Breaking News
Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Wise ‘Cat: Opinions should respect others



How do you tell a loud, blunt and opinionated friend that they need to tone it down when they’re in public with you without offending them?


-Alecia Viault, 23

Dear Alecia,

There is nothing wrong with your friend’s opinion, but sometimes opinions don’t have to be shared with everyone.

When you have a friend who is very opinionated, it can sometimes be very hard to talk to them without making them defensive or angry. Sometimes, however, you have to put their feelings aside and think of your own.

Confronting people is never fun, but sometimes it’s necessary. When an opinionated person needs to tone it down a little, here’s how you should tell them:

1. Choose your words wisely.

Bring up the topic in conversation casually. If this person is really your friend, you should not feel like you are walking on egg shells when you are around them. Still, keep in mind how your words can change the entire course of the conversation. Avoid accusations and give examples of situations where your friend has made you feel uncomfortable or has been a distraction for you and others around you.

2. Stay calm.

People usually are not fond of being scolded, especially if the person scolding them is not their parent or guardian. Even if your friend gets angry or starts yelling when you bring the topic up, just assure your friend that you didn’t intend to start an argument. If the situation gets out of hand, walk away from it. Both of you will need time to cool off.”

3. Get to the point.

Do not sugarcoat anything. Sometimes people need to hear the entire, possibly brutal, truth of a situation to really understand it. Just do not be as “blunt” as your friend can be.

4. Put yourself first.

You do not want to be associated with people who make others look at you in a negative way. Your friend’s opinions are not necessarily yours, and your friend needs to learn that it is one thing to tell you how they feel, and another to speak so loudly that now the entire class and professor knows how your friend feels too. Your friend may not mind that attention, but it seems like you do, and a “friend” should not put you in uncomfortable situations.

5. Have the conversation in private.

Obviously your friend does not have a problem with letting the world know how they feel, and this conversation is not one for others to hear. The conversation should be between you two and stay between you two.

All you can hope to get out of the conversation is that your friend will understand where you are coming from and will act on it. If your friend can be blunt and opinionated with and around you then you can be just as blunt when delivering the truth to them, just not rudely. Just because you tell someone how you feel, it does not mean they will do what you want them to. You will have already done your part by having the conversation. With good intentions, you can’t go wrong with letting your friend know how you feel. Unfortunately, other people’s actions do affect us, but we can control how much those actions get to us. At the end of the day this is your friend that you are trying to talk to, and the conversation should not be too serious. Little issues should never become major issues.


– WiseCat


Kristina Martinez can be reached at [email protected] or @kristinacsuc on Twitter.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Orion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *