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Author Topic: Statements about my cat - rude?  (Read 15115 times)

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AngelBarchild

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #60 on: January 12, 2013, 11:02:20 AM »

I think it is a "know your audience" kind of thing.  I agree with Willy-Nilly that a lot of hyperbole is not meant to hurt and I engage in that too - with certain people.  I know who I can say stuff like "I'll wring so and so's ( insert cat or child's name ) neck if that happens again....but I would never in a million years say that to someone who I thought would be hurt by that....and I would never tell someone they should put their pet down.  It is not only insensitive but it is nobody else's business.

Here is where I will risk a tarring and feathering from the pet lovers.  I too love cats and own two....but I have also been put in the position of having to get rid of a pet and I think it would just as rude for anyone to tell me I was a "psychopath" or a horrible person because they disagreed with my decision.  Of course I hate when people discard animals like yesterdays trash but the decision to get rid of an animal is not always callous "I got bored with having to take care of it" reasoning.

We spent  a good deal of time and money ( vet checks, medication etc ) trying to break kitty of her bad habit of peeing AND pooping on furniture....but having moved into a new home with a new baby proved to be too much for her and nothing was working.  Sorry....but I can't afford to be constantly replacing my reeking, utterly destroyed furniture and I did not want my toddler and my infant to be subjected to a filthy, feces and urine fouled house!  It was sad but kitty had to go.

My husband and I had to get rid of a cat for the same reasons. He went to live on a farm, where I hear he kills mice like crazy, and lives in the barn. No matter what we did he could not be socialized and would not stop peeing on the carpet. We were very lucky to find a place for him, because no one wants a mean cat that can't be litter box trained. If we hadn't known someone who needed a barn cat, he would have gone to the shelter, where he would have probably have been put down, as un-adoptable.

It's fine to be offended by someone's use of hyperbole, but that's what it is, hyperbole. I will often say I'm so mad I'm could kick babies/puppies. I in fact, have no desire to hurt anyone's babies and or puppies, it's just exaggeration.

TootsNYC

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #61 on: January 12, 2013, 11:30:13 AM »
except, you know what? I think that sort of hyperbole is rude.

it puts the listener in a very uncomfortable place.

That's why I like so much the point that you learn something about people who says those things, and one of those things you learn is that they haven't learned to NOT SAY those things.

It's like swearing. I don't think it's ever polite. I do it--but I won't ever tell you that I think I'm being polite when I do it. I might think I can get away with it, and I might not thing it's an amazingling phenomenally rude thing to do. But it's not polite.

AngelBarchild

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #62 on: January 12, 2013, 11:35:29 AM »
except, you know what? I think that sort of hyperbole is rude.

it puts the listener in a very uncomfortable place.

That's why I like so much the point that you learn something about people who says those things, and one of those things you learn is that they haven't learned to NOT SAY those things.

It's like swearing. I don't think it's ever polite. I do it--but I won't ever tell you that I think I'm being polite when I do it. I might think I can get away with it, and I might not thing it's an amazingling phenomenally rude thing to do. But it's not polite.

Oh no, I agree that sometimes hyperbole is rude. My comment was for the people upset because they took the comments seriously. It's definitely a know your audience sort of thing.

gen xer

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #63 on: January 12, 2013, 12:06:14 PM »
Some people take things VERY literally.....and since being polite requires that we are sensitive to them as well as the people who are not as offended by hyperbole...well it's back to "know your audience".

Still.....I have to say that those literal, easily offended types can get very tedious after a while with everyone walking on eggshells.

As far as pets are concerned....if you are a hardcore pet owner who will keep your animal at any cost...so be it.  That's your preogative....but be careful of judging those who maybe can't afford a pet's newly acquired bad habit.  It is also their prerogative to decide whether their situation warrants getting rid of an animal.  Some people will keep a biting dog no matter what.  Fine....as long as they are prepared to deal with the consequences.  If I owned a dog it would be put down the instant it bit someone ( I am not talking play-nipping ).  I wouldn't even take it to a shelter because I don't think I could live with myself  if some unsuspecting family adopted it and it hurt someone.

That is one of the myriad reasons I DON'T own a dog....because I have almost no tolerance for unpredictable or aggressive behaviour that could have catastrophic consequences.

gen xer

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #64 on: January 12, 2013, 12:09:24 PM »
except, you know what? I think that sort of hyperbole is rude.

it puts the listener in a very uncomfortable place.

That's why I like so much the point that you learn something about people who says those things, and one of those things you learn is that they haven't learned to NOT SAY those things.

It's like swearing. I don't think it's ever polite. I do it--but I won't ever tell you that I think I'm being polite when I do it. I might think I can get away with it, and I might not thing it's an amazingling phenomenally rude thing to do. But it's not polite.

I am a swearer too....a bad habit I am having a hard time breaking.  I should probably be put down  :P

TootsNYC

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #65 on: January 12, 2013, 12:41:02 PM »
except, you know what? I think that sort of hyperbole is rude.

it puts the listener in a very uncomfortable place.

That's why I like so much the point that you learn something about people who says those things, and one of those things you learn is that they haven't learned to NOT SAY those things.

It's like swearing. I don't think it's ever polite. I do it--but I won't ever tell you that I think I'm being polite when I do it. I might think I can get away with it, and I might not thing it's an amazingling phenomenally rude thing to do. But it's not polite.

I am a swearer too....a bad habit I am having a hard time breaking.  I should probably be put down  :P

LOL! (I get the joke)

And on another note--is it really "walking on eggshells" to refrain from saying, "I'd kick him into next week?"

I know that I think that's not a polite comment, I think it's inappropriate, but I don't take it literally (for one thing, time travel isn't a simple matter of velocity or force). So it's not a matter of "literal-minded" people. It's a matter of thinking that some animosity is not funny, and we don't want to be around it, even if you don't mean it.

And in the OP's situation (and in many of the rudest hyperbole situations), the threat *is* possible--and that makes it all the ruder.

perpetua

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #66 on: January 12, 2013, 04:38:07 PM »
  I would assume 99.99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999% of people who say they'd "throw" or "kick" or "kill" a cat are really not actually psychopaths, they are simple people who utilize colorful language to make a point - the point being not violent or mean, but simply "I'd do something radical and strong".  Heck I joke at least 4 times a week to my DH that we shouldn't feed the cat today because its too fat and she ate yesterday.  Geez I don't actually mean we should not feed the fatso, I'm just joking around, and if anyone took me seriously they wouldn't have to distance themselves from me, because I would already be distancing myself from them for not understanding how jokes work and having little patience in their 'jumps to nasty conclusions' mindsets.

Yeah, this. I regularly threaten to turn my cats into rugs if they don't stop doing whatever. Doesn't mean I'd *actually* do it.

bansidhe

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #67 on: January 12, 2013, 05:46:39 PM »
My question is this:  several times now, when talking about the situation with friends or relatives, people have said things like, "If that was my cat, she'd be out on her butt in a heartbeat!" or "I'd kick her <ruder word for butt> across the room and she'd never do it again!" or even, "Time to put that cat to sleep!"  These statements really bother me.  I'm not diminishing how annoying this behavior is, and I do know that sometimes, drastic measures have to be taken.  I'm definitely OK with people making serious suggestions about how to handle this difficult situation.  But people were saying this flippantly and callously when I was talking about the research I was doing or the animal behaviorist I was trying to contact, to improve the situation, and making it clear that we were trying less awful options first.  And they certainly know how I feel about my pets.

Folks, this is not generalized hyperbole on the order of "It makes me so mad I could kick puppies." These are nasty comments directed at the family pet of someone standing right in front of the person making the comment - and the people making these comments know full well how the OP feels about her cat.

If the OP had complained that her (hypothetical) kid had scrawled all over the wallpaper with crayons would it be harmless hyperbole for her friends to suggest that she beat him?

The "It's just hyperbole" argument doesn't wash in the OP's situation. I also completely don't buy the theory that people who say stuff like this wouldn't actually do what they're suggesting. Loads and loads of abandoned and abused cats, dogs, children, etc. testify to the opposite.
Esan ozenki!

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TurtleDove

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #68 on: January 12, 2013, 05:58:05 PM »
If the OP had complained that her (hypothetical) kid had scrawled all over the wallpaper with crayons would it be harmless hyperbole for her friends to suggest that she beat him?

Never in a million years would I take such a suggestion seriously, and certainly I would not waste energy getting upset about it. I would not personally say such a thing, but if someone in my presence said this about my child I would laugh it off and move on, perhaps make a sarcastic comment back like "I'd get covered in pink crayon if I tried!" knowing people in my life would know that by this statement I do not actually mean that the reason I would not beat my child is because I do not wish to be covered in pink crayon. 

In my opinion, based on what the OP posted, no one is actually seriously suggesting any violence or animosity in any realistic way toward her pets.

Hmmmmm

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #69 on: January 12, 2013, 06:11:12 PM »
If the OP had complained that her (hypothetical) kid had scrawled all over the wallpaper with crayons would it be harmless hyperbole for her friends to suggest that she beat him?

Never in a million years would I take such a suggestion seriously, and certainly I would not waste energy getting upset about it. I would not personally say such a thing, but if someone in my presence said this about my child I would laugh it off and move on, perhaps make a sarcastic comment back like "I'd get covered in pink crayon if I tried!" knowing people in my life would know that by this statement I do not actually mean that the reason I would not beat my child is because I do not wish to be covered in pink crayon. 

In my opinion, based on what the OP posted, no one is actually seriously suggesting any violence or animosity in any realistic way toward her pets.

I agree with TurtleDove.  It would not be surprising if a friend said a child would be scrubbing toilets with their toothbrush for the next 9 years for doing something really bad.  None of my friends used corporal punishment with our kids when they were little but I know I heard "I'd tan their hide if my kids did ...". None of us ever really thought that would occur or that they were endorsing corporal punishment.  It was more a sentiment of I understand how frustrated you are dealing with this. 

AngelBarchild

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #70 on: January 12, 2013, 07:21:07 PM »
My question is this:  several times now, when talking about the situation with friends or relatives, people have said things like, "If that was my cat, she'd be out on her butt in a heartbeat!" or "I'd kick her <ruder word for butt> across the room and she'd never do it again!" or even, "Time to put that cat to sleep!"  These statements really bother me.  I'm not diminishing how annoying this behavior is, and I do know that sometimes, drastic measures have to be taken.  I'm definitely OK with people making serious suggestions about how to handle this difficult situation.  But people were saying this flippantly and callously when I was talking about the research I was doing or the animal behaviorist I was trying to contact, to improve the situation, and making it clear that we were trying less awful options first.  And they certainly know how I feel about my pets.

Folks, this is not generalized hyperbole on the order of "It makes me so mad I could kick puppies." These are nasty comments directed at the family pet of someone standing right in front of the person making the comment - and the people making these comments know full well how the OP feels about her cat.

If the OP had complained that her (hypothetical) kid had scrawled all over the wallpaper with crayons would it be harmless hyperbole for her friends to suggest that she beat him?

The "It's just hyperbole" argument doesn't wash in the OP's situation. I also completely don't buy the theory that people who say stuff like this wouldn't actually do what they're suggesting. Loads and loads of abandoned and abused cats, dogs, children, etc. testify to the opposite.

You might be a little more careful making comments like this. I have said I was going to skin my cat and that I was going to throttle my child. The cat gave me an indignant look, and the kid did basically the same thing. Do not make accusations, that people who use humor/hyperbole you find offensive, are in fact child/animal abusers, Because there is no other way to take what you said, you were pretty direct. I am one of those "People who say stuff like this".

Your accusation is incredibly offensive.

bansidhe

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #71 on: January 12, 2013, 10:00:07 PM »
The "It's just hyperbole" argument doesn't wash in the OP's situation. I also completely don't buy the theory that people who say stuff like this wouldn't actually do what they're suggesting. Loads and loads of abandoned and abused cats, dogs, children, etc. testify to the opposite.

You might be a little more careful making comments like this. I have said I was going to skin my cat and that I was going to throttle my child. The cat gave me an indignant look, and the kid did basically the same thing. Do not make accusations, that people who use humor/hyperbole you find offensive, are in fact child/animal abusers, Because there is no other way to take what you said, you were pretty direct. I am one of those "People who say stuff like this".

Your accusation is incredibly offensive.

Your cat and your child. Have you ever made comments like that about someone else's cat or someone else's child in that person's presence? That's a huge difference to me in the level of hostility intended by the speaker.

And whether anyone wants to believe it or not, abuse and murder occur on a daily basis. Not everyone who acts like the people in the OP commit acts like that, obviously, but I think much less of them regardless and people who make comments like that about my animals do not go unchallenged.
Esan ozenki!

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AngelBarchild

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #72 on: January 13, 2013, 04:49:09 AM »
The "It's just hyperbole" argument doesn't wash in the OP's situation. I also completely don't buy the theory that people who say stuff like this wouldn't actually do what they're suggesting. Loads and loads of abandoned and abused cats, dogs, children, etc. testify to the opposite.

You might be a little more careful making comments like this. I have said I was going to skin my cat and that I was going to throttle my child. The cat gave me an indignant look, and the kid did basically the same thing. Do not make accusations, that people who use humor/hyperbole you find offensive, are in fact child/animal abusers, Because there is no other way to take what you said, you were pretty direct. I am one of those "People who say stuff like this".

Your accusation is incredibly offensive.

Your cat and your child. Have you ever made comments like that about someone else's cat or someone else's child in that person's presence? That's a huge difference to me in the level of hostility intended by the speaker.

And whether anyone wants to believe it or not, abuse and murder occur on a daily basis. Not everyone who acts like the people in the OP commit acts like that, obviously, but I think much less of them regardless and people who make comments like that about my animals do not go unchallenged.

Yes I make those comments in front of my friends, and then the kids run screaming and laughing out of the room. The cat just gives me a look, my friends laugh. Like I said it's a know your audience situation. You flat out said "I also completely don't buy the theory that people who say stuff like this wouldn't actually do what they're suggesting." I make those jokes (to people who share my sense of humor) and you are flat out calling me a child/animal abuser.

That's one hell of an interesting assumption.

MariaE

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #73 on: January 13, 2013, 05:55:35 AM »
You're still making those comments about your kid and your cat. Some comments are perfectly acceptable for the owner/parent to make, and completely out of line for anybody else.

Besides, bansidhe didn't say that everybody who made such comments were serious - just that it couldn't be assumed that nobody were serious either.

I think you're seeing offence where none was intended. She in no way called you an abuser.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2013, 06:12:12 AM by MariaE »
 
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RingTailedLemur

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Re: Statements about my cat - rude?
« Reply #74 on: January 13, 2013, 06:09:16 AM »
MariaE put my thoughts into words better than I could.