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Can we tell others they are wrong?

Walk In Dry Places
October 9, 2010
Can we tell others they are wrong?

As we become more sensitive to others, we soon learn that it’s very difficult to tell another person he or she is wrong. Even when we struggle to be kind and diplomatic, we can provoke an angry reaction.

We should not be surprised, because showing people they’re wrong is one of the most difficult things in human experience. Few people like to be told that they’re wrong, as we can see when our wrongs are advertised to others.

There is almost no way to directly tell people they’re wrong without hurting or offending the. Furthermore, if they are hurt or offended, they might feel less inclined to work to correct their behavior.

If we’ve taken the 12 Step principles to heart, however, we learn first that we are usually not required to tell anybody that he or she is wrong.  But we can help people simply by relating accounts of situations when we were wrong and what we did to change. If done properly, this gives the other person the opportunity to change without feeling resentment or humiliation.

I’ll try to be as sensitive as possible to the feelings of others. I’ll be especially careful about trying to show them that they’re wrong.

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