Archive for November 15th, 2010

November 15, 2010

Let cruelty end, and let it end first with me….

by Rod Smith

“It blows me away to see those who have strayed and used the ‘bad marriage’ moniker to rationalize their actions of divorce. What kind of moral callousness flows through another human being’s blood to actually want to put someone else through such tortuous pain? Granted, there are those marriages that deserve to go, those involving physical abuse and other demeaning actions that dehumanize the spouse, but for those who simply drifted apart and decided to leave for the guy/girl down the street without trying to get something back…I have no respect for you. Yours was a marriage meant to survive…you just gave up, demonized/devalued your spouse to the point where you could justify your actions, and put him/her through a living hell. It probably felt right at the time, but faith, understanding, and a little counseling could have saved a marriage.” (Edited)

It is counter-intuitive, I know......

Let it end with me...

Of course, reader, you are correct. Our first line of action is to salvage, to repair, and to find reconciliation. As your letter points out, sometimes this is not possible.

Like you, I am taken aback at the couples who now cannot tolerate breathing the same air as someone to whom they once swore undying love. Let all cruelty end – and let it end with me.

November 15, 2010

Emotional process….

by Rod Smith

Have you ever wondered why a gathering if supportive mothers, or the church committee you are on, or your annual family gathering can become so intense and complicated – and become a minefield of human conflict and emotion?

Every person is a unique, deep well of thought, feelings, conflicts, memories, ambitions, and motives. Many well-meaning persons, like the people on that team with you, have hidden scores to settle (sometimes even hidden from themselves).

When people get together, bringing equally unique, deep and complex issues together, things can begin to be intense. This is especially true when people “unite” for a cause.

It is these very complications, these undercurrents that can offer insight into the emotional processes of any group or community for the person looking to be helpful.

Developing an eye (an ear, a feel) for emotional process among people, and allowing what you see to help you grow and behave in an adult manner will help you negotiate the best possible outcome for everyone, especially when things become messy.

Listen for what is unsaid in groups, look for the push and the pull, listen to the “meetings before the meeting,” to identify something of the group’s emotional process.

Listening, watching, will help you garner useful keys to helping groups and individuals make wiser and more helpful choices than simply (only) reacting to the reactivity within self and others.