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Malice And NeglectPeople have a terrible habit of hurting each other. Of doing stupid, selfish things that make other people miserable. Of tearing apart relationships that they cherish for no apparent reason.

Every time one person chooses to trust any other, they’ve giving that person the capacity to really hurt them. By allowing themselves to be vulnerable in front of someone else, they’re showing faith in that person’s compassion. In their capacity for consideration and care.

And, all too often, people find a way to betray that trust.

When someone we care about deeply enough to share our most personal vulnerabilities with hurts us, our gut reaction is to wonder why.

Why did they do that? What did they hurt me?

Why would they want to do that to me?

Why would they be so cruel?

We wonder how we could have been so wrong about someone we thought was so kind, so loving towards us. Someone who seemed to understand that they had been trusted with a part of us that was so fragile.

Suddenly, our perception of them is very different.

Where once they were precious, they are now toxic. What we once loved, we now reject. We cannot bear to love it any more. It hurts too much.

Because they were awful to us. They were horrible. They were mean.

What we often struggle to remember is that they likely weren’t being malicious at all.

They probably didn’t mean or want to hurt us. They probably didn’t realise that they would. They weren’t thinking about how their actions would affect us, if they were thinking about repercussions at all.

They weren’t being malicious. They were being neglectful.

While being neglectful is hardly a desirable quality in a mate, it is at least better than purposeful, pre-meditated cruelty.

It’s more forgivable.

And it’s more likely.

It’s true that humans can be capable of great monstrosities against other. But, far more often, they were just stupid.

People are ignorant creatures that caught up in moments of excitement and commits acts of monumental idiocy. Sometime, they mistakes they make can really hurt those closest to them

When you’re on the receiving end of someone’s dumb behaviour, it’s easy to forget that the people you love can be morons too.

It’s worth talking to them about it all. To see if they even realise you’re upset. It’s worth making sure they understand what they’ve done is so hurtful, and why it’s affected you like this. Unless you make that first effort, they might not ever know.

If they really are the person you believed them to be – the one who cares about you, who couldn’t bear to hurt you – they’ll want to know. They’ll take your reaction into consideration.

If they’re smart, they’ll learn from it.

But even an idiot will care.

Kirstie Summers,

Daily Zen.

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