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Wednesday, May 11, 2005
It's not my fault...

...but people sure like to blame it on me.

Disclaimer: It's sort of in the last paragraph what the disclaimer is, so sorry, you're going to have to read this one, just don't get all hot and bothered about it while reading. I'm not pointing any fingers or anything devious like that. I just want to get some things off my chest.

What is it that they're blaming me for? Well, that's hard to answer. It seems that people like to blame whatever problem du jour they have on me. Or that I'm the reason/cause for things that happen. And I'm tired of that misguided perception. Oh yes, I said *that* word again: perception.

Perception, as I've often said here, is the basis for one's reality and opinions. Without it, we couldn't see any sides of any issues, nor would we be able to differentiate ourselves in a debate. Of course perception is also widely useful when you have an imagination and want to figure out what someone else might see differently from what you're presenting. The problem comes when people take what they see and refuse to see anything else, or assign their own reality to it. That happens a lot to me - there's a lot of people who think they know exactly what I'm all about when they've never bothered to listen to what I have to say - they've just assigned their opinions of me based on a statement here, or a perception there, and usually when you just pick the pieces that you want to play with, the whole puzzle never gets put together.

Someone may say that I have the perfect marriage. Well, it's probably far from perfect, but it's pretty darn good. Wanna know the secret....?

So. Do. I.

Ok ok, it's hard work, it's love, it's communication. No, it's not a 10 minute phone call a day, but that little call in the middle of the day sure helps when you need a sanity check on something, or need to pass on some information, or are just passing the time between appointments. It's talking with your spouse and picking up on the moods that are within the house, and what's going on. It's being perceptive and receptive to situations that may or may not be pleasant, but they're ones that you have to handle - ones that need to be worked through. Ones that you cannot deny are happening, or are living in denial about.

Someone else may say that I pass judgment on people. Doesn't everyone? Show me a person who doesn't form an opinion about another individual or a situation based on what's been presented to them, and I'll show you an apathetic individual who lacks emotion and caring. Just because someone forms an opinion doesn't mean they're "passing judgment" on someone else. Or that they're being superior - of course, that's a whole 'nother blog topic in and of itself - people who are superior to other people.

There are those who think I have a perfect life, and others who think I have a sad existence. I'd love to get those people in the same room and watch them debate about me... then again, maybe not. I'd be afraid that I'd be left to mop up the blood.

I know that there's at least one person out there that's jealous that I have a manageable life, a solid marriage, great kids, rewarding job, wonderful friends... and I'm not saying that there is one person who is jealous of all of that wrapped up in a tidy little package, but that there are probably multiple people who are jealous of just one of those things. Or maybe it's that I've got my head on straight. Ah, there I go sitting on the pedestal again... I don't feel like I have my head on straight sometimes, but my friends help me straighten it out (and whatever they can't adjust, DH usually can), and my kids are terrors sometimes when they fight with each other (but they're great kids, nonetheless), and my job, while rewarding, can also be quite trying. Ah, but I digress, sort of.

There are people who have put me up on some sort of pedestal only to try and knock me off. Or to say, hey, look at who has all the answers. Look at the self-proclaimed know it all Queen. Guess what? I don't belong on a pedestal - no one does, except some very expensive piece of carved marble or glass. Yes, I have ego. I'm a very self-confident individual who has strong opinions and uses fairly resolute phrasing when she writes. At least that's my perception of myself, and if someone takes that to mean that I'm an obnoxious know-it-all there's nothing I can do about it.

I've watched entire situations in my time on the web blow completely out of proportion, I'll make a comment, and apparently then the whole mess is my fault. Makes me wonder about those who love to try and assign blame to me for whatever's going on (even if I'm far removed from the situation, or are even just sitting on the periphery of the situation) because they don't want to "be mean" to someone else who asked an honest question. I wonder why *I* end up being the blame magnet. I've watched people construct a whole story around themselves and thier lives, and once you give advice (which is what they are seeking) they either backpedal and say it's really not that bad, or they accuse you of attacking them because you're giving them a mirror that they desperately don't want to look into. What can you do? Pretty much nothing except hope that they get help someday and aren't too shocked if the life they know falls apart around htem.

Ah, there's the crux of it all - some people are self-made victims, some people are self-made gods (in their own minds) or like to create gods out of ordinary people, and some are blame magnets. I'm definitely in the last category and have been there for a couple of years. I guess it's easy to blame the self-assured individuals who take responsibility for their own actions and try to help other folks step outside a volatile situation and see what I see. Some think that that's just me taking over, taking control, trying to bend people's will.

Not so. If for every debate, every self-made victim, every boast I could take an individual outside of themselves and see what they're doing with a fresh perspective, then my wish for the world would come true. But even then I think some folks would still be headstrong and demand that everyone else is wrong, or that the situation isn't as bad as they made it out to be, or that they have to brag on this, that and the other because they really don't have anything else to talk about.

Some of you are probably wondering what's the point that I'm trying to make today. Some probably agree with the points that I have made. Today is just a stream of consciousness wondering that's been building up for some time about a bunch of things that have been bothering me. Now, before you get all atwitter and in a twist about this, don't start assigning personalities and names to the situations I've portrayed as you may be very off base about them - remember, it's that nasty thing called perception again. Sometimes it's better to be a mushroom (meaning, having your head in the dirt and not knowing what's going on). The focus of this entry is my feelings about things and not assigning blame - so I expect you to not do that either. And this is a "for me to know, and you to probably never find out" sort of entry as well. No, not a "the focus(es) of the blog will never find out" because that's just naive - a blog is out there for the world to see, to point at, to pass links on to... it's a "the author knows what she is writing about, and the reader will probably never find out the focus(es)"...

...and that's all I have to say on the matter for the moment.