Recently, I went through a horrible family crisis. One which could have been entirely avoided which left me with no one to blame but myself. The crises not only affected me but my family and several other innocent people.
As word quickly spread about like a grass fire of the situation we were going through many friends came to our support. It was very encouraging to have such friends give sincere uplifting wishes to us all. We all took it to heart as we needed encouragement at the moment of our despair.
However, I began receiving e-mail from one particular friend who was relatively new to our family. This friend came about our situation through another family member of hers who is also a friend of ours. One of my family members shared, in confidence, particulars of information that was relative to the big picture of our problem. She shared that information with her family member who felt the need to send me the e-mails which were filled with judgmental tones and indications that she had suffered the same problems in her past by another family member, yet she continued to give me unwelcomed advice, this advice from someone who barely knew me and had little understanding of the problem.
I responded with a reply of my own to inform this person that she was not aware of all the details involved and that she should not be judgmental of me in the first place due to the fact that her advice was not requested. This person responded by sending further emails that were clear attacks against me and several areas of my life and personal business including my job. Again I replied but this time I made it clear that it was entirely none of her business and I didn’t appreciate her nosing in on it.
Again the unwanted emails came in a flurry and grew stronger in language and references to the bible based on her belief and she suggested that I read my bible. At this time I became furious and wrote this persons family member to request that she tell her to leave me along in an attempt to keep the friend relationships from being damaged. This request went unanswered to me and I became even angrier due to this person being the one to speak of things told to her in confidence to someone who is clearly a speakeasy and gossip.
My family member sent messages to those who were involved in these attacks on me to point out that those who were attacking me seem to believe they are perfect and without blame in their own lives. She did this in a manner without using their identity. Needless to say this ignited more and more hurtful communications to the point that not only were the friendships damaged, but damaged beyond repair.
This whole ordeal with these “friends” left me bewildered and in constant thought of what would possess someone to attack an acquaintance and his family they barely knew during that family’s serious crisis. My thoughts were that this particular person was mentally unstable. I could think of no other reason until I was reminded of a leadership class I attended in which the subject of confrontations was discussed. I read a quote from the material written by John C. Maxwell which read,
“Hurting people hurt people and are easily hurt by them”.
This made perfect sense to me because this person hurting me with her words of condemnation made me believe that maybe she was still hurting from her bad experience with a family member in her past. Was she merely lashing out at me with anger as if I was the one who hurt her? Did she feel the need to cause me pain so strongly that she was willing to destroy friendships over something that was absolutely none of her concern or business to do so? Or was she simply crazy and off of her meds?
I choose to believe the former because it is more comforting and easier to understand than simply someone targeting me for evil words during a very hard time in my family’s life. I only wish that I had remembered the John C. Maxwell quote early enough to prevent the friendships from ending.
We all have pain that lays dormant deep inside of us that has never had time to heal. And once something breaks open that old wound the pain becomes fresh and as painful as ever. I hope these people that have chosen to kick me while I was down simply did so to ease their own suffering. If so I wish for them to get the help they need to heal.
As for me and my family we will continue to seek healing of our own and learn from this experience that hurting people hurt people and are easily hurt by them. Understanding that many people are in pain is a very good start.