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The personal embarrassment that one feels on account of and for another (i.e. a friend, a family member or a complete stranger) who is making a fool of him or herself. A person experiencing secondhand embarrassment feels as if they are doing the embarrassing action themselves, effectively putting themselves in the other person's shoes.
Guy 1: Man, Sarah's presentation today was terrible. She forgot half of it and stumbled through the rest.
Guy 2: Oh I know. I had so much secondhand embarrassment for her. It was like watching a train wreck.
by Casey L. December 14, 2007
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2
When you feel so embarrassed for someone else's actions that you feel the embarrassment for yourself as well.
Stefanie is singing loudly in Portuguese! I feel second hand embarrassment... I can't be in the same room right now.
by arisames December 05, 2009
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