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The How-To Lounge: Getting Along With Someone You Don't Like

The How-To Lounge: Getting Along With Someone You Don't Like

Regardless of how easygoing, fun to be around, or sweet you may be, it’s inevitable that you’re going to come across someone who you just don’t get along with. We’re all different, and just as we can feel a deep connection with some people, it’s very normal to feel a strong distaste for others. Whether we know them through work, school, or even family, they can be impossible to avoid altogether so the best you can do is try to get along. To find out how,


  • Spend as little time with them as possible. This doesn’t mean that you should ignore them, but if there's no need to interact then don’t. The more you’re with them, the greater chances you'll have of becoming annoyed and angry.
  • Though of course we have our reasons for disliking someone, most of the time it’s not because they’re a terrible person, but simply because our personalities just don’t mesh. So while it may be easy to nitpick all their annoying habits, it’s important to acknowledge their positive attributes as well.
  • Likewise, recognizing their personal struggles is also valuable. Always try to consider what challenges have made them the way they are — it’s not necessarily a good enough reason to suddenly like them, but it can help you understand them better.
  • Be respectful of them even when it’s hard. You don’t want to become the bad guy, so don’t act like one.
  • Being respectful doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t stand up for yourself if necessary. If they treat you poorly, I think it’s fine to kindly put them in their place.

And remember, if you don’t have something nice to say then don’t say anything at all. It's a great etiquette standard, but especially true when dealing with those people who get under your skin.


blooditsnotfunny blooditsnotfunny 9 years
I have to deal with so many people that I dislike at school. My problem is that I am smart, but when I am talking with a group trying to figure out a problem I just always blank on it for some reason so people think that I'm stupid. Then I end up with people who are getting C's or B's in the class talking down to me and thinking that they need to explain the basics of chemistry when I'm getting an A! I get so annoyed that I feel like saying to them.. you know what I don't need your advice because I am way smarter than you. I always bite my tongue but then people just continue to think that I'm stupid! So annoying.
HappyKate HappyKate 9 years
ugh... lets just say that my boyfriend mother tried to hard to make me feel like part of them.....ugh....I can't even think of going there without feeling like I am going to say something rude...
tweet-hotpants tweet-hotpants 9 years
when i was in college there was a girl on my lacrosse team that i couldn't STAND. she was so annoying. i started praying for her- just things like that she would have a good day and stay safe at practice- and if she ever mentioned anything, like a test, i'd pray that she would do well, etc. It may sound ridiculous to some people, but praying for her actually made it really hard to dislike her.
Marci Marci 9 years
I don't make a habit of spending time with people I don't like unless I have to - because of work or whatever. But I'm of the school of thought that there's something about just about everyone that I can like, so I'll look for that. Granted, some people make that *very* difficult to find, but I keep busy trying!
AujahAcorn AujahAcorn 9 years
gesh! my cousin! I could go on and on about her. I do have a question. Any good tips on what to actually say back to rude comments? I get so shocked with the things she says I freeze up! maybe a post on that? just an idea: ) In a nut shell, she has bad self esteem and I think she looks up to me and thinks I am really "cool", in turn she puts me down any way she can. ANYWAY SHE CAN! I just don't know what to say back.
moxierain moxierain 9 years
Usually when I come across people who I don't get along with and don't click. I'm just civil. I don't become friends with them, don't hang out, etc. I'm just civil. As far as family and relatives, just because someone is related doesn't mean that you need to spend time with them at all. Especially when you don't like them. Blood isn't always thicker than water. Besides sometimes some family members are abusive and I just refuse to be abused by anyone and that includes relatives.
mnp mnp 9 years
Ugh. I just had to deal with one of the secretaries that I work with here. I'm trying to be nice and diplomatic but she is trying to trample all over me. I can't think of anything positive right now.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
Great tips. Luckily I can't remember the last time I had to endure dealing with someone I disliked.
MartiniLush MartiniLush 9 years
Thanks for this post! It will certainly help with visits with my MIL!
CaffeePants CaffeePants 9 years
One of my bf's good friends used to drive me crazy. He just has an abrasive personality. My bf agrees. He is a very matter-of-fact person and is an authority on everything. We would get into arguments almost every time we hung out. I've realized that I don't need to be his friend but we do need to be civil for the sake of my bf. Now I just try not to talk to him about certain heated subjects and when I sense the convo in the room going somewhere touchy I disengage or find a reason to change the subject. It's just not worth the constant bickering.
MissMeow MissMeow 9 years
I can definitely use this advice. Thanks Dear, this will be great to keep in mind at parties this summer.
Sydney-C Sydney-C 9 years
Same thing here...I don't even personally know the girl, but I already have an extreme dislike for her (I have my VALID reasons!!) Thanks for the tips Dear.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
Uggg take my boyfriends brothers gf for example! I LOATHE her. She is so rude. But I put up with having to be in the same room as her...I just don't talk to her at all.
dkaanoi dkaanoi 9 years
This has to the best thing ive read all day. Its hard not to be negative when you are around someone you dont like. When you hear theyre name brought up in conversation, see a picture of them anything that has them involved. But this is a great way to deal with it all. Im in this situation right now and im definately going to follow these rules!! Thanks!!
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