The Power of Blame

Romans 2:1 You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.

Blame…It’s a very tricky thing. We all have done it, and probably continue to do it but the hardest question to ask oneself, is why am I blaming someone, or should I really be blaming myself?  We are not here at DEHR to cast blame, but we are here to shed light on things.

Now, how does blame correlate to Diversity, Equity, and Human Rights? The direction we take with issues that DEHR helps shed some light on are vast—and often there’s blame attached.

Ugh, I was late for work–we blame traffic,

I spilled my coffee, I blame the pot holes that are STILL there from last winter.

I blame [insert ethnic, sexual, gender, race, religion, etc] for [obscure incidence]

We (yes, the royal we) are ALL guilty at some point in our life, and our crazy hectic schedules to cast blame on others.

One of our favourite speakers that help shed light on these complex and tribulation ideas is Doctor Brene Brown. She studies people and has amazing research

Click here to watch her amazing little short



Now the real meaty stuff, how can I use this in MY CLASS to teach this messy idea. Well, you’re lucky. I have JUST that for you…

Below are two activities that require little to no set up or materials that can help you teach this stuff.

Activity 1: Click me to download a PDF

Activity 2: The Blame Game

The Blame Game



Adolescents often blame other people for their problems and assume that everyone is out to ruin their lives. Most have trouble accepting responsibility for their actions. They often believe that adults should be able to read their minds and have trouble asking for help. Blaming only leads to more conflicts. Statements including the words always and never, as well as statements like “Nobody understands” and “It is their entire fault,” are examples of blaming statements that prevent people from taking responsibility for their actions or seeking help when facing difficulty. In this activity, the students will play The Blame Game and become aware of the amount of blaming they do.


Small ball Basket or bowl

Copy of The Blame Game Statements (cut into slips and placed in the basket or bowl)



  1. Prior to the group meeting, place the slips with the blaming phrases in the bowl or
  2. Have the students sit in a circle or around a
  3. Begin the group with a discussion about blaming. Ask the students to give examples of how easy it is to blame other people for our mistakes.
  4. Talk about the statement “It’s not my fault!” Ask the students about the last time they said
  5. Pass the basket or bowl to each girl and instruct her to close her eyes and pick out one of the
  6. Have each girl read aloud the blaming statement she selected and instruct the group to discuss briefly how this statement can  beused to avoid responsibility and how it can result in relationship problems.
    1. After each girl has had a turn, give the instructions for The Blame Game:

    In this game, a small ball will passed around the circle. As soon as someone receives the ball, she has 10 seconds in which to use a blaming statement. If she repeats a statement that was previ- ously used in the game or takes longer than 10 seconds, she must take part in a “confessional,” in which she has to talk about one of the following: a time that blaming caused her difficulties, ways to prevent blaming, or problems that can result from blaming. When she’s finished, the game resumes by having her pass the ball to the next person.

    1. Continue until group time is



    ❀  What makes it difficult to accept responsibility for your actions?

    ❀  What feelings do people avoid when they constantly blame other

    people for their actions?

    ❀ How will you use what you have learned today in the future?

    The Blame Game Statements






    It’s not my fault!



    It’s your fault we got in trouble!



    She started it!


    If you listened to me, everything would be fine!



    He made me do it!



    Why did you make me do that?



    I can’t help it!



    You ruined EVERYTHING!



    It’s my mom’s fault that I am late!



    You NEVER listen to me!


    How come she got away with it last week?



    You are SO lazy!



    You don’t care about me!



    We lost the game because of her!



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