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  1. #1
    Senior Member Nonsensical's Avatar
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    Default Telling others what is right or wrong

    I've kind of stumbled with this recently..I'm not so sure what I think about it.

    I guess my question is..is right for you to tell a person, say a close friend, whether something is right or wrong? Is it right for us to have that jurasdiction? Sometimes I don't know whether or not I should be trying to control a person out of a bad situation or let them make their own decisions whilst providing them with my opinions regarding it.

    So..should we direct others in these situations and make them believe that what they're doing is wrong? or should we realize that every person is an individual and can/should make their own decisions.
    Is it that by its indefiniteness it shadows forth the heartless voids and immensities of the universe, and thus stabs us from behind with the thought of annihilation, when beholding the white depths of the milky way?

  2. #2

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    I never tell my friends that they're wrong- I've come to learn that most people believe that they're right and will choose to justify and rationalize their perspective regardless of the input of others, and the only thing you're going to get out of it is resentment and bitterness.

    What I do instead is to play the role of the ignorant yet curious innocent-bystander. "Why are you doing what you're doing? What makes you think it's a good idea? What about all the potential misgivings? Wow, are you sure? How are you going to deal with the consequences? How do you live with yourself? Do you think it might be a better idea to do X instead?"

    The idea is to get them unsettled and uncomfortable with themselves and their position, so that they naturally end up shifting towards a preferable one without our (overt) interference. Don't tell them that they're wrong- subtly show it to them (without them realising your intentions), and let them see it for themselves. If they go down the "oh dear, I don't know anymore" route, you can offer gentle suggestions- they will be open to your influences at this point.

    If you've made them see with their own eyes that they're doing something wrong, and yet they still choose to do so out of stubbornness, evaluate your position. If you do not require their friendship, you might want to look for new friends. If this is not a possibility, be silently neutral with subtle disapproval, with respect for the choice that they make. They will turn to you when faced with the consequences. Be magnanimous, and they will listen to you from then on.
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  3. #3
    mod love baby... Lady_X's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OneWithSoul View Post
    I've kind of stumbled with this recently..I'm not so sure what I think about it.

    I guess my question is..is right for you to tell a person, say a close friend, whether something is right or wrong? Is it right for us to have that jurasdiction? Sometimes I don't know whether or not I should be trying to control a person out of a bad situation or let them make their own decisions whilst providing them with my opinions regarding it.

    So..should we direct others in these situations and make them believe that what they're doing is wrong? or should we realize that every person is an individual and can/should make their own decisions.
    Good question..I personally despise that c word but I think friends and family should be honest with each other and express their views in a constrctive manner with intent of offering a different perspective and help them decide what's right for them but then back off once you have and let them make their own choices while still offering help if and when it's asked.
    There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.
    -Jim Morrison

  4. #4
    The High Priestess Amargith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady X View Post
    Good question..I personally despise that c word but I think friends and family should be honest with each other and express their views in a constrctive manner with intent of offering a different perspective and help them decide what's right for them but then back off once you have and let them make their own choices while still offering help if and when it's asked.
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  5. #5
    Boldly Gone Malice's Avatar
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    I think that there's no harm giving your opinion on the subject. If you are generally concerned for your friend, or your friend approaches you for advice, by all means warn them of whatever it is you feel could be a potentially bad decision/situation for them. But you also have to keep in mind too that there is a line between being helpful and being controlling - which [I also feel] is wrong.

    I had this issue recently when a close friend ('R') broke up with another friend ('C') of mine, the latter of which came crawling back four days later. I love them both, I really do, but I strongly felt that given the circumstances 'R' would be doing himself wrong by taking someone back that had treated him so carelessly. I consoled him and offered the advice I felt was in his best interest, but in the end he wound up taking 'C' back regardless.

    Was I a bit miffed that he had gone against my advice? Of course. But as his friend, and both their friend, I had to respect and realize that their intimate relationship is really none of my business. If they are happy, I am happy for their happiness. - Regardless if I feel they are truly right for one another or not. :P
    a little less conversation, a little more action please
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    Ghost Monkey Soul Vizconde's Avatar
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    I tend to keep quiet unless it crosses one of my core values or I own a particular person a higher duty of care. Too often people are so insecure that they 'kill the messenger' for any critique of their wrongdoings. In general I have noticed the following maxim is true

    "some people need to be told they are assholes. Others need to find out on their own."
    I redact everything I have written or will write on this forum prior to, subsequent with and or after the fact of its writing. For entertainment purposes only and not to be taken seriously nor literally.

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    Senior Member Nonsensical's Avatar
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    Hmm. all very good advice!

    I guess I naturally lean more towards letting them decide for themselves if something is wrong. It can sometimes really piss me off when I see someone try to control another over a situation.
    Is it that by its indefiniteness it shadows forth the heartless voids and immensities of the universe, and thus stabs us from behind with the thought of annihilation, when beholding the white depths of the milky way?

  8. #8
    Twerking & Lurking ayoitsStepho's Avatar
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    I fully believe you need to let them know what they're doing is right or wrong. I don't think it has anything to do with control if you really care for the well being of the other person. But I also don't think they shouldn't be bugged continuously about it. Tell them, then back off. In the end it has to be their own choice.

    I actually don't see why people get so defensive or offended by someone reminding them that something is right or wrong. Personally, I've had a few times where I wish someone would have come in and reminded me that what I'm about to do is wrong, to kinda let me know what the harm was of a decision. To me, it shows that someone cares about you enough to let you know. If they didn't care, they wouldn't tell you because they don't care about where you end up.
    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
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  9. #9
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Hell yes! In fact, I'll say that to qualify as a friend, you had better tell me when you think I'm about to do something or am doing something wrong. It would concientious to let that slide for someone you are supposedly loyal to.

    I can't see merely telling someone your position being too controlling.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    If I think they are doing something unwise, I try to advise them (and I don't always resist the temptation to tell them 'I told you so' when they don't listen.) so that they can avoid negative consequences.

    On moral stuff, most of my friends are actually pretty moral or are making their best effort to be. I may put things in a different perspective for them and point out likely consequences, but that's about it.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

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