The right way of discussing sensitive topics - eAge Tutor

Spoken English

The right way of discussing sensitive topics


Hello, friends and fellow students! Do you know why I call you fellow students? It is because even I, like you, am in the process of learning English. English is a rich and diverse language and one continues to learn it every day. Whether it is through reading the newspaper, watching an English movie or even reading a pamphlet, we are exposed to this wonderful language in all sorts of ways. All you have to do,as a spoken English student, is to keep your eyes, ears and mind open and grasp all the knowledge you can!

Sensitive topics

We have been getting a lot of appreciation for our blogs, and we promise to continue helping you and grow along with you. As an online English-speaking course, our aim is to provide you the best-spoken English lessons and English speaking exercises.

In today’s blog, we shall see how you can broach sensitive topics.

Why is discussing sensitive topics the right way, important?

English is also called the Queen’s language. Spoken English is not just about using the right words in grammatically sound sentences; it is also about one’s manners and how you conduct yourself in various situations. Sensitive topics need to be approached with care and concern. Your choice of words should show that you understand the gravity of the situation and do not want to further burden or tense the other person.

Various ways to discuss a sensitive topic

Broaching a sensitive topic: When you wish to start a discussion regarding a sensitive topic, it is always important to either ask for the other person’s permission or to clarify that you need some of the other person’s time and attention.

Here are a few sample sentences on how you can start a discussion:

Can I ask you something?
Can you spare a few minutes? I need to talk to you about…
There is something you should know…
Is this is a good time to talk?

Closely pay attention to the sentences above. They are polite and set a very good precursor for starting a discussion.


Discussing a negative or sad topic: Many times, you need to deliver bad or negative news. How would you do that? Your choice of words should be careful; because you know whatever you are going to say, will be unpleasant. The key to start telling or discussing a negative topic is to first sensitize the person by saying the correct opening line.

There are numerous ways you can do that:

“I hate to say this, but I need to tell you…”
“I know this is very unpleasant for you, but you should know that…”
“I am sorry that you are hearing this from me…”

Do you get the point? Always make sure that the person is mentally prepared to hear something bad after you have said your opening line. This way, the sad news won’t take the person unaware.

Sad topic

Practice these sentences, and also write a few of your own, and you can improve your English successfully.

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- By Chander Madan

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