The Blame Game and Why It Destroys Relationships

The most frequently asked question in any personal argument: Whose fault is it?

The short answer: Everyone’s. Every person who has had anything to do with a situation has some fault in how things turned out. There is no single cause and effect. There are many.

So asking “whose fault” it is is not productive in resolving a situation.

Some may disagree. Some say that by determining to whom the fault may be laid, that is the person the hurt party may receive compensation in exchange for the damage dealt.

But in the case of disagreements in personal relationships, damage is dealt to every party. There is no clear aggressor and defender. Every person had a purpose and a need, and they acted upon it.

It’s when we forget this that we forget to empathize. We think only of the hurts dealt to ourselves and ignore the other’s original intention.

So next time you find yourself feeling resentful and angry with your partner, your friend, your family for something THEY have done to YOU, think first: why did they do it? Was it intentional? And will it be productive to accuse them of hurting you on purpose?

No, chances are, the other person becomes defensive and they start counting off in their head all the wrongs that YOU’VE dealt THEM. Invariably they’ll try to defend themselves with something like, “but what about that time you…”

What follows then is your utter disbelieve that this person would have the AUDACITY to blame YOU for something THEY did… and on and on it would go.

So instead of going down that road, next time, just take a minute and think: did the other person mean to hurt you? No? Okay. Talk to them about why you are hurt. Acknowledge that they meant no harm. Ask them to try avoid stepping on your toes next time. If there is confusion? Well. Talk, rinse, repeat.

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