I was talking with a friend about another friend who is having some problems. As we talked, we thought about what lead up to the present situation. We could see how things were allowed to progress, and things were allowed to go on that lead to the present situation. What may have always seemed normal to them, appears dysfunctional to the outsider. As we were about to conclude our conversation, my friend said to me, "This makes me wonder what there is in my own life that I don't see.".
I have to admit that I have thought alot about this. You see someone in a situation, and you see the red flags and try to warn them. But sometimes it is hard to see the red flags in our own lives. Our own lives are normal to us. When we live with something, it is hard to see if it is abnormal. In general we try to think the best of others. We try to put up with their faults. We try to be kind and accept them for who they are. But the problem is that sometimes we allow our selves to be victimized because we can't see reality for what it is.
I don't want to become cynical, but I'm beginning to try to look at things in my life realistically. If it walks like a duck, and it quacks like a duck, it is probably a duck. Or in other words, if someone acts a certain way toward me, and I make excuses for it, I won't see the reality of their behavior. Here are a few examples of what I'm talking about.
--A child misbehaves and begins to act in a way that is contrary to the kind of person their parent has taught them to be, but the parents ignore it because they want to believe the best of them, or they don't want to fight with them.
--A friend never calls, and doesn't make an effort to spend time with another friend. Their friend may make excuses for why they never call, but the reality is that they aren't that interested in being friends. One could argue that they are busy, but the scripture does hold true, "by their fruits ye shall know them". If they want to be your friend, they will do things to "BE" your friend.
--I often hear women say that they saw their husbands doing things that sent up red flags, but felt if they just had patience, things would change. For example, I have a friend whose husband was always hugging and kissing other women, under the guise of being "demonstrative". He ended up having an affair and divorcing his wife. She was shocked...should she have been? I believe she saw the signs, but chose not to accept them.
Like I said, I don't want to be cynical, but I do think there are benefits of making friends with reality.