The following is one definition of "I guess" on Urban Dictionary:

-apathy towards something or someone
Jack: So, are you pro-life or pro-choice? Because I really feel that when you analyze both sides of the issue... John: I guess.

I find the use of "I guess" in the example kind of strange. Is interrupting someone and saying "I guess" a common way to show that you are not interested in the topic?

  • 2
    The dots do not indicate an interruption. They indicate either (1) that Jack slowly stopped speaking or (2) that the rest of Jack's explanation is not relevant to the example. Who can tell with a crowd-sourced slang dictionary? Aug 17, 2021 at 10:18

1 Answer 1


It's not a common usage in my experience. At least not in isolation like shown in the quote.

As you've read, using "I guess" implies the speaker isn't very interested in the issue, but it generally does require a side to be picked. It just makes clear to the listener that the speaker doesn't feel confident in their response.


You say I guess to show that you are slightly uncertain or reluctant about what you are saying.
[mainly US, informal, vagueness]
I guess she thought that was pretty smart.
I guess he's right.
'I think you're being paranoid.'—'Yeah. I guess so.'

In the example provided in the OP's quote, I would still expect the respondent to pick a side, for example.

"Pro-Choice I guess"

The usage in the original quote is closer to a joke response, such as answering "Yes" to an either or question.

"Do you read fiction or non-fiction?"

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