“Whenever you are about to find fault with someone, ask yourself the following question: What fault of mine most nearly resembles the one I am about to criticize?”
– Marcus Aurelius
When moving from Manipura tapas to Anahata tapas I noticed that I have one more strong addiction, which I didn’t realise before. I had it for years but only now I started to pay attention to it and realised how destructive it is for me and my relationships. Now, when I know, I decided to write about it and remove this from my life once and for all. Same as I did with the other negative habits and addictions I struggled with. What’s this addiction I’m talking about? It’s blaming.
When I was a kid, I remember my father coming back home after work. He was tired, overstimulated by interacting with many people every day and stressed because of the responsibility he had. Being jovial and very social at his work at home he was completely different. Becoming grumpy, unsociable and irritable. I never remember him playing with me. By just being a silly child or asking the “wrong” question I was making him angry. He used to shout at me, degrade me or even beat me. It was always my fault. Like I should feel guilty that he is punishing me in cruel, inadequate way – “See what you made me do.” My mum was also playing this game, telling me that father is tired and I shouldn’t disturb him was justifying that I just asked for being treated like that. And I just wanted attention from the person who was an important figure in my life. As this repeated through the years, me and my family started to avoid him and leave him alone. I remember all my childhood I hated when he was at home.
He was not blaming only me, but the whole family. His parents, his siblings, my brother, my mum, and her parents with whom we were living together in the same flat. Everyone was and very often still is guilty of villainous acts against him. His way of thinking, treating him in the different way he wants and not agreeing with him and his ideas. He came into conflict with the entire family, trying to impose the feeling of guilt on everyone.
Unfortunately, this blaming game is super easily learned by young children, so that it is easily passed on from generation to generation. I learned it very fast and started to play it since I became a teenager. It was the same way he learned it. From his parents who also played it like pros, manipulating each other to feel guilty all the time. I’m writing this not to put the blame on my father, because I became a blamer, but to describe the circumstances and mechanism of this addictive pattern. I believe he is just as much an unconscious victim of this compulsion as I’m.
Blame is simply the discharge of discomfort and pain. To blame is to feel or declare that (someone or something) is responsible for a fault or wrong. It’s assigning the responsibility for a bad or unfortunate situation or phenomenon to (someone or something). Blame is a defence mechanism. Whether you call it projection, denial, or displacement, blame helps you preserve your sense of self-esteem by avoiding awareness of your own flaws or failings. Blame is a tool we use when we’re in attack mode. Falling into the category of a destructive conflict resolution method, blame is a way to try to hurt others. It’s easier to blame someone else than to accept responsibility. There’s less effort involved in recognizing your contributions to a bad situation than in accepting the fact that you’re actually at fault, and changing so you don’t do it again.
Someone else must always be to blame. The blame game is irrational. It stigmatizes the other person. That’s why people overreact when things go wrong. It’s better to be a blamer, than to be blamed. Whoever gets the blame is less than he/ she was before the fault. Speed is crucial in winning this game. Blame is one-sided. It’s not about understanding what happened, but about making the other part responsible. In the end, no one wins the blame game. Blame creates biases. We accuse others to defend our position. Blaming is avoidance.
The biggest problem of this addictive game is that the person to whom we can expose the multiple grievances we accumulate is the person who is closest to us; the one we love – partner, child, parent. This person becomes the recipient of all of our accumulated rage at the injustice and imperfections of our lives. It is of course total absurdity to blame them. But this is to misunderstand the rules under which love operates. We simply cannot and therefore don’t usually get angry with the people who are really to blame for hurting us. Rather, we get angry with those whom we can be sure will tolerate us for blaming them.
What I do, to stop blaming? Working on my self-awareness. I put an extra effort on think before I’ll say something. I’m asking my-self what I’m going to say and asking my-self why I’m saying that. Especially if I speak with person who I used to blame a lot. I’m cultivating healthy mindset realising, it’s no-one’s fault, blame isn’t the issue. Seeing guilt in anyone won’t solve the problem. What matters is how we go forward and sort things out. I’m okay and you are okay. I remind my self that I love that person and the last thing I want to do is to keep hurting him or her.
Realising this I want to apologise all me beloved ones who I accused, prosecuted and blamed. None of you deserved for that. I wanted to say special apologise to my dear Charlena, who I believed, were blamed by me the most. I’m sincerely sorry sweetheart.
I also want here to forgive my father and send him my compassion. I wish him that he will realise this pattern in him and find will power to stop blaming others and enjoy the connection with them. He is a strong man, who already defeated a serious addiction in this lifetime. I believe he can win with this one too.
I wish all of you, who are reading this blog post, more self-awareness. To remind yourself every time you are going to blame someone, that it is not worth it and won’t lead you anywhere.