Friday, November 11, 2011

Mea Culpa

"Once again, I’m in trouble with my only friend
She is papering the window panes
She is putting on a smile
Living in a glass house"

Sometimes I can really step in the shit. 

Like most people, I can be thoughtless and callous.  Sometimes I think I'm doing the right thing, pushing and pushing.  But in the end, the border between "being a good friend" and "being a thoughtless pain in the ass" gets faded and I find myself on the wrong side.

So it is with me and my best friend.  Sadly (or smartly), I cannot reveal the exact issue, but suffice it to say she's doing something I do not agree with.  My thought process -  she's doing it because of a lack of believe in herself -  she knows it too. 

And after suffering in silence, I finally opened my mouth last night.  "You're better than this," I declared.  "You can do better.  Why settle?"

And boy did I get the tongue lashing of a lifetime.  No one can quite cut through you like she can.  And boy did she slice  me up.  Last night she was Valaryan steel slicing through warm butter, like Longclaw carving up mutton (shouts out there to Malka, Colloq, Sibaw and Chana), taking me apart piece by piece and really giving it to me.

And you know what, I deserve it.  I was wrong.  To quote Allanis, I'm wrong and I'm sorry, Baby.  It's so easy for me to sit in my ivory tower and dole out my unsolicited advice.  My empty words of wisdom. 

I have one ironclad rule of arguing/debating.  You must see the other side.  You cannot fight a position you do not really understand.  You need to step in their shoes and strengthen your understanding before you can formulate a winning argument.  It's never enough to say "I'm right because the other side is wrong."  You have to know WHY the other side is wrong.  Or less right.

And I have failed to do that.  I've listened to her arguments, but I have not heard them.  I failed to understand her reasoning - rather I've simply told her what a person in my situation would have done.  But we do not share a situation.  That's what got lost in my thought process.  I looked at it from my side only.

Tova and I made a deal.  She doesn't read this blog though she knows of its existence.  But I'm apologizing publicly anyway (and I will apologize 100 more times to her privately as well - until she stops bitching me out and accepts it).

So mea culpa - my bad.  And I'm sorry.

3 comments:

  1. I see your point, but don't be so hard yourself. I think that a good friend ALSO has a responsibility to speak truthfully and to try to be helpful. Just because you disagree doesn't mean you have to keep your mouth shut if you think your friend could do better. Having said that, if the friend decides to disregard your advice, no need to push further. That won't lead to anything but arguments.

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  2. I agree with that - but I lost sight of her side. And thats where I erred.

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