Passing by a mother with two little girls I could not help but witness one little girl bumping into the other. She had lost her footing and suddenly there was a scream of discontent everyone within a range could hear. “You hurt me!” She began to cry, her face turned red, and became angry, looking for a way to lash out. Of course the first thing that happened is she turned to “mom”. Mom was busy looking at things on a shelf in the store so she did not witness what had happened. She only took the word of the one who was crying. It was met with, “Leave your sister alone. ” Mom had a scornful look on her face. I wanted to say something. After all, I was a witness. It was not intentional hurt, just an accident. I had to tell myself not to get involved. I’m sure “mom” would not have wanted to hear it from a stranger. (My thoughts on this changed later).
My point here is, sometimes we think someone hurt us with ill intention. Could it be that it was not meant to happen but just an accident or something that could not have been controlled? Some things are not within our control, like sudden illness or a difficult event that happens in our families. Other moments might be an emotional issue that is just misunderstood and then someone is left hurt, bruised, and upset. The little girls in the store had an advantage though. One screamed she was hurt. Often we don’t do that when it is an emotional issue or a time we might feel slighted or misunderstood. It happens to everyone. How could it not? We are all different people with different ways of seeing things. More often than not, the hurt one does not express how they feel, so nothing gets solved and there is no understanding. Even worse, they express how they feel and it is met with a hurtful reply or it it is ignored. Just like the mother in the store, often we don’t want to look at things or even take the time to make them better. The sad thing is that a little honest communication can go a long way.
Communication is so important because its the only way to solve an issue or to discover the intention behind what has occured. It also gives an opportunity for a healing event. It’s an opportunity for the one who hurt the other to say they are sorry. Sometimes we just don’t know because the intention was not to hurt anyone. A huge “I am sorry”, can heal so much. It’s very simple. Even if the intention was not to hurt anyone, someone still can be very hurt none the less. This all seems so elementary when I write it, but I see it over and over again. Hurt is hurt and should be addressed. In the same respect it is very disturbing to try to make things better but the other party or parties won’t give the opportunity. That is where forgiveness comes in handy.
When I think back about the two little girls, I wish I had said something. After all, I knew it was not intentional. My involvement might have been welcomed or not, but either way at least the one who had the accidental trip would have benefited from a little grace. I think it’s so simple. People don’t need to figure each other out. These are things we are supposed to learn in our grammar school days.
When you hurt someone say you are sorry.
Don’t assume the hurt was intentional.
Be open to communication.
Take responsibility for what happened no matter what the intention.
Don’t meet an honest expression of hurt with more hurt.
Be an ambassador for peace and do everything possible to pursue it with others.
Maybe you can come up with some of your own. For some reason when we become adults we get amnesia concerning how to act with one another. We might all be different but there is one thing that never changes; we are all human. These are issues that work the same with everyone.
Loving you from here
Dr Jenine Marie Howry