Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Goose and Gander

I started this post well over a month ago.  I have come back to it a couple time and added a few things, and taken away others.  I even debated clicking "publish".  I tend to ramble in a few spots, and for that I apologize. 

This may be something that I've made up in my own head, but often times I feel that my opinions are viewed as invalid, irrelevant, errant, or just plain wrong.  I've even been told I am ignorant, stupid, and crazy for believing the way I do.  "What kind of person are you to think that way?"

I was raised to always let the other person talk as much as I do, that their opinion is just as important as mine.  After all, it is an opinion (a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge).  In fact, quite often, by listening to the other person's point of view you may end up learning something, or at the very least, seeing the situation from a different perspective.  It can be a disservice to the other person to NOT express your opinion.  I had an argument with someone once who withheld their input on a very important decision that needed to be made even after multiple requests to chime in.  It wasn't until weeks later when he expressed his dislike of the outcome that I asked him why he didn't speak up.  His reasoning?  He didn't want to change anyone's mind and show how weak they were.  I explained that he wouldn't necessarily have changed anyone's mind, and definitely not because of any weakness, but he would have shared a different perspective and perhaps enlightened the others.  As it was, since he didn't give input he didn't have "skin in the game" and therefore couldn't really argue his displeasure in the outcome.  "I don't like how it turned out!"  "No?  Well, you should have said something when you were asked and before a decision was made.  It is too late now to change events."

To listen and hear both sides is not always easy.  I will be the first to admit that I have failed as much, if not more, than I have succeeded.  On the flip side, I know I have frustrated many different people multiple times from simply saying, "I hear what you are saying.  Have you considered looking at it from the other side?"

Over the years, and a lot more lately, I have attempted to stretch and express my opinion on more topics.  I try my darndest to be careful in my words so as to not be insulting, belittling, or over-inclusive.  Words such as "stupid", "ignorant", "asinine", "idiotic", "crazy" are just a small sampling of words I try to avoid, especially    All I expect is for the same respect be shown to me.  I don't believe that is too much to ask for.

It all boils down to mutual respect. 

"What's good for the Goose is good for the Gander."


  1. Because I've always found you so reasonable, warm, and easy to communicate with, I'm sorry you had an experience that motivated you to write this post. The world is not always made up of people who have their heads (and hearts) on straight:-)

  2. A perfect example of people coming to an issue from different places. I think your head is in the right place. Thanks for sharing.