The Guilt Trip

Do you know that woman that finds a way to passively aggressively guilt trip you when something doesn’t go her way? She can turn anything around so that even if the whole thing wasn’t about her, it becomes about her. Instead of just addressing an issue at face value, she keeps pushing and twisting so that she can become the victim.

I know her. I used to be her.

In my last few relationships before my marriage, if my significant other didn’t do something the way I wanted, I found a way to fight and make it about me. I used to be act like things were okay but then freeze him out. I used to guilt trip and guilt trip and guilt trip. I did it to my friends too. But I finally realized though that a good relationship is based on direct communication rather than trying to force someone to understand you without talking to them.

Recently, I’ve made some mistakes. Honest mistakes that I didn’t mean to make but since I’m human, they happened. I also owned up to them and apologized for them. Now the people on the receiving end decided that instead of just accepting my apology and understanding that it happens, that they needed to make subtle comments on the fact that I screwed up.

I know when I’m being guilt tripped because I start having these arguments with the people guilt tripping me in my head. I think about what I want to say to them, explain to them so they understand why my mistakes happened. I want to yell and scream at them until they understand why it’s not my fault and that obviously there is something wrong with them if they had to guilt trip me. And this conversation goes around in circles in my head.

I don’t want that to be the case. I don’t want to have these conversations in my head and I really don’t want to have them in real life. Is it really worth arguing with someone who guilt trips? They obviously think they are the victims of whatever happened.

I like what The Four Agreements says. “Don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you.” It’s true. My mistakes weren’t meant to cause anyone harm. They were true mistakes on my part. So I will go ahead and believe that these people need to guilt trip me because of something that they are going through. Maybe it’s insecurity, maybe it’s something in their past, or maybe it’s just the way they think.

All I know for sure is that I don’t want to go through life feeling like I have to guilt trip people to make myself feel better. I don’t want to be passive aggressive in my communication methods. I would rather resolve a problem directly and move on. As my husband once told me, “You can be lame or you can have fun.” I choose to have fun every time.

Passion or Validation?

Have you ever heard someone who talks about something they’re into and it is the most amazing thing they have ever experienced? And then they talk about something else and it’s just as amazing? Does it ever seem like some people are just really overly passionate about a few things?

I was wondering this the other day when I had heard a few people discussing different restaurants they had been to. Was it a real passion? If so, is it necessary to really emphasize what you feel or think about it?

I had always thought that if someone had a passion for something, it’d just show. You would notice by what they did or how they spoke about it. When people really get that over-excited about something, is it real or is it a show?

Maybe these people are really that enthusiastic about the things they talk about. Maybe passion about something just runs over and there’s no other words to describe it.

But maybe, sometimes, people are just a little too passionate because they want to sound like they really care about something. They want to validate that their opinions are important. Maybe if they sound passionate about something, other people will respect them more. It’s kind of like the whole idea of posting everything we think or do on a social media site just so we can count the likes and comments we receive.

When did we become so needy for others’ approval? Why do we have to be something we aren’t? Why can’t we just be satisfied in knowing we enjoy what we enjoy and not have to get validation for everything we do or say?