Offending those we love…

I am cautious about what I post here.  For one, I am aware that it’s available to a wide variety of folks who are connected to me either directly or indirectly.  And, it’s mostly a personal blog, but could be read by my patients, my students, and my colleagues.  So, I am always thinking about my posts before I hit the “Publish” button.

I commented the other day (and the following day) on a post that I found on clotildajamcracker‘s blog – a self-professed “oddball fiction writer and suburban food forest gardener” who write children’s fiction, and blogs about living debt-free.  Recently, she posted a scathing criticism of the spending habits of her sister, Clementine, including a photo of said sister, who looks quite friendly.  And, then, the following day, another criticism of her grandmother, grandmothers in general, and her mother-in-law in particular.

Now, maybe this blogger is inventing all these people she criticizes so freely – maybe they aren’t really her family members.  After all, she does claim the title “fiction writer”.

One commenter on her site observed:  “I sure hope your sister doesn’t know about these posts.”

To which clotildajamcracker replied: “I’m sure she’s off somewhere talking smack about me. She isn’t such a nice person. Anyway, I think I told her that I blog about her.”

Really??  I’m fascinated, in a bit of a rubber-necking, looking for the train-wreck kind of way, by this apparently unabashed self-righteous public expression, which seems to revolve around the attitude that “I’m right, and everyone else is wrong, and here’s why I think so.”

It comes along with a fearlessly unfiltered, and seemingly unconcerned for the fall-out, attitude of telling it all as you see it.  No holds barred.

The question that clotildajamcracker asked at the end of her rant about grandparents was “…if anyone has raised kids that turned out happy and drug free, I would love to hear how you did it.”

My advice (having a relatively happy, and definitely drug-free 30+ year old daughter, and working on getting the 7yo and the 4yo to adulthood similarly well-adjusted): “Don’t bash on all your relatives all the time”.  In fact, don’t bash on anyone.  Don’t be judgmental.  Give folks the benefit of a doubt.

Shalom Bayit – Peace in the house.  Yes, it’s tough sometimes.  That’s the point.  We need to practice getting along with those we have to get along with, because they are inextricably attached to us through human ties, and then, having mastered the art of getting along, mostly peacefully, with those we are officially joined to, we may be able to extend that practice of good-will, and generosity of spirit, to those in our community, and then those outside our community, and finally, to include those who we had previously defined as The Enemy.

Then, we have really succeeded in living a Good Life.

At least, in my humble opinion…

2 thoughts on “Offending those we love…

  1. Your humble opinion sounds about right to me. In fact, realizing that I couldn't blog smack about my husband when we were going through a really tough time, might have saved my marriage. Although "Squirrel" figures heavily in my blog, he understands that my complaints fall more in the realm of good-natured teasing and I'm glad that's where they've remained.

    1. Janaki says:

      Thanks for the thoughts, and I'm enjoying discovering your blog!

      I think the husband (or partner) would be the most sensitive to write about.

      I'm often impressed with my friends who blog, so I know the partner in question, and the invariably positive tone that is maintained. In most blogs, spouses seem to be better than saints!

      But, of course, you don't want to unload on the world the common bumps and travails of staying married – it can be a bumpy ride!

      Anyway, thanks for stopping by.

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