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pinkbowtiepumps
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:37 am

What does it mean when a friend puts his/herself down all the time? I mean like saying "my artwork is awful, I'm just scraping by, it's nothing exceptional..." Are they looking for compliments or do they really think that lowly of themselves? I know some people want praise, but what is the usual reason behind doing this?



Shayne
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:53 am

really, only she can answer this question. others can only speculate.

did she say that she thinks lowly of herself? she maybe be 'thinking realistically', but her expression is percieved by you as thinking lowly of herself.

some of the difference could be whether this attitude discourages her or encourages her to motivate to try to do better.


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Bluestocking
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 1:35 am

I've discovered it mostly to be "fishing for compliments". Sometimes I find a self-deprecating sense of humour to be funny and a good way of breaking the ice, since neurotypical people seem to want to be seen as having a healthy self esteem, but don't want to be seen as vain and arrogant, and that's their way of circumnavigating the "arrogant egomaniac" label. Least in my experience.



LeonKrahe
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 1:39 am

I can't really speak for her, but I've got the same attitude, I just plain have low self-esteem and am a perfectionist, so I truly end up feeling nothing I do is of an adequate quality. Compliments do nothing for me.



Brittany2907
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:13 am

Your friend may set high standards for themselves & because they may seem like unreasonable standards to others, it may seem like she's 'fishing for compliments'. But yes, I would think some people just say things like that to get attention/praise but I know for me that the former is true.


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CrinklyCrustacean
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:21 am

There is a line between confidence and arrogance and this is one way of avoiding the latter. For example, Whistler (a famous painter) was once praised and the conversation went like this:

admirer: "There are only two great painters: you and Velazquez"
Whistler: "Why drag Velasquez into it?"

That's vanity and arrogance. It's just not polite to say, "thanks very much, I know I've produced a masterpiece." Then again, there's also a line beween polite self-deprecation and downright personal disservice where people don't allow themselves to enjoy the praise they are given.



Manders
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Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:27 am

I do that sometimes, but with me it's really neither. Like when people compliment my artwork I usually respond with a thanks, but I'll tack on something like 'I'm kind of disappointed with the way it turned out', or something similar. I either don't know how to respond to the compliment, or I don't want to seem too proud by just saying 'thanks'.

But with a lot of people I know, it's all fishing for compliments. The people I know who are, in fact, really down on themselves don't flaunt their insecurity by making such comments.



Kenjitsuka
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Thu Apr 02, 2009 5:32 pm

Quote:
I've got the same attitude, I just plain have low self-esteem and am a perfectionist, so I truly end up feeling nothing I do is of an adequate quality. Compliments do nothing for me.

SO true!! !!



pinkbowtiepumps
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Sat Apr 04, 2009 1:36 am

Manders wrote:
But with a lot of people I know, it's all fishing for compliments. The people I know who are, in fact, really down on themselves don't flaunt their insecurity by making such comments.


Good point. This seems to be really true. Who would want to flaunt their insecurities anyway?



Dentu
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Sat Apr 04, 2009 2:11 am

I do it a lot because I've got a really bad self-image. I put on a good face about it, but I disappoint myself in just about everything I do. I hold myself to standards I'd consider obnoxious to hold anyone else to.



aspiedude
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Sat Apr 04, 2009 1:12 pm

I slice it both ways. Sometimes I act like an arrogant arsehole to make people laugh. Think Ron Burgandy in "Anchorman". :)



RoisinDubh
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Sat Apr 04, 2009 1:23 pm

I do this constantly, to the point where others sometimes find it annoying. I know some people who do it fishing for compliments, but in my case, I honestly DO have a low opinion of myself....deserved or not....and often make a joke of it. Like other jokes, though, I apparently take it too far. :(


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andyroyd
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Sun Apr 05, 2009 1:13 am

I am often self-deprecating but my goal is to "fish" for honest responses. I tend to assume that most people will try to say positive stuff regardless of it's validity to avoid hurting the recipient's feelings. My strategy (however ineffective it tends to be) is to make it "ok" to say something bad in order to get their true feelings since I have trouble evaluating my own accomplishments.



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