You're sad. Frustrated. Maybe a little angry.
Someone has deleted you from Facebook.
Unfollowed you on Twitter.
Unsubscribed from your blog.
Written you a letter saying how disappointed they are in you.
Left your church.
Distanced themselves from you.
This hurts even though you might act like it doesn't matter.
Doing what you were born to do.
What God made you to do.
What you're supposed to be doing.
What you were born to do upsets their apple cart in some way.
Makes them uneasy.
Threatens their comfort level or their status quo.
They rant or shut you out. Sometimes they do both in rapid succession.
Either way, you feel the pain.
The root of the problem is not the fact that you're doing what you were born to do, it's that they are insecure about it for some reason.
Mind if I share three things with you that might help if you're facing this?
Take a deep breath.
For me this comes in the form of a bike ride, or getting a cup of coffee and sitting down for a minute just to get quiet and think.
Get by yourself and just breathe and get your bearings. Sometimes you need to do that after somebody tries these immature and ridiculous tactics designed to get you to cease and desist with your God-given gifts.
Realize that you are not the root cause of people's backlash
Doing what you are born to do is always going to make somebody else uncomfortable.
I've found that often the people who lash out are those who have been too lazy to do what they're supposed to be doing, people who failed and gave up, people who lack the courage to try again, people who would rather criticize others than go for their dreams, and the list goes on.
There are also people who aren't healed who lash out. Hurting people hurt people!
Inevitably when I have opened up about my beliefs about adoption, somebody gets upset. Those who get maddest have often been those who have given up a baby, adopted a baby, had an abortion, have an adoptee in their family or work in the industry. (Yes, I said industry -- it's big business, don't let anybody fool you.) I know I said I wasn't going to write about adoption again, and I'm breaking my own rules here so let me go quickly to number 3...
The bottom line is, it's not you they are lashing out at. It's their own unhealed self that's the issue.
Remember the Tia's
Why are you speaking up about whatever it is that you're talking or writing about?
Why do you care?
What compels you to do this in the first place?
Who are you trying to reach?
Who are you actually helping?
Remember the people, the names, the faces.
They're worth it.
Last night after church a young lady we'll call Tia (not her real name) asked to speak to me privately. She shared with me some personal things she is going through at this time. Things not always easy to talk about. She said, "PD, can I just say that when you shared your thoughts this past week about some issues [things people actually de-friended me over] it changed my life/decisions forever? It gave me courage to talk to you tonight, and courage to get help and move forward in the right direction."
That's what it's about, friends. The Tia's of the world need you and me.
- Shake off the backlash
- Remember the Tia's