I knew it was true.
I’ve been cut off.
I did some things that were wrong. I said some things that were hurtful.
I also did some things that were very difficult, but needed to be done.
During a horribly turbulent time in my life, I didn’t handle things well. I ran from relationships. I didn’t have the character to work it through. I tried, but I couldn’t keep going.
These things were then misunderstood and passed along from person to person.
A whole group of people now believes things about me that are inaccurate and they treat me very coldly.
They cut me off.
Have you ever done something you regret? How did people treat you afterwards?
Here’s the hard part. I recognized what I did, how it hurt some people, and I apologized and asked their forgiveness. They forgave me.
It’s the others that are cold now. I didn’t do anything to them. They don’t even know the real story. They heard some things and believed them without coming to the source.
Isn’t that the way it goes. We sit in judgment of others without bothering to find out what really happened.
I’ve done it.
You’ve done it.
It doesn’t really seem to matter until it happens to you (or me).
So I walked into a place that should have been very welcoming, filled with people I know and love.
It felt like a firing squad.
Oh, they were nice enough. They said “hello.” Well, most of them, anyway. Some couldn’t even look at me. It was after the greeting that was hard. They couldn’t stand near me. They might have asked a question or two, but they waited for their escape. I tried to ask about their families, but was given very little information. It was obvious there was a huge wall between them and me.
My husband noticed.
I wondered if I was just paranoid. Maybe I was making it up. Maybe I was just too sensitive. Maybe I was in a selfish place, or triggered by something, or expecting too much, or…
And than it happened. A couple who attended the same event came to our home and asked us what had really happened. Not what everyone said and believed, but what really happened.
We told them. And they wept. They wept for what we had been through. They wept for how they had judged us. They wept because they believed everything they had been told and stood on the sidelines while we suffered alone. They jumped on the bandwagon that judged us. And they were truly sorry.
Then they confirmed all that we had felt. People really had judged and demonized us. There really was a wall between us. They really didn’t want to talk to us, they just wanted to judge.
Now people say they are so thankful we’re “making an effort.” They still don’t want to know us or understand what happened. That would be too messy and require them to actually enter our pain. But they sure are glad we’re showing up to make everyone else feel better.
I get it.
I’ve done it.
Wouldn’t it be great if we’d all either go to the source and find out what really happened, or keep it to ourselves?
Have you ever cut someone off?
Have you been cut off?
This post written by Colorado Life Coach, Carrie O’Toole.