© 2009, 2016 by Raymond Alexander Kukkee
Should Disrespect be allowed to destroy relationships?
Disrespect. It is one of the most difficult but common problems experienced in human relationships today. A social issue that can be the source of much aggravation and unhappiness. Disrespect can destroy lives seemingly without intent.
Is there always intent when individuals arbitrarily and repeatedly disrespect you? No. Perhaps long lost in childhood memories, disrespect may lurk testily in the back of the mind, or new and abrasive retorts are created and refreshed daily upon contact. Some individuals may be blissfully unaware they are being offensive and disrespectful. Others offer offense and disrespect with purpose and intent. Regardless of cause, issues or intent, disrespect is an unnecessary unkindness to any soul or individual person.
The world population consists of billions of individual human beings. With that unbelievable number of alternative choices available for friends, relationships, neighbours and associates, it seems unnecessary to suffer the discomfort and misery caused by allowing any one individual to habitually disrespect and destroy happiness. If someone unnecessarily criticizes your image as a person, is abusive, insulting, degrading your character, being and self-esteem, the relationship is unacceptable. Without remedial action taken, feeling of worthlessness and resentment may fester, and irrational anger may surface. Should one take revenge? No. Two wrongs do not make a right.
Common sense suggests any thinking human being should not allow themselves to be brutalized either physically or psychologically. The simple question one must ask is: Why socialize with or tolerate persons who insist, even thrive upon disrespecting others? Why accept unjustified and destructive behavior aimed squarely at your happiness, your inner person and even your reputation? Those questions are valid.
Clearly a logical, conscious decision is necessary. Should you then cut off contact with persons who repeatedly disrespect you? The best thing to do is analyze the facts, and make a logical decision.
Prior to going to the extreme of permanent alienation there is much to be considered. Alienation from another human being can last a long time, causing grief in the short term. That social choice may also negatively affect you for the duration of your life. In the future at some undetermined point, one may not even recall the root of the problem.
What is the source of disrespect?
Disrespect emanating from a specific individual may originate in many areas of their personal lives. Competitive, overly critical and thoughtless people invariably express unhappiness with others when it is their own personal lives at question. Substance and lifestyle should be scrutinized, questioned, and changed as required. Distress, anger, accusations and insults may be expressed as disrespect for others for inexplicable reasons; unrealized, undisclosed, long-forgotten, or even imaginary events,—may cause unimaginable and permanent damage to relationships if allowed to persist.
What is the Remedy for Disrespect?
Perhaps making an allowance for the old adage, walking a mile in someone’s shoes may be helpful. Consideration of the feelings of others. Consider that respect must be mutual. After any incident, an appropriate and necessary sabbatical should be allowed; time allowed for redress prior to condemning an offender to isolation forever. Thou shalt not judge may also be applicable. Professional help for the offender may be desirable.
Respect is Earned
Although genuine respect is earned, not commanded, individuals in relationships, families, or casual friendships may fail, or merely forget to include the importance and dignity of truth and mutual respect. Kindness and respect of others should be an inborn and natural characteristic of adult maturity, but is often lacking. Abrasive individuals often simply do not realize the extent of the damage made by their comments or offhand remarks they themselves may perceive as innocent —or even humorous.
Character differences and similarities, opinion, and ideas which define individuals as unique should ideally be taken into consideration at all times, —but are often placed outside of the realm of reason in relationships and forgotten. Truth may be ignored at one’s peril; in the extreme, lies may be unknowingly or arbitrarily chosen to poison the environment of relationships for undisclosed reasons.
Individual Responses are Unique
Individual human beings are unique specifically because they are products of their own specific environment, upbringing, surroundings, experiences in life, and desires, just as individuals may be alike and share some characteristics. Individual responses are unique. Just as occupational hazards are not limited to doing physical harm, psychological changes to the mind may occur with stress or influence of an occupation, an event, or even the droll and unique surroundings and stress one is personally subjected to on a daily basis, both inside and outside of the home and work environments.
Peer influence is common, particularly among teens, where the unexplored quantity and definition of self is often heavily influenced by the example of others, and a desire and willingness to be able to identify with others. Can that specific need and the constant stress it creates generate disrespect for others not considered to be equals or peers? The answer must be yes. Even with equal social status, financial pressure and social-economic worries and other factors may cause measurable stress, unsupported comparisons, negative thought and a reduction in logic and judgment.
If you suffer repeated disrespect, a personal decision must be made . Should you arbitrarily and generously choose to believe that outside factors such as peer pressure, and socio-economic influence justify extreme, negative behavior in others causing you personal grief? Should society, as a whole, willingly make an allowance for, and willingly tolerate the result of problematic and constant disrespect of others?
Perhaps in Utopia
Perhaps in a grand Utopian gesture, disrespect, insults and innuendo should be tolerated to some degree, but disharmony often grows out of control. When uncontrolled disrespect without justification, prompt, or reason is tolerated, a negative outcome is virtually guaranteed . Logic dictates that most human beings wish to live peacefully, retain their personal dignity, and live with truth and positive thoughts.
What may be overlooked is the clear evidence that in disrespecting any individual, regardless of relationship, race, age, gender, background, lifestyle, economic status or political affiliation, the offender often makes more negative statements about himself or herself than about the person being so attacked and disrespected.
Failure to Communicate
An unintentional failure to communicate love, understanding, and truth may create difficulties within relationships, but far worse, intentional and direct communication of destructive lies, innuendo, ridicule, or accusations, are based in disrespect and inevitably result in alienation. Alienation is almost guaranteed if only because it is completely illogical and foolish for any human being to willingly tolerate toxic behaviour by others. It is uncharacteristic and not natural for sentient beings to willingly accept such treatment.
Remedies are based upon Trust
In eternal hope, promise exists in the given that if peace can be made by the offering of apologies, amendments and acceptance , mutual respect, understanding, and the relationship itself can be rescued and improved.
With trust, most relationships can, in time, be corrected and rebuilt. Hope is eternal, as forgiveness is a basic tenet of both civility and Christianity. Until offenders can freely and willingly develop character and enough trust to admit wrongdoing, it seems reasonable, logical, and justified to cut off contact. Any person who repeatedly disrespects others—must develop people-handling skills and better judgment. Offenders may or may not be told why the relationship has failed, if doing so will only exacerbate animosity. All instances are unique and require tailored solutions. Time is of the essence.
With all choices made, as sentient beings, life lessons are offered —and eventually must be learned —by all.
Feel free to offer comments on YOUR solutions to disrespect in relationships…What do YOU do?
Is that Incoming I hear?
tags: #relationships, #disrespect, #Causes of failure of relationships #why disrespect, #low self-esteem, #communication, personalities, #society #civilization