One of my major personality flaws is that, no matter how tolerant I pretend to be of differing views, I’m really not. Then again, who really is? We all have views–some more deeply engrained than others– so when we meet someone with a radically different view, we usually don’t even try to see their side, and if by chance we do, we obviously think our opinion is the right one. It wouldn’t be our opinion if we didn’t.
The above is why JChin and I clash so often. Our personalities are completely different, and her views on many of the issues which I hold near and dear are quite different from mine. For example:
Smoking: I find it completely and utterly repulsive while she does it and doesn’t plan to do too much to stop her kid from starting.
Gay marriage: she thinks the solution is to let gays have civil unions with all the same legal rights as marriage, and I firmly believe that separate but equal is never equal, and if you can’t call it by the same name, it doesn’t matter if the rest is technically the same.
Relationships: She and L fight ALL the time, but she says it’s “normal” for couples to have problems, whereas I think that while relationships do take work, when the work starts to feel like work and the bad times and stress outweigh the happiness, it’s time to leave, no matter how comfortable you might be.
Big business: I think it’s great, but she looks at it from the ‘people perspective’ and thinks it’s horrible, even though I don’t think it’s that bad from that pov either.
Motivation: I am extremely motivated. I will work for a large international company in the future and will always strive to do more, make more, be better, and never settle. She is happy as a clam at small LJB and has no plans for advancement. She blames her parents for not pushing her, but what’s stopping her now? And if she uses Ethan as an excuse one more time, I might smack her…..
That’s just the surface of our differing beliefs, but that’s enough of that bitching. The point of all this is that, as much as I hate being judged, I do judge people with views I think are completely, completely stupid (or just completely, completely wrong), but I try to keep my mouth shut and expect the same from them. It’s not my place to judge them, and it’s not their place to judge me.
Of course I have friends with opinions I don’t agree with–I’d be a very lonely person if I only associated with carbon copies of myself lol–but it’s much easier to get along the fewer the differences. I get along just swell with Kim and EK because I agree with them on almost everything I consider important. I can look past AC and Nat’s religiousness for the same reason. Emily’s naive whereas I’m fairly cynical, and I don’t understand her relationships, but we’re bffs because we mesh on other things, like motivation. It’s only when you interact with someone radically different that maintaining a friendship becomes a bit of a challenge…..