Twice in the past couple of days, being on the receiving end of a hurtful remark, one passive-aggressive, one not...Either way, hurt is hurt. Amd how to respond?
First, to evaluate my own behavior, and try to ferret out those times when I have hurt others with my words, or might be tempted to.
Second, to consider whether to confront the person directly or let it pass.
I tend to let it pass, but occasionally I do respond and then sometimes suffer more hurtful consequences. But at least I stood up for myself in that instance.
Of course, everyone else has experienced the same thing and gone through the same decision-making process in deciding how to respond.
Often these hurtful words come out so fast that I am taken by surprise and I become tongue-tied. other times I think that responding with negativity to negativity accomplishes nothing.
One of my heroes is MLK, and he counseled nonviolence, and his philosophy made a deep impression on me. He knew nothing about the internet, of course, but how would he advise bloggers or Facebookers who are subjected to verbal abuse?
I raise these questions again because these incidents continue to present themselves. I am able to take care of myself, but what about others who may be much more vulnerable?
Then, there is the fact that we are subjected to a toxic media and political environment in which individuals are lied about and denigrated at the drop of a hat. How do we respond to that?