Dealing with negative behavior

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, May 13, 2015

We all probably know at least one person who is responsible for a constant stream of judgmental commentary and can find at least one negative thing to say about a person on a daily basis.
For most of my life, I’ve wondered if there is a cure for this behavior.
Don’t get me wrong, we are all guilty of judgmental and negative thoughts, but not all of us verbally express them.
Personally, I don’t believe there is anything inherently evil about these people. However, I more or less feel they are projecting some of their own self-loathing onto others.
Sometimes they comment on your weight, clothing styles, what you eat or any number of other things that can eventually wear a person down mentally.
Eventually, the person being torn down will finally have enough and one day, no matter the time or place, say something in response to the commentary.
Suddenly, you’re the bad guy, the jealous one and the instigator.
In reality, you’ve had enough of the shenanigans and kept silent for far too long.
On the other hand, what more can be done to better this situation?
The website, defines verbal abuse as the ongoing use of harmful words or sharp tones to control another person and emotional abuse as the fallout of all forms of abuse.
The website offers a six-step strategy to break the cycle of abuse.
–– Clearly state what you are willing and not willing to accept and establish boundaries.
–– Communicate the consequences that will be enforced if the abuse continues.
–– Enforce the consequences.
–– Do not negotiate; instead tell the abuser that when the negative behavior stops, you look forward to an improved relationship.
–– Never react when a boundary is violated, don’t cry, beg or explode. It keeps you under the control of the abuser.
–– Find support from a couple of objective people to help you through the process.
In my opinion, this is some pretty good advice, some of which I have utilized.
I don’t believe there is a quick fix to these types of problems.
It will take a lot of love and patience to find common and less hostile ground.
But, if you love the people in your life and believe they are worth it, then do what it takes to keep them in your life in a positive way.

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