student asking question

What does "bless her heart" mean? When can I use this expression?


Native speaker’s answer


This is an expression that has a couple different meanings and has different connotations to it. This expression is more common in the southern part of the United States than it is anywhere else. "Bless her heart" is an expression that can show pity or sympathy towards someone. Ex: Bless his heart. He works so hard trying to make everyone happy. Ex: Oh, bless your heart. I know you want to help. It can also be used when you don't like something but you are trying to be polite. In this video, the store clerk is talking about how her cat brings her dead mice. She doesn't enjoy that her cat does this but is being polite, which is why she said "bless her heart." A: Did you hear that she got a tattoo of an elephant on her back? B: Oh, well bless her heart. I would never want that. Ex: My friend gave me this painting, bless her heart, but I don't like it at all. This phrase can also be used to insult someone. I don't recommend using it this way. Ex: Oh bless their hearts. They don't even know what a cellphone is. Ex: Bless his heart. He took his cousin to the prom because he couldn't get a date.

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