Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I can be a judgemental hypocrite

I think there must be a hierarchy of judgement prevalent in the human condition. Or perhaps different levels of it, for I have been thinking about how I judge (consciously and unconsciously) and how it not only affects me but shapes the way I see the world.

There are times when I wonder if I'm not snarky enough, which renders me feeling inadequate because I don't join in. Or if I'm entirely too stabby and overblown about things, with some subjects that ignite me so much that they cause me to speak out. I usually these days keep to myself because if it's so important to me that I feel the need to state it, I sometimes then get protective of my opinions and can tend to be slightly defensive about them (and, therefore, don't want to be disagreed with).

And this is not even to mention the fact that I sympathised with someone just this morning at the shops who was assuming the position of authority on someone's personal business - by merely standing there and nodding with compassion, I was contributing, but my conscience told me at the time, "As long as you keep your mouth shut, you're not doing any harm." Fact is, I was doing harm. To me, if nobody else (but I know it wasn't just me my actions/inaction was affecting). I didn't do what I innately felt was the right thing (for me) to do, which was kindly but firmly steer the conversation away and not let the person keep going on about it. And why did I do that? I wanted the information, of course. I wanted to be privy to what the townsfolk are doing and saying, be kept in the loop, feel included, not look like a wet rag or that I can't have fun or that I don't like a joke, under the guise of it being "in whomever's or whatever's [in this case, the community's] best interests" because, oh, what a grand scapegoat "the others" are when they're all doing it too. You may as well join in, for if you can't beat 'em, isn't that what we've been programmed to do? And that fear of not being liked, of being seen - judged - as someone who takes everything seriously or has to put a dampener on things.... that's a big one that keeps luring me back in.

"Do as you would have done unto you" - I like this wisdom, for I would like to think if I keep my judgements to myself I'll not be judged as often (or unfairly). But I think I'm fooling myself, really, for although I hope for a world that makes judgement of others extinct, I know there will always be excuses made for the goodness and rightness of judgement - I allow myself to make them all the time, despite being wary and aware of the harm it can do! - and fair points they'd be, too, for who am I to judge?

There's not much that inflames me, not these days. It doesn't make for grand blog posts, that's for sure, because much of the time, by the time I've formulated arguments for/against whatever it is, I've reached the conclusion in my head that 'to each their own, judge not lest ye be judged' and so forth. Ultimately, I can't spare the energy to be so passionate about anything external to me and my experiences because it just seems to fall into the big Gossip or Judgement basket. I do not believe it is fair or just or correct to judge. And yes, I still do it all the time (even if only in my own mind) - I am working on curbing this, as a thought is as good as spoken in the energetic world. And that just contributes to nothing constructive or positive on the whole.

However..... you must have known there was one coming......

This morning, I read a post on Mama Mia's blog about toddlers having their eyebrows waxed, all in the name of a beauty pageant. I think we must surely be far past the oft-touted statements of the parents of these little girls (and boys) who claim their children love the the competitions and they have so much fun, when the parents begin inflicting quite a serious amount of pain on their child, all in aid of being judged for how they look. Wow. Way to perpetuate the crazy, often unattainable without an airbrushing, ideals of the magazine/celebrity industry. And involving such small, malleable minds too.

Far be it from me to judge, as I've spent the past few paragraphs saying, but seriously..... WHAT THE HELL???

This is not some far off country. This is happening here in Australia. I find this just wrong, wrong, wrong. Now, I have chosen to have my eyebrows waxed for nearly 20 years and it STILL hurts. I'm a grown woman who's given birth twice. I know pain!

Deliberately and systematically administering this pain on your own child is causing untold damage to so many areas of that child's life. These are the formative years. I shudder to think what harm it must cause emotionally. What a way to condition your child to submit to unnecessary, avoidable, pleading-to-make-it-not-happen pain at the hands of someone who loves them. The idea of a child having to endure that at the hands of her mother [well, her mother's chosen beauty therapist, but still] leaves me cold.

Perhaps these parents [I'm guessing it's only the mothers, though, who go this far, although shame on any fathers who allow it to happen, no matter what the excuse] ought to go through some sort of counselling to (re)discover their own self esteem issues before forcing their children into some perceived superficial ideal, for subjecting their children to this sort of idiocy has surely got to stem from something deep-seated in the parent??

At the least, this is short-sightedness at its very worst.

Right. Now that that's out of my system, I want to just address a brief tweet that happened to grab my attention as it swiftly moved down my timeline. Along the lines of Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban lacking priorities for leaving their brand new three week-old baby daughter (who knew?!) while they went to a party. I began to enter into it, citing a case of someone I knew who left their eight week-old so they could go on a two week romantic 'reconnecting' holiday, and implying this was surely worthy of some perspective - after all, the most amount of time that new parents could go to a party would only be a few hours - but then stepped back.

I was asking for judgement of the new parents to be suspended (no matter who they are, I couldn't give two hoots if it was a couple from up the street or the most famous, or rich, couple in the world). And yet, here I am just a few hours earlier, ready to rip shreds of someone else I've not met and know nothing about because she's beautifying her daughter.

They're hardly in the same league, I know - one is causing pain to a pleading, begging child and (to my mind) is abuse, and the other is a newborn who probably stayed asleep for the entire duration of her parents' attendance at that party, save for possibly a burp and bottle.... But I'm still being rather hyprocritical.

See? I'm bothered by it. By the waxing horror and by the fact that we can so freely and easily judge (with a cute Twitter hashtag to soften the blow sometimes) those we are likely never to even meet. I vow to continue looking at my own spoken/written words and conscious/unconscious thoughts with regards to how quick I am to judge or prejudge people and their decisions.

I think I'm starting to realise why my posts have been lacking of late. More and more, I am seeing that unless I can find a way to make it productive or upturn it to the positive, I don't want to be questioning the morals or actions or decisions of others because I'm just contributing to the group mentality that it's okay. In reality, other people's business is none of my business (unless they offer information directly and seek feedback/opinions) and pretty much no matter what the situation, there's always learning in there somewhere - the only part I have control and responsibility over, therefore, is my reaction to becoming privy to these situations.

Back to posts about picking on my cat for me, I think *sliding rock back over head*

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