Social Question

chelle21689's avatar

Do you know a person that puts down every idea/decision?

Asked by chelle21689 (5450 points ) August 15th, 2012

I feel like my brother-in-law is kind of that way. For example, if I tell him I’m going to drive my car to a certain state. He’ll make me not want to go and say things like “It’ll never make it” and list reasons why. I went ahead and did it and I made it fine.

Or if I wanted an Ipad. He’ll tell me not to get one because you can’t see certain sites and to only buy apple products because they can’t get viruses although I like mostly HP laptops.

OR…
if I want to go for a job he’ll give me reasons why it’ll be so hard to get it and it won’t be likely. But he’ll give advice.

I think he means well with his advice but it’s usually, “No, that’s not a good idea”. Not just with me. He’s one of those type of people I won’t tell just because I think it’ll get shot down.

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20 Answers

marinelife's avatar

That sounds depressing. Some people say no to everything because they are afraid of change, but your BIL just sounds like a Negative Ned.

bkcunningham's avatar

It is a symptom of a control freak? Yes, I know people like that too.

Shippy's avatar

My dad was like that and I found it very draining. In the end I’d tell him off for being so negative. Then hed get all sarcastic and say “oh positive thoughts hey” which was super annoying. So all in all I think its fear based. The worse part is I am turning into him!! So maybe ask more inspiring people their views too.

Judi's avatar

I think I would have to put them in their place. So sorry you are going through that.
I actully used to think in terms of limitations too. It took moving 800 miles from my family to be abloe to see the world as possibilities.

creative1's avatar

Ultimately all decisions are yours and I would only tell him if I wanted to hear the worst of something so I could take it into consideration before doing what I want. Sometimes you need to hear the bad so you can take steps to avoid it happening.

fremen_warrior's avatar

Some people are not even aware they’re doing this and will refuse to even admit they downplay everything you say. It can be pretty frustrating talking to this type of people. I have a few in my family, so I know lol

MilkyWay's avatar

Yeah, my dad. Nothing is ever good enough for him.

cookieman's avatar

Yes, “Glum” from Gulliver’s Travels. ”We’ll never maaake it”.

Frankly, I can be like that sometimes. Usually if I’m tired and/or stressed. I make a point of catching myself and be positive.

josie's avatar

I know a few. But I avoid them. A negative attitude is more toxic and more counter productive than anything else that people can do.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I know someone like that. I pity him. He’s a loser .

gailcalled's avatar

@chelle21689: Remind your bro-in-law that you are not asking for advice. That means he can’t give any.

Unwanted advice is a hostile act.

If he lays some on you, stop and ask him, “Do you realize how negative you are much of the time with me? Will you please stop it?”

If you use questions rather than statements, he is forced to answer and thus, pay attention for at least an instant.

stardust's avatar

Yes :-) I know the odd Negative Nancy. They are such a pain in the arse to be around and as others have said, such negativity is toxic. I’ve found that attitude usually comes from people who are deeply insecure or living in fear all of the time. I try to avoid them as they’d suck the life out of anyone :/

Bellatrix's avatar

Yes, our Opposition leader. He is the leader of the Noalition.

I used to work in an organisation where a couple of people did this. Their behaviour was political though. They only wanted change they instigated and anything put forward by others was dismissed. I used to find ways to canvass other people who had a vote before they heard about things. It was the only way to get things changed and my goodness, did things need changing.

flo's avatar

I don’t know if I prefer “negative neds” or _“people pleasers”?

Symbeline's avatar

My roomate does that, unless it’s something she already agrees with or champions. Hell, I don’t even have the right to dislike food that she likes; she figures, literally, that I’m eating it wrong, or don’t remember how good it is if it’s been a while I’ve had something. Logic. Gotta love it.

As for decisions I take or think about; it’s pretty much the same. She’ll completely denounce it if she thinks it’s crap, and tell me what she would do instead. Even if it’s completely obvious I already made up my mind, and that I didn’t actually ask her for advice. Fuck it, used to it at this point, and I know a few more people like that at work. I hate it how some people will just always talk about themselves, and how everything they do, but usually just would do, is always more godlike than my very existence.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Between the optimist and the pessimist, there is a droll.
The optimist sees the doughnut; the pessimist sees the hole.

It is completely understandable how you feel. I often feel the same way, as others obviously do, based upon some of the posts above. What I’ve found is that we all have different personality types and various communication styles.

The BIL’s intent is to help you. The effect is negative. There are numerous reasons why this might be. It is just a matter of figuring out why he, or any others, are like this and adjusting your style when communicating with them.

Mariah's avatar

Bleh. I think behavior like this is a odd sort of defense mechanism. People like this don’t want to see you have fun or be successful because it reminds of them of the fact that they’re not successful and they’re not having fun. So they try their hardest to rain on your parade instead of creating a parade of their own.

The best thing you can do, I think, is to ignore it. Or maybe gently point out to him that he has this habit. But just don’t let him discourage you from doing what you want to do.

PS…. Macs can totally get viruses.

trailsillustrated's avatar

I know more people like that than I care to. It’s a habit, they want to tell people what to do, they want to feel superior. It also can be just the peevish personality type. Also known as losers. Don’t worry about it.

chelle21689's avatar

He’s an okay guy. He’s good for my sister but I think he’s the type that can easily get on the bad side. I mean he’ll take offense and turn it into drama. He’s also good at arguing because he’s a good business man and knows how to negotiate. I just try to stay out of it and not tell him much anymore.

chelle21689's avatar

I think with him it’s more of a “I’m never wrong and always right” type of thing. My sister is stubborn and so is he lol

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