Social Question

SpatzieLover's avatar

Does someone you know regularly admonish you? If so, how do you deal with it?

Asked by SpatzieLover (24471 points ) May 18th, 2011

Someone I know has been regularly admonished and/or openly publicly corrected by more than one family member. He is a competent adult.

In the past, he just accepted the treatment. Now that he’s begun therapy, he will address it with each person privately.

I realized in talking with him that I have a couple of relatives that do the same thing. A couple of which I rarely see, so who cares…Others, I’ve told to butt out.

For those of you that have dealt with this:
Do you avoid dealing with it? Do you openly tell them to knock it off/stop? Communication or non-confrontation?

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14 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Confrontation all the way.

Coloma's avatar

The number one test of all relationships is how well someone can handle confrontation.
‘Safe’ people are confrontable about something they do that is hurtful or bothersome to you.
They will CARE about your feelings and correct their bad behaviors.
I just confronted a ‘friend’ of 7 years a few months ago about her horrible habit of speaking for and volunteering others without asking them first.

Her reaction told me everything I needed to know. She denied, defended, accused me of ‘misunderstanding’ her motives, argued over her intentions vs. her actions, tried to tell me she asked when she did nothing of the kind and, in general, layed a big fat guilt trip on me for daring to confront her less than stellar manipulative side.
Well..it went absolutely nowhere. I have since told her that I am not able to be in a relationship with her, or anyone that cannot ‘hear’ my feelings and respect them.

Yep, clear, direct confrontation is the only way to go. The persons reaction will speak volumes about their level of maturity and security in being able to respect your feelings.

tranquilsea's avatar

I confront people once and then maybe twice. If the result of this is like @Coloma‘s then I distance myself from them.

Coloma's avatar

@tranquilsea

That’s my M.O. as well. I gave up beating my head against brick walls a long time ago. haha

tranquilsea's avatar

@Coloma ain’t that the truth.

zenvelo's avatar

For me, as a variation of @Coloma, it’s a matter of setting good boundaries. I don’t confront, I set a boundary that whatever it is, it is not open for discussion and i will not participate.

BarnacleBill's avatar

Depends on who it is. I told my mom, “Quit beating yourself up. You need to have a little more confidence in your parenting skills. You did a better job raising me than you think. Really, you did.” I made it about her, and not me.

My uncle, I asked if today was the Rapture, and did the Vatican know he was here.

Coloma's avatar

@zenvelo

Exactly!

And what I mean by ‘confront’ is a non-defensive ” Hey, ya know what? I need to talk to you about something that really bothered me, I’ve noticed you have a tendency to…..fill in the blanks ”.....
I am extremely diplomatic, but, cross my boundaries and feed me bullshit excuses, and, you’re history. lol

What really gets me is that some peeps truly don’t get how insulting they are to your intelligence and observation powers….do you think I fell off the turnip truck yesterday? Jesus, spare me the insulting mind games! haha

Coloma's avatar

@BarnacleBill
LOL

One of my fav. lines for the martyr types is ” Jeez…give up the cross, somebody could use the the wood!” hahaha

cazzie's avatar

I’m the youngest of 9. Most of them are also married, so there’s dealing with some of the spouses as well. I’m over 40, but the way most of them talk to me, you’d think I was still 10 years old. I’ve travelled farther than most of them and they still think I’m unable to tie my shoes ‘the right way’. Any wonder I live an ocean and half a continent away from them?

Coloma's avatar

@cazzie

Your situation is a classic example of unconscious relating based on the past. So many people fail to relate to the person in the present moment, like you said, your are an adult, of X amount of years old, independent, yet, they still treat you like a child.

All you can do is keep reminding them you are NOT a child anymore and that you expect them to honor that. :-)

We all can be ‘guilty’ of that. My daughter is 23 and she really put me in my place a few months or so ago. She was telling me about some of her financial worries, things going on, stress, and I jumped in with an offer to ‘help.’

She told me, in no uncertain terms…” MOM! I am JUST telling you about whats going on, I don’t WANT any help!” Mea culpa for mommy. lol

Now, I just listen without the urge to ‘rescue’ her, and trust if she really needs my help she will ask. ;-)

cazzie's avatar

Well, I left early and often.. if you get what I mean. I go back for short visits, so if someone gets on my nerves, I just breathe and think…‘This will all be over soon.’ There is one sister in law I simply can’t relate or talk to. She and I hit a wall, figuratively speaking, when my mother died and I just smile and nod and avoid her best I can now. The things she did and said to me were just completely out of line. I tried to explain very calmly at the time why things were being done they way they were, but she was never going to see it my way,(or in this case, ‘our way’ because it was a decision several of the daughters made together, but I happened to be johnny-on-the-spot when she discovered and went off about it.) I’ve had falling outs with other sisters, but I never make the exchange confrontational or snooty. I just avoid, avoid, avoid and when I can’t avoid, I smile, nod and say nothing. It’s like a d├ętente, no one has to apologise, or expect an apology. I show appreciation for any kindness they do for me, but I expect nothing and want nothing from them. Instead of family, I guess they turn into my fam-apathy.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

My story is much like @cazzie.‘s My parents had the first and the last grandchild on both sides of the family. Guess who is the youngest?

The cousins are fine; it’s the siblings that are still a challenge. I finally learned to say, “Thank you for your unsolicited advice. I will take it into consideration.” And I do, as they often have good advice. They just need to realize that I have been successfully living on my own for over 25 years. I now realize that they just want to help. It is based upon their own experiences and that I need to let the resentment go.

@SpatzieLover I suspect that you and your friend are going through a similar process of self-awareness. It doesn’t do any harm to speak up, as @Coloma‘s example proves. From my experience and hearing stories from friends, speaking up is the only way to change the dynamics of the relationship.

SavoirFaire's avatar

I have an aunt whose major issue in life seems to be that she is not as smart or successful as her sisters. Naturally, she takes this out on her nephews and nieces. We’re also smarter and more successful than she is, however, so her strategy is to try and infantilize us. My response has been to adopt a completely expressionless manner and explain exactly what she is doing and why it is childish, then move back to whatever conversation she interrupted as if she wasn’t there.

Apparently, she purposely avoids family events these days if she knows I’m going to be there. In what I’m sure is a complete coincidence, I keep getting invited to more and more family gatherings.

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