Laughable Advice

Unless it’s raining, puddles are highly untrustworthy. I have no idea who or what made a specific puddle, but both of those answers are probably best left a mystery. I don’t think I want anyone to tell me the answer to those questions, and I certainly don’t want to conduct any personal investigation.

That was one lesson I learned at work this past week. Another lesson that I learned was that you should avoid laughing out loud at a joke you think of by yourself while you’re quietly walking behind someone you don’t know. Because if that person looks over their shoulder and sees it’s just you, you’re going to have to face some tough questions. Mainly, “What’s so funny?” If you say “nothing” because you’re embarrassed to tell them you just made yourself laugh out loud, then everyone leaves that situation feeling like the other person is judging them.

Throw that one in the “Lessons Learned the Hard Way” bucket…

Speaking of judging, I heard an interesting comment today. Someone said, “Everyone judges, but in return, everyone is being judged.” And I think that’s pretty accurate. From the moment we look at someone, we start judging them by picking out flaws or things that attract us to them. This may all happen before they say anything. If you turn around and see a guy who is 6’8″ standing behind you, you don’t think, “He must like dogs.” You think, “Damn, this dude is freakin huge.” I mean…he might like dogs. Typically, big things are really nice. Have you ever noticed how big dogs are usually the nicest? It’s the small dogs that are always barking and trying to bite everything.

Almost derailed there. Bringing it back to my original topic of unfairly judging others.

My whole life, people have been in relationships that I haven’t agreed with (My friends have said this about me too, and I would agree with them). And I would always try and help out friends who were struggling with relationships by providing some advice. Mainly because I thought I had some pretty good insight. Relationships aren’t that hard. They really boil down to Communication, Effort, and Appreciation. If two people have these things, then most of the time, the relationship will be successful. Except for the times when it isn’t. Compatibility and Passion are the oars that move the relationship boat out of Platonicville and onto Lovers Island. But some couples just vacation there, and some couples end up moving there for good. The problem is, advice can often confuse a vacationer, and that’s what I realized that I was doing. Any time I tried to play Matchmaker, I may have done more damage than good, and they overstayed their visit. Sometimes, an outcome is not a true indication of intention. But it’s still the outcome you live with regardless.

I’m entering a stage in life where some people are making relationships permanent via marriage. And while marriage is not always permanent, the intention behind it is. I’m having a difficult time voicing my opinion about these relationships to the individuals who are in them. I’ve always asked friends to tell if I’m going down a path that they see ending poorly for me. It’s not always easy, and I haven’t always listened to the advice, but I tried to see if from their point of view and know it’s coming from a good place. But what do you do when you know that advice may alienate a friend, resulting in severed ties? I’m sure there are people who have told a friend that their significant other sucks, and as a result, ended up cutting ties with that friend because the friend took it personally. But I don’t know if anyone ever left that situation saying, “Well, at least I got that off my chest” and felt good about it.

Realistically, what it comes down to is your own personal (and most likely, selfish) line of thinking that a friend’s significant other is not good enough for the friend you have love for. Basically, “You should end your relationship with this person because I would feel more comfortable knowing you MIGHT find someone who is good enough for you. Ditch this person that says they love you and you dearly love for the chance that you find someone I deem worthy.” It’s one thing if your friend is in a relationship that is physically, emotionally, or psychologically damaging. But if it’s more of a, “Well, I just think you can do better” type of thing, then I’m starting to realize I just need to try to be as supportive as possible.

And if something happens, then you just help them get back on their feet.

I guess that’s all for now. Just some personal reflections for today.

Thanks for reading.

– The Puddle Maker


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