Beyond ‘no’: subtleties and complexities of refusal

12 04 2011

Mythcommunication: It’s Not That They Don’t Understand, They Just Don’t Like The Answer

This piece talks about how a direct ‘no’ is disfavored in western/English-speaking culture and how other kinds of refusals are generally clearly understood. It contains thought-provoking insights into what ‘nos’ work and can push us all to honor our students’ myriad ways of saying ‘no’.






One response

12 04 2011
Joanne Factor

Thanks for posting, nice analysis. I’ve noticed it’s a challenge for many teen girls in self-defense classes to consider saying “no” even to inappropriate requests. “But that’s RUDE!” is a common reply.

However, many women over the age of 35 (at least those who take my self-defense classes) have far less trouble with that word.

The insights in the article can also help our students come up with alternative “indirect no” strategies, in case their first choice comes up short.

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