When The Shrug Is Toxic

When The Shrug Is Toxic

Sometimes when bad things happen, people will shrug off a detail or part of the conflict. They can often be sorry for what happened but...

I didn't intend to hurt you, so I'm not upset

It sounds legit right? I mean if you didn't intend to hurt someone, then you're typically not responsible for what happened right? Except... Just because you didn't intend to hurt someone doesn't mean you should not feel upset that you hurt them.

Try this example:
If you elbow your wife in the face at night while you sleep should you not still be upset with yourself that you did? Yes you were asleep. It was unintentional. But that doesn't change the fact that you hurt her. Yes it's also true that you should not take full responsibility like you "did something wrong" emotionally. Because you didn't. It was not intentional.

But if you don't actually feel bad for them in a serious way. That's not a healthy emotional place to be. Why would you not feel bad, for hurting her? Even if it was unintentionally, you still hurt her.

What's it matter if it was unintentional?

Serious question. What's it matter? Does your intentionality or unintentionality take away their pain? Does it make it "all better"? Does it change anything for the other person who's in pain? No, not really. Not in the moment they are hurting. Sure it matters and helps later on down the road, after they have had time to heal and process. But in the moment, when the pain is throbbing what does it matter whether it was intentional or unintentional? The other person is in pain, they don't need explanations or details, they need love.

I myself am guilty of this. I have done this a number of times. But now I see the toxicity of it. The "me" focus of it. And I am working to change.

Just one of those things to think about...


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