There are many times I hear the statment "No matter how flat a pancake, there are 2 sides of a story"
I cannot tell you how tired I am of hearing that. There are times when ..no matter how flat the pancake, there is a right and there is a wrong.
Abuse is wrong ...the other side of the pancake is to treat the person with respect, kindness and dignity. There is no in between, there is a right and a wrong.
Murder is wrong ... life is right.
Robbery is wrong ...respecting other's property is right.
I could go on, but you get the picture.
In the last 2 years I've come to the realization that giving excuses to someone for bad behavior keeps me stuck. I try to justify that other side of the pancake. To give the person the benifit of the doubt. I've given so much benifit of the doubt, that I learned to doubt myself.
I watched a friend go through a divorce while her child went through brain cancer and she was pregnant. I watched the father use the little girl with cancer as a pawn in custody case. I watched him taunt my friend by claiming the baby was not his. (it was, there was no doubt). I watched him bring his girlfriend to the funeral of this precious little girl. The divorce, wasn't final yet.
I watched all this and became totally frustrated for my friend. It's still going on, he's using the baby now to inflict pain on my friend.
In my nieces case, my sister called me, furious ..no FURIOUS that I'd not gotten 'the other side of the story' before I offered my niece a place to live. First, my niece was 22 years old, an adult. If she wanted to move out of her house and out on her own, I don't need another side of the story, my home is open ...to her and to her adult siblings. Second, I knew the other side of the story, I got it when my sister called me the day before I offered my home and asked me to "pray for R that she would come back under our umbrella of authority, stop rebelling and regain her salvation"
Um , my understanding of the Bible is that salvation comes through Christ, not through parents. I also do not believe that adult children are under any real authority of their parents. Respect, yes, honor yes, obedience??? They're adults, and they are accountable to God.
My nieces rebellion: holding hands with her boyfriend. Seriously. Her Godly, wonderful boyfriend. But they were committing 'sin as to witchcraft' (yes, exact quote). The affection between this young man and young woman was compared to the sexual sins in Roman's 1. My sister said "if you think that's ok, then you need to re read Roman's 1"
Um ... depravity, sacrificing sexual deviancy to idols, debauchery ... that's all in Romans 1, but affection between a young man and a young woman??? That's not in Romans 1.
I saw both sides, a right and a wrong. It's wrong to use the Bible as a weapon, it's incredibly wrong to use the Bible as a weapon against your own child.
In my own case, there was so much with my parents that I gave them the benifit of the doubt. "but they were busy" "they didn't see the forrest for the trees" I'd given them a dozen or more excuses over the years ... the reality is ...
there is a right way to treat a child ...and a wrong way.
Every parent makes mistakes. I've made more than I can even imagine. But, I did my best.
When you're so busy giving to someone else's children your best, that you don't even see your own child's issues ... that's wrong.
I have lost count of the issues that have come up in my adult life and had my mom or my dad say "well, we just didnt' see it"
They saw it in my sister, they saw it in my brother ..and got help for them. But for me ... they didn't see it.
There is a right and a wrong in lying about your life experiences as well ...and that lie ... that simple lie about my existance ..is at the very root of all the overlooking that happened to me.
I found out in March that my father is not my father.
It'd been the family rumor for years, but ... my mom?
The realization is ... she could not admit to her own wrong doing. Being married to a Baptist minister and getting pregnant by someone else was not acceptable behavior. So, deny it. Deny that it's anything but the Baptist minister.
For years, I thought he was just a jerk for walking out on her the day she told him she was pregnant. Now, I understand. Doesn't make it right that the secret was kept.
She still won't admit it, even with the evidence out there. I recently had to do a project for developmental psychology which included genetics of a family. It got me thinking ...blood type ... I was trying to make the father have a certain blood type ... but the family was different. It wouldn't work ...the scenerio I was trying.
So ... what blood type does my dad have. Sure enough ... he doesn't have a blood type that will match with mine.
Wasn't it possible in 1964 to type blood? If he did not think I was his, shouldn't he have just proved it wasn't true ... instead of keeping me in the middle of their war for 43 years.
The reality is ...he wasn't going to be allowed to see my sister if he proved the paternity of me. So, he tolerated having me around.
My problem with that is ...if you're going to accept the parentage, there is responsibility that comes with that. Adoption all the time gives children love they'd never get otherwise. .. it is possible to parent and love a child who is not yours.
The fact that he rejected me from the beginning and has made that rejection abundently clear over the 43, almost 44 years of my life ... this war was with my mother, not with me. I should have been left out of it.
I was a reminder to him of the betrayal....
To mom ... I was a reminder of her betrayal ...
and so ...they both did anything but to really LOOK at me.
No wonder I always felt like the odd man out of my family. I was.
There is more, but that will do for this post.
Right and wrong ... sometimes there just is no other side of the pancake. To flip it, means you've got the wrong side up.