That's a good question to ponder. I guess it's because I sometimes feel like I deserve all of the crap headed in my direction, while I like sticking up for people. It's more of a "me" issue because of my lack of self confidence and I try and make up for it with compassion. But I will say that I turn into a completely different person when I'm defending someone. I feel as if I'm sticking up for mankind, you know? I guess it's something to work on.
I had quite a few run-ins with a douchebag from my old high school. He'd pick on this one girl in our gym class who seemed to be mentally handicapped. I don't think I've ever felt so much hostility and disdain towards a person to that degree before. It was just sickening, and our gym teacher would never do anything about it because I couldn't 'prove it'.
Good question, indeed. I don't necessarily think that I deserve the things said to me but it seems that there's at least some truth in everything that comes my way. So, I start processing it and while doing so, defending myself is the last thing on my mind.
Sometimes it's more like obstructionism, when confronted with something and I'm "pressured" to defend myself. It's like I have to put things on hold because I have to look at them from multiple aspects, consider all the data, myself, the person who is "attacking" me, evaluate the situation and the evidence the other party presents, is it even anything relevant and whatnot. I need time to think things through and reach a decision on whether it's even a situation where I should defend myself or how to go about doing that. And that can be interpreted as being submissive and unable to defend myself. Most of the time I simply choose that it's not worth the effort because the situation is absolutely ridiculous and I'm above that already. I walk away.
But with defending others it's like a black and white scenario, there is not so much getting lost in the processing of the data but a strong need to act. I "feel" the need to stand up for those in need. And it's not that they can't do it for themselves, it's more like a unified front against the "evil".
It's a curious thing. Like what was already mentioned, I think I either feel that defending myself is either not worth the grief (although it'll bother me for the rest of the day) or that I just don't really feel like I'm worth defending. I don't know what it us about defending others. Maybe it feels good to show others that you're on their side, that you know what's happening is wrong and that standing by and watching is just unbarable.
I'd always be really shaken up after confrontations like that.
... Whatever happened to dueling over something? XD