There are many reasons kids might want to have a good comeback cued up and ready to go.
Perhaps your child is a funny kid, the class clown, and wants to defend that reputation with only the sharpest responses (which can’t always be prepared on the fly).
Or, perhaps your child is vulnerable in some way to the clever (or not-so-clever) comments concocted by other kids his age. Perhaps he looks different (ethnicity, ability, physical features, disability). Maybe he is smart, creative, hard-working, athletic, and well liked.
Comebacks for kids: Maybe he needs some confidence.
Regardless, it can help kids deal with whatever comments come their way to have some sort of canned response ready.
Bullying is more than just a few words….bullying is complex and challenging to handle in most cases. A snappy comeback isn’t going to take care of bullying, so I don’t want you to think that a good comeback is going to resolve a bullying situation.
A good comeback can help show a bully that your child is a confident person, and as such, that he aren’t the kind of person they want to spend their time harassing.
That your child isn’t a good target.
A good comeback can empower a kid, help him feel like he is doing something rather than just taking what he might consider to be abuse.
But in teaching a child about comebacks, and arming him with some, I think it also makes sense to teach him about what can happen when you really get a good zinger in there.
Your child could make his situation worse by dropping to the level of the bully. It might cause the bully to escalate his behavior, and encourage him to commit more or worse acts (becomes a competition).
Your child could actually hurt the other child’s feelings, and instead of slinking away in humiliation, the child could strike back to cover his own hurt (which won’t resolve the situation at all)
You risk teaching your child that the way to respond to people who are hurting them is to hurt them back.
Dealing with bullies (or people who make not-funny comments at your child’s expense) is a delicate balance, between helping your child get through their day and helping them understand how to behave in the world.
I think the list of comebacks below are the ones best used by kids against other kids who are happy to use their words (and your child) as a means for entertainment, where a good response could provide entertainment for all and earn your child some respect.
Ultimately, it will be up to him to decide in the moment whether a snappy comeback will do him good in the situation, or result in greater harm.
Clean Comebacks Anyone Can Use
- In order for you to insult me, I would have to first value your opinion.
- Is that the best you’ve got?
- Look who is talking.
- Hashtag blessed!
- Mirrors don’t lie….and lucky for you, they can’t laugh either.
- Where is your off button?
- Someone said you were funny…I don’t see it.
- I’ve been called worse by better.
- Amazing what showering can do for a person, you should try it.
- Well….I had help.
- I love the sound you make when you are quiet.
- Your boyfriend thinks so too.
- Don’t think,you might sprain your brain.
- I may not be perfect, but at least I am not you.
- Earth is full….go home.
- I’m not weird, I just fall outside of your narrow view of the world.
- In the land of the witless, you’d be the king.
- It is okay if you don’t like me. Not everyone has good taste.
- Your lips are moving, but all I hear is blah, blah, blah.
- I’m jealous of people who don’t know you.
- Your words, not mine.
- It scares me that you’ll be able to vote one day.
- I wasn’t insulting you. I was describing you.
- You say that like it is a bad thing.
- I try to be, it’s tough going these days.
- You should come with a warning label.
- Hey, there is worse, I could be you.
- It is impossible to underestimate you.
- Coming from you…I’m flattered.
- If you can’t be kind, be quiet.
- Zombies eat brains. Obviously, you’ll be safe.
- I didn’t realize that the world revolves around what you think.
- Whoever told you to be yourself gave you some pretty bad advice.
- Coming from someone who has a face not even a mother could love.
- Did you say something?
- Oh, I heard you, I just don’t care.
- I prefer a battle of wits, but you look unarmed.
- If you are cooler than me, does that make me hotter than you?
- I don’t know what makes you so stupid, but it really works.
- Nothing makes this room look better than when you leave it.
- I like the way you try so hard.
- I bet you were up all night trying to come up with that one.
- I could agree with you, but I don’t like being wrong.
- It’s funny how people know the least have the most to say.
- You know what….I like you.
- So I have been told.
- You’ll get there, eventually, if you work as hard as I do.
- Cool story, bro.
- Did your parents ever encourage you to run away from home?
- No need for insults, your face is enough.
- Have a nice day….somewhere else.
- I hope you fall down with your hands in your pockets.
- I found the attention you are looking for.
- I don’t remember asking you.
- Thanks, but no thanks.
- Hey, I found your nose. It was in my business.
- Sorry, what did you say? I don’t speak idiot.
- You know, being a good person doesn’t actually take that much effort. You should try it.
- Did I ask you?
- You have a right to your opinion, and I have the right to ignore it.
- I’d respond to that comment, but I doubt you’d understand me.
What’s your favorite comeback for kids to use? Let us know down in the comments if you’ve got one for us to add to the list!
Emily Anderson is a mother of three children, all under the age of 10. Located in the Pacific Northwest of the US, Emily is a mom and part-time blogger, jumping in front of the computer when the kids are sleeping. She started this blog in April of 2019 and is proud that the blog is now paying for itself. If you want to know about her journey as a blogger, check out out her personal digital journal or her post about failing her way to blogging success.