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I Told You So

Is someone else always right at your expense?

Mike cringed inside. He stood waiting for the words he had heard so often in his life. "I told you so," his father said with a tight lip. His dad was furious, and Mike set his jaw, clenching his teeth. It would only be worse if he blurted out what he so wanted to say: "Yeah, you're always right! You're never wrong about anything!"

Once, just once, Mike wished he could prove his father wrong.

Mike's father had told him the car wasn't in good shape when he had bought it, but Mike really didn't care at the time. He just wanted the car. Halfway into his dad's lecture about why the car was a stupid idea, Mike had tuned him out. Somewhere between the explanation of the fuel system problems and the bald tires, Mike had stopped listening and started hoping—hoping this time his dad would be wrong.

Now Mike had to admit it: his father had been right about the fuel pump, though he really hadn't listened to what Mike was trying to tell him.

Mike knew the car wasn't perfect, but it was a good deal anyway. It might not have been the car his father would have chosen, but Mike was still happy with his choice, fuel system problems and all. No matter what Mike tried to say, his dad wouldn't listen. His dad was right about the car, and that was all there was to it.

Right or Wrong? We're All Plenty of Both

The person who is always right does allow other people to have differing opinions. If the other person is shown to be right, that is often met with a studied indifference—as if it wasn't that big a deal in the first place. However, if the other person is wrong, the failure is pointed out strongly and loudly.

Being around a person who is always right produces frustration and anger. Events are constantly being turned around in his or her favor. You begin to think there is no justice in the world, since the other person never has to admit his or her error. More important, you may also begin to believe that he or she has been right all along.

Realistically, no one is always right or always wrong. All of us are plenty of both. In healthy relationships, forgiveness is extended when someone is wrong and graciousness is shown when someone is right.

It's time to begin to reclaim the truth and put the lies to rest. As you think about the lies you have believed, think about the truth. What is the truth about you?

The Golden Rule

Most of the time words roll of our tongues without our thinking much about them. It's time to consider our words carefully—what we say and how we say it. Perhaps the Golden Rule has no greater application than in the realm of communication.

Internalize this statement:

"I will strive to speak to other people the way I wish to be spoken to—with kindness, respect, and consideration."

2013 Gregory L. Jantz, Hope and Healing From Emotional Abuse, Revell.