We all like to believe that we’re good people. That we have good intentions. That we’re doing the right thing. Oftentimes, however, our actions may exhibit otherwise. Despite believing our intentions were pure, even “good” people do “bad” things. Hurtful things. And hurting people we care about, whether it was intentional or not, is devastating to all parties involved.
When we do things that cause pain to the people we love, it may be our first instinct to do whatever we can to repair this damage. To make things right. To reconcile for our past mistakes. The most disheartening fact about this is that sometimes, the harder we try to clean up the messes we’ve made, the more people we hurt in the process. This is a life lesson I’ve learned the hard way recently. And it has led me to question my own character. How can we be doing the “right” thing if so many people are being hurt in the process?
The sad truth is that sometimes, what is best for us is not what other people want for themselves, or even what is best for them. This doesn’t mean that we should compromise our own desires for the sake of another’s happiness. But we must remind ourselves that some mistakes cannot be undone, per se, through the mere use of words. Apologizing time and time again when we continue to act against another person will do nothing but lead them to believe that we don’t mean what we say. That we are just spewing “BS” for the sake of clearing our own conscience.
Because of this, we must remind ourselves that, after having hurt people and leaving them feeling as though we don’t love them, whether or not this is true, all we can do is take a step back, allow time to heal them, and perhaps try again in the future. If the damage is irreparable, then simply loving them from a distance is all we can do. It’s a disheartening realization to come to, and it may often leave us feeling as though we have no control over how we affect others. But that’s not the case. We have control. We have the ability to reconcile for our past. It just isn’t always possible to do immediately, or through the simple offering of an apology.
We must remove ourselves from the situation, work on our own being, and show through our actions that we are doing everything we can to be different and better. Because, as I’ve been learning these days, silence is more conducive to healing than empty words are.