How To Communicate With People Who Blame Others And Accept No Responsibility

Posted on July 1, 2017 by Nate Regier / 0 comments
Share via

The ability to communicate effectively with different people, especially during miscommunication and distress, is one of the most sought-after leadership skills. This article is part of a series on how to communicate with people in distress,

The problem

people who blame others sign

Some people in distress magically absolve themselves of all responsibility for their behavior and emotions. They blame everybody and everything for what happened, become blameless themselves, and resort to whining and complaining about how difficult and boring everything is. These people have excuses for everything. When things don’t go their way or someone tries to hold them accountable, they lash out vengefully as if it’s your fault they are in trouble.

The back story

Behind the scenes, people who blame others and are blameless need positive contact; lively and upbeat exchanges that include plenty of humor and movement. When they don’t get contact positively, they attempt to get it negatively by blaming. This invites others into power struggles around responsibility, thus delivering negative contact. Nobody wins when we spend all our time trying to corner and convince blamers that they are accountable.

These people are naturally spontaneous, creative, and playful, and hate the emotional discomfort associated with personal responsibility. So they blame, whine, and vengefully attack others to avoid it. Paradoxically, it only results in others trying to exert more control and box them in, which is the opposite of what they need to thrive. Eventually, they get sanctioned or fired.

One very important dynamic to know about blamers; they don’t care if they suffer, as long as others suffer as well. They are more than willing to take the people down with the ship. So threats, sanctions, and punishments are ineffective because if the blamer doesn’t care, then the punisher ends up doing all the suffering.

If this is you

  • Use your creativity and humor to solve the problems in front of you, not avoid them.
  • When the going gets tough or you are uncomfortable with something you’ve done, it’s OK to feel it, own it, and work through it. You’ll love it later!
  • It’s OK to vent, as long as it doesn’t turn into complaining and avoidance. Consider installing a “muffler” on your negative reactions.
  • Get your contact needs met by building in plenty of fun and movement into your life. Games, sports, or time with friends all help energize you to do the stuff that’s not so fun.

Communication tips

  • Keep it light with these people, even if you are discussing serious stuff. It’s OK to use slang or less formal language.
  • Movement is key. Whenever possible, move around, stand up, and use a game to get things done.
  • Avoid preaching expectations, values, morals, or ethics. These come across as judgmental and condescending.
  • Avoid emotional appeals. Keep it short and sweet.

This article is part three of a series on how to communicate with people in distress. Read all six articles to discover why people act the way they do in distress, and how you can communicate to make a positive difference.

Over controlling and critical

Crusades and pushes beliefs

Manipulates and creates negative drama

Blames others and accepts no responsibility

Withdraws and doesn’t respond

Makes silly mistakes and looses confidence

This series is based on our work using the Process Communication Model, a research-tested framework for understanding and communicating with different personality types, in and out of distress.

Copyright Next Element Consulting, 2024

Book Your Next Keynote Speaker

Dr. Nate Regier

Author and Co-founder of Next Element, Dr. Nate Regier is available to speak at your upcoming event.

Submit a Speaker Request

Podcast: Listen to Nate "On Compassion"

On Compassion with Dr. Nate Listen to the Podcast

Join Our Community

Want To Republish Our Posts?


Add comment

Your comment will be revised by the site if needed.