Co-NNections Recovery Stories

Kindness, and how it’s misunderstood – February 25, 2020

Since I have been in CoDA my kindness is being met by all sorts of different responses and expectations and I must like myself enough to set boundaries when needed, but not in a mean way, or allowing the incident to cause me to withdraw and isolate. I need to learn to be ok with it no matter what, because changing from a caring to a hard, unkind person just isn’t in me. I just don’t want to allow these different events to disempower me and prompt me to retreat. So, learning to be aware about how my kindness is received and being ok with it is of great importance to me.

 It doesn’t matter if the experience is good or bad, or how strongly I feel about something, or how much I feel I’m in the right, that what I believe is the truth, because the other person feels equally that what they believe is the truth. They are entitled to believe their truth, and it doesn’t have to be the same as my truth. However, their truth does have to be respected, just as I would like them to respect my truth and my reasons for being kind.

My deepest desire is to stay open and loving and try to help other people and sometimes this is welcomed, sometimes expected or taken advantage of, and many times it’s met with suspicion regarding my motivation for being kind. I come from a place of loving kindness because I know what it is like to need help and be too afraid to ask, and I don’t want anyone else to feel this way. I don’t know why being kind is often looked upon with suspicion although I, too am guilty of this.

However, it hurts when I get rejected and I don’t understand why I’m being rejected because I didn’t really do anything wrong and this confuses me. When I was a child I never knew when or why I would be punished, so today it triggers me when nothing seems to make sense and what I consider to be common decency is frowned upon or scoffed at.

Kindness is a simple word with a whole lot of starch attached to it. It’s important for me to learn to realize if my kindness is being received in a positive or negative way and set the appropriate boundaries in the future. CoDA is teaching me how to do this so that I can continue to nurture this part of myself instead of retreating and hiding it away out of fear of misunderstandings.

There is an old adage, “You have to be cruel to be kind.” This has to be done in the right measure, so I am working on achieving a healthy balance with where, when and why and with whom I share my kindness.

Thank you for letting me share this with you.

In Peace and Loving Kindness,

Pamela W. – November 29th, 2019

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