“I love people,” A, my cousin, joked as some guy cut her off in traffic. I am listened to the blare of a car horn and I could just picture her blankly sipping her venti Starbucks, watching the driver of the other car work themselves into a frothy rage over her indifference.
“I do too,” I sighed, faking an elated tone. “But you know what’s better than people?”
“Rug burn?” She asked.
I gasped, “A, we talked about this. Rug burns are medicinal and cure the cold.”
“Don’t be dumb,” She sighed, “Rug burns don’t cure the cold- watery coffee does.”
I grunted. Then I thought about it. “I don’t remember what we were talking about.”
“K! And his attitude,” She offered.
“Says the Queen of attitude.”
“My attitude is… cute…” She scoffed. I could picture her turning up her nose.
“Yeah, you’re cute and I’m charming and that’s why no one fights with us ever,” I groaned.
She was quite for a moment then said, “Why can’t K and I have a common language of sarcasm? You understand me perfectly…. Plus he never thinks its funny.”
“Because we use our humor to make ourselves seem less vulnerable and sarcasm is just humors cheapest weapon,” I said honestly.
She was quiet for a while then said, “What’s the cure for vulnerable?”
This is something I need more advice on. My therapist once said that I use my humor to block people from taking my feelings seriously so I don’t have to take them seriously. I accept that as true about me. I kinda knew that, inherently. It feels good to make people laugh and it feels bad to have them pity you or even be sympathetic. I just switched one out for the other.
I have learned from being in a poly triad with L and E that sarcasm has a place and its not in an argument or serious discussion. Think about it this way. In a relationship each person has a list of needs and wants. And Venn-diagramming those is hard. Now add a third circle- a third person’s wants and needs. Not only does each person overlap in some way with two other people (be you friends or partners or whatever) but then there is a place where all three circles overlap.
All sarcasm does is try to hide what’s in your circle. And then needs don’t get communicated or met. Its hard for someone to understand that you want to spend more time with them when your response is “I don’t miss you at all.” Or trying to get your husband to see why going to a Friday game isn’t the best plan if your response is “Great! Now get a tickets for Sunday and Monday so we can make it a vacation.”
Sarcasm has everything you need for a good distraction tactic. Its like a conversation flash grenade- The flash lets you mask your own feelings and the other person is left blinking in confusion.
Also not everyone thinks its funny.
If you have advice on the bads of sarcasm please share with me. Me and A need resources !!