How do you respond when someone interrupts you in conversation?

@TheHorse (73581)
Walnut Creek, California
March 8, 2017 3:49pm CST
I was listening to sports talk radio this morning, of all things, when I noticed that one of the hosts was constantly interrupting his guest, a sports reporter who was being interviewed. It was as if the host was trying to assert his power by not letting the person being interviewed speak. I changed the station. In real life, one of my pet peeves is interrupting. I tend to speak quietly but clearly. If someone interrupts me, I notice it. It wasn't until I started teaching assertiveness in my Intro to Psychology class that I realized I was NON-assertive around interrupters. I used to let people talk over me and then try again. Now, I simply say, "Excuse me--I want to finish my point," or something similar, when I'm interrupted, and I usually get to finish my thought without offending anybody. How do you respond when someone interrupts you? Does it bother you as much as it does me?
34 people like this
38 responses
@MALUSE (44672)
• Uzbekistan
8 Mar 17
Yes, it does bother me and I also ask to be allowed to finish what I want to say. But I also interrupt. That's a bad habit, I know. But I get impatient when people talk too slowly and in a long-winded way and I already know half-way through a sentence how it will end. Unfortunately, I now live among a tribe in the south of Germany where most people talk in this way.
8 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
Do they talk slowly? Or do they tend to interrupt?
4 people like this
@MALUSE (44672)
• Uzbekistan
8 Mar 17
@TheHorse They talk slowly. That doesn't mean they're challenged in any way. On the contrary. This is a region where many world-famous inventions have been made. I've been living here for more than 40 years but I'll suffer until my last day when a local opens his or her mouth and talks in the regional dialect. Even well-educated people do that. It pulls off my shoes! I speak standard German. I can't speak anything else. But because of this, I'm sometimes considered arrogant.
4 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
@MALUSE I wonder if, as an American who doesn't speak German, I would pick up on the differences in speech across regions there. Here in California (as in New York, but with a different accent) people tend to talk fast. Up in Montana, where I spend part of my Summers, people speak more slowly.
2 people like this
@jaboUK (55201)
• United Kingdom
8 Mar 17
I think it's rude. One chap I know prefaces his interruptions with "Interrupting you..." as if that made it all right.
7 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Mar 17
I'd just lay my "Excuse me, I'd like to finish..." line on him.
3 people like this
@jaboUK (55201)
• United Kingdom
11 Mar 17
@TheHorse I'll do that next time.
2 people like this
@UncleJoe (11276)
• Virginia Beach, Virginia
12 Mar 17
@jaboUK then you should be allowed to preface by saying, "Punching you in the face" to express your opinion.
4 people like this
@Corbin5 (119556)
• United States
8 Mar 17
I change my behavior to change their behavior. If interrupted too many times, I stop speaking. The majority of the time they realize their interruptions are the reason for my silence and more often than not, I am asked to contribute what I want to say.
5 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
Some people I know talk so much they probably wouldn't notice if I went silent.
3 people like this
@Corbin5 (119556)
• United States
8 Mar 17
@TheHorse Well, going silent does allow others who talk too much to wear themselves out. A good thing.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
@Corbin5 Have you ever actually put the phone down, gone to get a glass of water, come back, and had the other person still be yakking away?
4 people like this
@DianneN (88053)
• United States
8 Mar 17
I don't like interrupting or being interrupted. I have a supply of phrases, similar to yours, that I use as well.
5 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
Do they do the trick without "hurting" others?
2 people like this
@DianneN (88053)
• United States
13 Mar 17
@TheHorse I hope so!
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
13 Mar 17
@DianneN I get a lot of practice with the ADHD kids I work with. But I try not to be "mean" about it.
2 people like this
@teamfreak16 (42042)
• Denver, Colorado
9 Mar 17
My girlfriend does this to me all the time, but so do others. I try twice and then give up.
3 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
You just let them ramble on? Sometimes I do that, but I then turn it into an experiement to see how long they'll blab on without seeking my thoughts.
1 person likes this
@teamfreak16 (42042)
• Denver, Colorado
10 Mar 17
@TheHorse - Pretty much. I just pretty much give up.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
@teamfreak16 At least you get to practice your listening skills.
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (120480)
• Boise, Idaho
8 Mar 17
This really bothers me. I see it on shows like MSNBC Live and such. Discussions. Many don't do this but some do. I can see getting excited about the subject matter but, it is a form of disrespect. That is how I feel when it happens to me. That they don't have enough respect for me to let me finish.
3 people like this
• United States
8 Mar 17
Political reporters are the worst to talk over people. I hate that.
3 people like this
@celticeagle (120480)
• Boise, Idaho
8 Mar 17
@ScribbledAdNauseum .....Me too.
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Mar 17
@celticeagle I change the channel or walk out of the room when that happens. Someone who doesn't want another to finish their thoughts isn't someone I want to listen to!
2 people like this
@Gillygirl (17602)
• Sutton, England
8 Mar 17
I don't like being interrupted either. I usually say I will listen when I have finished speaking.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
Does that tend to work?
1 person likes this
@Gillygirl (17602)
• Sutton, England
10 Mar 17
@TheHorse In a professional capacity it does. Especially when accompanied by one of my looks.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
5 Oct 17
@Gillygirl My "look" depends on the situation. The other night, I was just saying (to the chronic interrupter), "Excuse me, I think (other friend) was still speaking."
1 person likes this
@amadeo (75863)
• United States
8 Mar 17
I was never in this predicament .So I can not answer this.But if I was I will tell her or him to I am sure that you can see the line there.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
Alas, there are situations (like at work) where I can't tell someone to go to ****.
@amadeo (75863)
• United States
10 Mar 17
@TheHorse I know that you cannot.I understand
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
@amadeo But with my friends who just won't shut up or listen...
• New Delhi, India
9 Mar 17
I try to ignore at first but if necessary I ask the person to let me finish
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
20 Mar 17
I do that sometimes. But I'm more likely to say "excuse me, I'd like to finish" than I was a few years ago.
1 person likes this
• New Delhi, India
21 Mar 17
@TheHorse that's sober enough
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
5 Oct 17
@amitkokiladitya It actually works sometimes.
@FayeHazel (21431)
• United States
9 Mar 17
Yes totally! Usually what I have to say is well thought through and I too am quiet -- and normally I don't say anything when interrupted - or if it happens over and over and over and over as it tends to - then sometimes I snap. I like "Excuse me, I want to finish my point" a better way to handle it though. Thank you
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
5 Oct 17
I did it the other night on behalf of a friend who was constantly being interrupted by a chronic interrupter.
1 person likes this
@FayeHazel (21431)
• United States
5 Oct 17
@TheHorse You're an awesome friend.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
5 Oct 17
@FayeHazel Heh. I just had t do it. It was driving me nuts.
1 person likes this
• United States
8 Mar 17
Sometimes. I,just, try to be patient and look for an opening to talk. I guess I am too easy going.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Mar 17
That does sound pretty (too?) easy going? Would say anything if someone said "Mars is the first planet to appear in the evening sky and is the second planet from the sun" while pointing at Venus?
• United States
9 Mar 17
@TheHorse Well, that is different. I would have to,gently, interrupt and make my point. If the person wants to argue, I just walk away. You cannot argue with ignorance.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
20 Mar 17
@Montecristodog Sigh. Ive had to many times in my day. I think my friend that I taught about Orion and Scorpio (they're opposite each other in the night sky--one is a Winter constellation and the other a Summer constellation) still thinks they're right next to each other.
@LadyDuck (182572)
• Switzerland
9 Mar 17
Absolutely, it bothers me a lot and I find rude people who interrupt those who are talking. I do what you do, I say "excuse me, let me finish what I have started to say".
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
It seems like a very "neutral" and appropriate thing to say.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (182572)
• Switzerland
10 Mar 17
@TheHorse I think it is but it does not work all the time. My Mom is someone who interrupts all the time and once she starts to speak it's hard to be able to speak again.
@inertia4 (27775)
• United States
9 Mar 17
I usually get mad. Can't help it. I notice that on Fox news. My girlfriend watches that fake news channel all the time and they always cut the people off. Like they know it all and don't want to hear what the other person is saying.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
I wonder if Fox Fake News does it more than CBS and all of the other Fake News Stations.
1 person likes this
@inertia4 (27775)
• United States
10 Mar 17
@TheHorse Yes, Fox lies all the time. That is a fact. I like watching that Vice News on HBO now. They go deep into the stories.
@JudyEv (137073)
• Bunbury, Australia
9 Mar 17
I certainly have noticed news reporters continually interrupting those they're interviewing. Some of the old hands are quite good at dealing with this but others not so.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
It was interesting how Hillary handled one of (and probably more of) The Donald's interruptions during the Presidential Berates...I mean Debates. She just kept on talking as if he wasn't talking over her. I thought it was a good move.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (137073)
• Bunbury, Australia
11 Mar 17
@TheHorse Some of our pollies will say 'well, if you'd just let me finish' or similar.
• Prairieville, Louisiana
9 Mar 17
Cute grandkids at the table.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
Oh, those aren't my biological kids or grandkids. The boy is sort of my "pretend son." His mom came here from Eastern Europe and his dad is out of the picture. So I take him cycling, play soccer with him, etc. The little girl is a neighbor too. This is them coloring on my balcony a couple of years ago. Note how shes kind of being "the boss." That's what made me use the picture.
• Prairieville, Louisiana
9 Mar 17
Interrupting people is rude but I have done it myself.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
I try to catch myself if I'm tempted. My ADHD kid clients interrupt a lot.
@Kandae11 (40358)
9 Mar 17
I don't know if you are aware of this phrase "not cutting you" - In my side of the world, when someone is interrupting another person in the midst of dialogue - that is what they would say. I find it annoying because they are doing just that -- cutting in on your speech, why not simply say - excuse me..
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Mar 17
We say "cutting you off," as in a car.
1 person likes this
• United States
8 Mar 17
Oh, I hate the type that interrupt others! I am non-assertive myself. It's just the way I was taught. However, if I feel passionately enough, I will talk over the person trying to talk over me. I think it's rude and childish to interrupt people. To me it just shows you that the person interrupting doesn't liket he point you are trying to make. Doesn't want to hear your opinion, even.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
5 Oct 17
Some don't even care (about your point). They just want to keep on blabbing.
@Hatley (164469)
• Garden Grove, California
8 Mar 17
yes it reallydoes and I now say PLEASE let me finish
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
I'm glad you assert yourself.
@sharon6345 (142374)
• United States
8 Mar 17
I let them know that a conversation means we both listen and talk. If it does not stop I get up and walk away. I don't deal with that at all. It's something that will piss me off in a bad way.
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73581)
• Walnut Creek, California
8 Mar 17
Glad I'm not the only one who gets ticked off by interrupters.