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Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Defensiveness Disadvantage

My Facebook page has only been up since just before Christmas. I’m still new to the game. In the short time I have been there, I have learned a few things about human nature that I didn’t fully understand before. Well, actually, I still don’t understand, but I accept them as reality. First and foremost, I have learned that if I take a position on anything, those who do not share my opinion are going to take it as judgment against them as people. Secondly, they are then going to school me on why what I feel and how ‘judgmental’ I am is not very ‘zen’ of me.


I have opinions. So do you. So?

Look, I’m not a fence-sitter. I tend to research the heck out of things (products, issues, ideas…what have you), arm myself with a solid education, and then make a decision. My decision is not set in stone. If more research or education proves my decision wrong, I’ll change it. I don’t make my decisions lightly, nor do I just talk (or post) out of my hind end.

None of that really matters for this post, though. What matters is that I AM NOT JUDGING YOU. Agree with me, disagree with me…that’s all fine and well. Let us all have the strength, maturity, and wisdom to understand that a differing opinion does not equal a personal attack. And for heaven’s sake, ‘zen’ does not mean everything has to be touchy-feely and cater to everyone, never ruffling any feathers. That is not the definition. I actually am aware of the meaning – not being so would’ve been pretty lame of me considering what I named the page.

The disadvantage of everyone getting so up in arms every time I post something that doesn’t harmonize with your beliefs is that you miss out on an opportunity to learn. Who knows if you’d agree or disagree in the end, but if you’re not open, if you’re closed off due to defensiveness, you can never take in the information and grow from it in any way. Maybe you’ll still disagree with me and your reasons for doing so will be strengthened by what you’ve learned. Maybe you’ll agree with me and your life will be changed in some way. If you don’t ever take it in, though, because you’re too busy defending your position and feeling hurt by some judgment that isn’t even taking place, you’re the one who loses.

Here it is once again – I am not judging you. I can’t continue to follow after every “it’s not very ‘zen’ of you to judge me” comment and state that I’m not, in fact, judging anyone. I won’t do it anymore. Doing so ends up making me look defensive and that’s a feeling I dislike tremendously. So, please consider this my one-size fits all “I’m sorry you feel that way, but I’m not judging you for __________, I’m merely stating (circle one) facts/research/a study/thoughts/opinions/etc.” comment.


  1. Oh, I know what you mean! It's as though if we make a decision on ANYTHING, the people on the other side of the issue are offended. The point of the Facebook posts is to get us talking, and undoubtedly we all may feel differently about an issue, and even when we agree, there are varying degrees of agreement. It's okay. It's not personal. It's your page so of course it's about how YOU feel.

    P.S. My dream was also to be a high school English teacher. =)

  2. I love your facebook page.
    I read what you post about every day and I refer it to other people that I know.

    Next to you I am not zen at all, I did BF with both of my kids but they were weaned before a year old.

    I did not cloth diaper.

    I do not co-sleep all the time ( I try not to and they end up in bed with me anyway :))

    But what I am saying is that YOU have no reason to not post what you do, because of YOU and YOUR web page my children are now Vaccine Recovering kids. Because of YOUR website, my daughter got better after being sick for almost three months, ( no modern meds were working, Breast milk was the key)

    SO Thank YOU!

    <3 Always,
    -A Proud Supporter-

    1. I have been thinking about your words since you posted them and am still swooning over them. Thank you so much for all that you said!

  3. Kudos! A great reminder to not take things so personally!