Like all families with children, there will be fighting...not always the yelling, slamming doors kind of fighting but the other kind...the kind that strikes much deeper, the kind that sticks with you for ever. I'm talking about the little jabs that hit you where it really hurts, the phrases muttered under the breath and the times we ignore pleas for attention.
Okay, go back and re-read that last little bit, I'll make it easy and just copy it below:
...the kind that strikes much deeper, the kind that sticks with you for ever. I'm talking about the little jabs that hit you where it really hurts, the phrases muttered under the breath and the times we ignore pleas for attention.
Think back to your childhood, while all of us have many happy memories I would bet that just as many of us have memories of that kind of hurt. While we do forgive and move on, that little bit of pain will always be there--lingering. If that hurt was too frequent, we continue to live in fear of when it will happen again.
As a recovering doormat, I feel uniquely qualified to speak on this subject. My siblings were pretty great--I was significantly younger so by the time my memories really kick in they were in college. I said great, not perfect. There are memories of that hurt occuring a few times but not enough to make me skittish of them today. However siblings and immediate family aren't the only ones who inflict that hurt. Often times we find ourselves being treated this same way by friends and acquaintences. I was once at a conference where the speaker referred to this as the doormat syndrome. When we put out the welcome mat to our life and allow everyone (or anyone for that matter) to wipe their feet on us, we become the doormat. You know the person--the one who when you leave their presence you feel just a little worse about yourself, filled with a feeling of self-doubt and insecurity. There is absolutely nothing you can do for these people because odds are they are doormats themselves who have been "wiped" on for so long that they are simply a product of their own self-doubt and insecurities! Keep your doormat out but wash it off often--don't let their problems bog you down!!
So if there isn't a way to cure these folks, why mention it at all? What can you do? You can join me in recovery!! When there is a "wiper" in your life, distance yourself from them, be aware and don't let their negativity bog you down and more importantly, don't be a "wiper" yourself!!
The picture I always verbalize for my girls is a nice clean board, much like this.
When you take that little jab-hitting where it hurts, muttering under your breath or ignoring someone, you are driving a nail in their clean board.
Sure, you may apologize and remove the nail
but look at the board--there is a gaping hole where the nail was placed and no matter how many times you apologize for driving that nail, the hole never goes away. Sure they may forgive you but you have damaged their essence, the very core of their being.