I use the compliment sandwich a lot when I am criticizing people – especially people I don’t know very well. If I know you fairly well or just know you aren’t a big cry baby, I’ll give it to straight. For those unfamiliar with the compliment sandwich, it’s when you tell someone something positive, then state your negative criticism, followed by another compliment.
*You are so brave to get up and sing in front of other people.
When you sing it sounds like whales raping each other.
You’re hair looks cute like that.*
Pretty simple, right? My children have yet to master this technique. Instead, they are using what I refer to the compliment open-face sandwich. Here is an example from each child.
First from Kamryn:
Mommy, you are really skinny.
No wait, I’m not done yet, your belly is kind of fat.
And then from Rory:
Mama, I like your shirt.
You have a baby in your belly? Me touch it?
Any questions about my “problem” areas on my body?
*Actual compliments and criticisms I have received.