How to Respond to an Insult with Comebacks

Throughout life, you will encounter rude and even abusive people, they will say horrible things about people behind their backs and even to their faces. In some cases, this victim may be you. There are many articles out there that serve to help defend yourself, yet this article is a little different. In many of these incidences, people will attempt to comeback in a logical manner or strive to reply in the wittiest manner. This is not always possible, so I shall be highlighting a fallacious route intended to sidestep the impact of the insult by changing the context of the argument.


  1. Image titled Respond to an Insult with Comebacks Step 1
    Identify your insulter in terms of gender, status, age and so on. Also, identify the insult, what it seeks to achieve, its validity and truth, the originality, the significance and so on. Understanding how both these function will allow you to see how the person thought of the insult in the first place. Think of this verbal exchange as a boxing match, your opponent has thrown a big hook which has landed square as you were likely not prepared, you however, are not phased. Instead of throwing a big hook back because they will have their defences up, you are going to essentially kick them in the shins and watch them hop about like a fool.
  2. Image titled Respond to an Insult with Comebacks Step 2
    Maintain composure. Take a deep breath, remember what they have said is just words, if it were in a different language you wouldn't even be able to understand them! People feed off your responses, they want to see you get angry or upset - don't give them the satisfaction, no matter how horrible the insult. By maintaining your composure, you will signify at least equal or greater status than the person who insulted you.
  3. Image titled Respond to an Insult with Comebacks Step 3
    Prepare a fallacious comeback. This requires an analysis of your surroundings, the people, the context of the insult and so forth. Once this has been analysed, use it to moderate your fallacious comeback. Don't reply with something people may deem 'inappropriate' or 'offensive', this will just further harm yourself. A majority of arguments can be won by simply controlling the audience, remember this. Your comeback should exploit this opportunity to win support.
  4. Image titled Respond to an Insult with Comebacks Step 4
    Develop comeback itself. You should aim for something non-orthodox, off the cuff and unrelated. Such a response will disrupt your opposition's thought pattern and leave them confused, whilst you appeal to the audience for support. Note, you are not technically winning the argument but manipulating the environment to make your opposition seem silly. Consider the following examples.
    • "Yeah, let's have another one mate" - but say it with a grin or a chuckle. The opposition is forced into either, calling you out for not technically replying, or, responding with another insult that is different. If they call you out for not replying, you can respond by drawing attention to how they are unable to think of anything else. If they respond with another insult, depending on the quality, you can appeal to your audience by laughing loudly and then saying with a grin, "That’s funny, I’m going to laugh like this" and immediately stop laughing and look emotionless at them. Your audiences will likely laugh at your reaction, making your opposition’s insult look less funny than your response.
    • If the person is of the opposite gender and the context is agreeable, you can accuse them of being attracted to you - "If you fancy me, just say". Such a response will again, likely cause laughter amongst the audience and force the opposition to either abandon their original insult to deal with your accusation, or, point out that you haven't actually responded to their insult. In either case, maintain the grin and say with a hint of sarcasm "alright don't cry about it". And walk away. If they respond again, turn around and say in a slightly frustrated and confused manner, "I don't understand why you keep trying to talk to me?! I don't fancy you". Again, you should be able to feed off the audience and exist whilst the other person looks a fool.
    • Another suggestion would be to say, "have you got anymore boring, its just I'm going to sleep here". Again, the opposition will likely not be expecting such a response. If they provide another insult, respond by using one of the previous examples.
  5. Image titled Respond to an Insult with Comebacks Step 5
    Take the win - this is important. You now have the upper hand, the opposition is frantically trying to deal with your non-orthodox insult, and when they respond, get ready to crush them:
    • A slightly sarcastic but more confused, "Nice comeback" and begin talking to someone else to signify the end of the argument with you as the victor.
    • Stare at them for a second or two and say, "Do you always kill jokes?" The loaded nature of the question should slip by as the opposition struggles for a response.
    • If appropriate, respond by looking perplexed and say bluntly, "True", followed by a perplexed laugh to signify you have no idea what your opposition is on about.


  • This is not an all encompassing or definitive guide to beating people in an argument. This is a guide dedicated to fallaciously winning arguments by deviating the context.
  • Create and prepare your own comebacks similar to the ones in this example beforehand, it is always nice to be prepared and not have to rely on the same comebacks. The more unique the comeback, the more your audience will react. The funnier the better.
  • Such a strategy will not win every argument (it is purposefully fallacious!). If you tangle with someone who is able to spot this, chances are you will have to change style.
  • Appealing to your audience is fundamental; it's all about momentum. The audience, your friends and so on are the people you need to appear as though you are winning to. If they support you, the opposition will feel undermined.
  • Don't be afraid to improvise or even abandon this method, chances are someone will call you out on this style of arguing


  • Recognise this style of arguing, if someone is using it against you, fight fire with fire or openly call them out and expose them to the audience. Say, "are you purposely going to keep changing the subject of this argument because you can't think of a proper insult?"
  • Be careful. People do not like to lose argument or be humiliated, they could respond in an aggressive manner.

Article Info

Categories: Managing Arguments