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Life is unfair.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

5 Snappy Ways to Respond to Accusations

Posted by fxckfeelings on January 9, 2018

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If, like our reader from earlier, you have a shady/”complicated” past, it can be easy to imagine all the not-good ways your current, not-shady friends would react. Often, however, those imaged responses are the kinds of things that are far more likely to come from the anxious, critical, demonic recesses of one’s brain than the mouths of others. So, in order to both demonstrate how unlikely these responses are and how easy they are to rebut, here are five horrible, hypothetical reactions to your past and the best (or at least snappiest) ways to respond.

1) “I get it—you’re

As someone who’s managed to clean her life up, get a real job, and function as well as whoever could be lobbing this insult your way, you should know better than to take this seriously. “If crazy means putting myself through school, saving some money, and establishing myself in a real career, then fine, lock my ass up. But even a crazy person—this one—can understand when someone’s being a judgmental asshole.”

2) “Now I don’t think you can be trusted.

If someone can talk frankly about stuff in their past that’s hard to admit to or talk about, that’s an indication that they’re more likely to be honest, even under the toughest circumstances. “I got to where I am the hard way and I’ve established a good reputation with my employers and friends. If you can’t see my ownership of my past and what I’ve accomplished in spite of it as reasons to trust me instead of the opposite, then the only untrusted thing here is your judgment.”

3) “From now on I’ll only see you as a whore.

If you’re talking to someone who throws the word “whore” around, then it’s not worth talking to them for much longer, let alone trying to earn their understanding. “You can’t make me feel ashamed for doing what I had to do, just as you can’t convince me to judge someone by anything but how hard they work, how they keep their promises, and how they deal with adversity. If you can only see me for what I did instead of who I am, then it’s best for both of us if we shouldn’t see more of each other than is absolutely necessary.”

4) “How can I rely on someone so clearly damaged?”

Baggage doesn’t necessarily mean damage, because if you were truly damaged you wouldn’t have found the strength and will to come as far as you have. “Whether you’re talking about a car or a person, you judge damage by how well something functions after it’s been put through the ringer, so by those standards, “damaged” doesn’t apply to me. If your perception of me is too damaged, then that’s on you, not me.”

5) “My opinion of you has irrevocably changed for the worse.”

Anyone who wants to cut you off for having gone through hard times is not someone worth holding on to. “If someone has a negative opinion of me, I always want to know why, because I try to live up to certain standards and criticism may reflect my failure to do so. Then I can assess how their reaction compares to my perception of what happened and apologize if necessary. From what I know of my past and my efforts to overcome it, however, I have nothing to apologize for, so let’s just come to terms with the fact that our opinions of each other have now both irrevocably changed for the worse and wish each other well on our opposing trajectories.”

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