Regina, being able to talk through conflicts and owning one’s mistakes are the hallmarks of maturity. As I’m sure you know, not everyone matures at the same place. But like I said, forgiveness is extended to others but it’s for your own peace of mind and should extended freely. Trust is to be earned.
I had a pretty important familial relationship where I had to set-up boundaries. Basically, I said, “When you treat me this way, I feel x. I don’t like feeling x, and if you continue to do that I’m going to remove myself from the situation.”
Well, of course, they tested me and removed myself from the situation. But as much as I didn’t want to I had to establish and enforce rules that said I won’t allow myself to be treated this way.
It’s funny. Like it or not, we all play roles in relationships at one time or another. Sometimes people behave the way they do to get a certain response. (Think of it as “pushing buttons.”) Person A does this because they know Person B will respond a certain way. If their strategy works, they’ll continue that line of action. If it doesn’t, they’ll stop.
If you’re trying to change a situation, there’s two things to know—
- You can’t change someone else’s behavior, but …
- You can always change your response
If you’re in a situation where you can’t remove yourself, you can always withhold the response they’re going for, but consistency is the key. Eventually, they’ll come to realize that their old strategy no longer works.
Keep moving forward!