"Accepting Criticism"

There’s this encounter with a feeling-close relative that still pops up my mind from time to time even if it was a long time ago. Since my mind keeps on replaying thoughts and imagining things I should’ve said or done, I’ll pick it apart again. There’s this notion that there is virtue in ‘accepting criticism’. But what if the person doing the criticizing… doesn’t really have a say on the matter? What if they have a version of you in their mind that isn’t really what you are and they have the gall of imposing their version of you in their heads? What if they don’t really know the details of your life for the years you haven’t even met? As if they know you better than you know yourself?

Another problem is since they’re the ones doing the criticizing, you should shut up and listen and just take it, and when you answer back and tell your side of the story they’ll call you defensive. If they are so open about their criticism, then why don’t they also accept my criticism that they should shut up about things they know nothing about? But… what made it all absurd was they seemed to be disregarding my experience. No Sir, I don’t think you know me. Those things, they happened to me. I own it. You can’t just condense it into assumptions and give me advice over things I’ve already solved by myself alone (and it wasn’t easy at all). Seems as if they want me to even thank them for it, that those were caused by my character flaws that they even suggested I change my entire, defective personality.

What they were talking about was the 'me’ they thought years ago. I’m not that person anymore. It’s like they’re disregarding all the changes in my life that they didn’t even ask about. Hell, you wouldn’t want to be remembered by the past, right? Especially when you’re doing other things now. Even Neil Armstrong once said that he doesn’t mind being always known as the first man on the moon, but he’s also been accomplishing other things since and after 1969… and a person wants to be known for his 'whole ledger’. If I were him I’d be sick of people only asking about the moon when I’m doing other, cooler stuff here on Earth now.

You know what they said when I didn’t accept their holy criticism? “Let your rage consume you.” Christ. I should’ve followed my instinct that I shouldn’t waste my time on people like this. I had wasted my time on them for the sake of being nice… next time, being true to what I feel,even if I come out as mean, is better for myself in the long run. I realized that they really didn’t care about me, they care only about themselves. I dislike assuming people, and I am careful now never to assume anything about anyone.

Accept criticism… but only from those who can be trusted.

Post a Comment