Healthy Relationships: Correct vs. Accept (Part 1 of 4)

Greetings and welcome to my post. In this four part series, I want to continue to focus on helping you build healthy relationships. When we all participate in healthy relationships, then life goes well and we are all happier. But when we engage in unhealthy relationships and unhappy patterns, life does not go well and we are less happy or depressed.

In my last series, I asked you to focus on this question: Do you want to be right or do you want to pursue a love relationship? The focus of this question had to do with what is your intention when it comes to your most important and personal relationships. If your intention is to be right, you will seek ways to prove who is right and who is wrong. But when you choose a love relationship, you want to give up attempting to prove right and wrong and you want to pursue love.

So in this four part series, the focus is on answering this question: Do you want to correct people or do you want to pursue accepting one another? Let me begin in the first two parts focusing on this unhealthy decision of pursuing correcting one another.

How would you define correction? As a society, we view this word and language from attempting to correct something or someone who has done something wrong or who has made a mistake. When used as a verb, the focus is on removing an error or fault so that in the correction, it becomes true or accurate. To correct is done as an action to make or do something to reverse or fix that which is a mistake or not accurate.

Every day, or at least most days, we all use this device called a pencil. A pencil has on one end the lead to write and on the opposite end it has an eraser which applied to a lead writing, it can erase or get rid of what you wrote. A pencil has already built into this instrument both the ability to write and correct. To write is to use the lead, to correct is to use the eraser. I don’t know who created this instrument but it already assumed that one is going to make a mistake and it built in the device called an eraser to correct the lead mistake.

Now isn’t that interesting. There are very few things in life that has already built into it a system that is prepared to correct itself. As I am typing this, sure I have the tool and capacity to enter delete or backspace or get rid of or correct something I typed. As you know, the wise inventors who do create something can and should build something into the system to correct or erase or fix a potential problem done the line.

So when we think of relationships, we cannot apply this same thinking or application. But boy oh boy, do some people have as their intention to try and try to correct a person who makes a mistake. So you are in a relationship with someone and you make a mistake, brake a rule, don’t live up to an expectation, fail to do something right and the person who is affected by your mistake rushes in and tries to correct you.

Sure, as a parent when you are raising your children, you want to correct them when they do make a mistake because they don’t know or maybe they have not learned or practiced enough. But now you are twenty-eight years old and you are married to your spouse who has made a mistake due to overcooking the casserole or not getting home on time as he or she had said or getting a traffic ticket due to going too fast. So how do you as a spouse react? Do they see this as an opportunity to correct him or her? Do they see this as a chance to point out how they did not do something accurately and to point out their errors and find fault for the mistake they made?

How does it feel to always be looking over your shoulder for someone to pounce on you to point out you made a mistake, point out your error, and see this as a chance to find fault or blame you? Can you see if this happens over and over how much this can hurt a person and hurt the relationship? Can you see if the intention is to correct that only leads to the other person walking on eggshells out of fear that the other person is going to correct them if they make a mistake?

We live in a society today that for whatever reason is constantly looking for fault, asking questions and wanting answers when people make a mistake, and are looking for ways to connect the dots to come up with an explanation for how or why this or that happened. Our society has a low tolerance for mistakes.

But when we are out to correct a mistake in our most personal and important relationships, we are setting them up to fail. To correct someone is to remove love, safety and trust. When you correct, love, trust and acceptance goes out the window or leaves the house and all you have is a family or relationship that is based and grounded on correcting one another versus accepting one another. And when this happens over and over, than you are always feeling like a failure or unworthy to be with someone whose intention is to correct you. And this does not work!

The bottom line is this. Correcting people are people who are impatient and who do want to point out a mistake that leaves the other person feeling they have to justify themselves. A correcting person wants to know why, what, how, and who. They are like detectives looking for evidence that you made a mistake and they are out to correct you. Not the problem, but you. And that is why being we a correcting person hurts so much because they are not focused on problems, they are focused on you. Thanks for reading.