The Upside Of Criticism And Negativity

This is in response to the comments on Weighing Negativity. Because, hey. Life in not a marshmallow.

 

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The Upside Of Criticism And Negativity — 28 Comments

  1. Interesting Elsa. I remember once, in a rare instance when I was leaning on my brother for emotional support, I cried out, why me? And he replied softly, why not you? And it was the soft delivery that hooked me. If he had snapped at me, I would have resisted. Delivery counts when you’re offering someone a reality check.

  2. Just wanted to add, that usually when I offer someone a reality check, and they resist, I detach, detach, detach. If what they’re planning is going to impact me, I detach and then fortify myself. I feel gutless in that way, but hey..

  3. You may have pointed out one of the best reasons to get a consult from an astrologer — someone who doesn’t have a personal stake in your situation, and isn’t afraid to offend you like a friend might be… yet can see the dynamics involved.

  4. I am with you Elsa. “Nobody” wants to push, to take a stand, and …. grrr, someone’s gotta! Oh this comment isn’t gonna make me any friends, but SOMEONE has to give a fuck. *chuckle*

    To me it’s like working out, or learning a new skill. It takes a little bit of controlled damage to a muscle to build up new muscle. It takes aching legs to learn the tango. It’s just part of life.

    As I said on the prior, I am the reality check. This is my job, you dig? It’s what I do and what people depend on me to do.

    (Ahem. Can you tell I have Saturn?! LOL)

  5. I totally agree with you Elsa.

    I am fully aware that I also have to accept people telling me what they think, funny thing is that is the way I like it. I can disagree without using a rocket launcher to voice my dissent.

    I have always felt that withholding and allowing people to think you agree, is the same thing as a lie. I don’t profess to be the only one with the truth but when something quacks like a duck and everyone else hears the quacking as well as me,I would say that is likely a pretty good indication it is the truth.

    I am wondering though if maybe my lesson to learn, is to just turn away and let people I care about walk off the cliff if that is the path they choose, because being a reality checker can be damned depressing dealing with the fallout.

  6. “…can be damned depressing dealing with the fallout.”

    Yeah, Daemoness. And it is my feeling that the “fallout” is going to be much worse in the years ahead than it has been in the years past. (last 10 or 15). It’s just much less forgiving out there so when you wave your friend on their way the consequences of that may be stunning.

  7. I’m glad I don’t have a lot of Libra. I think it would totally stress me out if I felt compelled to bring balance & harmony to things I am very opiniionated about. It’s like, I can’t even conceive of worrying about whether or not something is balanced…I think it’s interesting to notice this which must show up in my chart somewhere.

    I do have my chart ruler in Libra, angular in the 7th house, but it is Neptune, it is retrograde, and it is opposed by Venus. But apparently that still is not enough!

  8. I guess you can say that I learn all my lessons the hard way.
    I used to listen to my friends all the time when it came to things…I listened to my Mum forever… I listened to my sister go back and forth and back and forth and back and forth with her kid’s Dad…I listened…I listened to my best friend while her boyfriend controlled the fuck out of her…I watched my roommate’s partner emotionally abuse her…I watched too many people to count struggling with addictions…
    I’m not kidding when I say I’ve tried every approach: softly, loudly, listening, ignoring, reality, what have you. The only thing that seems to work for this Saturn/Neptune/Venus gal–with Saturn sq. Mercury is a level of detachment.

    I believe that listening is an art. But I seem to attract people who are attempting to gain independence (Perhaps this is my South Node in Aries).

    On a different note, I listened long enough to a friend last night and I was her reality check (I’m not detached all the time, obviously, that’s too hard).
    Keeping in mind I watched her struggle with a mentally ill husband for years (he dumped her and their family when he was committed), then a boyfriend who treated her like shit for 4 more years.
    She’s started dating someone new and I said this (which made her laugh):
    “I’d tell him if he doesn’t feel like having sex, he shouldn’t lied and said he was really, really, into it, and then I’d email X and Y and tell them [these are both men] that they are cock-blocking, then I’d tell them to take a flying leap and I would delete all emails before reading them! And I’d call them squarebots to boot! Holy Bejeezus man, you think I want to waste another half decade along with your brilliance, youth, sexuality, intelligence, and vitality with some insecure dipshit who won’t even screw you properly? I CAN’T HANDLE IT!!!”

    Then I said “I can’t take this shit anymore I’m super irate, byyyye!”

    The great thing is she was laughing her head off at me, but here’s the clincher: she’s an Aquarius with Sagittarius thrown in! She’s going to do whatever the hell she wants anyway!

    GAH!!!!

  9. That’s a good point – sometimes it’s better to get a professional opinion. An objective third party that doesn’t have a conflict of interest. It can be hard to tell if the criticism or negativity offered by others is legitimate, a kick in the stomach, or just plain controlling. That line can be awfully blurry with different motivations for giving ‘advice’ for each person.

  10. Yeah, I’m one of the ones who said I’d stand by. But I think it depends on how crazy the situation might be …

    I mean, I had two friends over for dinner the other night, and I could see *very clearly* it wasn’t going to work with them. My friend is investing *everything* into this other person and this other person is just not really there for whatever reason.

    And it hurts cause I love my friend. But what can I say? And the thing is, he never asks me. (Just kind of complains and tells me stuff that’s a bit alarming.)

    I mean, yeah, I’m watching him suffer to some degree . . . but this is what he needs to do – his lesson – not mine.

    He once told me, years after the fact, that when I was sitting across from him with my new fiance he could see it wasn’t going to work (and it didn’t) but had he told me that at the time, I probably woulda flew through the roof (not really, but…)

    I had to go through each inch of that myself. And it wasn’t until I came out and asked advice – on this very blog – that I started changing. But before that I couldn’t have changed; I just wasn’t ready to until I’d actually lost my way so much I had to … ask for help.

    And that’s why I figure when people ask, they’re ready.

  11. Totally agree wth your last paragraph and last line, DC. When I was a practitioner I had to assist when asked. It was my job, and yes, by choice it was my job. To help them look at it from all angles was about the best I could do (too much Pisces to be very good at the tough love) (unless it’s a significant other as in boyfriend, those I always try to “fix” hahahaha snort hahahahahah snort hahahahahahah).

    Astrology is awesome and an entirely different matter, i think that people who call on you, Elsa, maybe sense that they are ready to hear something they don’t want to hear…kinda tough love astro-advice. I know that was they case whenever i have asked you anything.

  12. I have been thinking about this one, and I suppose it determines where a friendship/relationship has its boundaries. I mean I would not tell my sister she is letting her family down at a time when she is breaking her neck trying to make ends meet. Also, as I think someone else said it depends how it’s packaged. The old story of blaming the behaviour and not the person is something I try and keep in mind, especially when the situation gets emotional. Doesn’t always play out but at least I have it in mind (!)Writing a letter sometimes works and at least they have the option to burn it afterwards and there is a certain amount of saving face on both sides.

  13. Oh, Elsa, I was thinking you meant when the person was hurting him/her self only, not when they are hurting me and/or my family. If they are doing something that will hurt me or someone I love, I would never stand aside and let it happen.

    I have confronted my sister intensely, but not cuz she was jumping off a cliff. It was because she was being exceedingly rude and usurous toward my mother.

  14. I’ve confronted my sister on numerous occasions when she is about to jump off cliffs or like when she slapped our mother. . .I had really good delivery too. I wrote a letter. Very sensitive, but very detached.

    Well, not again will I talk to her about her big oopsies. No way. At least not for a very long while.

    That girl ripped my head off for interfering. Insulted me claiming I couldn’t possibly understand because of x,y, and z. And then she jumped off the cliff and took her kids with her. Didn’t call me for a year and a half.

    I’m sensitive, man. It takes so much for me to get the gumption and the balls to talk to them about their very personal business. I care so much about someone, invest like that. . .and then she jumps. I watch her fall.

    Futile.

    And she comes back a few years later. . .”You were right.”

    Really? ‘Cause it is not even satisfying to be right. It just kind of makes me sick to my stomach.

  15. I feel that sense of responsibility. I think some of my friends are “new souls”. I feel like it’s my responsibility to help them. It has nearly always bitten me in the ass. So I think it is my lesson to learn – to leave others to their own devices, even when they ask me what I think. Now I just have to decide which makes me feel worse, not saying what I think or being beaten up when I do.

  16. I understood the last post on this in a very specific way: how do you deal with someone who is deluding themselves, possibly manic, and going to do something that will cause no lasting harm? In that situation, I know it’s futile to try to keep them from going off the cliff and doing so only gets me hurt. I’ve been there and back so many times I’ve learned to detach.
    However, in a situation where there is a definite risk of harm, I will step in. Unequivicably. With doctors, and cops, and a commitment order if necessary. If someone is risking their life savings on a scam? Yup, I’ll be there with a metaphorical bitch-slap and a solid NO. But if it’s a bad idea that someone will eventually bounce back from with little to no harm, I let it lie. Hopefully, next time they’ll think twice and in the meantime I’ll save my sanity. Win-effen-win. ;)

    Who here has Libra? *raises hand*

  17. to many people in my life have told i can’t do things i am perfectly capable of, so i’m cautious of overstepping from what i see to where they are.

    but, on the converse, for example, i do my students a disservice if i don’t let them know when they’re making a misstep. i do, however, try to start where they are and move them forward by asking questions that will let them come to their own conclusions… sort of socratic teaching. i do that with my frieds, too… but i’m more than willing to recognize where my knowledge ends and their self awareness begins.

  18. I like your statement “the bill is coming due” and about landing on marshmellows.
    Maybe you would make a good “balif” in your realistic tougher perspective on this topic? (if that is really the case for you). When would saying or doing something about a friends decisions be “interfering” or smothering? Not letting them make their own mistakes? I guess each situation is different and best assessed that way. If my mate was going to buy an old jaguar car I would tell him he shouldn’t and several other things. But if he started a relationship with someone who I knew would be detrimental I wouldnt say anything. He wouldn’t listen to me anyway.

    k

  19. I was on hiatus when this first posted… And I have to say oh hell no, I’m NOT going to sit back and let a friend/family member/partner/whomever do something stupid/risky without speaking up. If they still want to do their thing after I’d said my bit, then ok… But I feel obligated to at least point it out when someone is about to make a mess. After all, you never know when someone is running blind and doesn’t see some crucial part of the picture.

    Of course, I’ve got Virgo rising and a Cap moon. Saturn and Virgo! lol

  20. I didn’t foresee the ditch my friend fell into. She had plans…sell the house, relocate the 4 kids (single mum)to a new state, new schools and a new job. It felt weird. Me and my kids were going to miss her. I couldn’t guage whether it as a good move or not. It was risky. It was exciting. After 6 months she fell into a hole… couldn’t find work to support her family, got into heaps of debt and go depressed. DAMN I wish I could have counselled her before she left…but no one has a crytsal ball. Do they? I wish I had.

  21. This is really hard and I just don’t know the answer at all. I had three relationships with men who weren’t right for me last year. The first one I finished and my best friend told me that if I hadn’t she would have ‘intervened’ as she felt he treated me so badly. The next one she finally ‘intervened’ with some information that mean’t that I pretty much had to finish it if I had any dignity. I wished she had told me earlier so we agreed – total honesty. The third time she was totally honest and I had to cut it off and was so angry with her because I didn’t want to. I think the key was that on all occasions I knew that she was right. What she thought resonated with me and so I did the right thing. Still in weak moments I can look back and feel cross though!

    The telling thing is that on all three occasions Elsa confirmed that things weren’t good from the astrological viewpoint and that of course didn’t bug me in the slightest – because I asked for that advice and I paid for it. No way I wasn’t going to listen!

  22. Bella, I hear ya. I’ve done some DUMB things for and with men, and no one has tried to stop me. It’s nice to have a supportive cheering section, but when those same people are later saying, “I never liked him anyway, he wasn’t good enough for you, I didn’t think it would work, etc,” I get pretty peeved. After a couple disasters, I told people point-blank, “If you think he’s a jerk, SAY SOMETHING!”

  23. I have Saturn conjunct Chiron in Pisces in 6th house, this is in a grand water Trine with Moon in 10th, Neptune in 2nd…plus I have a loaded 11th house with Venus in Virgo there… I constantly struggle to NOT tell people to beware or rethink stuff! I have learned the hard way and can advise from my own unhealed wounds (Chiron) but it is hard because then people think I am being negative. I am trying to point out the obsticals to help make choices wiser. That is why I love astrology because it gives me an outside medium to relate my own experience to anothers in a more clinical way, to keep it more about “what do you want in your life–these are the factors/weather report.”

  24. I wonder if telling someone that they are about to fall off a cliff and telling that person what to do is the same thing. In my opinion they aren’t the same thing.

    I wouldn’t tell a person what to do, but I think a friend sometimes should warn that person that “Look man, there’s a cliff there.” And then that person can decide if they want to hurt themselves or not (lol). I’m not going to tell that person to not jump off the cliff, but I will tell them there is a cliff.

  25. What about the “people are going to do whatever they want anyway?” And what do you do to follow up with the reality check? Is it like a sentence you speak or how do you go about continuing to support them? How do you do it without controlling them? A lot of people learn by hurting themselves.. But then again, telling them, you’ve done your duty.

    I’ve had some issues trying to control my friends to keep them from making mistakes. I’ve changed my approach a little. Like with a friend that refuses to go on medication and needs to… how much do you say? I told her I suggested it and she lashed out less because I said it mildly.

    How do you give the reality check so it sticks? So they actually do something about it? Or should you just let them know and not try to control them any further?

  26. Saturn in Virgo made me want to criticize and point out negative things in the hopes of getting people to pick more positive choices. It did not work at all, and it was completely the wrong approach.
    Usually, I look for the right moment or hopefully a receptive person to say something. Otherwise, I say nothing because it’s pointless. Yes, I have a Virgo Sun, Jupiter in Gemini in the 3rd house, and a ton of Sagittarius planets in the 10th house. So it’s hard for me to hold back from saying something. But I had to unfortunately learn that I have to hold back sometimes.

    As for me, I’m willing to listen to advice, but with a grain of salt. I also recognize that people are experts at some things, but not everything. That way, I will avoid asking questions they cannot answer.

    Elsa, I trust in your ability to analyze people’s souls, and I’m willing to listen to any advice that will help me do better in this lifetime.

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