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Letter to a Stalker, Abuser, Illegitimately Legalized Resident, Unregistered Sex Offender, Textbook Sociopath…and My Ex

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(Photo Credit: Jeremy Thomas)

 

This was not a part of my life that I wanted to share so openly or soon. However, my ex, as accurately characterized in the title, recently came into my radar by interacting w/one of my posts on FB. Before I get to the letter to him, a little background:

I met Adalberto Jose H. (aka “Alex”- the name he stole from his brother who was stuck in El Salvador when Adalberto snuck into the States) when I was 17 – just short a year of my brother’s death anniversary. The death catalyzed the journey of hell each person in my family would embark upon for the following 20 years, so at that point, it was still a raw wound, a perfect portal for infection.

I was sheltered, religious, and had to make sense of why our loving, happy family “deserved” such a thing. When Adalberto showed his first signs of stalking, which I didn’t understand at the time, I thought that his persistence meant that I should give him a chance. Maybe we were too close as a family – we never needed anyone else. Maybe we were stuck-up and didn’t even know it. Maybe this guy wouldn’t take no for an answer because he was my test to allow someone outside of my family in. That was the fatally flawed reasoning of a broken, confused, grieving, adolescent girl.

This then-illegal immigrant found out that I was an American citizen from our first conversation, and did not only start digging his claws into me to gain “papers” into this country, but he tried to “destroy my life” (his words, once he got legalized permanent residency through me) and threatened harm to my children whom he used as “anchor babies.”

I would not be his only victim
. He started having an affair with a Filipino high schooler, “Dee,” who had a pregnancy scare because of him at one point. She was 16; he was around 30 by that time. When I found out, I asked her sister to set up a meeting for me with Dee.

Dee was a small, young girl who was in love with this man who’d told her he was separated, and was married to a horrible, abusive person. When she found out I was nothing like what he’d said, she was confused. She told me he had instructed her to let me, essentially, unleash my fury on her when we met, to let me beat her, do whatever I wanted to her because I’d be mad. He was a coward who shielded himself with the innocent.  Because she was in love with him, she’d unhesitatingly agreed.

Of course, I never had any intention of harming her. She was a victim like I was, and I wanted her to think of her life and future, to not fall into the trap that I had.

Now, nearly 20 years after having left him, he shows up w/a week-old FB profile using a pic of himself and my kids when they were little as his profile picture, which he posted just a day before reaching out to me.

As much as I hate to admit something that I know would give him great pleasure, I freaked out. Part of it was trauma-memory, part was an understanding that this guy has not changed, in the worst ways.

When I’d escaped that relationship nearly 20 years ago—and it was an escape effort, carefully coordinated very much in the way Katie Holmes “escaped” Tom Cruise (whom, coincidentally, Adalberto had a man-crush on and wanted to be just like)—I’d discover that I’d entered a new chapter of fear. He could now hit-and-run. Worse, he’d use his legal paternal rights to harm me “in ways no one can see,” as he’d promised after the first time he got arrested for domestic violence towards me. (He’d kicked me because I wanted to leave. Before that, he’d given me a black eye – just in time for my final exam, for which I had to wear dark sunglasses, indoors, on a cloudy day. But he got a freebie with that one.)

The man had zero relationship with nor interest in the kids – he didn’t know their birthdays, nor favorite colors, nor anything anyone resembling a parent would care about. He never shopped for gifts for them, didn’t show up for holidays, never spent time with them unless his family/friends invited him to do something w/their kids. Even the small things were telling, such as how he’d use their displayed artwork as scrap paper, or how he’d give them the worst parts of food he was eating (i.e. inedible fat of meat that he was going to throw away). And these were while we were together.

Even still, after I’d escaped him, I tried to encourage a relationship with him and the kids—initially. He never wanted visitation, nor to pay child support. He would only call a week or two before each court date (which was months apart) to ask for them, for show. Everything he did that looked decent was for show – he was even capable of making real tears come out to persuade people of something he would be completely lying about.

The kids were never stupid – they knew who he was, and didn’t think of him as a father. They knew what love looked like, because they had me to see the extreme contrast.

At some point, a mother cannot continue to tell her children that what they see with their own eyes was unreliable, that their intuition on good or bad people cannot be trusted, that their mother is unable or unwilling to see the truth, as well. They knew Adalberto never cared about them. They were simply used as pawns to stay in America, and then to trap me through the system, abusing his legal paternity rights.

So I acknowledged their concerns, and we lived in fear. I knew that it brought him joy to see me afraid and suffering, so I appeased him with it more, to protect my children best I could.

20 years later, he’d seek out the woman he’d used, abused, and terrorized, flourishing pics of these innocent kids in his usual preposterously false narrative.

I could ignore him, sure. But he has not had enough, apparently, and I will not become small again, nor run away to allow him full rein in a country and world I helped open up for him.

I also hate bullies. It’s time.

I’M WRITING THIS for anyone who has been or is still in an abusive—physical, emotional, and/or psychological—relationship, and for their loved ones who understand—or don’t understand—and suffer and fear for them.

I’m writing this for my beautiful children, who are so good, courageous, and stronger than many—including themselves—may know.

I’m writing this for my friends, that they may get to know me better, and that I may get to know who they are better.

I’m writing this for those who have been hateful to me out of jealously from their own issues – not to feel sorry for me, but to hopefully give them insight into what has made them struggle with having an open, gracious heart.

I’m writing this for “Dee,” in hopes that she may finally see the value of women being there for one another, bearing witness, standing up and speaking up for each other.

I’m writing this for the Good in the world
, to help set it free and unbind it from shame, to place the spotlight onto the darkness and force it to be known, not only to bring awareness to others, but for its own sake.

Now, where were we, “’Berto”?

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

DEAR ADALBERTO/JOSE/”ALEX,”

STOP RIGHT THERE.

First, the girl you are looking for, the teenager who was lost and confused by her brother’s death,

– the one to whom you told you were 18 when you were 22 after she told  you she was 17,

– the one to whom you showed pictures of your ex and her mom and said were of your sister and your own mom,

– the one to whom you did not reveal that you were already married for “papers” in exchange for money with another woman, until you got this naïve girl pregnant and told her she needed to help you stay in this country through legalized marriage,

– the one whom you said caused her own brother’s death because she “was a bad person,”

– the one to whom you started openly being abusive and cheating on once she answered, “yes,” to your repeat question, “So no matter what, now, they can’t deport me?”

– the one to whom you said you could freely kill if she were in your country,

– the one to whom you admitted years later you kept trying to get her pregnant to “ruin” her body and make her life “very difficult” if she tried to escape,

– the one to whom you promised to harm without leaving marks anymore, because you were “smarter now,” and so started threatening to harm her through her children instead,

– the one whom you enjoyed scaring by jumping out from behind bushes after she’d left you,

– the one whose family and friends you’d try to move in on to slander her, when you never had a relationship with any of them prior,

– the one whose 14-year old brother you’d gotten to start smoking, and whose little high school girl friends you’d start proposing to give rides home,

– the one whose mother gave you a bird as a gift, which you later killed by snapping its neck with your bare hands and telling her later, laughing,

– the one who was so scared of you because she knew you were sick and evil, and knew you would hurt her in any way you felt you could get away with,

THAT girl is no longer here.

I am speaking on her behalf; let me introduce myself.

I AM THE ONE

who survived a family tragedy, a family’s destruction, betrayals of all kinds, and over a decade of physical and emotional abuse and threats to my children’s safety by a jackal of a man (that would be you);

who learned to recognize women who are going through abuse, men who are sociopaths and abusers,

who learned to distinguish between anger and grumpiness from beautiful hearts, and fake smiles and crocodile tears from ugly ones;

who learned to trust her instincts, speak up for others, fight for light in darkness, to beat darkness;

who has been guided, by a higher power, out of your clutches, and been protected by guardians of humanity on earth,

who walks in the company of many intelligent and strong individuals who would see through you as easily as she did and does, and who have no fear of you like she once did but doesn’t anymore,

who believes in the power of love, but will go to war for justice;

who will lead every unwitting victim, that dark souls like you seek to trick and trap, devour and devastate, to become a force of strength for good that will bring you your greatest fear: Justice & your day of reckoning.

YOU WERE A MAN WHO MANIPULATED A TEENAGE GIRL lost in mourning, statutorily raped her, and groomed her into being your baby-making, English-speaking scuttle-mouse slave.

IT DOESN’T MATTER that you grew up in a culture where beating and raping underaged girls was acceptable. You’ve told me the stories with pride. My ESL Salvadoran students have told me the stories with disgust. I’ve read blogs by Salvadoran women who have escaped, sharing the same stories, with anger and determination to bring awareness.

IT DOESN’T MATTER that you were always hungry to take from innocent, beautiful things, because you were an empty black hole which could not create its own light.

YOU WERE NOT INNOCENT. YOU KNEW IT WAS WRONG. You knew that here, in America, it is unacceptable, and quite illegal. In fact, much of what you’ve done while in this country, to me and others, have been illegal. You knew very well what you were doing, so you’ve always been careful about hiding it, lying frequently and effortlessly to everyone, including me (until you got your papers finalized).

You’ve only gotten arrested for 1 thing (while with me). And apparently, you’re still not locked up. You’ve been lucky, far, far beyond your worth.

But by reaching out to put “feelers” on me recently, you were basically STALKING a person who has had a protective order against you, whom you knew, under no uncertain terms, would have every reason to repel any form of contact by you, dangerously PUSHING YOUR LUCK.

You see, all those years I was imprisoned by you, I was weak and confused, not stupid. Back then, I thought if I showed you great kindness and love as I grew up knowing, you would become like me.

And you understood my efforts. You exploited them, because you had a different agenda.

Instead of appreciating me, you used my naïve goodness against me, trapping me with it, draining me of it. THAT’S WHAT SOCIOPATHS, PSYCHOPATHS, NARCISSISTS, PIMPS AND PEDOPHILES DO.

People have seen you around and reported to me in the past years. At almost 50, you are still creeping through the malls, hunting down young girls. You have a few kids with another woman now.

Yet, a week and a half ago, you tagged me on FB using a nearly 2 decade-old pic with my kids as your profile picture, which you posted THE DAY BEFORE reaching out to me, in an account you created just a week prior. No pics of you with your new kids.

This is very easy math, kiddo.

YOU ARE LIKE A PEDOPHILE who’s tracked down the little lost girl he’s molested before, and is trying to offer a lollipop on a string to entice her again. Except, she is a strong, grown woman now, she will never forget you molested her, and she knows you are still a pedophile.

WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN in such a situation, do you think? I can tell you: It will likely end badly for the pedophile. That naïve girl is gone. The woman in her stead has zero patience for bullshit and zero tolerance for bullies.

So, trying to pick up where you left off is a very, very bad idea.

You don’t deserve the opportunities and sanctuary of this country. You deserve to be put away in prison for a long time. DO NOT KEEP PUSHING YOUR LUCK.  Your days are numbered.

You need serious, long-term, professional psychological help and painful soul-searching (yes, you need to feel pain for the pain you’ve caused many, for any chance to heal and grow).

Finally, a bit of advice to heed forever, to help change the course of your life and who you are for the better:

CAUSE NO HARM:

DON’T IMPOSE,
DON’T DECEIVE,
DON’T VIOLATE.

Simply: Don’t do to others what they don’t want you to do to them.

(Hint:  If you want to hide it from your victims, the court, the law, or the public, it’s probably wrong to do. DON’T DO IT.)

You can begin practicing this with me:

RULE: ANYTHING PERSONALLY CONNECTED WITH ME IS OFF LIMITS TO YOU.

Yes, that includes MY children. They have a wonderful father—the only man they consider their father – the one who, since the beginning, loved them and treated them like a loving father would. And IT IS NOT YOU, for overwhelming reasons YOU caused.

So whatever you think you want from us, the answer is, “NO.”

NO. You cannot win them back.
NO. You cannot impose into their lives.
NO. You cannot trick or try or pretend you’re “just saying hi.”
NO. We owe you nothing.
NO. We do not want an apology, or any other excuse for contact.

YES. Any efforts to seek us out, get info about us, connect with us, are UNWANTED and will be considered stalking and harassment.
YES. I will fight back.
YES. My kids will fight back.
YES. I will have an army of capable people who will help us fight back.
YES. You will pay, with interest, this time.

Be very clear: The part of your life involving any part of me is OVER.

TURN AROUND, WALK AWAY.

This is not a negotiation.

YOU WERE MY TEST to help me become a stronger, more aware, more compassionate, more justice-driven human being.

If I’d failed my test, if I’d stayed with you, I would have probably died. I would not have been able to save my children, nor help many other people. Failing was not an option for me.

But also, if I’d failed, you would not have the chance to take YOUR test now:

I AM YOUR TEST to give you a chance to try to become a human being.

If you fail, YOUR LUCK WILL RUN OUT. I will not be shy, or soft, or scared, or alone: I will unzip the skies to unleash the countless bolts of karma tagged with your name. (You don’t want to fail this one.)

I PASSED MY TEST by WALKING AWAY.

YOU PASS YOUR TEST by DOING THE EXACT SAME THING: WALK AWAY.

THERE IS NO OTHER WAY.

The key to make this successful: Once you start walking, don’t look back.

GOOD LUCK. God help you, because if He doesn’t, He’ll be helping me.

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Everything You Need to Know About Scott Dinsmore

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 (Scott and his wife, Chelsea, at one of their many locations on their planned year-long trip around the world.)

 

I have a hard time writing this, my tribute to the late and great Scott Dinsmore, founder of Live Your Legend, leader of authenticity, instigator of passion and purpose.  It’s not because thinking about him makes me want to cry again – I’ve become proficient at writing between sobbing sessions this week. It’s not because of his long, heartfelt response to my last email to him, just a few weeks prior to his passing. It’s not because of all the wonderful truths about him in the thousands of messages, stories, poems, songs, videos, and articles that continue to pour into his tribute page.

I’m having a hard time writing this because:

1) I don’t feel worthy. I’m not family, nor a close friend, nor a colleague, nor someone he’s worked with. I’m not in his inner circle.

2) I’m afraid of messing up, of not doing justice to honor him with something as amazing as he was.

Despite these reasons, I know I have to say something; I’m so full-up with gratitude for him, because it is well-placed.

Even though I wasn’t in Scott’s close circle, he made me feel like I was. And apparently, he managed to do this to thousands of people all over the world. Testimony after testimony continue to show up on his tribute page from people who had never met him in person, but who were so impacted by his energy, spirit, and contributions, that they, too, were devastated by the news of his death last Saturday.

Why?

Because Scott was real. He was genuinely open to connect with everyone who reached out to him. He was also kind, patient, positive, humble, and thoughtful – as uncommonly a beautiful person and gentle spirit as you could imagine.

He was transparent. He had a bubbly, nervous energy sometimes, and he openly shared his vulnerabilities. He loved Taylor Swift, did handstands, and breakdanced for all to see. I was not in his inner circle, yet I knew these things.

Scott was intelligent. He was unassuming about his intelligence, but through his writing, online content, and how he packed his courses, you could tell the guy had a busy, analytical, sparkly brain.

He was also wise. Scott saw the big picture. He wanted to create a life of purpose through work that he loved, and one that would create space for more meaning and love in his life. He wanted to share this with others, as well, to change the world in the most powerful and igniting way – through the individual. To spread this quickly, while keeping the integrity of true human connection, he created the LYL community, with all the local communities run by their perspective volunteer hosts around the world.

He was a giver. Scott gave so much value on his website, in his posts, through his connections, presence, time – for FREE.  He wasn’t a nickle-n-dimer – he even had the LYL T-shirts made available for the community to purchase at cost. He was endlessly generous with his kindness, smile, and energy. He could have made a lot more money, but Scott was more about the vision he had for the good of the world.

He was a healer. Our society is so broken because of the many layers of disconnection. Scott was all about real, heartfelt, human connection. He managed to create this intimacy on a massive scale. For those of us who fortunately meandered towards his work of light, we were rewarded with fulfillment of this basic, yet sorely lacking, human need.

In this past week, members of the LYL community worldwide gathered together online to grieve and comfort each other. It was how I was able to fall apart completely, but then pull through faster than I imagined I could at the depth that I fell. The community was a sieve that I threw myself into through this period of grief, and came out the other side with greater love, clarity, connection, and purpose. This was Scott’s work.

Finally, and most importantly, Scott Dinsmore was unequivocally a good person. One of my favorite quotes that I’ve held close to heart all my life was the Q&A from a reader to advice columnist, Marilyn Vos Savant, for The Washington Post, way back when I was a kid:

          “Q: How do you tell between Good and Evil?
           MvS: You give it power.”

Scott had brains. He had charm. He had connections. He was in a position of power and influence. He could have only spoken or given real time to those who could amp up his career, but he treated every person like gold. He hoarded nothing, tried to help everyone have a leg up whenever possible, and responded to each connection with full engagement and exuberance.

This gift of thorough and authentic goodness is what makes Scott a legend. He is a leader by sheer example. I am so grateful to have been given the chance to know and connect with him at any capacity, because the fruit does not fall far from the tree, and every branch that Scott nurtured will bear fruit of the same light, joy, and healing that Scott’s spirit embodies.

“Even if you decide you want to stay off grid (and you deserve happiness in whatever form you choose), the seeds have been planted for so many people because of you….I want to thank you for keeping me inspired through your own greatness of simply being who you are. The stuff that has been coming out of that is bonus.”  (From my last email to Scott, just before he went off the grid.)

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Sensitivity 101 (Not a Touchy Subject)

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(Photo Credit: DeeAshley)

When someone says to me, “You’re too sensitive,” what I hear is: “I’m too lazy to try to understand your perspective, “ and/or, “The world revolves around my personal measuring stick, which is stumpy and marked by crayons.”

There is a difference between being sensitive (very cognizant and responsive to actual stimuli) and being touchy (negatively responsive to perceived stimuli):

Sensitive: Someone says your hair is ugly, so you cry.*

Touchy: Someone says your hair looks different, so you cry.

*(You’re not necessarily actually crying – just emotionally responsive with non-happy feelings.)

If you cannot tell the difference, you may be touchy, sensitivity-challenged, or both.

Being sensitive renders one open to feeling emotions quickly and strongly, and can be a powerful aid for things requiring intuition and innovation, such as business, sports, art, and inventions.

Being touchy is a useless exercise for everyone, including the touchy person. It is a defense tactic that can come across offensively, creating unnecessary discomfort for and disconnection from everyone around.

I grew up with parents who gave me an abundance of love and praise, which resulted in me having had a strong sense of security and a free, natural confidence. I was also very sheltered, and so assumed that everyone was like me: I met positive stimuli with optimism and energy. Without exposure to real pain until I was older, I didn’t realize until later in life how extremely sensitive I actually was.

The times I have been told I was “too sensitive” were by people who were raised without the care and attention that I was given. They were dismissive because they did not have a reference point for such things. The irony was that the same people often were very touchy, themselves.

The distinction between the two is an important one to be made, because modern society often looks at sensitive (easily emotionally evocable) people as weak. If the sensitive person is also animated and expressive, as touchy people tend to be when irritated, society looks at the sensitive as being unable to make sound judgments, because sensitive and touchy people are often clumped into the same group.

Some may argue that whether one is sensitive or touchy may be a matter of perspective, and so that it is a moot point to try to figure out who is which type. That viewpoint is dangerously incorrect, for it can eventually turn an otherwise sensitive person into a touchy one, or exacerbate the response or condition of an already touchy person.

DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS OF SENSITIVE PEOPLE

Following are the main qualities that separate the sensitive and the touchy. For those who recognize that they tend to get bristly easily, but don’t know how to approach triggers, pay special attention to the “Touchy Tips” at the end of each item.

1. SENSE OF CLARITY:

Sensitive people feel strongly but also see the big picture because they observe, or rather, absorb the world around them. They are naturally curious, and tend to be stocked with information because they constantly seek to satisfy their curiosity. They simply enjoy learning and understanding.

It can be said that touchy people also observe—like a hawk. They observe and analyze, but often to find “problems,” not solutions. They seek “proof” to support their negative decisions rather than amass info to make an informed one.

A great poster, created by bestselling author, Karen Salmansohn, perfectly illustrates this:

(Credit: Karen Salmansohn)

(Credit: Karen Salmansohn)

The general population senses the lack of clarity in a touchy person’s reactions, whose negative reactions are usually easy to see. This is why emotionally responsive people are generally not taken seriously. Unfortunately, this attitude is taken towards the expressive sensitive, as well, because we’re in a very connection-lazy society – people don’t take the time to really understand or care, so they dismiss or ignore.

Not only is this unfortunate for the sensitive individual, but the byproduct of this as a society is a perpetuation of disconnection. In prison, with hardened criminals, cases have shown that being put in isolation can literally make an inmate insane. Yet here we are, walking around by droves, disconnected, isolated – it is no wonder our society is riddled with mental illnesses!

Touchy Tip: The question of clarity is tricky because from the eye of the beholder, the view usually appears to be accurate. But as it goes with perspective, whatever you seek to see, you are more likely to find. To avoid this biased vision (which is like looking through a lens akin to a fun house mirror), seek truth instead of proof. This will require that you trade your tools of war for those of an explorer: open eyes, ears, and mind.

Relinquishment of pride or control is a mandatory prep for a space of clarity to settle in. This will take practice. Start now, and practice often.

2. SENSE OF SELF:

Sensitive people not only have a strong curiosity for the world around them, but they turn that curiosity inwards, as well. They want to understand who they are, why they are as they are, and how they can use this understanding to grow and improve as a human being.

Touchy people tend to limit their observations and analysis to the external world. They may know what they like and don’t like, but they do not spend much time investigating their own psyche, motives, and values. Because of this, and having an ironic mix of both deep insecurity and inflated ego, touchy people often assume to be experts on others while struggling with accountability. They are quick to identify how others are meeting their expectations (or not), but they are disconnected from their own roles in their disappointments.

Touchy Tip: Rap artist Ice-Cube sums it up: “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.” Is there any aspect about your life, including your history, relationships, characteristics, that you are ashamed of? How do you deal with those feelings of shame? How do you think people see you? How would you like people to see you? Are those images aligned? Answer those questions in detail, and then interview yourself candidly: Ask yourself hard questions and answer them as honestly and thoroughly as you can.

If you are just getting to know yourself, consider how much less you may actually know others. Keep this in mind the next time you get into an argument, and adjust your approach accordingly. You may discover that acknowledging your errors and imperfections to actually be a win that multiplies in returns.

3. SENSE OF JUSTICE:

Sensitive people have a strong need to for what is right and fair for all, because they have an innate sense of it. They do not want to wrong another person any less than they want to be wronged. In essence, they are sensitive for others as well as for themselves.

Therefore, in arguments, the sensitive person may be slower to respond to verbal attacks, as s/he is absorbing both the message and emotions that the speaker is projecting. They want to understand. This pause may be mistaken by the other person as the sensitive person’s admission to fault.

Touchy people are often immersed in an ego-centered world, so arguments for these people are less about mutual understanding or resolutions, and more about some form of “winning.” Most of the time, their winning is in the form of “being right,” and unfortunately, their conviction is one based on negative assumptions.

When a sensitive and a touchy person argue, it’s often a futile effort, as it is with most human connections where the give-and-take flows in only one direction. The sensitive person who is experienced with the touchy recognizes this, and will usually try to disengage from such situations.

This is not to say that sensitive people will not stand their ground. Where they feel something unjust or inhumane may be concerned, their sense of justice supersedes their usually peaceful nature. It is in situations where a disagreement is expressed with an agenda other than for clarity and resolution by the other party, that the sensitive will walk away.

Touchy Tip: In your next argument, ask yourself, “Why am I here? Am I in it to win it?” Unless you’re in a courtroom, if the answer is “yes,” game over – you are not there for the right reason, and it will show.

You probably want to be heard and your feelings to be considered, right? Guess what? So does the other person. So this has got to be a fair fight.

Try this:

1. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes – abandon yours for a minute. Listen for the message beyond their words, and try to feel what they are feeling.

2. Respond to them with what you’ve learned from having positioned yourself from their perspective. Don’t accuse first – ask for clarity, and describe your viewpoint as if you were a third person observing the situation.

3. Only after successfully attaining the prior 2 steps do you share your emotional response to the issue at that moment it impacted you.

If you commit to this exercise, you may discover, more and more, that things are not as dastardly as you believe them to be.

*     *     *

Nobody is absolutely 100% on either line of any group. A level-headed, insightful, thoughtful, just-minded, sensitive person may have moments or a situation that makes them touchy. This will be the exception for them, however, and most likely they will regret such incidents, (wo)man-up to it, and make any necessary amends.

The one-way hypersensitivity of touchy people, along with their lack of clarity, introspection, and sense of justice, make remorse and atonement illogical options to them. BUT, there is hope for them if they find that being touchy is no longer rewarding, even with all the “points” they have collected in their minds.

If the touchy commit to being more open, striving for truth above “proof,” they may find their position—in life as well as arguments–soften, maybe even change, and they need to know that this is OK. Gaining understanding is better than winning points anyways. Understanding can build bridges and lay foundations for growth, while “points” build walls and fund isolation, and all the points in the world won’t make anyone more powerful or happy.

The best thing that a touchy person can look forward to in becoming open to clarity is a new perspective on the world in which they live, one where the world is kinder, friendlier, and not out to get them, as formerly believed.

As for those who are still trying to figure out who they can call “too sensitive”: Put your measuring stick away before you hurt someone. In this, and other matters of the heart, size does matter, and your stump is showing.

 

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