General Question

gailcalled's avatar

What triggers a need in some people to have the last word?

Asked by gailcalled (54644points) February 10th, 2009

I find sometimes I have to gag myself…I wasn’t very empowered as a child. Maybe that explains my neurosis.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

44 Answers

jonsblond's avatar

I like the first word. ;)

Great question

EmpressPixie's avatar

I think some people just like being right (me!) or feel the need to argue the underdog (also me!). Though, the two urges can cause weird problems at times.

Also, when someone is wrong on the Internet, you must correct them. It is your duty! If you don’t, they’ll keep being wrong.

whackyrusty's avatar

Not having a comeback is almost admitting defeat to some people. I guess they need to say something otherwise they feel they have lost the battle. Of course, most of the time, it is the person who knows when to stop, when the argument or whatever is clearly going nowhere, who actually ‘wins’ the battle.

cak's avatar

I have no basis to this theory, only my husband’s input. Just to annoy the daylights out of others. I think, to a point, he is correct.

tinyfaery's avatar

The need to be correct.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

I agree with tinyfaery. Most people that I’ve met who are like that tend to argue even when other people know, without a doubt, that they’re wrong. If I’m dealing with that kind of person, I won’t bother arguing. I just say, “Okay” and end the conversation/argument.

gailcalled's avatar

(I would say something here, but I took an oath.)

cak's avatar

@gailcalled- there is an oath for this problem? I need a copy.

jonsblond's avatar

I think an argumentative person is an insecure person. No basis to this theory, just a thought.

TaoSan's avatar

the unwavering belief that they are “in the right”?

Harp's avatar

There’s something primal about it. It’s like stags charging at each other with their antlers; one wins when the other turns away. When discourse turns combative, we demand some sign of concession from our rival, and failure to respond is often taken as a form of concession. As long as there’s a rejoinder, then the battle goes on.

It’s not really about being “right”. It’s about being dominant.

Les's avatar

Funny story:
I was in a meeting with my adviser and another scientist (who is known to need the last word). We spent an hour discussing what the next step was in my lab work. We went through all the details and covered all the facets of this next project. I was all set to get moving and cruising in the lab, and on my way out, this scientist says to me, “So, are you going to do this?”
No, I think I’ll just sit on my hands until you give me a degree. But the last word was hers. I don’t understand it. It is the need to be correct, but also be make sure that everyone knows that he/she is smart enough to still be in this conversation.

johnny0313x's avatar

@DrasticDreamer – that is my policy all the way, I CAN’T stand when someone always needs to get the last word or argue their point rather then just see that there is two points of view or that they are just in general wrong(assuming that they are) If i know they are wrong and they keep going at it, ill just walk away from it and say “okay” even if it means backing down. I just don’t have the time or patience to deal with someone like that.

Thegary's avatar

The last word is the one everyone remembers. How many times have you heard someone say “I don’t even remember what the fight was about, but the last thing he/she said was…”
And it only becomes the last word when one stops talking. I like when I hear people say “you always have to have the last word”. Um, wouldn’t that statement make it the 2nd to last?

TaoSan's avatar

I like when I hear people say “you always have to have the last word”. Um, wouldn’t that statement make it the 2nd to last?

Priceless! :)

jonsblond's avatar

I wonder who’s going to get the last word on this thread. ;)

EmpressPixie's avatar

Oh, me! me!

@Thegary: It’s not the last word, because the next thing someone says to that (at least in the movies) is a rather unthinking, “I do not!” Thereby assuring they do, in fact, get the last word in.

Bluefreedom's avatar

I just want to get a word in, edgewise, so here I am. I’d like to think I’m getting the last word on this thread but I think expressly forbidding everyone to quit posting after my response here is about as realistic as honesty in politics. Not happening. :o)

On a more serious note, I have found myself having the last word on many occasions that involved debates, arguments, or fights and a majority of those times, my last words were apologies.

rooeytoo's avatar

It drives me crazy when people make statements that are based on their personal opinion and not rooted in fact. Then defend them ad nauseam regardless of the statistics. And they are usually the ones who have to have the last word. I just give up and click the “stop following” option. Some people are experts on everything and that is that!

aprilsimnel's avatar

Oh, @gailcalled. Watch this, speaking of “last words”. If you can’t laugh, well, what can you do?

cookieman's avatar

I know a few people like this. My mother is the worst.

Never wrong. Never backs down. Must have the last word (which is often an angry one).

There’s no arguing with these people. Walk away.

gimmedat's avatar

I have to have the last word because I do. It’s really not any deeper than that, I don’t think.

tennesseejac's avatar

@gimmedat your mom is really not any deeper than that

KatawaGrey's avatar

Well, I often try to have the last word only because I feel like I have to respond to everything the other person says. It gets very confusing when I’m on the phone with a friend who also feels the need to respond to everything said so we end of having very long goodbyes that usually go something like this:

Me: All right, see you then.
Friend: Yeah, I can’t wait.
Me: Me neither.
Friend: Yeah, it’s gonna be great.
Me: Yeah, it is.
Friend: Okay, I really need to go now.
Me: Yeah, me too.
Friend: Okay, goodbye!
Me: Goodbye, see you then!
Friend: You too, goodbye!
so on and so forth.

It’s not that either of us needs to be right or prove a point, it’s just that we each talk too damn much and feel rude hanging up first.

TaoSan's avatar

can I have the last word now? ...Please… pleaseplease

KatawaGrey's avatar

(sorry, couldn’t resist)

TaoSan's avatar

P L E A S E!

cookieman's avatar

OK. You can have the last word.

TaoSan's avatar


gailcalled's avatar

(Since I am whispering, this doesn’t count. Click on “Thank yourname.” There’s one good answer.)

jonsblond's avatar

@TaoSan How did I know it would be you. ;)

TaoSan's avatar

Oh I’m so predictable :)

jonsblond's avatar

Damn! I thought I got the last word.

I’ve been waiting. Game on!


Bluefreedom's avatar

The End. :o)

jonsblond's avatar

That’s what she said.

Bluefreedom's avatar

There is a light at the end of the tunnel. I needed to share these last words because I’m currently waiting for new questions to appear on Fluther and I had some time to kill.

jonsblond's avatar

@Bluefreedom I tried the “what is your porn name” question last night, but it only lasted 20 minutes, if that. I’m up for suggestions.

Bluefreedom's avatar

@jonsblond. Me too. I’m drawing a blank right now. How the hell do you get writers block on Fluther? :o)

mattbrowne's avatar

Maybe extrovert versus introvert?

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