How do you manage a situation in yourself where “blaming someone ” emerges?
Recently I experienced an unpleasant situation with someone, and at the time I accepted the necessary suffering without expressing any displeasure; then by rethinking something like “blaming him ” emerged, and by looking more closely, I understood that this interpretation was completely subjective, it was linked to an expectation on my part on what “it should have been.” I saw it as a buffer, a mechanism trying to protect something, and therefore it was something to be denounced immediately.
I would say that blaming someone is something subjective that can only emerge from a partial point of view, but that does not have an objective reality in itself. In this kind of situation I have the choice of allowing myself to be resentful or not. I am always free, whatever happens, to respond to a context and how I manage it internally.
Usually in me resentment emerges from a situation where I have not done or said something that could have created a conflict. What I have to do to avoid resentment is to speak or act sincerely at the moment without wanting to be nice at all costs, to have the courage to say or do what needs to be said even if it creates a conflict, an uncomfortable situation or if I hurt the other.
If resentment arises, I look for the moment when I hid behind a “nice” personality, guided by the fear of what could happen if I said what I had on my heart. If resentment persists despite everything, I try to accept the necessary suffering to feel it without blaming myself or the other. For me, resentment is a lot like hate: I hate myself for hiding, I hate you for pointing out my weakness.
I am thinking of my relationship with my ex-husband where I have long resented him for not understanding my “spiritual” approach, for not even wanting to discuss it, despite my repeated requests. Today, it seems to me that this was a demand on my part, and therefore an internal consideration. Between the time I decided on our separation and the time I told him that I had made the divorce proceedings, that is, about two years, as long as I had resentment towards him, I observed, I looked at what my part of responsibility was, I also struggled. It took all this time to have the strength to no longer allow this feeling to emerge, as it has such ramifications coming from the need for recognition and ultimately from the feeling of injustice (in my opinion.)
When this feeling emerges, if it is a relative, I try to express my concerns; but to express it when the emotion is no longer there, after I have felt and explored the tension, the impatience, the attacks of the mind that seeks stories. If I express myself constructively, it disappears like magic. This is the case with relatives with whom things are going well.
But I have a more difficult example that lasted several years, with the father of my daughter. I blamed him for a long time for the way he left, without talking about it. Because of his absence of words, it made it impossible for me to calm down. I have suffered from the lingering of this resentment, like a feeling that hangs behind it a stench, a bad smell. I was struggled with it, and I felt like it wouldn’t evolve until I could say something. And to talk to him about it was not possible because there was only fleeing contact. One day I realized that “resenting him” actually meant “wanting something from him,” and then I saw that it was related to my wanting him to change. I felt pitiful, helpless. I let go of that, accepted the necessary suffering, and that resentment broke away from me. I experienced it as liberation.
The acceptance of the necessary suffering is the fuel of transformation, and as a result, it is a gratitude that comes, a deep gratitude that does well.
I manage the situation by almost automatically forbidding myself from resentment towards others, and by looking inside myself at what this resentment masks. I then take full responsibility for the situation. From there can emerge an action, which can be to do nothing or to “go my way,” or to “fight,” or….. In situations where I have allowed resentment to enter me, I remember systematically cutting myself off from the person and making the situation worse.
The same situations handled today only elicits compassion, even if I can decide to “fight.”
It is a situation that I hardly encounter: I very quickly switch to compassion for the other; I am lucky enough to be able to accept useful suffering, and I am aware that this person may not know what external consideration is, nor that acting out of self-interest is not compatible with the feeling of openness of the heart, and that he probably does not know useful suffering; I feel sorry for him. I am very grateful to this tool: the acceptance of necessary suffering.
In the case of a dispute, a conflict, a lie, someone who has hurt me, I take the hit, the shock, I accept. If I feel anger, I try to put it aside to stay with the feeling. After taking a step back, when I am no longer in emotion, I address my interlocutor, either orally or in writing, to clarify, by recounting the facts, showing objectivity, and if necessary, I seek a solution with the other.
This makes it possible to restore a healthy relationship, it avoids getting into revenge, retaliation and revenge. If my interlocutor does not assume his responsibility, what he has said, what he has done, if he denies, if he is acting in bad faith, I show him, in one way or another, that I am not fooled. I give him back what belongs to him, I put distance with that person. The important thing for me is to stay clean, not to corrupt myself, not to dirty the sacred in me.
This question raises real “white areas” in me. The last situations where “I was angry at someone” were mixed with affect. For example, when a member of the group recently resigned from teaching. I blame the person because I think that if I were him, I wouldn’t have done it that way. And there is a misunderstanding on my part, a surprise and a judgment. Something that “falls on me” is extremely uncomfortable and painful. On the other hand, I am absolutely unable to express my feelings to the people concerned, objectively, without affect. I’m more inclined to get angry. Neither express nor repress… I have it in my head (I mean in my head and not in my heart). So, I don’t express but… I repress. That’s where I miss the boat. I’ll put the lid on it. I swallow the snake. I’m going to put it on the back burner. And I let go of what amounts to saying that I quit… Lack of courage, cowardice. It’s been a long time, I realize that now.
I found many small situations where “resentment” emerges:
when someone makes me a fishtail: I growl, judge, call the guy a moron before I step back. There is like a mental stop, a distance (detachment) and at the same time, a bodily relaxation. Sometimes it is accompanied by an inner smile or a comment like “it’s life” or “this is another macho identity that expresses itself.”
A colleague, on whom I depend to move forward, has promised to do something he does not do or hurts, and I have to suffer the consequences. It irritates me and I get angry inside before I realize that I’m mostly mad at myself for being trapped. Then immediately follows a relaxation and forgiveness to him and me.
In summary, it seems to me that the process is always the same:
1. Situation causing discomfort that I do not immediately welcome
2. Reaction (rejection/anger) more or less long = unnecessary suffering until:
3. Welcoming the necessary suffering and bodily relaxation to find the right answer
4. It can be a simple inner smile or an action such as “running away,” “punching in the face” or “doing what needs to be done.”
In fact, it is a question of putting oneself in the shoes of the other, while remaining attentive to the action to be carried out in oneself in one’s own shoes. If I look at the last experiences where I had to deal with this feeling in me, it is very different if the emotional plays a role in the management of the situation or not. For example, in situations with the administration, with the medical relational person at different levels, I can put myself in each other’s shoes, managing in the moment the possibility of a dialogue without too polluting projections. I feel patient and tenacious, I stay the course and take the necessary action according to the context.
In situations with an emotional relationship, I can also put myself in each other’s shoes. But then I need more courage to be in action without losing myself, without forgetting the essential that guides my steps. It takes courage to put myself in each other’s shoes while meeting myself by facing the pollution of my identity mechanisms.