Whose Fault is It?

It seems like I've run into a lot of (relatively) minor relational problems in the past two years. Perhaps that's natural considering the major changes I've gone through in the past 30 months--getting married, having a baby, moving to two different states in the US, and then three different cities in Korea, going through unemployment and job changes, finishing another year of seminary. Relationships are fragile things.

So, I waste an amazing amount of mental energy trying to correctly assign blame to myself and others. Whatever goes wrong, I wonder, "Is it me? Am I selfish,immature,weird,mean? Or is it them? Are they selfish,insensitive,psychotic?" Or I wonder, "If we're both to blame, than who is specifically responsible for what percentage of the blame? Is it 50/50? 70/30? 99/1?" So, my mind goes on like this and I wonder how much should I blame myself. I wonder how can I be sure that I am aware of my own faults. I wonder what to do and how to do it. If they're at fault, how can I forgive them and deal with it? If I'm at fault, how can I change? Good things to consider sometimes but not good to analyze all the time.

I'm weary now of thinking about what I should have done differently or what her motives might have been or whether he meant what he said. I certainly have all kinds of flaws, but unfortunately, I can't come up with anything concrete that I might be able to change. Maybe I'm so blind that I can't see myself clearly. But when people accuse me unexpectedly or (just as bad) ignore me for long periods of time, it throws me into a state of introspection. If I've offended someone, I don't object to being confronted with a specific thing. But to be confronted with a general degradation of my character, unembellished with a single specific example, is puzzling to me. It makes me very tired.

I'm tired of dealing with problems and tensions in relationships, but it seems that very few of my relationships have been spared recently. Is that because I'm worse than other people or because I happen to know a lot of bad people---opps! I'm rehashing it all again. And I am being a little facitious.

I found a great quote from Thomas a Kempis via Charity Grace.

"Until God ordains otherwise, a man ought to bear patiently whatever he cannot correct in himself and in others. . . Nevertheless, under such difficulties you should pray that God will consent to help you bear them calmly."

Good advice for me now. If there is something wrong with me, I sure as heck don't know exactly what it is or what to do about it. And if there is something wrong with the people whom I know, I can't do anything about that either.

**Yes, this post is purposefully vague. Sorry to leave out the juicy details! Probably if you knew, you would find it so trivial that it wouldn't be worth reading. But sometimes the small things hurt just as much as the large.

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