The other day I made a mistake. in my estimation a fairly large mistake.No, not a huge mistake in the scope of my life. I didn't gamble my savings. I didn't cheat on my husband.I didn't commit a felony, gamble big and lose big.I am speaking in a more holistic sense. I made a big mistake in assessment, I exhibited poor judgement, and effectively I exhibited a bit of cruelty.
It was not that expressing myself was wrong, or that my intentions were less than kind. It was that I left myself see myself as righteous when I was, in fact, fueling partially on good intentions, and partially on my own unreconciled distaste for another. I let my judgement of someone's behavior deprioritize their emotions too greatly.
Which is to say, I let myself consider her hurt reasonable fallout and did not even consider if there was another, better way. Something I never would have done to someone I like, or even, really was mostly ambivalent about.
Which leads me to a final thought.
I do not believe that it is ever, ever okay to inform someone of your dislike of them unless it is the only way to get space and protect yourself.
I do believe it key to find ways to get distance, important to establish boundaries and incredibly necessary to remove yourself from harms way. I am not saying you should bed down with those you hate.
But I do not believe that communicating your active distaste towards another needs to be, generally, part of this process. I do not believe anyone gains anything by understanding they are personally disliked. I think it is hurtful, cruel experience for most people that hinders their ability to understand what they have done by making the distaste their chief experience. And I think expressing that dislike is a way of displacing the emotion instead of truly examining why that person gets to you as much as they do.
But still I circle around to a key question again: how do we reconcile the swirl of negative emotions? How do we process distaste in a healthy way? There must be value in such reactions and a way to acknowledge the emotion and engage in self reflection and personal protection without growing the aversion?
If I knew the answer, I would be a much much finer person.
But I will say this: be wary of the part of you that wants to give action to your antipathy..that wants to blame another ...well, for anything really, but certainly for the swirl of negative emotions they produce. Go inside. Tame that beast. Because it has an appetite, and the ego will feed it if it is allowed to grow endlessly.
*Vonnegut, Mother Night