is derogatory!
You Are Too Beautiful/ Handsome To Still Be Single:
This statement sounds complimenting, considering they admit you are very good looking not just to them but everyone. So they feel since you did not pop out of your mother’s womb all grown up, some other persons who obviously met you before them should have desired to settle down with you considering your good looks. So marriage is now the ultimate goal for anyone who is beautiful or good-looking? Besides this statement could also mean that there may be hidden flaws you have that could have kept you single considering how you look on the surface. For a person looking for companionship, this could be very hurtful.
You Behave So Well For An Igbo/Yoruba/Hausa/Any Tribe/Christian/Muslim/…:
If You are going to compliment someone’s character or excellence, go ahead and do it but bringing down a whole tribe, religion or group just to do that is very insulting and unacceptable. Implying that the person in question belongs to a group or tribe with a lower standard of excellence, so they surpassed your low expectations of them is a very wrong way to compliment anyone.
With All Due Respect…:
Preceding your statement with this phrase would mean you respectfully want to make your point unequivocally known to whoever you are talking to, without attacking their ego. While this is a good way to make your point clear to whoever, most of the time subtle insults usually follow. This phrase is often used when people want to disrespect you but don’t want you to feel bad about it. How nice!
You Look Beautiful/Young For Your Age:
However complimenting this might feel, it sounds stupid! Telling someone they look good inspite of their age, as if beauty is only restricted and reserved for the young. Telling someone they look younger for their age could be a delightful compliment no doubt, but isn’t that also telling them they have aged and you are expecting them to appear so?
You Are Much Smarter Than You Look:
Really? Like seriously?!! So beauty and physical appearance is now directly proportional to intelligence? People usually use this statement when they are trying to say ‘you are beautiful/handsome and I was not expecting you to be smart too’ or ‘you dress and appear hot and I wasn’t expecting intelligence to be part of it’. Attaching beauty to one’s mental capability is very dumb!
Your Beauty Comes From Inside/I Prefer Your Inner Beauty:
If you want to tell someone they are ugly, just go ahead and tell them! Which one is inner beauty and beauty coming from inside? It’s ok you want to let someone know they have a beautiful heart and character but that should be a discussion when the topic “character and attitude” comes up. When complimenting someone’s physical look, please leave inner beauty alone and concentrate on what you see, else that is a backhanded compliment!