Hi, I am a therapist. In my private and group sessions, I hear many stories about rude, angry, and disrespectful people. Many of my clients are coming to me asking how to react when other people treat them badly. The ability to create healthy boundaries is one of the most requested topics in therapy.
Sometimes my clients say that they catch themselves being rude towards their partner, their kids, and other people. They say that their emotions take control over them and by the time they realize it, the damage is already done. They have already said things that they didn’t really mean to say. They promise their partner never to do it again, but in a stressful situation or in the middle of a conflict, they repeat it again, again and again.
Today I would like to talk to you about the reasons why people get angry, about the 6 true reasons why people say offensive words, act disrespectfully, and are rude.
Why People Are Rude, Angry, and Disrespectful
There are rude people. There are disrespectful people. There are angry people. 99% of these people are simply acting this way because they are not happy. They have low self-esteem or they are in a bad situation where they feel helpless. They are trying to protect their boundaries and they are using anger as their coping mechanism. Let’s talk about each reason in detail.
Reason #1 why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful is because it is their defense mechanism.
People with low self-esteem can easily become offended. When somebody is crossing their boundaries, they want to protect themselves. Because of their low self-esteem, they are extremely sensitive to other people’s opinions. If you raise your intonation a bit, they often feel criticized and judged. They get emotional over small things. With these people, you might feel that you need to be very careful with every word that you are saying.
These people get offended even before you finish your sentence. They may seem rude and disrespectful, but in reality, they are extremely sensitive and defensive. They get emotional and that is why they use insulting words. They will raise their voice, their intonation, they will attack you mentally and sometimes physically, because they feel pain inside.
Of course, they don’t have a right to be abusive or rude towards you. In most cases, these people don’t want to be rude. Later they regret their behavior. They apologize and ask to forgive them. But in the next misunderstanding, they continue saying mean words. They know which buttons to press. And they do it. Unfortunately, they cannot control their emotions. And even though they apologized / for their behavior before, they keep hurting others again and again.
If you catch yourself going through this cycle (if you are hurting people without meaning to), I highly recommend finding a therapist. There is nothing wrong with you. You are not crazy. You just need someone who can help you to release your pain; someone, who can understand what is happening with you. Someone, who can help you to build healthy self-esteem and communicate your needs and desires in a healthy way.
If some of your friends, family members, or co-workers are going through these behavioral patterns, just share this video with them. Post it on your social media. They might see it and might recognize themselves and ask for help. Stop the video right now and share it on your social media!
Let’s move to the next reason.
Reason #2 why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful is because they want you to HEAR them.
A person often would raise their voice, their intonation, because this person believes that if they get loud people will hear them. The person believes that if you are nice and polite, then other people will walk over you. But if you are firm, loud, and show your power, then people will respect you and will follow you. Such people often don’t notice that they are crossing the line and become rude and disrespectful.
They honestly believe that you must show people who the boss is and you must not show any weakness if you want others to respect you. They also believe that if they show their true feelings and emotions people will think that they are weak and will use them. If they show their true feelings, people will laugh at them and won’t take them seriously. These people were raised in a belief that you should be strong 24/7 and never let your emotions control you.
Reason #3 why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful is prolonged conflict in a relationship.
This type of rudeness often happens among people who are going through a series of misunderstandings and conflicts.
One example of a prolonged conflict is a generational disagreement. It can be a generational conflict when parents refuse to accept that their child is an adult. Parents try to control their adult children expecting them to follow their values and their expectations. Because parents and adult children often desire different things in life they might go through lots of arguments.
Each side is trying to prove their opinions, but they don’t hear each other. Therefore, they are raising their voices and using aggressive intonation. They might accuse each other of being stupid or use some other disrespectful words. What each party really wants is to be heard and understood. This is a generational conflict. They don’t need to understand each other. They might never understand each other. What they need is to accept each other and allow each other to be different. They need to let go of their expectations. Parents need to let go of the idea that their kids are like them and therefore, they have to follow their steps. And adult children need to stop waiting for parental approval and expect their support.
Another example of a prolonged conflict often happens in a married or dating couple who is going through a separation or even divorce. They no longer want to make an effort to listen to each other and accept each other’s needs. Partners do not want to hear each other’s opinions; they are just trying to prove their own ideas. They ignore each other ideas and hurt each other. They use insulting and disrespectful words trying to prove their point. They know each other’s triggers and they are using them to hurt each other more and more.
Reason #4 why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful is the inability to express anger towards the real abuser.
When a person cannot express his anger toward the one who offended him, they have to find someone else for that purpose. For example, a boss was rude and disrespectful toward his employee. The employee was not able to respond and when he comes home, he is stressed, nervous and he screams at his wife. If the wife can’t express her anger with her husband (maybe she is afraid of him or doesn’t want to escalate the conflict), she has to find somebody else for that purpose. She was hurt. She feels pain inside. She doesn’t know what to do with her feelings.
Now the spouse is nervous and stressed. Kids can feel the tension. They can feel the anger and pain in the air. They are acting out. As a result, the parents are screaming at their kids.
Kids don’t know what to do with their feelings. They might hurt their pet or they keep their feelings inside. The next day at daycare or school they misbehave and can even create a fight.
Parents receive calls and get angry at their kids. They are disappointed and worried. They might overreact at work and say rude things to their colleagues or their subordinates. And then their co-workers come home and release their anger to their spouses.
Do you see the chain? It goes on and on and on.
When a person can not respond or does not know how to respond to rudeness, they suppress their feelings inside. And these negative feelings might come out at any moment. The person might become mean and aggressive over small things. Often the person regrets his behavior but it is already too late.
That’s why it’s so important to learn about healthy boundaries, to learn how to manage your emotions and how to release them in a healthy way.
Before we talk about the next reason, I would like to invite you to my Happiness Club that I created for people just like you who want to learn how to release their negative feelings without hurting others or themselves.
It will take you only a few seconds to join the club. You will then have instant access to my entire healing database which includes guided meditations, self-development webinars, life-coaching techniques, art therapy, and much more.
Reason #5 why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful is a wrong belief that they have the right to be rude.
This is also some type of defense mechanism. A person acts rudely because somebody or something hurt them. They see themselves as a victim. They believe that If someone was rude to them, then now they have the right to be rude. In retaliation, If someone calls me names, then I can hurt the person back. If someone raises their voice, then I can show my voice as well.
These people believe that life is not fair to them. Often, they are afraid of confrontation, and therefore, they like to complain about their problems to their friends. A good friend would listen and probably try to help. But you have to remember that this is not a one-time event. This is the type of person who always complains. Their friend might offer them a solution, but 99% of the time, they will reject it. They are not looking for a solution, they just want attention. That’s why they keep complaining and accusing others of being rude, disrespectful, and mean to them.
At some point, a friend would get tired and stop helping. And here come rudeness and aggression. When a person has a victim mindset and doesn’t get attention, they become angry. Now, they blame their friend for being cold and ignorant and get stuck in their victim’s mentality even deeper than before. Life is unfair to them, people are rude and ignorant, and nobody cares about them. This is a detrimental limiting belief that slowly makes a person rude, angry, and disrespectful to others.
Reason #6 why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful is jealousy.
Some people can get really jealous when they see another person have a better car, a better house, or a better job. Their jealousy makes them angry. They feel that the other person is above them because the other person has all these expensive things. So, they feel like they are at the bottom and somebody else is on top. In order to feel good about themselves, they judge and criticize others. They have to put the other person down in order to feel better.
People with high ambitions but without significant achievements in life often react to other people’s successes aggressively. They especially get angry when their friends, family, and co-workers achieve greater results than them. Every time they see their friends and family succeeding, they experience the feeling that there is something wrong with them. They almost feel like the other person has something that they were supposed to have. They have to criticize other people’s successes in order to deal with their feelings of being miserable. The more they criticize the less miserable they feel. That’s why they can be extremely rude and disrespectful. They are basically raising their self-esteem by putting you down.
Let me know in the comments if you know such people.
How do they make you feel?
How do you react to such behavior?
These were the 6 true reasons why people are rude, angry, and disrespectful. Now that you know the reasons, you can find the appropriate way to respond to their mean behavior.
Once again, I invite you to join my Happiness Club where you can learn how to create healthy boundaries and enjoy your relationships.
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