What could possibly justify the act of intentionally embarrassing or humiliating someone? Let’s get more specific, what could possibly justify the act of intentionally embarrassing or humiliating someone you love? I can’t say that I am innocent of committing this act against someone, however I can say with a clear conscience that I haven’t intentionally done this since I was a teenager. So if I have embarrassed or humiliated anyone, whatever I said or whatever “tone” I used, it was not done with any malice.
Sadly, this unjustifiable act is intentionally committed every day by so many people and even more so during this time of crisis. I see it in public, I see it at my office, and I see it within my family as I’m sure many of you do as well. What is the point? Do people really enjoy being pricks? Understanding behavior can help us act accordingly, and know that just because you are understanding a behavior, doesn’t mean you’re approving of it. But understanding gives you your power back in an otherwise uncomfortable situation. Once you understand it, you have the power to act and not react. Some possible reasons for a person to cause emotional suffering intentionally can be:
- To take the focus off of themselves
- To make themselves feel better when they are feeling insecure about themselves or the situation
- To make themselves feel more secure as a person
- To establish control by means of mental cruelty”Payback”
- To be an asshole because let’s be honest, some people are quite simply put “assholes”
No person with any substance wishes suffering on another being. Yes, you read that correctly, if you truly wish suffering for any living creature, you lack real substance. We all have weak moments, moments when we allow anger, sadness, embarrassment, to name a few get the better of us. But once you center yourself and the initial shock has subsided, we should not be hoping for another to suffer.
We also need to recognize the difference between intentional and unintentional actions or behavior. Lets say “Joe” turns the music up extremely loud that it’s blaring because his hearing is horrible. It disturbs the rest of the people in the area, it irritates some, and it hurts someone else’s ears. “Joe” isn’t trying to hurt or annoy anyone, he is simply putting the volume to where he can hear it. Maybe someone even tells “Joe” that it’s too loud, and “Joe” gets upset because he is frustrated and probably embarrassed that his hearing is so bad. Months or even years later, “Joe” gets hearing aides. Now you want to “get him back” and show him how loud it always was and why it pissed you off. So they turn the music on loud so it’s blaring, and when “Joe” is shocked by how loud it is, so now you have humiliated “Joe” by telling him that’s what you’ve been dealing with. Now was that necessary? NO. When “Joe” got his hearing aides, no doubt he heard how much he hasn’t heard and when he sees where the volume button is compared to where he used to have it, he will be embarrassed enough without someone humiliating him more. When “Joe” had the volume up so high he wasn’t intentionally hurting anyone, but when you decided to “get him back”, you were intentionally hurting him. This is a little example, but you get what I’m saying. Some possible reasons for a person to cause emotional suffering unintentionally can be:
- Lack of self worth
- Not paying attention
- Lack of knowledge of human behavioral boundaries
- Grew up with emotional suffering being the “norm”
- Simply being unaware
I repeat my previous statement-No person with any substance wishes suffering on another being. I remind you when this happens to do your best to understand the person and/or their situation in its entirety. Many times it’s the understanding that diffuses the suffering for all parties involved.
During this time of crisis most likely we will more often find that we are more easily irritated or even irritating. We all need to BE AWARE, RECOGNIZE, and UNDERSTAND so that we may each show our substance and ACT with style rather than react and cause more unnecessary suffering. We are all in this together and we all want and need the same things. Don’t put this off, start this today-because we never know when tomorrow won’t come.