Must We Always Forgive?
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24-11-2012, 06:43 PM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
Hey, Chas.

I disagree with the idea that anyone is "just like that". No one is anything as a state of being. That notion flies in the face of mountains of research that spans many different disciplines. It's just not how human beings function, we're far more dynamic and complex than that. People can be in a given place at a given moment, but there is nothing that says that has to be permanent.

But like I said a long time ago, reconciliation is a process, not an act. If someone is unwilling at the moment to participate, there are people trained in intervention who can help work at that. If one round of reconciliation fails, if a given strategy fails, there are other rounds and other strategies. Maybe reconciliation won't occur before the parties involved expire, but it's always possible. But most importantly, there is nothing in the functioning of human beings that makes it impossible in some cases. There's a distinction that I'm trying to draw here and I'm not entirely sure that I've made it clear. It's impossible for me to run naked and unassisted across the Pacific ocean. It's physically impossible. No amount of time or energy or intention can make it happen. So if I abandon the attempt, that's a reasonable reaction. But there are no such limitations to reconciliation. There is nothing that can be observed that tells us "this cannot possibly happen so it's justified to abandon the attempt".

The only thing that truly makes reconciliation impossible is removing one's self from the process.

Hey, Anjele.

Firstly, thank you for sharing that. It was very personal and, I am sure, quite painful. I respect you and what you went through.

The relationship between you and your mother is a system. It's nested in a larger system that extends to include your sisters and other members of your family. That is nested in other systems and so on. Those who study human relations and human systems intervention know that the system is complex. The so-called unwilling person, in this case your mother, is a part of the system, not the source of the issue. There are content questions, "Who did what, when, how..." but they don't actually tell us much. What's more important are process questions, "Why did this happen." If we do a process intervention on the system you presented, we look at the entirety of your mother's lifespan development, your lifespan development, the influence of your sisters, your father, extended family, friends, socioeconomic questions, health questions, both physical and mental, attitudes, beliefs, why she thinks she's not in the wrong... the list is extensive. If we look at process, we might discover WHY your mother acted the way she did (and continues to) and from there, devise ways to address that directly. If we discover a way to work through all of the road blocks that have led to your estrangement, we might be able to get everyone back to the table and find solutions and ultimately, reconciliation.

But if we start with the premise "that's just the way she is" or "she'll never change" or even "she's the beginning and end of the problem" then we start from a pre-conceived notion of futility.

This does not necessarily mean (as I mentioned to Chas) that people could intervene and work through all of this before your mother passes away, but that the avenue is always there. The skill set required for such an intervention exists and has been used to great success because that avenue is always there, we just have to find it on the map first.

Again, this is different than tit for tat. I'm not saying move back in with her and let her abuse you further. If you needed to remove yourself and your family from that situation, then that's what you needed to do. Absolutely, get the hell out of the line of fire. The point is that your relationship with your mother has been damaged. It can be repaired. Won't be easy. You aren't guaranteed the win. But the attempt can always be made.

Hey, Rum.

Quote:It is very possible to forgive someone for their past behavior without
putting yourself back in the firing line again, To know that someone is
abusive means that they have a problem, forgiving them for the past in
no way means you should allow them to continue down the same route and
abuse again.

Well said.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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24-11-2012, 06:51 PM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
Ghost, I think you missed where I pointed out that she doesn't think she has ever done anything wrong to any of us, therefore she sees no reason to change.

It isn't "fixable". She doesn't think anything needs fixing.

I am her target of choice though not her only target...I removed myself from that and will not return. When I hear how she treats others I know that if I put myself back in that world, I will be swiftly placed back into favorite whipping boy status. I served my time.

See here they are, the bruises, some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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24-11-2012, 07:06 PM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
Hey, Anjele.

I didn't miss it. I mentioned it by name.

I don't think you should just go back to that situation as is either. But that's different than reconciliation.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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24-11-2012, 07:27 PM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
Whatever dude...there's no repairing it...that's what you are missing. She doesn't think anything is wrong with her behavior...therefore there is nothing that will ever be fixed. I know a lot of the things that led to her being the way she is and I can't forever pay for the fact that I "stole her youth" by being born. Some evil pre-gestation plot on my part. It's broken beyond repair...it just is. And yes, I can say with absolutely no doubt in my mind that it CANNOT, CANNOT on any level be repaired.

Ain't no Disney birds circling and chirping around in this scenario.

See here they are, the bruises, some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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24-11-2012, 09:35 PM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
(24-11-2012 06:43 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Chas.

I disagree with the idea that anyone is "just like that". No one is anything as a state of being. That notion flies in the face of mountains of research that spans many different disciplines. It's just not how human beings function, we're far more dynamic and complex than that. People can be in a given place at a given moment, but there is nothing that says that has to be permanent.

But like I said a long time ago, reconciliation is a process, not an act. If someone is unwilling at the moment to participate, there are people trained in intervention who can help work at that. If one round of reconciliation fails, if a given strategy fails, there are other rounds and other strategies. Maybe reconciliation won't occur before the parties involved expire, but it's always possible. But most importantly, there is nothing in the functioning of human beings that makes it impossible in some cases. There's a distinction that I'm trying to draw here and I'm not entirely sure that I've made it clear. It's impossible for me to run naked and unassisted across the Pacific ocean. It's physically impossible. No amount of time or energy or intention can make it happen. So if I abandon the attempt, that's a reasonable reaction. But there are no such limitations to reconciliation. There is nothing that can be observed that tells us "this cannot possibly happen so it's justified to abandon the attempt".

The only thing that truly makes reconciliation impossible is removing one's self from the process.

In practical terms, there are cases where there can be no reconciliation. Every one has to participate, there has to be time. It is not realistic to try to bring someone in power to the table if that person doesn't even see or admit the problem.

So while you may be right, you are not being realistic.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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24-11-2012, 11:20 PM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
Hey, Chas.

Well that's an interesting piece of dissonance.

You seem to think that I'm ignoring things like people not giving a fuck or people thinking it's not possible or people not possessing the requisite skills. I'm not. I'm not being 'unrealistic' I'm being factual. Human beings and human systems function in specific ways. I'm not letting people believe that an excuse is a fact. No one is something as a state of being. That's caricature, not reality.

I said straight up, the only thing that makes it impossible is if someone removes themselves from the process. So yeah, if Johnny Q doesn't want to participate, ain't nothing gonna happen. But intervention is always possible. Bringing him back to the table is always possible. I know that sometimes people don't want to bother with reconciliation. But that doesn't take away from that fact that there's nothing that makes it impossible.

There's a difference between failing to achieve reconciliation and not bothering to try because you assume that it's impossible. Do you get what I mean by that?

Hey, Anjele.

I'm not missing it. I just don't agree with your assessment because it doesn't compute. I've said it twice, I know she doesn't think anything is wrong. That doesn't take away from what I've said in any way.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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25-11-2012, 07:50 AM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
(24-11-2012 11:20 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Chas.

Well that's an interesting piece of dissonance.

You seem to think that I'm ignoring things like people not giving a fuck or people thinking it's not possible or people not possessing the requisite skills. I'm not. I'm not being 'unrealistic' I'm being factual. Human beings and human systems function in specific ways. I'm not letting people believe that an excuse is a fact. No one is something as a state of being. That's caricature, not reality.

I said straight up, the only thing that makes it impossible is if someone removes themselves from the process. So yeah, if Johnny Q doesn't want to participate, ain't nothing gonna happen. But intervention is always possible. Bringing him back to the table is always possible. I know that sometimes people don't want to bother with reconciliation. But that doesn't take away from that fact that there's nothing that makes it impossible.

There's a difference between failing to achieve reconciliation and not bothering to try because you assume that it's impossible. Do you get what I mean by that?

Yes, Matt, I get that. But I am saying that it is not always under one's control, not always practicable. I can't make the asshole V.P. of Engineering come to the table. I can go to the president of the company, but he may not see the problem or may not agree that anything is to be done or may see my value as less than the asshole's value.

My acceptance of this situation will bring me peace - reconciliation in this case really is not practically possible. I am not giving up, I am accepting the reality. I see no place for forgiveness in this situation.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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26-11-2012, 08:03 AM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
Hey, Chas.

Thing is, I work with PhDs who's job it is to intervene in precisely that sort of case. They're human systems/human relations specialists. They're hired by corporations all over the world to assess the situation and facilitate change. So I agree that you might not have the requisite skill set to initiate a reconciliation process with that asshole VP (while I believe he done you wrong, no one is an asshole as a state of being) there are others who do it all the time with great success. If your attempt fails, or your strategy fails, there are other strategies, other attempts and further resources. It's a process, not an act.

Anyhoo, we're talking in circles at this point. I'm saying that reconciliation is never guaranteed but always possible. You seem to get that argument but still insist that there are some cases where it's impossible. Why that is is beyond me, but I respect you and I'm not trying to bludgeon you, so we can leave it at that for now. You and I have a fine relationship, we just happen to disagree on this point. Out of concern, I invite you to embrace the possibility that the situation at work isn't as hopeless as you believe it to be.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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26-11-2012, 08:33 AM
RE: Must We Always Forgive?
(26-11-2012 08:03 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Chas.

Thing is, I work with PhDs who's job it is to intervene in precisely that sort of case. They're human systems/human relations specialists. They're hired by corporations all over the world to assess the situation and facilitate change. So I agree that you might not have the requisite skill set to initiate a reconciliation process with that asshole VP (while I believe he done you wrong, no one is an asshole as a state of being) there are others who do it all the time with great success. If your attempt fails, or your strategy fails, there are other strategies, other attempts and further resources. It's a process, not an act.

Anyhoo, we're talking in circles at this point. I'm saying that reconciliation is never guaranteed but always possible. You seem to get that argument but still insist that there are some cases where it's impossible. Why that is is beyond me, but I respect you and I'm not trying to bludgeon you, so we can leave it at that for now. You and I have a fine relationship, we just happen to disagree on this point. Out of concern, I invite you to embrace the possibility that the situation at work isn't as hopeless as you believe it to be.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
I think we're at the quibble level of possible-in-theory vs. possible-in-practice.

That situation was some years ago. I moved on.

Now I'm the V.P. of Engineering. I get to be the asshole. Big Grin

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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