Getting your heart trampled and screwed over by someone you love or thought you loved. Common sense dictates that experiencing [insert shitty behavior/experience here] is good for you. Similar to spanking a child, is the following concept a completely foreign idea? Most people might already be on their way to being a decent, loving, empathetic person without sinister garbage happening to them. Or do those boring stories not make good lessons?
Why must we embrace the shit that terrible people spew at us? Why must we feel like we have to "use" what we "learned" in order to feel better and move on completely? What is with this inherent desire to turn look at empirically shitty behavior and try to decipher something good?
Being lied to, or fucked over or tricked in the game of love—these are painful but critical lessons on the path to personhood that tell you something about yourself. Becoming vulnerable and subsequently revising your self-conceptions are both essential components of falling in love.
I don't argue with any of this; I'm arguing that getting treated like shit is a very useful way to learn something about yourself. I certainly don't mean to pick on this article, but it echos a common sentiment in pop psychology: hitting rock bottom and getting the worst of the worst first before you can truly know yourself or experience something great.
Jesus Christ I hope that's not fucking true.
Why does a couple have to experience the loss of a child or infidelity or job loss or some other tragedy to have a stronger marriage? Why does an alcoholic have to suffer the worst of alcoholism before she can get help? Why does this person feel that nearing death made her a better person? Why is getting breast cancer the best way for some women be a better wife, mother, sister, and caregiver, according to this book?
What if something bad happens for no reason at all? Why can't we chalk some of this stuff up to people being selfish assholes or life-threatening diseases can be random?
Yes, it's shitty when life is traumatic and awful. But there's way too much sugarcoating. You don't need to have to have anything bad happen in order to get the most out of life or to learn a lesson about yourself or to broaden your expectations. When people treat you like shit or bad things do happen, it's okay to wallow in it. It's okay to actually blame another person for the transgressions he committed. It's okay to be mad about it too instead of drawing with crayons. That anger is okay to feel because it's genuine. It certainly beats pasting a fake smile on your face and telling people it's for the best when you don't mean any of it!
There is no one "correct" respond to anything life throws at us. But instead of having an intense and uncomfortable aversion to anger and resentment by always looking for the "lesson" in things, embrace what you truly feel — whatever that is.
I await the negative onslaught of anger in the comments.