Thursday, March 01, 2007

"I didn't Mean it That Way"

Often in life we make statements that may not sound to the listener the way we think we intended the words to be heard:

I didn't mean that I don't love you but .....

Of course I respect you my child. What I said to you was for the best even though you may not see it that way now.

I have nothing against (take your pick): Arabs, Jews, Feminists, Black People ... Some of my best friends are (take your pick).

Upon hearing that my partner (Black Woman) is Jewish: "Oh, you and Sammy Davis Jr.

Frequently the statements are not as blatant. The person listening may have had a lot of painful experiences in their life related to what the other person is seemingly flippantly saying.

As a White Man I often don't realize how others who may be Female, of Color, or of a Working Class Background may be "translating" in their daily lives, making the dominant culture people such as me "comfortable" and living in a "foreign" world for themselves (at least in the area I'm talking about).

Listening and really hearing, feeling and thinking all can help a little at least!


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