What else could it mean?


One strategy that is easy to understand is “What else could it mean?”  Throughout your life, you’re going to get people who ignore your messages, don’t call you back, reject your invite to the dance or ignore you in the halls.  Automatically what comes to mind?  “Oh, he/she is mad at me.  What did I do?"

Often we jump to conclusions and make judgments without enough information.  For some reason, our brains tend to jump to negative conclusions.  But that doesn't mean that we can't take a minute to see if there is another reason for what just happened. 

With this strategy, you learn to think, “What else could it mean?” 

That person who didn’t answer you in the  hall?  Maybe he or she was late to class and that’s why they seemed to ignore you in the hall.  Maybe they were deep in thought and didn’t even see you. 

The point is, whether they reject you for a date or simply forget to return a call, you should open your mind to ALL the possible reasons, not just the negative ones.




Stories from teens who have used this strategy successfully

The question “What else could it mean?” is a question worth keeping in the back of one’s mind, especially in relationships.  Being a teenage girl, I know the questions and conflicts that occur in a girl’s mind when she is going through the dating stage.  Keeping the question “What else could it mean?” helped me immensely

Girls, there will be times when you are expecting a call from that certain boy and he may not call that day.  Of course one of the first things that comes into your head is “He doesn’t like me” or “He is mad at me.”  Before all thoughts run through you head, stop and ask yourself “What else could it mean?”  You need to think and really realize it could have nothing to do with you.  He could have gotten home late; he could have gotten caught up at work.  The possibilities could go on.  

Many situations may arise in your relationship but always keep “What else could it mean?” with you before you jump to conclusions.  Just think of this question the next time he doesn’t call, when he doesn’t show up to your soccer game, when he seems to not be feeling well and seems to be mad at you.  When he decides to go out with the guys instead of you, or even if he doesn’t say or show appreciation for something you have done for him, ask yourself, “What else it could mean?” before you get upset and jump to conclusions.  The best idea is to ask him and, of course, if it happens way too much…it’s time to talk it out and perhaps make some changes.

The same advice goes for you guys!

Senior - Mt. Hope High School 




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