I Do Have An Opinion And I’m Allowed To Have One

by Sherry Riter in Change,Choice,Self-Development  

in my opinion

Yes, I have an opinion and you may not agree, but that is okay.

People change when they want to change and some people just don’t want to change. They may say they are accountable for their mistakes and are sorry, but they hang onto their lies, arrogance, hatred, habits or whatever their negative traits may be that wreak havoc in their relationships, job and dreams. Then they feel guilty and angry when their actions hurt people and they are held accountable. When their life doesn’t improve, they place blame on everyone else.

I will be the first to say that I am NOT perfect and I make mistakes ALL the time. We all do. I don’t say, “We all do,” to justify my mistakes. I said it because it is just a fact that no one is perfect. But expecting people to snap their fingers and get over pain caused by your hurtful actions is ludicrous. Just because you feel guilty or decide to start over, it doesn’t mean that I have to hide my pain and smile at you. Before you get all defensive, I’m saying “you” as a general statement and I’m not picking on anyone. 😛 Although I can think of a few people that will not like this post if they read it. LOL Anyway, these are just lessons of life that I have learned over the years, so I’m speaking from the “I” point of view.

My attitude about people, change and life goes something like this:

If you want my trust, be trustworthy.

If you lost my trust because you continuously lied to me, then you must make the effort to earn it back. If my trust isn’t worth your effort, that is your choice. My trust is a gift, but only for those that deserve to receive it.

I’m allowed to be angry at you for hurting me.

If you hurt my feelings, then you have to apologize, stop your hurtful actions and give me time to heal. There isn’t a time limit on how soon healing takes place. It is different for each person. Did you know that anger is often just a guise for hurt and pain? Here’s a question and a bit of food for thought…If you are going to keep doing the actions that cause me pain, how am I supposed to heal? Can you see the logic in this statement?

If you want a new start, stop playing in the old baggage, old relationships, old habits and old thoughts.

I watched “Sleeping With The Enemy” the other day and it always makes me think of people who stay in situations because they feel no hope for a better life. Everything from domestic abuse and alcoholism to drug addiction. Those things CAN be overcome and as long as you are living, there is an opportunity for you to lay down the baggage and change. The longer you hang onto all that old stuff, the more likely you are to lose the new stuff.

The driving force behind YOUR goals is YOU.

If you want to attain your goals, work hard and don’t expect other people to do your work. No one can attain your goals for you, but people can and are willing to assist you in fulfilling your dreams.

If you need help, ask for it.

Asking for help is not always easy especially if you are not a humble person, but you’ll never get help from anyone if you don’t ask them. People can’t read your mind. If someone asks you if they can help you, at least be humble enough to admit that you DO need their help. Needing the assistance of other people is NOT a bad thing. It’s called, “being human.”

Don’t have a double standard.

If you expect others to live a certain way and treat you a certain way or give you respect, you must also live and treat them the same way. So to be blunt…

  • If you lie, expect to be lied to.
  • If you cheat, expect to be cheated on.
  • If you scream and yell, expect to be screamed and yelled back at.
  • If you ignore, expect to be ignored.
  • If you are not loving in your actions, don’t expect loving actions to be coming your way.
  • If you use people, expect to be used.
  • If you give very little of yourself, expect to be given very little of others.
  • If you fake your feelings toward people, expect others to fake their feelings towards you.
  • If you are not interested in others, don’t expect them to be interested in you.
  • If you can’t keep confidences, don’t expect others to keep your confidences.
  • If you won’t help others, don’t expect them to help you.
  • If you don’t give comfort when needed, don’t expect to be comforted.
  • If you call people ugly names, expect to be called ugly names.
  • If you cuss at people continually, expect to be cussed at continually.
  • If you act guilty, expect people to doubt you.
  • If you are not understanding, don’t expect others to be understanding towards you.
  • If you are not tolerant, don’t expect others to be tolerant of you.

I could go on and on in the same vein, but I think it is clear what “double standard” actually means.

I will feel disappointed if you do not deliver on your promise.

If you make a promise, commit to an action, and then break it, I will feel disappointed. I will more than likely feel disappointed that the promise wasn’t kept, but also disappointed in you for breaking the promise. My disappointment is a natural human emotion. On top of being disappointed, I will also be hurt and angry that you didn’t keep your promise. Maybe other people don’t feel that way, but I do. A promise is your word and if I can’t believe your word, what kind of relationship can we build?

Uncontrollable anger ends communication.

In order to share ideas and thoughts with each other, anger accompanied by yelling and screaming simply can’t be a part of the scenario. When anger enters, rational thoughts and compromise ends. Communication is VITAL in ALL relationships and the only way to have good, healthy relations is to ensure that everyone gets to express their thoughts and feelings without being screamed at or demeaned. Uncontrollable anger focused on other people really shows that you have no control of yourself.

Men who physically abuse women are mean.

If a man thinks that using their physical strength against a woman shows that he is more of a man, he is very mistaken. The fact is that generally men are stronger than women. I can’t think of any man that is weaker than me especially since I’m just not a tough girl. So I lose respect fast when a man bullies a woman by throwing their strength around and/or threatening to hurt a woman just so that they can have their way. Think about it…a man that will tell a woman something as violent as, “I’m going to punch you in the face if you don’t shut up,” may someday make good on his threat. I’ve never had a man punch me in the face and it isn’t an experience I would like to feel.

Truth eventually is revealed.

Because the truth will come out one day or the other, it is better for everyone if you tell your own truth as soon as possible. A few years ago when I was in the throes of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) flashbacks, I feared that I was going to die. I knew that many, many people with severe PTSD were unable to heal and died, so I had a legitimate fear.

Anyway, I didn’t want people to distort the truth of my life and all the things I’ve done wrong. I didn’t want them to cause Alyssa to wonder what the truth really was about her mom. Mistakes are learning experiences and I’m going to keep on making them throughout my life, so what is the big secret anyway?

One day, Alyssa and I got in the car and I drove us to the back of the Best Buy empty parking lot. Then I put the car in park, looked out the front windshield and told Alyssa that I never wanted anyone to tell her something about me that might shock her or leave her with questions that I couldn’t answer because I had already died. In my peripheral vision, Alyssa looked at me a little weird. I started telling her my whole life story which included “confessing” all my secret truths. When I was finished telling my story and answering Alyssa’s questions, I gotta tell you, I felt a wonderful freedom.

I think my honesty with Alyssa made us closer if that was even possible. We have a mutual respect for each other and our humanness. Truth is a beautiful thing and produces a wonderful freedom compared to hiding secrets.

Honor, ethics and integrity are often misunderstood or ignored.

I believe that society in general is losing their moral decency. An example of this is the tendency for “ex-husbands/wives” to tell all the private secrets of their spouses to any and everyone that will listen.

Yesterday as I was surfing, I started reading this exact scenario on a popular website. This is the stuff that I don’t like to hear about other people. I think it smacks of a lack of honor, ethics and integrity. Websites like that lose my attention real fast. I don’t want to read about other people’s blunders. I have enough of my own, so I don’t need to worry about all the screw ups that other people make on a daily basis.

Do you know why you feel the need to disrespect someone else? It is human nature to have a desire to be right. People who have low self-esteem have to disrespect and dishonor others in order to boost their ego and be right. If you are willing to admit your mistakes and appear imperfect, then the temptation to throw others under the proverbial bus will be nonexistent.

I don’t want to be a victim to your lifetime of slights.

A slight is actually what psychologists call “narcissistic injuries.” Although most slights are small and not meant to purposefully hurt someone, a person who allows them to build up often already suffers low self-esteem. Examples of experiences when you could feel hurt, humiliated, disrespected and slighted would include times when your spouse forgets your anniversary or you don’t get the promotion at work you thought you deserved.

If you allow those emotions to fester and boil, the slights you experience can lead to extreme anger and a total breakdown of relationships. The reason you are so vulnerable to slights is because there is a fundamental insecurity inside you and a fear of not being good enough. When these feelings are blown out of proportion, the anger you feel flows over to everyone around and especially those who love you.

Before reacting to a slight:

  • Accept that you feel hurt even if you see the circumstance as trivial.
  • Think about the consequences of irrational behavior.
  • Recognize that being easily offended really gets you nowhere.
  • Change your expectations.
  • Assume the best and don’t personalize it since the other person might not have meant it the way you’re taking it.
  • Think about your good qualities. It is important to develop your own self-love so that “slights” won’t affect you.

Selfishness kills love.

I’ve thought it and seen it a billion times. Selfishness is the root of all the reasons that loving relationships end. You cannot make a relationship loving all by yourself. You can constantly give your time, talent, energy, money, thought and love, but if the other person isn’t doing the same thing, the relationship will not be successful. Eventually you will get tired of trying. You may actually start to feel angry and used. No matter how much you love someone, being hurt continuously gets old and enough is enough. Selfishness does not belong in a “love” relationship. If you can’t share everything with the one you love and are committed to, who can you share it with?

Texting can be detrimental to a relationship.

I text a lot simply because it is convenient and a great way to exchange a small amount of information quickly. In that way, texting is phenomenal.

On the flip side, if a text is too short or worded in a way that you do not speak normally, you may read it entirely different than the way it was intended. What do you think happens? You get angry, hurt, aggravated or a whole slew of other negative emotions.

So before you text, think about your current relationship. If you are fighting like cats and dogs, is there a possibility that your text will be misunderstood because it is too short or worded unclearly? If you are exchanging a text with someone that peace exists in the relationship, the likelihood of your text being misunderstood is dramatically reduced. This is just another reason to ensure that your relationships remain as peaceful as possible at all times.

Some good things end.

There are many things that immediately come to mind that fit the category of “good things that end.” For instance, a bowl of ice cream, a fun day, a night of lovemaking, a relaxing massage, the life of a pet/person we love and a luxurious nap. Life does not consist of only fun, excitement and happiness. Good things end and thank goodness bad things eventually end too.

Unfortunately, sometimes good things turn out not to be so good for us after all. When that happens, it is important to know when to let go, change and reset your goals. If you have a hard time letting go of a relationship because you just want desperately to “make it work” or “make it right,” learn from your former mistakes. The lessons you have already learned are priceless. People change when they want to change and some people just don’t want to change enough to actually bring the change to pass. So let go and help them to let go by walking away with memories of the happiness the relationship brought while it was good.

Now I’ve shared my opinion. Hopefully you read this post in the honest and humble spirit it was written. Feel free to share your opinion in the comments and have a wonderful day!

This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Joan February 26, 2014 at 7:05 pm

WOW! I feel like I just walked out of a therapy session. Great advice – er I mean opinion! In my opinion, I think you might have missed your calling. Are you sure you’re not a therapist? 😉


2 Sherry Riter February 28, 2014 at 1:09 am

LOL Joan 😉


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