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How do you effectively confront people who are spreading negative rumors about you?

161 Answers
Last Updated: 03/18/2021 at 6:41am
1 Tip to Feel Better
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Lisa Groesz, PhD


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Top Rated Answers
November 20th, 2019 1:33pm
Confront the gossiper in private, you do not want to create a scene in public as things can go side ways and people may judge you as overly sensitive person. And be direct with him. Tell him about the rumor you've heard of and if he did it. Be discrete and on the topic. Be ready for denials. Ask open end questions like "Why did you do that?", and let him know how you felt about it. If he still denies or doesn't apologize then just be the bigger person and forgive him as he clearly doesn't care for your feelings.
November 29th, 2019 7:16am
If you're feeling hopeless, disinterested in things that you used to enjoy, have suicidal thoughts, etc., then depression seems like the likelier cause and you should contact your doctor to discuss. If you're symptoms are more related to feeling easily offended or "attacked", acute and temporary sadness due to hearing something that's sad, etc., then sensitivity may be to blame. Although it can be easy to confuse the two, depression is a far deeper issue that affects nearly every part of life until it is resolved. If you think that you may be depressed, please speak to your doctor.
February 10th, 2020 12:13am
Unfortunately even if I do a good job, there will always be people who are dissatisfied with me. It comes with the job. I can't control what others think and they have the right to their own opinion. I focus on helping people no matter what, negative rumours or not. Even Anthony Robbins has some negative rumours about him and millions of people still love's what he stand's for. I strongly believe that if you can't deal with the negatives, you'll have a hard time trying to help others. Remembering the good you can do when you really care about helping people, is more empowering than any negative rumours.
February 14th, 2020 4:29am
I would confront them, Asking what I did to them to cause them to bully me/ spread rumors of me.
March 29th, 2020 6:08pm
Talk it through what them. I stay opened minded & listen to both perspectives. For example, when my sister & I get into arguments. I always try my best to listen to her view on things. I try my best to always come to an agreement if I can’t come to an agreement because the other person is too stubborn I’ll just give them space & leave the scenario. I’ll try talking to them later when they are calmer & willing to listen. It can be hard to confront but it is the best way to communicate & alone things
April 12th, 2020 8:23am
MMmmm. Sometimes I like to take the bull by the horn. I like to ask this people concerned why they seem to think my story is so important that they are spending their precious time spreading it. But I will keep in mind my boundaries on how to speak to them. Confrontations can be done in an amicable way . I need to watch my voice , facial expression , gestures and choice of words. I might even rehearse a little before I actually speak to the people concerned. The bottom line is : Emerge from the confrontation elegantly, gracefully , politely and feel good about yourself. That's empowerment and it would be a fantastic bonus for your growth.
April 22nd, 2020 2:42am
I will admit I don't handle things the best way possible but I have learned from doing have to be strong outgoing and fierce. You also learn to not care what others are saying because it's mostly about how you want to feel and not the other way around. You learn that later in life in the weirdest ways. One day you can be mad at this boy or girl and go off but then you learn to control yourself and you learn how to be a better person. So what let people talk because they hate that the most.
May 16th, 2020 3:57am
I haven’t had to confront anyone regarding rumors, but I have had to confront someone spreading truth. This truth was regarding my private life and my safety. I expressed my concerns and explained how allowing this information to be release effected me emotionally and puts my privacy at a high risk. It was also a matter that involved the safety of my children. Once my concerns were communicated and were confirmed this person understood the circumstances and no longer continued to “spread the rumor”. Sometimes a broad upfront approach maybe be the answer. However it might not be for a smaller matter, it could really backfire in other situations. It’s best to take it case by case.
July 17th, 2020 6:38pm
First off, negative rumours are not always a bad thing. A person who invents those rumours is probably feeling envious and those who spread it as well. The more outrageous, in fact, the better the compliment to you. It may sound strange, but the fact that anyone takes the trouble to make up a story about you is rather flattering. This said and if there is a real need to address the situation, you can approach any of the rumour-spreading people (as long as you are sure you are on target) and pleasantly ask that person for his/her advice. "I hear this rumour has been spreading about me and I was wondering if you could help me figure out how to snuff it?" That person would rather be your instant ally rather than an enemy. You can turn this issue into a very positive experience.
August 26th, 2020 6:02pm
For situations like this it's important to treat it delicately, as you most likely does not want further labeling and rumours. It would be a good idea to find a time when all of you have somewhere to go to talk in private. Try to learn what exactly they're trying to do and, if possible, why they are doing it. Then I'm sure it would be easier to resolve the issue. If everything comes down to it, you may consider talking to authorities, especially the rumours are escalating and are more detrimental to your image/mental health than you can bear. There are always legal actions available as well if it affects your future, career, etc.
September 22nd, 2015 9:15am
Ask them if you can have private talk with them and then ask calmly if they have heard any rumours that someone close to you is talking about you and you want their help to find out who it is so you can speak with them.
October 26th, 2015 3:41pm
What you shouldn't do, is fight back. That just makes more conflict that you have to deal with. Understand why they are spreading rumors about you. It could just be a misunderstanding. But if it isn't, ask the person why they started the rumor. Try to reason with them and figure out unresolved conflict.
July 26th, 2016 12:27am
If people are spreading negative rumors about you, you should find out if they're aware that the rumors thy are spreading about you are false. You should them inform them that the rumors they are spreading about you are false. The third thing is find out their motive.
September 29th, 2016 3:05pm
I will go to that person and ask her whats the problem. I will tell her that i prefer face to face conversation regarding my negatives
October 27th, 2016 4:57pm
I tend to try and talk to them about why they started to spread the rumor, or get one of my friends, that is also their friend, to ask why. Then I try to get them to stop by trying to talk to them about it. Because, for me at least, it's because of one of my sensory things I do to keep me grounded, when i feel like i'm disassociating. Then we try to work out a compromise.
February 5th, 2017 10:53am
I have found that confronting them bluntly is always the better choice, rather than being cagey and shady. You need to have a cool and collected demeanour and not give vent to nasty feelings.
February 26th, 2017 9:18am
Negative rumours are harsh, but do not be harsh to them. Regardless of your anger and frustration, simply ask them to stop. If that does not work, tell the person a story, a story of how the rumours affect you. Rumours are spread with the intent to hurt on a skin level. As soon as the people realise it has sunk deeper than that, they will likely apologise. Remember, do not be harsh to them. It is about forgiveness.
March 1st, 2017 6:38pm
Confronting a person that has been making up rumors about you is an uncomfortable situation for most people. The best way of clearing the air with this person is by approaching them without the intentions of retaliation and being aggressive. This will not achieve much. Identify what you have heard and let them know how this made you feel. Once you have told them why it bothered you, ask them to kindly stop saying mean or hurtful stuff because what there doing is bullying. That tends to stop the rumors being spread but if it continues then best you discuss what's going on with an authoritative figure, or a professional to help resolve the issue
March 5th, 2017 3:04pm
You have to stand up for yourself. Tell them to stop and tell others that it was rumors. And true friends will always believe you and ask you about the rumors when hearing them.
March 15th, 2017 7:14pm
The first thing you should do is know who you are, and know there is nothing those other people might say that would change who you are. Then ask them directly, often people who spread rumors will stop doing so if they are confronted directly, respectfully but with no fear.
April 18th, 2017 9:15am
Approach the people who are spreading rumors in a calm manner. Showing signs of anger, frustation, or hatred can intensify and worsen the situation. Politely asked what they said about you and why they said it, because it isn't true. Once you hear there response, request that they don't do it again and kindly thank them for hearing you out before you leave the conversation.
April 19th, 2017 9:23pm
Tell them to stop spreading rumors about me, or tell the counselor or my parents about it. Or I just do not mind them since what they are saying are not true at all
April 23rd, 2017 4:31am
When confronting people who are spreading negative rumours about me, I start with asking them if they said it. Then I will ask them why and try to come to a solution. If they keep up with the rumors or still act a certain way, I simply ignore it. I know from experience after a while they will move on.
May 12th, 2017 6:49am
I ignore it for the time being and wait for it to be forgotten, most rumors blow over fairly quickly. If they don't stop after a week or two, politely ask them to stop. If that still doesn't work, notify someone who may be able to help. Although just ignoring them usually works!
May 20th, 2017 5:52pm
In this case it is important so stand up for yourself. Go straight to them and tell them that It hurt you what they were telling about you. You dont't have to explain yourself just make sure that they were doing wrong. I think it is also important to understand what the other person is going trough - maybe their life isn't that great at the moment but you are allowed to feel angry but just be understanding
June 15th, 2017 9:12pm
I always come to the person who I believe is responsible and say something along the lines of "Hello, I've heard that you were saying that I [whatever the rumor is]... That is false information and I would like to know why you were spreading it. I also ask you to stop doing so." The key is to remain calm during the confrontation, be direct and clear, do not actually accuse someone but say that information has reached you/you heard/you saw/etc. that they were spreading the rumor. Then ask them why they were doing it and request them to stop. It's important to stay polite.
June 25th, 2017 9:33am
Tell them exactly how it hurts you and to their face. It's easier for people to be hurtful online so showing them that you are a person with emotions would be most effective. If you are confident, confront them in front of others to.
June 29th, 2017 2:25am
Be honest! Approach them in an environment you feel comfortable. Don't let anger overtake you. Be the bigger person. These rumors don't define who you are!
July 1st, 2017 3:33am
If it's someone who is not important to you you just ignore them, if it's someone who is important to you then you talk to them and ask them why they're doing it.
July 9th, 2017 3:14am
You can agree to meet this person or you could just message them asking them about the rumors and then just tell them to stop. Nothing has to get out of hand and escalate into an altercation. Just be mature about it.