Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog

Sometimes people see what they want to see and sometimes they only pay attention to what they are shown. Often times it’s six of one and 1/2 dozen of the other. In any combination it can seem as if the person we thought we knew has disappeared. This is true in all kinds of relationships from peers and colleagues to friends to relatives and even, or most importantly, significant others. The thing to keep in mind is that it’s probably less that they have morphed into some unrecognizable other and more that we just didn’t realize these other aspects of them exist.

We see this in people suffering from addictions. They steal, they lie, they do horrendous things and the people who love them declare “This isn’t them! This is the addiction.” Yes and no. This is them, a version of them that is enhanced and enforced by the addiction. It’s not pretty, but it’s real and has to be dealt with. This shows up for veterans as well. Who they were there isn’t someone else, it is them. They can’t sluff it off like the uniform or the weapons and war gear. It is a part of them which needs to be healed and integrated. It is a factor in the lives of children who were molested and adults who are raped. There is no “moving on” as if who they are now isn’t intimately connected with those moments which changed everything.

Who a person is incorporates all of their experiences, their needs, their gifts, the lessons they are learning and the choices they make. In for a penny, in for a pound as the saying goes. We don’t get to choose what parts of a person are truly them and which aren’t. We may want to because it suits our purposes, but in the end this only makes things harder on them and on us. Seeing them for who they are allows us to be honest with ourselves and make healthy choices. Sometimes the most honest choice is to say “Yep, that’s who they truly are” and let it go at that.