It’s time to let other people make mistakes. I once saw a quote that said:
“We have a tendency to want the other person to be a finished product while we give ourselves room to evolve.” T D Jakes
It hit me right in the goolies. So often in life we expect other people to know better and to be better but we give ourselves permission to make mistakes.
I was reminded of this quote over the weekend as I read a post on iVillage Australia from a woman about to marry who didn’t want that man’s son at their wedding. Before you get all up in arms, the woman actually thought her partner’s son wouldn’t want to go to the wedding and she wasn’t intending to have any other kids there.
I felt for her – she was a woman who was about to become a stepmother who clearly had no idea what it’s really going to be like. She hadn’t yet realised that when it comes to her partner’s son she really doesn’t get a say or, rather, her say does not count for as much as his parents’ opinions on what happens when it comes to him.
I do think she was wrong to ask that of her partner. It’s his wedding too.
What I think was worse, however, was the complete outpouring of name calling and hate that post received on Facebook – “selfish”, “horrible human being”, “I hope he realises the mistake he’s making”, “tell your fiancée, I bet there won’t be a wedding after that” and, worst of all, “I hope she never has any children of her own, she doesn’t deserve to be a mother”.
Look, the woman was wrong. She will look back, in time, and realise it was wrong to ask that of her partner, but that’s what happens in hindsight.
Are all the people condemning her perfect human beings who have never done anything they regret? I doubt it.
Why is it we expect other people to be perfect and never make mistakes, yet we don’t expect the same of ourselves? Why is it a snap moment of bad judgement can forever tar our opinion of others, but we expect to be forgiven for our past transgressions.
If I hadn’t learnt to forgive myself my mistakes, I would be sitting rocking back and forth in a corner somewhere, and I expect you would be there with me.
If I hadn’t been lucky enough to be forgiven by others, I would have no friends at all.
We are none of us perfect, and we must remember to be kind in our dealings with others.
Before you judge someone, walk a mile in their shoes. Then you’ll be a mile away… and you’ll have their shoes.
Have you ever made a mistake? Have you ever forgotten other people make mistakes too?