Silence is not a sign of weakness

Our readers feel that dealing with something nasty said to one doesn’t mean one has to retaliate. But ignoring the idiots is wise as long as it doesn’t mean humiliation. If it does, then you have to stand up for yourself

I believe the parties must have healthy and persuasive reasons to support their claims (opinions). As for me, if the opponent says something nasty to me I honestly deal with the situation as per its demands. If my opponent is logical and s/he can be convinced with logic, I use logic. If my opponent is not ready to have any healthy debate and cannot be convinced, it is better to be silent as silence is not always poisonous but sometimes may win the game too.

— Som Nath Ghimire, Kawasoti-5, Nawalparasi

Yes, there is always difference of opinion on any issue because of difference in perspective, skill, knowledge, and experience. If someone says something nasty to me, my first response would be a smile as it is the fault of his narrow mind, knowledge, and experience. I would put forward my points about the issues respecting his background and skill and try to give an easy solution to the issue by making both of us happy.

— Bijaya Manandhar, Tokha, Kathmandu

If someone says something nasty to you, it is human nature to be furious about it. But it may be foolish to start quarrelling and end up fighting with one another in such situations. It is natural that one’s instincts may kick in to give back as good as one gets, but we should not forget what Gandhi once said, “The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” No one likes to be wrong but quarrelling with one another cannot solve anything. If one is wise enough to understand the other, then anything can be solved. There is always misunderstanding and conflict on any issue, but a bigger issue may be caused if one does not act wisely.

In a nutshell, I believe that if one raises his/her voice in an argument, it is probable that the person is wrong and one should always stay silent in such a situation to make his/her life more peaceful and free from worries.

— Reejan Shrestha

It’s in human nature to defend yourself when something bad or intolerant is said to you.

Personally, I think a person should remain silent when the accuser bombards his/her perception on you. Though it’s not easy and one would try and defend themselves to the most.

As we know an angry mind is a narrow mind. It is the feeling that makes a person’s mouth work faster than their mind. During such a situation if a person tries to retaliate with the accuser, it would be useless. Moreover in such cases, the problem may get bigger and create a mess. So it would be a wise decision if the accused keeps mum at such circumstance. Rather he or she should wait for the accuser’s mind to cool down. Then you can have one-on-one conversation which may solve such problems. But this will require a lot of patience from your side which makes it a bit difficult.

— Shreeya Dhakal

I used to argue a lot whenever there was conflict of opinions, especially when the opponent was wrong. It really troubled me when someone told me something unpleasant and I definitely used to backfire. But why be Hitler, if you can be Buddha? Getting angry at someone else’s mistake is like punishing yourself for it.

Sometimes the wisest action is none at all. So, nowadays, I choose to stay silent because if the opponent is wrong, at one point of his/her time, he or she will realise the mistake. So, I think it’s better to stay in peace and let the other person learn the lesson.

— Wallflower

I don’t like people who backbite. Maybe some people fight back, some bad-mouth and some might not even bother to say a word to such people. Usually I deal with such situations by staying calm. I think silence is a better way out instead of retaliation.

Most people often have the mentality of tit-for-tat. But I don’t think it always implies in all of our life situations. Back in my school, my friends would retaliate whenever anyone did or told something nasty to them. I don’t agree that retaliating is a solution. It just provides a false impression of you. When I tend to fight back, my anger forces me to speak really aggressively so I decided to endure when people say nasty things. We don’t have to care about what people say about us. Sometimes silence is better while tackling such life situations.

— Rojina Pradhan, Ravibhawan, Kathmandu

If someone says something nasty to me, I won’t stay silent nor will harm. I would rather respond with humour. Responding with humour sometimes disarms the insultor. For example, if someone calls me badarni, I will reply, “Badarni aka sundari right? Aww, so sweet of you thank you.” This will often get the person insulting you to stop out of shear surprise.

If we have a sense of revenge, it will harm others and ourself. Negativity and ego develops within us which leads to mental illness and results in depression.

— Asmita Bhusal, Tamghas, Gulmi

First of all saying something nasty to others shows the level of the person as in from where s/he belongs, how they grew up... People are not same and don’t have the same mentality, so it’s up to us how we deal with it.

If someone says something nasty to me then I believe it's better not to deal with them, just avoid them. For me it’s not about tit-for-tat, silence is a good idea instead. Speaking with dumb people and arguing with them is a waste of time and energy for me.

— Anonymous

In Nepal every women is harassed by some uncivilised people while walking in the street or different public places everyday. Such people pass vulgar and nasty comments just to embarrass us. I think it is useless to reply to them. We cannot change their mentality.

When I discussed about this problem with my elders then they advised me by saying, ‘the elephant keeps walking as the dog keeps barking’. If we will take any action then they may be more violent and may throw acid on us, not only acid attack but they may sexually molest us. Recently we heard about Sangeeta and Seema acid attack case. So, in our country it is good for us to ignore such people. Police officers may take action but in many places police are also assaulting women.

— Kajal Beriwal, Adarshnagar, Birgunj

If someone says something nasty to me, I will take it normally rather than retaliating. I will try my level best to make him/her understand the topic. For instance, if I am a political leader and I have gone to collect opinions on the topic Preferences to Madhesis in hilly region, some people might support me but some people might say that Madhesis should not be given equal priority, they must be overlooked by the nation. Then I will try to convince them patiently without retaliation. I will make them clear that the Madhesis are also Nepalis.

— Ravikant Yadav, Majhariya-06, Bara

When I saw the question, I wanted to answer it. I actually have been told quite nasty things over time and to date it has continues. According to me silence is the best defence. One may feel like one needs to shout, but it does not help, rather it contributes to the fight. We know the example of Lord Gautam Buddha who said nothing to the person who scolded him. The man later realised his mistake and apologised. I personally feel one can deal with nasty people by remaining silent.

— Sandesh Kunwar

Probably there are different opinions and perspectives as people have their own realistic views and ideas. However, if anybody says something nasty to me I will deal with it probably and will not retaliate. Somehow it’s better to keep silent, but in this case I won’t be as I hate silence.

I would deal with that person in other days by talking.

— Shraddha Karmacharya, Manthali

 The difference in opinion is greatly associated with one’s personality, way of perceiving things, socio-economical behaviour, religious norms and values and so on.

However, if someone says something nasty to me on an issue I would rather stay quiet than retaliating in such case. If I retaliate there will no difference between that person and me. It will create a bad relation between us. Also retaliating would not help us solve the differentiation, it will only create confusion.

I will not prefer to keep quiet as well. As keeping quiet is not the solution. Someone says something nasty because his or her way of perceiving thing is different from mine. Also they might not have completely understood an issue or understood it on the surface. As a learned person, l need to help him or her, so instead of being silent I would rather try to help them understand the issue clearly.

— Dikshya Khadgi

Dealing with such people is very tough. In my case, I am a calm boy and I rarely get angry. In such case, I would rather negotiate with the person than stay silent. Taunting those foolish ones can make a mess which I don’t want.

— Anonymous

When I discuss with someone and he/she says something nasty to me, it really becomes intolerable for me. It makes me feel that the person is insulting me. I also feel that he/she has crossed his/her limit without thinking about the consequences. Whenever we speak in front of anyone we must always remember we should always think before we speak. Otherwise there is a probability that we might pick up a fight with that person for sure. If someone uses nasty words against us we should always try to convince him/her. If he/she doesn’t stop doing so, we have to return the favour. Insult should never be tolerated under any situation.

— Pratik Shrestha, Buddhanagar, Baneshwor

I think it is better not to mess with the people who say something nasty to us. Instead, we ought to be calm. It’ll be senseless no matter how hard we try to make those people understand our point.

It might sound good to give back as good as we get; however, I want to ask you — why should we waste our time and energy to unproductive stuffs and people? So, it would be better to remain silent instead of retaliating.

However, keeping silent every time is not rational. Sometimes there might be a situation where we should speak up; may be for our rights. What only matters is how calm and peaceful we are and that very thing reflects our behaviour.

— Dipti Gyawali, Kathmandu, Nepal

Silence is the most powerful tool of communication when used at the right time. It relays your point of view in the most explicit way that words cannot and it’s better than retaliating in such case. I would prefer to remain silent in some situations as it becomes the most powerful tool, particularly if the person is a master of facial expressions. Actually, it is the most effective tool when you don’t want to debate on an issue or you don’t want further confrontation. And sometimes keeping quiet gives him a better lesson.

Silence has great depth and amplitude. If we can maintain silence we can avoid most of the disputes with our loved ones. I would prefer to remain silent and try to prove myself by action rather than retaliating.

— Nirajan Mahato, Imadol, Lalitpur

Well it hurts to remain silent when someone is using nasty words. But remaining silent is the best way to respond in such situation. It makes them realise that they have hurt someone and nothing can be as good as self-realisation. They will start thinking twice before they speak, which actually is a marvellous way to make someone better without hurting them.

— Anonymous

Often when you interact with people, especially with those groups who are mean then there is a high chance of getting a rude response. They can reply impolitely and it may lower our self-esteem.

I think we should not take it easily and reply back logically, however it doesn’t have to be in the same way. We could tell him/her politely using strong words so he/she won’t dare to repeat it and think twice before saying anything nasty again.

I believe doing this we will not lose our self-esteem and we will be more confident to deal with these kind of people. Generally people offend those people who are weak but if you act strong no body can dare to insult you.

— Gunjana

Every person has his/her own reason or logic on a issue. So, it is obvious that there are differences between opinions on any issue. But saying something nasty to anyone to put their opinion over others seems to be unjust. If something like this ever happens to me, I won’t stand it.

Some believe that remaining silent is a better option than retaliating in such circumstance. It could help them to deal with such case. But I believe it does not do any good. It is often misunderstood as cowardice. In my opinion, it works if it is unintentionally said.

However, I am always on the side to give such person as good as I get it. This teaches them a good lesson not to repeat the thing ever again. But it should be within limit, not vulgar or else situation may get worse.

— Shubham Agrawal, Kolkata, India

Silence is good only if the offender does it unintentionally. If that person has a habit of shooting heart-aching words, it’s better to retaliate. Unless s/he realises the sin committed, s/he is not going to change. I believe we should deal with it in rather aggressive way as such offenders usually do not seem to get our words if spoken politely. Thus, we should succinctly reveal the gravity of his/her offence so that the offender learns unforgettable lesson in life. It’s for his/her development, not ours!

— Barsha

No, silence is not an appropriate answer because the author of the nasty remark will then assume that he is in right and his target has no answer or logic to defend himself. So we must retaliate, but not losing our decency and sanity. The nasty remarks should be immediately nipped in bud in a dignified manner.

— Kajal Chatterjee, Kolkata

When someone tells something nasty to me, I would rather speak up than to keep my lips sealed. Come on, none of us have any machine to change our cortisol (stress hormone) into dopamine (love hormone) instantly! Even scientifically I would choose to retaliate, because what people speak about you makes a great influence on your activity. My words won’t be so straight so as to hurt him/her but yes it will surely do something to move their soul. So, I will take my step to change his/hers view so that symbiotic relation can be maintained in his and my attitude.

— Bablu Yadav, Koteshwor

It is not necessary that every person has same thinking on certain issue. There is always difference of opinion on any issue. The difference of opinion results in the best outcome or solution of the issue or problem. So, it is very important to listen to the views of others rather than imposing ones views on other. However, if someone says something nasty to me I deal with that person according to his nature. If he has the ability to listen to others I correct him. Otherwise, I think silence is the better option for me. To retaliate with such type of person is just a waste of time. I have to deal with both types of people. And my method has worked for me to greater extent.

— Madan Kr Baskota, Satashidham, Jhapa

 It all depends. There are many times when a person should restrain; not pouring your anger and there are times when a person should fight back.

I say it’s better to stay hushed most of the time because I believe arguing with foolish and idiotic people is useless and definitely unproductive. So one should try to ignore them and engage in productive and creative work.

The most important thing is to not letting other people disrespect you.

— Prajwal Bajracharya

Opinion is like a b**t, everyone’s got one. Some of us choose to show, while some don’t. There’s nothing wrong on having an opinion on any issue but sticking to your own opinion without even realising the validity of your own opinion is what creates the problem.

It is widely said that ‘if you always want to be right, you should always change your opinion’. The rationale behind this is, if you change your opinion with regard to others opinion there won’t be any argument and you’d find yourself always right. But what’s the point of having an opinion in the first place if you are always agreeing to disagree? I personally believe arguments should never be about who is right and who is wrong. Arguments should rather be about what’s right, and what’s wrong. I always try not to form strong, unwavering opinions on things unless I know enough to justify it. I’d rather focus on listening and learning, rather than spreading wrong information.

However, when someone says something nasty to me, I’m no Buddha that I can take it with silence. But as per circumstances where words have no significance, I prefer to remain silent. As it is said ‘silence speaks louder than words’, but one should never be so silent to be misunderstood. So basically, retaliating and remaining silent can be equally hurtful and wrong at times.

— Amrit Thapa

It won’t be wrong to say that every Nepali loves momo. Eating something you love always creates memories. Do you have any memory associated with momos? Illustrate.

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