When someone complains about us, we often become hurt instead of thinking about how we have hurt others. We can take it personal, lash out, believe lies, get defensive before any understanding comes to the surface. Understanding builds relationships. If we want enriching, healthy relationships we make smart efforts to resolve differences, but of course this takes sacrifice, and effort. If superficial relationships are considered easier then allowances are given for bitterness, anger, and assumptions to substitute for justice.
True justice comes when everyone is open to understand one another, then negative cycles get broken, and we can see one another clearly. We all have families. We all go through disagreements with our siblings, parents, children, significant others, friends, and work associates in some degree or another. We find fault and are at fault, but no one wants to be told anything, though we can tell everyone else. It is easy to be mean and not accountable to it, lie, but not be called liar, tell others who they are, but not listen to them tell us who they are.
Would you rather be the hammer or the nail, as in the old Simon and Garfunkel song. It is neither the hammer or the nail, not the sinner, or the righteous, how about there is you and me, and we are similar, and whatever I am feeling, you are too. We all have a part to keep in the well-being of private and public life. Our culture is screaming for this in every way, every social moment asking for understanding, justice, equality, but are we even providing enough equality towards our friends and family to keep relationships thriving with opportunity and community?
I am at least 50 percent at fault all the time. Even more so, my husband and I have a saying, “100/100.” It means one hundred percent my fault, one hundred percent his. When we are not blaming one another, it makes it easy to love and be loved. We can express complaints, needs, concerns because we will both take 100/100 percent responsibility, which allows for compassion, empathy, understanding, and space to grow.
We all act up when we get hurt, betrayed, used, insulted. It’s not about finding a method to perfection, but a method to cooperate and contribute, to be secure enough to support others when they have doubt, fear, struggle, hide, avoid, yell. This is a conversation about how to value one another as cognitive human beings with emotions, opinions, needs, instead of harboring hostility. We are all right, and wrong. This is true in every scenario, and there are always ways to get through conflicts without pain and disaster.
Practically everyone thinks it’s fun, even rewarding to tell someone off when they’re mad, but that doesn’t get the job done. It doesn’t fix things. It is not “tough” to reject someone. I have a temper. I’m passionate about loyalty and communication. I can easily feel betrayed, disrespected, dismissed. It’s easy to shut down and blame everyone around for being an asshole, but the truth is, if my sole concern is to protect myself instead of offering understanding to others, then I am the asshole.
We can act like we enjoy being a jerk, but we know this is fake, that is when you get down to the bare bones of your insides. So, put a little love back in your heart, as Jackie Deshannon sang. Create potential, create and change your world by making it right. Make it right with the people that give to you, even with the people that don’t. Either way, Anne Frank noted, “How wonderful it is that we need not wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
2 thoughts on “Making it Right”
Kate, a thought-provoking study on the blame game and you and your husband’s solution is perfect – 100%100%! What a close and understanding relationship and one that avoids the acrimony and anger and hurt of blame. I applaud you. Your final quote in the post is incredible, such clarity and wisdom in a young woman: “How wonderful it is that we need not wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” Just as relevant 80 years later and then!
Thank you so much for your thoughtful response and connection.
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