The other night I had an epiphany about the 'you need to grow a thicker skin' crowd.
You know those people who say hurtful things to to others and then tell them that they are 'too sensitive' when it affects them negatively?
They would tell you to 'grow up' and 'get a thicker skin'.
The irony is, those same people take an emotional knock if you turn the tables on them and are highly insulted when you tell them to take their own medicine.
My epiphany was that some people certainly are more sensitive than others but all of us are sensitive in different ways. Those who tease and belittle others are not as tough as they think, they are simply insensitive to the feelings of others.
I remember getting into an (unavoidable) fist fight with a fellow in school because I told him to stop being a jerk. He was making fun of a smaller fellow who had one or two quirks that made him bully bait.
This bigger fellow reckoned that he was helping the smaller fellow grow a thicker skin, yet when I told him to stop being a jerk, he got angry and said "who are you calling a jerk?". Next thing you know it was fists, dust and testosterone and friends breaking up the fight.
20 years later, I still see that nonsense everywhere, people being jerks and throwing the old 'just grow up' or 'you need to get a thicker skin' line after being insensitive or engaging in other forms of brainless thuggery.. Yet, when you confront them about it, they are just as sensitive as their victims.
If anyone needs to do 'growing up' it's the insensitive bunch who don't have the wisdom and foresight to seek first to understand before being understood. Words have a lot more power than we realize. With compliments and insults you can forge someone's future... We are all a lot more susceptible to influence than we like to think!
Manners... not difficult to have yet not easy to find!
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