It’s been a week

Sometimes it’s not my story to tell, but I can share some of my feelpinions. I know my push for my sister to stay a couple of nights at the hospital may have caused different troubles, but I do believe that the time out and the more pressing need to make changes to how we all work with and around her to support her and her family are good things. It brings things to the surface, out in the open, to be discussed and people can do better.

I’ve learned to really like the assumptions of DBT

1. People are doing the best they can.
All people at any given point in time are doing the best they can.
2. People want to improve.
The common characteristic of all people is that they want to improve their lives and be happy.
3. People need to do better, try harder, and be more motivated to change.
The fact that people are doing the best they can, and want to do even better, does not mean
that these things are enough to solve the problem.
4. People may not have caused all of our own problems, but they have to solve them
anyway.
People have to change their own behavioural responses and alter their environment for their life to change.
5. New behaviour has to be learned in all relevant contexts. New behavioural skills have to be practiced in the situations where the skills are needed, not just in the situation where the skills are first learned.
6. All behaviours (actions, thoughts, emotions) are caused. There is always a cause or set of causes for our actions, thoughts, and emotions, even if we do not know what the causes are.
7. Figuring out and changing the causes of behaviour work better than judging and blaming.
Judging and blaming are easier, but if we want to create change in the world, we have to
change the chains of events that cause unwanted behaviours and events.

To assume that people are doing the best they can, given their skills, their resources, their background, their experiences. That even if you are hurt or confused by their actions, they did the best they could.  That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t try harder, to learn and grow, to be better at what they do. And I believe that for myself, I know I’ve done wrong by myself and by others in the past and will make mistakes in the future, but everything has a cause even the craziest of “Borderline” moments.

The framing of someone having done their best at any given time is useful when you apply it to, I don’t know, let’s say, your parents and how they parented you. The stuff they did well, the stuff they struggled with. Remembering they too were raised by parents who did things well and struggled with other things. But remembering that very few people are deliberately malicious, and even then we can apply the same framework to think about what skills, personality and resources they bring to the situation. True, they may lack empathy, and intend to hurt you, but there are reasons for that, even if it is that they are truly broken as a person and need to have changes to them or the things around them, or both, to have good outcomes for themselves and those who they might damage with their fucked-up-ness. Yes, there are true predators, and they should be away from those they seek to harm, but how that looks I don’t know. But that’s not most people. And most people are truly trying hard, even if they fall short of their own or our expectations and hopes of them.

I’ve wandered off with my thoughts. I’ve been trying to decide whether to attend my therapy appointment tomorrow. It’s a lot of travel, and I’m tired still from the week that’s been. But it may be good to have that hour to talk with someone external, someone without expectations of how I should have handled the week and the people around me in the week. I don’t know, I’ll decide in the morning. The train ride might be nice, even if I still have to pay full fare because they only resent my Opal card over the weekend.

Bruce made me laugh this morning. I asked him a question, and he replied “I’m just simping for my e-girl”.

less than three xx

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