Unexpected angels.

judgingothers

During the past few months — since Trump got elected — I’ve become more judgmental and less trusting.   Now it’s true that due to being a victim of narcissistic abuse and suffering from several disorders and C-PTSD due to the abuse I endured, I’ve always been suspicious and hypervigilant of others’ intentions, always assuming the worst, or that they have some hidden agenda.    My motto has always been, “if you think the worst will happen, you will never be disappointed and your heart will never be broken.  If the worst does happen, you won’t be devastated because you will have expected it.”   It seemed foolhardy, even stupid, to be an optimist or expect the best from others.    Emotionally,  I couldn’t do it anyway.

But that’s a rotten way to live and certainly not a recipe for happiness or even contentment.  You walk through life being paranoid and suspicious of everyone all the time, always wondering what others are planning to do to hurt you.  You can never attain any semblance of happiness with a mindset like that.

Since I’ve been blogging and been in therapy, and since I’ve become a Christian, this had been improving.  I was feeling happier, trusting others a little more, and not always assuming everyone had a knife hidden behind their back.     I was beginning to find what I think God’s purpose for me is.    I noticed that people were actually treating me better, fewer negative things were happening, and best of all, more positive things were happening.  Changing my mindset to a more positive, hopeful one did indeed seem to attract even more positive things in my life. I realized that while it’s perfectly normal and even desirable to acknowledge and express “negative” emotions, that walking around with a perpetual black thunderhead hanging over my head wasn’t helping me or anyone else.  It was a defense mechanism that worked in its way, but was never going to allow me to be happy.

Trump got elected just as my SAD was kicking in, and the combination of the two sent me into a depression that seemed as bad as those I had when I was still married to my abusive husband.    It got even worse since his inauguration, and the ensuing (and immediate) shitstorm of chaos and fear-mongering that seems to have been unleashed since January 20.    It was so triggering for me that I began to distrust almost everyone again, no matter if they were on the right or the left.  It seemed as if there were no good people left in the world, and the world itself was going insane.   After all, how could a good person vote for such a leader, and yet, here he was.   Somehow, evil appeared to have won.     I’ve been scanning the news every day like a meerkat scanning the horizon for predators.

But even worse, I’ve become judgmental.   I never used to judge others for their political or religious beliefs, even if I disagreed with them.  I always believed that people have a right to believe what they believe, for whatever reason, and just because I disagreed with them doesn’t mean they are inherently bad people.   But lately, I’ve been adopting a hateful belief that all Trump supporters must be horrible people.    This is unlike me, and I knew judging others this way was wrong, but I couldn’t help it.    If someone was an asshole to me, even if they were just a driver acting like an asshole on the road, I’d say to myself dismissively, “they must be a Trump supporter.”   To my way of thinking, anyone who voted for Trump had to be a “bad person.”   Even though I knew several Trump supporters who are actually very kind people, I couldn’t seem to shake the judgmental thinking and stereotyping of Trump supporters as being a bunch of “deplorables.”

Today I was working in the home of an older retired couple who I knew had voted for Trump.   They listen to Rush Limbaugh and have a “Make America Great Again” bumper sticker on their SUV.   I also knew these were very nice people. The wife, Doris, always has homemade baked goodies, and they always tip.   Both are extremely friendly and just seem like good, salt of the earth people.  Okay, so I knew intellectually that Trump supporters weren’t all asshats, but I couldn’t accept this on an emotional level.   I also haven’t been able to accept on an emotional level that there are ANY really good people left in this country.

Today they proved me wrong on both.    The husband, Alan, started asking me questions about my car and then went out to look at it.  I thought it was a little odd, but maybe he was just a car buff and curious about my car.

He came back inside and said, “Your tires look like shit.”  He knew I was driving to Florida in a few weeks.  Somehow I felt on the defensive.   I started to explain I intended to get new tires before my road trip, but he interrupted me.   “I want to buy you a new set of tires.   There’s a tire shop down the road.”   Whoa, what?   I stood there, my mouth hanging open like a dimwit.

new_tires

“Oh, no!”  I said.  “I can’t let you do that.”

“I want to and I will,” Alan said.   That was final.  He wasn’t giving me a choice.    “Wait here a few minutes, it’s just down the road.”

I gave Alan my car keys.  I was in shock.    I felt like I should offer to pay him back or something, but he wasn’t having it.

When he got back from dropping off the car, Doris and Alan invited me into the kitchen where we sat down and had some cake she had baked and some Cokes.   Alan started talking about God.  It turned out he’s actually agnostic.  He said, “I don’t know if God exists or not, but if He does,  then He works through people helping others.   I want you to understand why I did this today.  Doris and I never had children, and we are retired and comfortable.   We’re not going to take all this with us when we die, so we like to help our friends and neighbors when we can.”

Driving home on my four brand new tires, I realized in my heart and not just in my mind, that angels can be found in the most unexpected places.   There are genuinely good and even altruistic people left in the world after all, and yes, some of them are even Trump supporters!

We should never judge the hearts of individuals, regardless of their beliefs.   We are all brothers and sisters under God.

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About luckyotter

This blog is my journal. I just choose to share it with the world instead of keeping everything inside my head. I'm a recovering Borderline and have also struggled with Avoidant Personality Disorder. I also have Complex PTSD due to having been the victim of narcissistic abuse for most of my life. I write mostly about narcissism, because I was the child of a narcissistic mother, and then married to a sociopathic malignant narcissist for 20 years. But there's a silver lining too. In some ways they taught me about myself. This blog is about all that. Not all my articles will be about NPD, BPD or other personality disorders or mental conditions. I pretty much write about whatever's on my mind at the moment. So there's something for everyone here. Blogging about stuff is crack for my soul. It's self therapy, and hopefully my insights and observations may help others too.
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14 Responses to Unexpected angels.

  1. AMEN sister! We are not to judge because us ourselves will be judged in the end as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have a tendency to suspect people who are just “guilty” of not thinking things out as deeply as I do, of being guilty of something far worse. It is very hard for me to believe that I am somehow more privy to discerning certain situations or more capable of critical thinking than any other individual.

    I too struggle with accepting that seemingly intelligent people have supported Trump, because doesn’t that mean that his shade of sadism and contempt for the weak and vulnerable was not a deal breaker for them?

    A humbling reminder to me is that I too was once brainwashed in a sense by my own mother, and being brainwashed is not necessarily a sign of evil intent, or having sold one’s soul. I excused and turned a blind eye to all of my mother’s underlying hostility, when I needed her as a mother.

    For some who supported Trump I believe they are just the long suffering, who are not yet brave enough to wake up from their cognitive dissonance. To wake them up when they are not ready can result in them turning against us. I still say good friends tell each other the truth, but not in a personally judgemental way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      I’ve always said, cognitive dissonance is a powerful thing. I also think many vulnerable people (the poor or uneducated, etc) actually believe Trump’s lies. They only watch Fox News because it reinforces the beliefs they have been brainwashed into, which further reinforces those beliefs. What’s so maddening is their refusal to acknowledge the truth even when the facts are right in their face, but like you said, we often did the same thing with our abusers. Many people cope by identifying with the abuser — also known as Stockholm Syndrome. Those who will be most hurt by Trump’s policies, especially the “replacement” to the ACA — are, guess what! The red state poor who work at low paying jobs with no health insurance. Maybe it will take that to get them to wake them up and get them to resolve their cognitive dissonance. Hopefully this healthcare bill won’t be passed because I cannot afford insurance if I lose my ACA (my job does not provide healthcare) and I did NOT vote for him.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I am glad you brought up Stockholm Syndrome. But this is also a societal example of the long abused in a double bind choosing narcissistic behavior themselves (or justifying it in Trump) to deal with and cope with with what they feel was a long suffering and abusive situation.

        It is interesting to me how history cycles through equally erroneous opposite extremes over and over again, as if human nature is to swing back in reaction, rather than become self aware of itself.

        Perhaps this can be compared to a bipolar patient unable to resist the high after the low.

        For example, I believe it is true that the “religious right” was disproportionately negatively stereotyped and ill treated by much of the media and those in the liberal “elite”. They therefore latched onto an equally or more abusive “savior” in Trump to save them, and cannot seem to discern (or dissociate from) his abuse of the very principles on which most religions are founded.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Of course Trump supporters can be good people. BeautyBeyondBones is a blogger on here and she voted for Trump, and she’s one of the lovelies bloggers I know. Positivity is really important in times like these. Stay strong 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Nevaeh says:

    It is probably true that Trump supporters are not all bad peolpe.
    But they must be really confused which sadly a lot of people are these days.
    Prsonally I can’t imagine a decent good hearted person in their right mind voting for someone like this.
    There must be something like cognitive dissonance or the like going on.

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      I can’t either, unless they have just been brainwashed and/or are stupid. Since these folks I know aren’t stupid and are obviously good people, they must just be brainwashed or uninformed. Cognitive dissonance has much to do with it too. It’s very hard to give up a belief and admit you were wrong, it seems.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Leslie says:

    Aww God Bless them! What a wonderful gift.

    I know someone who voted for Trump and at this point she’s mortified. And she’s not alone. And then there are those who will stick by his side till they’re dead because they won’t want to admit that they might have been wrong. And then there are those who are willing to overlook the bullshit he spews because they think he’ll do a better job on jobs. I think that the only thing we can really do is just deal with the policies as quickly as we can, and try to ignore the periodic shitstorms he kicks up. At least, that’s the way I’m trying to deal. I think if I dealt with everything that comes around from him I’d end up in the damn mental hospital again.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Yara Aiko says:

    Love this! “if you think the worst will happen, you will never be disappointed and your heart will never be broken.  If the worst does happen, you won’t be devastated because you will have expected it.” This is exactly how I have spent most of my life thinking. In many cases it has saved me, so I won’t say it’s all bad. But sometimes it does backfire and cause me to get stuck in a loop of worst case scenario thinking. That takes away from my ability to be in the moment and enjoy life.

    I think it’s wonderful that they did that for you! How incredibly kind. We need to start building bridges with the other side, or our democracy is done. We can only take so much of this divide, and gridlock, before our government (and country) falls apart. Stuff like this is the answer.

    Kindness. So simple.

    Like

  7. Yara Aiko says:

    Also, thanks for mentioning that he’s agnostic and for showing the good of atheists even though you’re a Christian (I saw you recently post something on Facebook). As an atheist myself, there’s lots of misconceptions and negative images about us, but we are just like others — morality, etc.

    Like

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