Saturday, August 21, 2010


I've been on the receiving end of some interesting assumptions lately; in the one instance, when the person's assumption was politely challenged, they flipped directly over into rudeness and verbal attack.

Rudeness from strangers is shocking - it takes a moment to process the situation, when I've made a calm and reasonable comment, and received rudeness in reply. I found myself standing with my mind blank for a second or two - and then had a momentary flash of how fortunate I am, not to have to deal with this on a daily basis anymore.

My first husband was exceedingly rude, and during the time I lived with him, I slowly became accustomed to his attacks upon my personhood - they lost their shock value, and became the norm.

When I began to work my Al-Anon program, I began to stand up for myself against these attacks, calmly stating that I wasn't going to stay and listen, if he didn't speak to me without yelling, and without rudeness.

I have no control over how anyone else behaves, and there are going to be times in my life when I'm faced with this kind of thing. How do I respond? Do I meet anger with anger, rudeness with rudeness? What would that gain me? A momentary satisfaction, perhaps, but when I tried that tack with my ex, I always felt a distaste for my own choice, once the heat of the moment had passed.

The other assumption made, was by an Al-Anon friend, and when it was explained that this was happening, we had a really interesting and in-depth discussion about how we each do this in our lives - make these assumptions about how someone else is living, how that feels, or what it means.

I need to be extremely careful that I am not doing this to another person. I do not know what life is like, for anyone but myself. When I assume, I'm deciding that my way of looking at the world is the only viewpoint, and this limits my understanding, and my tolerance.

I pray to be open to all ways of looking at life, whether or not they'd work for me.

1 comment:

  1. I too am shocked momentarily by outright anger and rudeness. I never learned to scrap well, being an only child. But after I get my bearings, I do speak up and set my boundaries as to what I will tolerate and what I won't. I don't have to stick around and be abused. And I won't.