Anonymous asked in Society & CultureEtiquette · 7 years ago

What does "bless your heart" really mean?

I've heard so many different things.. I just want to know what it really means when people say it....

13 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    “Bless your heart” can have several meanings in the South, and it’s not always a disguised way of saying “stupid”, although it can be. Examples of use of the phrase “bless your heart”.

    Examples as a gentle, socially polite putdown- “Bless your heart” can be said to someone who is just not catching on to something that’s very obvious to everyone else, like if everyone in the car is able to buckle their seat belts except cousin Brenda Sue who somehow is trying to hook her waist belt buckle to the car seat belt fastener, then someone would say “Why bless your heart, Brenda Sue, just let me show you how to fasten your seat belt”, but what everyone is really thinking but not saying is “Brenda Sue, you’re acting like you don’t have a brain in your head”, much kinder to say “Bless your heart, Brenda Sue”. OR Billy Joe’s teacher asks him in front of his mother how old he is and he says “I am 5 years old and he only holds up 3 fingers” and then his teacher gently, but with strong concern asks him one more time again how old he is and he says “I am 6 years old and he holds up 10 fingers”. At this point, Billy Joe’s teacher looks at both Billy Joe and his mother and says “Billy Joe, bless your heart and bless your mamma’s heart too”. But Billy Joe’s teacher is really thinking but not saying “Poor Billy Joe probably couldn’t find his way out of a small wood shed with directional arrows lit up and pointing to the open door”.

    Example as a sincere phrase of concern to a friend who’s having a rough day. Jackie Rattles just found out that her auto insurance has increased $5 a month. Down South, we’d say “Jackie, that’s a crying shame. God bless your heart”. Note, sometimes the word “God” is inserted to make the phrase “bless your heart” may sincere sounding.

    Example as a term of happiness and congratulations to someone who has achieved something great. Judy Rivers just found out that she finally achieved her weight loss goal and she can easily fit into her blue jeans, down South her friends would tell her “Bless your heart, that’s fantastic news!”

    In addition, “bless your heart” can be used in several different alternate ways. Down South, you might hear someone say “Bless your poor little old heart”, or “Bless your cotton picking heart”, or “God bless your sweet heart”.

    And that, Julie, is what “bless your heart” can mean in three examples. God bless.

    Source(s): My own personal experience.
  • 3 years ago

    Bless Your Heart

  • 3 years ago

    Define Blessed

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    This Site Might Help You.


    What does "bless your heart" really mean?

    I've heard so many different things.. I just want to know what it really means when people say it....

    Source(s): quot bless heart quot mean:
  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 4 years ago

    God Bless Your Little Heart means what it say's. from Georgia

  • 5 years ago

    It is a way of saying something really rude, cutting, and insulting to or about someone; you can get away with saying almost anything as long as you precede or follow it with 'bless his/her/your heart.'

    Similarly, 'I'll pray for you' is a way of saying that you think that the person is a hopeless idiot or a total jerk. If somebody asks you to do something you really, really don't want to do, you say, 'I'll pray about it.' as a more polite way of saying, 'No way!'

  • Lanell
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site

    My opinion: At the time that Jesus preached that in the Sermon on the mount series of sermons, "Blessed" meant "set aside for Heaven" It was also an idiomatic expression for "happy on your deathbed". The Catholic church recently admitted that "Blessed" meant set aside or set apart by God. To the Greek philosophers it meant "set aside for a good afterlife". I believe the Early Church quickly scrubbed that original meaning and even changed the original Greek meaning for it in the surviving Greek dictionaries (some dictionaries might indicate "archaic" . They (the early Paul following church) needed to do that in order to support Paul's interpretation of Jesus. Jesus gave us about 30 different ways of getting to Heaven. Paul gave us only one way;his way. But they could not scrub the philosophical and historical non religious books/scrolls written at the time. (My attic has a few books that quote those ancient writings that included the original meaning of the word "blessed', but I am too lazy to go up there. I have googled it but to no avail. Currently most Christian churches teach the meaning of "Blessed" means "happy" or "winning the lottery because God has favored you". Now for Meek. Meek is not weak, it originally meant gentle. Not just physically gentle but verbally and emotionally gentle. As Julius just indicated "humility" is an outward sign of meekness. I feel "Blessed are the meek" means that by being meek/gentle a person is "set aside for Heaven". I am a Sermon on the Mount Christian. I am suspicious of most other Bible verses. And the Holy Spirit visits me just fine. According to my religion anyone who cares about other people will be "set aside for Heaven". Why are people Meek? Why are people gentle? Why are people peaceful? ----- I suggest the reason is because they "care about other people"

  • 6 years ago

    As a Southern woman, we say that to vindicate us from all that horrid stuff we say about someone. Amongst other semi crude and less tactful things we could be saying. Otherwise, bless your little heart. Ha Ha

    Source(s): My Momma
    • pumpkin5 years agoReport

      As a Southerner, I have never known the term "Bless your heart" to be anything other than complimentary.

  • 7 years ago

    Outside of the South, "bless your heart" is not an insult, or at least that's been my experience. In the Northeast part of the U.S., the term is variously used to thank someone for an unexpected compliment or an unsolicited offer to help.

    • pumpkin5 years agoReport

      Southerners do not use "Bless your heart" in a derogatory manner. It is always said in love, compassion, caring, happiness.

      It's not an insult. And whoever told you that it is obviously is mistaken.

  • 4 years ago

    My grand aunt says this is a southern ladies way of giving you the middle finger. While smiling.

    Source(s): Aunt OZ from Louisiana
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.