Long, convoluted story so don't even try to reconstruct the missing pieces. There are points to be made. Let's set the stage: I'm walking down a busy street littered with pedestrians in the clutches of a tall, older man whose gait is twice as long as mine. I have to double-step to keep up with his pace. He has my limp arm in his grasp and is sort of dragging me down the street. Onlookers are concerned since I appeared as if I was possibly being abducted. My body language said I was not a willing participant. His body language was demanding. He walked proudly, chin held high, with me in tow behind. I noticed a young couple across the street who wouldn't take their eyes off of me, as if asking if I needed help. I appreciate them so freakin much, btw!
I didn't feel threatened by this man. He was harmless, just strange. I looked at the couple and smiled to let them know I was okay. Then I started to laugh like a crazy person, trying so hard to hold back my giggles. This was insane! This man seemed totally unaware of the appearance of this scenario. I could hardly believe it! He was highly educated and held Ph.D.s in both law and psychology! He was wealthy and lived in a humble abode with dozens of bedrooms. He had excellent social skills and was cordial, sympathetic, and appropriately behaved (in most circumstances). Yet, somehow, he was still dragging me down the street, publicly displaying his pride in having caught such an exquisite object. I dunno, that's what he acted like, lol.
The absurdity of the scenario was laughable and I could barely hold back. He didn't catch on to my lack of reciprocation. He didn't catch my snickers. His energy never changed. He was simply doing what seemed like the natural and right thing to do for him. No indication that he understood my body language. No indication that his apathy might be construed as utterly wrong. Yet a Ph.D. in psychology? C'mon! I couldn't comprehend his behavior until I was recording a video earlier and talked it through until that key moment when I realized he must have experienced some childhood trauma that led him to behave this way.
Here's the thing... It's difficult to see inside ourselves sometimes. That's why we have mirrors, and certain people around us act as such. Some people have the awareness to say, "hey dude, what you're doing is wrong." Imo, those people are priceless!!! You know why?... They're so few and far between. It takes courage to say the unpopular things, the offensive things that can hurt feelings. In my experience, few people have that anymore. In my adult life, I can count how many people have actually corrected my behavior in some fashion which can only mean either, A. I'm fucken near-perfect (lol), or B. I've done wrong things but they haven't had the guts to tell me so. I'd take any language. It doesn't have to be verbal. Silence is a language. Body language speaks volumes! To some people, at least, lol.
Not to this guy. He kept telling me how he supported the Me Too movement, completely unaware of his own contradiction as if he was completely disassociated from his own behavior. So it got me wondering about hypocrisy. Perhaps people don't mean to come off as hypocritical. They just don't realize their missteps. It's up to the others who notice the offensive behavior to step up and say something. The delivery doesn't need to be rude or harsh, but it needs to be. It needs to be said or expressed in some fashion so the person can see the error of their ways. Overall, I'd paint this man as a decent human. I doubt he was faking his empathy for certain things. He was respectful and proper, as most upper-class Brits tend to be. Things didn't add up.
If I were to throw a dart at his issue, I'd say there was a distinct childhood memory buried inside him that is crying to get out and be addressed. When I brought to his attention his inappropriate behavior, I never heard from him again, as expected. They always want to kill the messenger :( It's too bad because I wasn't judging. I was simply informing. In the last twenty years, one person corrected me. Just sayin'. And I'm the fucken weirdo here because I was grateful for his correction. I didn't realize I had slipped. I was left unattended for too long, lol. If left unchecked, people will inevitably fall off cliffs left and right. We need each other. That's partly why being social is important.
Anyway, digging into childhood memories is a mighty task. To nutshell the process, first, one should acquire the necessary mental and emotional tools to embark on such a potentially dangerous journey. If they feel confident they won't get crushed by the weight of the debris they must sift through to arrive there, carry on I say! But, if they suspect there's too great a quantity of crap to overcome along the way, they should have a substantial friend keeping an eye on them in the background. Slippery slopes are everywhere and it's hard to catch them all. A trusted and insightful friend is a priceless commodity!
When you're embarking on a dendritic journey, it's easy to slip and fall or get lost in places like despair, fear, etc. It can be difficult to find your way out because the paths are so convoluted. When your ballsy friend is keeping tabs and isn't afraid to tell you when you've slipped into sensitive places and character flaws, the journey becomes much easier. Some of us are doomed to travel these roads alone. It's the risk we take to heal. Emotional healing is detrimental to our overall health. Who knew? I didn't see quite how closely entangled our physical state was with our emotional state. I thought it was just some zen jibberish or some psychobabble. Apparently, I missed a few pieces along the way. Where I come from, emotions weren't valued at all. No one gave a crap how I "felt" about anything. What a load to learn some things alone! What can I say, they built me hard.
Things make so much more sense now, lol. Anyway, find the tools you need. You'll need to educate yourself. Read. A lot. Find things that resonate with you. If they don't feel right, they're probably not right for you. Surround yourself with people who resonate with you. If they don't feel right, they're probably not right for you. When things are wrong for you, your brain will tell you by sending funny gut feelings. If you ignore those long enough, they'll present themselves as physical ailments. Hopefully, you're not too fucked by that point. Take it from me, since I've been in primarily wrong places my whole life, don't ignore yourself. You need you. All the parts of you. Except for gallbladders... apparently, you could live without those just fine, lol.
Moral of the story: all the education and/or money in the world isn't enough to heal you or to point out where you're broken. Only people can do that. If you're equipped, you can do it for yourself. If you're not, find yourself someone who can help you. Good luck, peeps! Take good care of yourselves.