Have you ever been in the middle of a conversation or overheard a conversation and thought: “…how can she think like that!?”….
“All men are losers and drunks! They just treat us like dirt and have absolutely no respect for us!”…said Kathy.
“I swear that I will work to earn my living. I will be independent and have a life of my own. I will choose the man I marry. No one will choose for me. I will not allow it! Never!! Over my dead body!!”…. said Abel….
“Since I can remember I’ve dreamed of having a family life! Getting married, having children of my own, a dog. There’s no hope for me anymore. I’ll die alone” … said Yoko…
What you didn’t know was that….Kathy was the daughter of an abusive father, who got drunk every night, hit her mother until unconscious, and got into her bed until she left for college.
Abel was a Muslim girl, first generation of women to go to college, born in a culture where marriages are arranged and girls have to obey and honor their fathers wishes.
Yoko was a Korean lady who had had breast cancer, and carried a huge scar because of surgery. In her culture, women with scars are rejected by men, and society overall, and thus are doomed to live a lonely life.
We are a product of a combination of innate characteristics, culture, experiences, interests and events. All of which have shaped us to be, think and act in a certain way.
What’s interesting, is the fact that we already know how we think, and we have the choice to be curious about how and why other people think instead of trying to impose our own opinions on others.
Do you think you would be more open, understanding and compassionate if you knew Kathy’s, Abel’s and Yoko’s story BEFORE you heard their remarks?
Perhaps we should remember that every time we engage in a conversation with someone, it is precisely because we DON’T KNOW that person’s story that we should be more open and listen with our ears and with our heart.Solidarity amongst women is a very powerful thing. We can start activating it by listening to each other with respect.