Is it Rude To Say I Told You So?

We’ve all heard it at least a time or two, whether at work, school, home, or hanging out with friends… “I told you so”.

But, is it rude to say I told you so, even if you actually did tell someone so, and then said thing comes to pass?

Read on below and find out the full and in-depth answer!

Is it Rude to Say I Told You So?

If you are thinking about telling someone “I told you so”, just don’t, period. 

There is rarely a reason that warrants someone telling another person I told you so… unless it is a comical relief type of thing.

In other words, yes, saying I told you so is more often than not considered a highly rude thing to tell someone.

It’s not so much the words themself that is rude, in this case, however but is more so the intent behind it.

In plain English? If you feel the need to tell someone I told you so, really you are more worried about proving that you were “right” than anything else… which is absolutely rude and uncalled for in most cases.

How Rude Is it?


On the rude meter’s scale of 1 to 10, saying I told you so rates 8

The main reason that we didn’t rate this one a notch or two higher on the rude meter’s scale is that sometimes (just sometimes, mind you, and very rarely at that), the situation does indeed warrant an “I told you so”.

However, that being so, there is almost always a better way to word things than a hoity-toity sounding I told you so line.

Why is it Rude?

When you tell someone “I told you so”, what you are really saying to them is “I am right, and you are wrong… like I said, dummy”. 

Pretty condescending, wouldn’t you agree? 

If you and a friend are talking, and they warn you about spilling a cup of coffee, and you indeed do have a spill… how does it make you feel when they instantly spit out an I told you so?

It doesn’t feel good, right? Exactly, which is why you should avoid saying it as well if you don’t wanna seem rude.

Common Questions

How to politely say I told you so?

There are really no genuinely polite ways to say “I told you so” to someone. 

The truth of the matter is that telling someone I told you is pretty much rude any way you cut it. If you must, simply say something along the lines of “I tried to warn you”. 

Further, through a “so sorry” in there as well if you genuinely care about the person’s feelings.

Why do people like saying I told you so?

Truthfully? The typical type of people that enjoy saying things as I told you so simply like to be right as often as possible. 

Hence, when they are right, and you are wrong, they are most often the first (and only) person to bring it up… usually with an “I told you so” and a grin.

How to respond to “I told you so”?

In our humble opinion, a rueful smile is the best answer to an “I told you so”. 

That said if the I told you so is coming from a place of malice, ignoring it all together becomes the best way to respond. Another acceptable response may be flying the bird.