Bless Their Hearts
If you aren’t from the South, you may not understand this phrase. It’s a phrase that Southern women use for a variety of reasons. If someone is going through hardships, a good Southern woman will say “Bless their heart” as she shakes her head slowly. This is a sign that she truly feels bad for the person going through a hardship. “Bless their/your heart” can also be used as a way to insult someone in a passive aggressive manner. An example of this is “He’s as dumb as a box of rocks, bless his heart.” While this almost sounds as if they feel badly for the person, it’s not necessarily so. It can mean that but more likely than not it means “Damn! He’s stupid!” Which one sounds more polite to you?
So if someone says “bless your heart” to you, you might want to analyze the context of the conversation so you can determine whether to be offended or not. If you can’t figure it out, you probably were being insulted and didn’t recognize it. If this is the case, bless your heart!