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in my perfect world...

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I'm not generally known as a perfectionist for things outwardly visible like neatness... but as a human I do suffer from an idealism that sets me up for pain.

In my perfect world, people aren't mean to each other. People are able to afford one another space and consideration. People are willing to see one another's value.

What is the point of meaness, I just don't get it.

What is the point of defending oneself against mean acts? If I did, would I feel better or worse?

This issue puts me into shutdown for some reason. Something about it gets so under my skin I get hopeless.

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Finding, I hope you are okay. It's good that you have reached out.

I'm sorry you're hurting. Did someone hurt you? :( Does it help to talk more about it?

Maybe meanness happens because that person is hurting deep inside themselves and can't cope with their own issues? Maybe they repeat what they have learned in childhood by lashing out at others? There could be many reasons, I would think. I think we can try to understand, but it doesn't excuse the behaviors. It doesn't lessen the hurt brought on by such behaviors either. :(

I'm an idealist too and when I see someone being cruel to others, it does hurt. :( I end up feeling deflated and down sometimes. We can still do our part to create the change we want in the world (as Ghandi said) though sometimes it doesn't seem like enough. You're my friend. You are a very kind and wise person who gives her heart to others. ((hugs)) It makes a difference. You help spread kindness just by being you.

Would you feel better to defend yourself? Maybe you need no defending? I've been trying to learn that, but it's still hard. I would imagine everyone is different, though. Maybe it helps to assert yourself.

Can you go to the part that hurts and comfort her now?

I stand by you and support you.

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Something malign said in another thread struck me:

It would be something to work on, why you react with anger at yourself when confronted by things you "hate". Maybe that strong feeling that you're calling "hate" isn't just hate (because one would assume you wouldn't have any anger at yourself for other people being hateful.)

I must depend heavily on "rapport" with others. When it disappears, I guess I do too, which is very very painful.

I am trying to look at this, so maybe I can gain a different structure...

Thanks for your care, IJ :o

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I'm not sure how it works for you, finding, but it hurts me when others are in conflict. I feel hurt, though usually, and not angry. I always wish for everyone to be kind and caring with one another and I take it to heart when they aren't. If I'm in the middle of any disagreement, especially if I care for anyone involved, it is deeply painful. It becomes too much for me to bear at times. Don't know if any of that helps or possibly fits for you too.

I kinda suck at that

I kinda suck at it too.

Maybe it's part of being sensitive? There's a lot of beauty in sensitivity too. Unfortunately we also have to deal with the more difficult aspects of it as well. So how to take care of oneself when someone else is being cruel to us? A person in my life has some moments at times. I try to separate myself some from the words and know it's not really about me. Separating myself or creating some space from the other person's response has helped me cope with the meltdowns some. I also try to talk to myself a lot, tell myself I'm okay, this isn't about me, the other person is hurting inside and that's what this is about...It isn't perfect, but it does help a bit.

Maybe others can offer a different perspective. It's difficult to help sometimes when I do the same thing.

I'm sorry you hurt. :(

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I guess growing up it was ok to be helpful to the family, it was not ok to defend myself. Group dynamics.

Maybe I feel hopeless when the appropriate thing is to break off from a person, but how when you have to work together?

blah. The cognitive thinking part of this whole thing just spirals into a "no way out" kind of situation and I can't stop the invasion of it inside my head. Thinking and feeling are quite mixed up and nothing will stop.

Soooo feeling kinda mentally ill I guess

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That feeling does sound familiar. :(

Would it help to do something to free your mind? Perhaps a walk (weather permitting) or anything that might bring you comfort. Breathing? What thoughts would you offer a friend in a similar situation?

It's tough when you have to work with the person involved. Can you keep a safe enough distance or no?

(((hugs finding)))

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Physical, yes--- feels like suffocation. A heavy pressure on the chest

I'm imagining that my coworker feels something similiar, which she addresses by being aggressive (see, I can't just be me)


I breathe a space in this heavy pressure

I breathe a space in "to defend or not to defend"

I breathe a space in me v. you

I breathe a space in "no way out"

I breathe a space in waiting for things to change and get better

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  • 3 weeks later...


I am also really sensitive. I think that it would be good for you to learn how to be assertive and advocate for yourself. (I am trying to do this at work). Like when your co-worker is aggressive, what does she say? I read a book called, How to Work with People you Can't Stand. At first, it sounds like a book on how to tell others off, but it really goes psychologically into the different types of people, (the tank, the bomb-thrower) and how to handle each one. It focuses on understanding the person, which if you understand why the person is becoming aggressive and not look for what you are doing wrong (this is what I do), then with a lot of practice, you can deescalate the situation. I think that sometimes being mindful is the way, but I also think that being assertive helps you feel like you have power. I hope that helps. Take care!

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I'm still substituting rapport with being ok. I can soothe and appease the bully and eventually things will appear ok, but on the inside I am very much not ok. I just want out.

So, sorta back to the beginning, knowing I cannot have a perfect world, but not yet knowing how to be with myself around alpha *****es.

Still trying to own this as my energy and lean into it. :(

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"... not yet knowing how to be with myself ..."

Uh huh. Where does your other half go, and why?

As soon as you can get her to stay and breathe with you, you're fine.

Does that part have a voice at all? Can she be contacted when she is around, so that you can ask what she needs?

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Oh my goodness! I think I get something.

In my "shadow work" on this I have been getting stuck on B:

A. this person is really bugging me, so I must be like this person in some way that I can't see

B. how am I treating others like this person is treating me (bullying, narcissism)?

Stuck in what is wrong with me that I can't see? and getting no where and feeling worse and worse.

I think I now understand that B might be (ha!): how am I treating me like this person is treating me (in my perception)?

NOW I can get somewhere maybe


My persona self from work has been a narcissistic bully to me for sure... she's taken over! I mainly work. other parts of me barely get to utter a peep!

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This approach and "discovery" is very insightful and interesting to me, finding! But I wonder what's the step "C" - or is the step "B" itself supposed to remove the "bugging"?? :o

I'm sorry I don't have any contribution to this thread, but I wanted to tell you that I sympathize with you and that it's "instructive" for me, so to say.


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Um, it's your thread; you can say whatever you like. ;-)

Hopefully, I can echo your "Hurray!" without a lengthy introduction in which I ask permission. {I'll make it a postscript like this, instead.}

What I find particularly cool about this is the confirmation that quite often, everything depends on how we respond, rather than any change in external conditions. You were prepared in a way that allowed you to take the same-old world with equanimity instead of panic. And even if other people's situations are different, and even if their necessary preparations will be different, you've given us an example where such a change in perspective was enough to convert a problem into not-a-problem, which proves that it's possible.

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