How To Respond When Called Out On Your Privilege


[Ed. note: This is another guest post from Carli Trujillo.]

It’s something we all have, no matter our gender, race, or education level. We were all raised in our own environments, and those environments teach us perceived truths about the way the world works. Even if we spend years and countless tears attempting to unlearn stereotypes, bad attitudes, and incorrect information, we simply can’t escape the fact that we all have blind spots. We all fuck up sometimes and say something that we shouldn’t.

What matters the most is how you handle the consequences of your blind spots. If someone takes the time and emotional energy to call you out on something you said or did, whether it be a close friend or a stranger, why get defensive about it? Are they really attacking you, or are they simply pointing out the inappropriateness of what you said? Are they trying to hurt your feel-goods, or are they trying to heighten your awareness and, in turn, make the world a little less shitty? Aren’t they really doing you, and everyone around you, a huge favor?

Whether or not they do it in a public or private matter, whether they do it politely or crudely, etc. is up to them. Not you. All you can and should do is apologize for your mistake, maybe do a little research on what is hurtful about your comment, have a conversation about it with the person who called you out, and move on.

No one is perfect. All we can ever really do is try.


  1. I believe the term is “Constructive Criticism”? I was taught about that concept in school grade 8 I believe.

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