Real Talk #1:There’s only so much compassion you can have for someone who treats you like shit
I’ve been in lots of situations where the response from the people I moan to, or open up to to, has been along the lines of:
“Well think what they must have been through to end up like that.”
“Don’t get angry, have compassion because they clearly need it as they’re in a lot of emotional pain.”
“Don’t be annoyed, just send them love.”
“Have sympathy and show them some compassion, and maybe they’ll change.
Well. Fuck that.
Now, I’m a pretty sympathetic, empathetic and compassionate person.
But I’ve learned in the last couple of years that there’s only so far that can stretch.
I’m not about to make myself believe that I’m here to teach some higher sense of self.
Nor am I here to be a punching bag or a doormat to show someone the error of their ways.
And I am sure as hell sick of being preached to about loving kindness.
I tried the Loving Kindness meditation once which is supposedly all about forgiveness, compassion and sending loving compassion outwards. The guided exercise I did started with extending loving kindness to the person you least wanted to give it to.
I just ended up more irate at the person I was trying to send loving kindness to before I started. Instead of getting compassionate and washing everything away with love, I had a moment of quiet to really appreciate just how much of a prize bitch she was. And believe me when I tell you that I don’t say that lightly. (I think it’s fair enough to say that I don’t think practicing loving kindness was for me.)
Here’s the thing.
Everyone has gone through shit in their lives. It might be varying levels of shit – sure you might have a different resilience or sensitivity level which is perfectly okay – but we have all been through shit.
And that’s not to say you have to come out of it as some kind of flying dolphin shitting unicorn sprinkles out of your ass.
But you don’t have to come out of it as a complete bastard either and treat everyone you meet like shit.
Of course it would be great if therapy was available on tap, and I’m a great believer in the idea that everyone needs therapy for something.
But just because that’s not the case, should it mean that everyone can go around throwing their proverbial shit at each other.
And it certainly doesn’t mean you should take it.
Now there are times for speaking up and there are times when you’re voiceless and incapable of standing up for yourself. That’s okay, and believe me, a huge part of the battle is getting to be okay with yourself for not being able to stand up for yourself.
But whether you’re able to stand up for yourself or not doesn’t mean you have to have compassion for that person.
If you’re reading this, chances are you’re a gentle and loving soul and the idea of not having compassion makes you feel like an awful person. Well I’m here to tell you it doesn’t.
It makes you a human with needs, who deserves respect and someone who has boundaries and limits.
So fuck having to feel like you have to give your love, empathy or compassion for people who make you feel like shit.
As far as I’m concerned, it doesn’t serve you and wastes the precious time, energy and love of the wonderful person you are.
If you need to experience compassion for the person in order to find forgiveness that will help YOU move forward, that’s a different story (and I think ‘selfish’ forgiveness is perfectly okay), but just do it for you.
Don’t waste your time on people who make you feel like shit. Because they’re not giving your feelings, your time or your energy a SECOND’S thought.
You have so many experiences, memories and wonderful things to create with your life.
Focus on them instead.