Recently I was attacked by a friend who had held onto a couple of things that I had said to her weeks, even months ago.
I had told her I had disagreed with her on two big issues, and I guess the need to “prove me wrong” festered inside of her until she found a video to support her point.
She sent me the video, which I watched and found to be interesting because it presented different information from what I had originally heard. I acknowledged it to her and said it was interesting.
Unfortunately, she sent me a blistering message which showed she had held onto her anger and was waiting for the opportunity to show me I was wrong.
She’s normally a very outspoken person, but like many people, these past couple of years has morphed into an angry person who feels “saying it like it is” excuses her from being hurtful.
“Telling it like it is” has become an excuse to vent and unload vitriol onto others
I don’t mind plain speaking or speaking from the heart. I do draw the line at speaking hurtfully to others or not being willing to consider their feelings.
“Telling it like it is” which has simply become venting, is simply an excuse for a person to have an emotional meltdown, or tantrum if you will, at the expense of others around them.
Unfortunately, like so many now who feel it is their right to “speak their mind”, this has become an excuse to tear into another person and feel they can and should be excused if the other person feels hurt or attacked.
By the way, for whoever needs to hear this, “Freedom of speech” does not equal freedom to hurt people!!
“You’re being too sensitive” was what I was told after I let that person know how I felt.
So, instead of apologizing for dumping every one of her angry thoughts onto me, I was corrected for not accepting having her anger dumped.
No apologies for hurting another person, just justification for why they felt it was necessary.
I’m sorry, but what kind of friendship or relationship contract is that?
Taking responsibility for our own feelings vs. dumping them onto other people
Emotionally mature people see that venting out on others just spreads the hurt and pain around, but doesn’t actually deal with the problem.
Taking responsibility for our own emotions is a hallmark of emotional maturity and is a goal for a healing journey.
When someone just vents out their anger onto someone else, it’s an indication of the unhealed hurt and pain they carry, which can manifest as extreme anger when they are triggered.
In my world, I treat others respectfully, and if I’m angry or upset, I find a way to explain myself so I own MY feelings and don’t make them the responsibility of others to deal with.
The lines of respect get erased
Relationships, whether very casual or not, if they’re built on a basis of respect, will not devolve into one person feeling justified in speaking disrespectfully to others.
Mature and healthy relationships are built on mutual respect.
When one person chooses to erase those lines, they’re expecting others to accept their disrespect as part of the relationship.
How do we know if a relationship is toxic?
You’re in a relationship that is toxic or has become so if they’re very hurtful and expect you to absorb it all.
In the past, I have taken great pains to try to get someone to “see” how their actions or words affected me, without much success!
You’ll get very frustrated if you try to change someone!
People will only change if they see there’s a need to, and even then it’s really difficult for them to make changes.
So do you need to just put up with it? What can you do?
When relationships become toxic we have 2 choices
“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”Maya Angelou
We can choose to remain in the relationship and continue to accept the unhealthiness someone has brought in, or we can choose to take a step back from the person if they just don’t see that anything is amiss.
I’ll always check in with that person to see what’s going on with them. Often they’re just overwhelmed and don’t know how to handle feeling “flooded”.
When they realize their emotions have come out so strongly that I’ve been affected, most of the time they’ll apologize for spilling their inner drama onto me.
Sometimes they don’t see anything wrong with how they handled things. They may say that’s just the way they are and I need to accept it, which shows we’ve reached the point of me needing to release my need to try to get them to change for my own comfort.
If I feel overwhelmed and overloaded with their negative behavior, I know I need to withdraw, either temporarily or permanently.
How do we know if we need to withdraw from a situation or person on a temporary basis or a permanent one?
When we’re discussing this with the person, it’s okay to say to them “I don’t accept this in my world. If you choose to continue I need to withdraw from you.”
This is setting “boundaries”, drawing the line in the sand where you don’t wish them to cross.
How they respond will show you what you need to do.
If they seem okay with you withdrawing from them then they’ve given you their answer! They don’t wish to change and just want you to take it all on board if you wish to continue your relationship with them!
Sometimes we need to cut our losses and just move on!
When we choose to move forward, leaving that person for the universe and God to work with, it’s important to take a mental break from replaying what happened over and over in our minds, for that’s really not leaving them to follow their own path.
There’s just no telling that the other person won’t decide to look inwards at themselves and do the inner work they need to manage their anger and heal from it.
Maybe they will, and maybe they won’t!
Either way, you have your own life to live and inner issues to deal with, so just get on with those!
Don’t get passive-aggressive with them and give them a copy of my Anger Journal! However, if you are struggling with anger, by all means, order yourself a copy!
(Get other journals too: Guided Anxiety Journal, Joy & Mindfulness Journal, My Boundaries Journal.)
So, in closing…
How I tick: I’m always open to learning more and am able to admit it if I am wrong.
If it’s a matter of opinion, of seeing things differently; I’m willing to discuss but I’m not going to try to force anyone to see things the way I do, for I understand that everyone has the right to think how they wish to.
Not everyone sees life this way. We’re seeing this play out on the world stage and in communities, where one side tries to force the other side to be like them, to think like them, and act like them.
This isn’t being respectful of other people’s right to be their own person, to be different.
We can all be completely different and yet respect each other’s differences without trying to change or bully people to adopt our points of view, acting as though our opinion was the only valid one.
In this wonderful world we live, multiple points of view can coexist and be valid. None of us have had or will have exactly the same life experiences, so our viewpoints will differ!
Let’s practice speaking kindly to each other and to ourselves!
I’m sharing more posts that may be helpful for you:
- 10 Steps to Owning Our Happiness
- Setting “Boundaries with consequences”
- Making a change… “How do I take that first step?”
- Affirmation: Today is a new day! I can do this!
- As we practice being gentle and kind with ourselves, we actually help to speed the process of helping our lives become more positive!
- Always believe that wonderful things can happen!
- A healthy outside starts from the inside!
- Brain Rewiring
More good stuff:
Please go to my Archived Posts page to find more wonderful posts to check out!
My book: Now available through Walmart.com!
Guided Journals help you work on a particular issue by answering questions to help see patterns and to find solutions:
Thanks for buying my books on Amazon!
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