Sometimes, people are not up for the task to which they've committed themselves. That is, they have a problem handling a part of it, for whatever reason. Instead of admitting that, they respond by attempting to trivialize that part, even though it's a basic part of the task at hand (based on mutual/common knowledge).

Example #1:

Situation: Committing to picking up a mother and her newborn from the hospital but forgetting to bring the infant car seat.

Mutual/common knowledge: Child safety seat law (enforced for child safety).

Response: Attempting to trivialize the law itself and the mother's concerns instead of just retrieving the car seat (or sending someone to fetch it).

Example #2:

Situation: Bringing up "no nut products allowed" while discussing school snack rotation with other parents.

Mutual/common knowledge: 1. Known allergies to nuts. 2. Some kids share snacks whether they're allowed to or not.

Responses: From tuning out, frowning, scoffing...to theorizing that allergies are a myth (concocted by Big Pharma) versus just agreeing to buy or require nut-free snacks.


What is a word/phrase/idiom for being subjected to those type of responses during similar situations?

When I reminded her about the car seat, she just _____ me.

The parent who brought up the no-nut thing was _____ by some of the others.

Thanks for any suggestions.

  • 1
    Got it. Let me think on this one. I'm from the 80's too. Not "dissed"?
    – user22542
    Mar 23, 2019 at 22:58
  • 1
    I think the situation is clear, but what to call things naturally in the best way is not clear. You're trying to describe the (now) grandmother, how she is not understanding the situation well because she is strangely not that empathetic with the mother, and she is disregarding what the birth mom is saying because the gm doesn't know the new (at least 25 years old!) laws. Not an answer at all, but that situation is exasperating. I think 'can't handle everyday details well' is not what you are really looking after though. That would be ... um... dementia.
    – Mitch
    Mar 27, 2019 at 15:29
  • 1
    "My mother just rode roughshod over me." I don't have kids but my mother was exactly like yours. A real pain in the patootie [my word, I think] and blithely unaware of others' mental states.
    – Lambie
    Mar 28, 2019 at 16:44
  • 1
    Excellent redraft. The question is clear now.
    – Lawrence
    Mar 29, 2019 at 0:54
  • 1
    I had to put a lot of effort into reading this question. There is a lot of detail, and I am left wondering, “Is there a question?”. I suspect that the question can be improved, and will then get better answers (more so than the bounty). Mar 31, 2019 at 17:25

11 Answers 11


Thanks for offering some suggestion as to how you might want to use the word/phrase that you seek. Deriving the meaning from your detailed story and example sentence, I think your mother just "disregarded" you. I have also attached the freethesaurus.com link using the same word. It offers several other clever and nuanced suggestions.

There is one additional idiom that seems to fit your latest edits and examples. In every situation they seem to be "poo-pooing" your arguments/requests. It means to outright dismiss someone/something without any due consideration. This fits your examples now very well. Please consider it.

My mother just disregarded me.

When I reminded her about the car seat, she just "poo-pooed" me.

The parent who brought up the no-nut thing was "poo-pooed" by some of the others.




  • 1
    Have you checked the thesaurus link?
    – user22542
    Mar 24, 2019 at 8:36
  • I up-voted because I really like poo-pooed (I was going to suggest it but you’ve already done it) But I really don’t like “put you in your place” it doesn’t fit here- at all. If I put someone in their place I emphasize my position of authority, demean them, and call out their audacity at thinking they could do whatever it is they were suggesting.
    – Jim
    Mar 30, 2019 at 4:10
  • 1
    poo-poo and pooh-pooh both are great :) +1
    – Ubi.B
    Apr 1, 2019 at 16:55

My mother just blew me off.

My mother just blew off bringing the car seat.

You done been blown off.

The verb phrase blow off can take an object immediately after blow (especially for pronouns or names) or after off (for noun phrases denoting tasks like work). According to the Oxford English Dictionary (in "blow, v.1") it means both disregarding someone else and shirking a job or duty:

transitive. to blow off:

(a) (now U.S. slang) to rebuff, to reject the advances of (a person); to ignore, disregard, dismiss;

(b) U.S. slang, to shirk or evade (a job or duty), to stay away from (school or work) without permission or good reason.

If you're British, you may have recourse to blow out, with similar valences:

  1. transitive. Chiefly British.

To let (a person) down or shut (a person) out; to rebuff, reject the advances of (a person). Also: to fail to keep (an appointment), esp. deliberately, to jilt; to shirk. Cf. earlier to blow off at Additions.

Blow off especially pertains to your situation because your mother has both disregarded your concerns and has shirked the task at hand. Blow out might pertain more if she missed the appointment entirely, rather than neglecting some part of meeting you.

  • 1
    If you say that in England you will get some funny looks: the first is sexual, the second is about farting, the third just does not make any sense. And blow out is about punctures in tyres. Mar 31, 2019 at 17:28

The problem is I don't think there's an English word for exactly this, because you said your mother thought you were being 'fussy' about this. It certainly was not such strong opposition to suggest 'flak' which would be far too strong.

Flak is like military shells (figuratively). Saying you were 'dissed' doesn't sound too 80sish to me, just not quite right. That's more like she put you down over it (not what happened). I think the closest you can get to it is something a lot milder, like 'she gave me a little heat about it'. But I wouldn’t say 'heat' alone, just 'a little heat'. It needs to be a word or phrase that suggests you were worrying unnecessarily about something, in her opinion.

  • The mother was not being fussy. Fussy is what the mother implied about the daughter. OP wrote "your mother somehow implies that you are just being fussy." Mar 23, 2019 at 22:10
  • Correct. I edited the comment.
    – John
    Mar 23, 2019 at 22:12

Consider dismiss.

dismiss 2 Treat as unworthy of serious consideration. ‘When I campaigned for Police Community Support Officers in 2000, as the Mayoral candidate for London, the idea was dismissed by my opponents.’ - ODO

In the context of the examples you raise, dismiss tends to apply more naturally to the ideas rather than the people. Dismissing the person is a lot more offensive than dismissing the idea, though in the second example below, it could be read as a metonymic dismissal of the idea.

  • When I reminded her about the car seat, she just dismissed [it / the idea].
  • The parent who brought up the no-nut thing was dismissed by some of the others.

To dismiss an idea is to consider it so trivial that it doesn't bear further discussion. You can say that someone's attitude was dismissive, or even that they were dismissive. To complain that you were dismissed often implies that you were offended by the dismissal.

When using dismiss to mean the setting aside of something trivial, it's usually pretty clear that the one doing the dismissing considers the thing to be trivial. Whether it actually was or wasn't trivial relies on the context.


Guff[guhff] noun Informal.

1) empty or foolish talk; nonsense.

2) insolent talk.

Source: Dictionary.com


Grief noun

3) informal trouble or annoyance:

people were giving me grief for leaving ten minutes early

Source: Dictionary.com


The phrasing I would suggest would be:

When I reminded her about the car seat, she just gave me guff (grief).

The parent who brought up the no-nut thing was given grief (guff) by some of the others.

In my interpretation:

guff implies the person doesn’t know what they are talking about.

grief implies the person is affecting you.


Ignore, perhaps?

My mother just ignored me.

Or other phrases with similar meaning -

pay no attention

take no notice

brush aside (my) concerns


It's a bit like intimidation - you have a concern you think is legitimate, but they're trying to bully or browbeat you into submission.

Flout? ARCHAIC mock; scoff. "the women pointed and flouted at her"

I quite like 'dismissed my concerns', though it doesn't roll off the tongue. I think 'diss' derives from 'disrespect'


Your examples seem to involve a two-step process.
First, someone denies a fact, cannot admit a mistake, downplays the gravity of a situation. --> The direct object of such verbs are inanimate, things, concepts. I call this aspect the DISMISSAL.
Second, this behavior then psychologically affects someone, disrespects a person, annoys their close ones. --> The direct object of such verbs are animate, people, humans. I call this aspect the PSYCHOLOGY.

There are generally no single verbs to express complex, two-step semantics of this kind, i.e. having an attitude towards a thing + affecting a person at the same time. You are therefore unlikely to find one specific verb to express exactly and only the kind of concept you're describing.

Verbs for the former step (depending on the form of the dismissal):

She belittled, trivialized, dismissed, ignored, brushed aside, downplayed, denied my concerns.

Verbs for the second step (depending on what the psychological effects are):

She disrespected, scoffed at, pooh-poohed, made fun of, disparaged, gaslighted, annoyed, insulted, bothered, exasperated, vexed, deprecated me.

The best solution to express the situation you're describing might be to be explicit and pick two verbs, one to explain what had happened, the other to expresses the psychological consequences.

For example:

(1) When I reminded her about the car seat, she just [DISMISSAL trivialized my concerns], which [PSYCHOLOGY pissed me off].
(2) When I reminded her about the car seat, she just [PSYCHOLOGY annoyed me so much] with [DISMISSAL her inability to admit mistakes].

(3) The no-nut issue was [DISMISSAL just completely dismissed] by some parents and [PSYCHOLOGY that's just so frustrating and indecent].
(4) The parent who brought up the no-nut thing was [PSYCHOLOGY totally disrespected] by some of the others when [DISMISSAL they came up with these idiotic conspiracy theories].

This question is as much about inter-personal conflicts and anger-management as it is about English linguistics. So I'd go for an explicit expression that is a bit longer but really says what you want to say over a vague expression that may be shorter but could communicate ideas imprecisely or ineffectively.


An idiom which works quite well (especially in the first example sentence) is turn a deaf ear (to someone or something).

When I reminded her about the car seat, she just turned a deaf ear to me.

The parent who brought up the no-nut thing was turned a deaf ear to by some of the others.


turn a deaf ear (to someone or something)
To ignore or refuse to listen to someone or something; to fail to pay attention to something someone says.
The government has been turning a deaf ear to the pleas of its most vulnerable citizens.
I'll never forgive myself for turning a deaf ear when my roommate was clearly crying out for help.

© 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.


There seem to be at least two aspects to this:

Action and Reaction - on the parts of each of the two parties in the conversation.

The first party outlines the perceived problem.

The second party listens and disagrees.

The second party responds - either defensively or offensively.

If the response is defensive, the speaker's goal is to deflect negative attention and exonerate themselves from blame and the first party would be focused on the second party's behaviour.

In this case, the following would work:

Passing the buck
When I brought it up, she just bucked me.

Synonyms include:

Duck [the issue], dodge [the issue]

Other options, depending on context, age, etc., include:

(S)He dimissed me.

(S)He went into this disgussion, which left me ...

(S)He totally squanched the issue

If the response is offensive, then the intention is to insult or cause psychological harm. In this case, the first party would be focused on their own state and the following could work:

Depending on the context, age, etc., if left speechless, they could say:

(S)He burned me. (Def. 5)

if affronted:

(S)He dissed [on] me. (Def. 5)

If there's a gender bias thing going on:

He became totally dicksmissive.

She became totally titsmissive.


If a person can't handle a particular task, they can be labeled unreliable.

If an unreliable person gets argumentative when challenged, you can describe them as quarrellous, stubborn, headstrong, or any associated synonym

Someone who will argue a losing position or who always has to be right could be pejoratively labeled a know-it-all.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.