Six years ago in the post above, I asked about knowing when the time is right to challenge someone who routinely says things you find offensive. I'm obliged to admit that remaining reasonable with the person I had in mind when writing that post has become more difficult for me over the years. I have largely failed to go high when this person goes low.
A common sense definition of insanity is doing the same thing the same way over and over again and expecting different results. More than a few times, I've tried examining this troublesome relationship to assess how successful I've been attempting different things in different ways. On the days I think I've been successful, that feeling leads me to hope the next face-to-face will be civil. But as soon as ugly words or offensive statements are made, things deteriorate. My challenges sound shrill; my silences shame me. End result: I walk away liking myself less.
Then I immediately adjust my expectations for the next encounter, and start planning different things to be done different ways. Is this loop familiar to any of you? If so, I'd welcome hearing strategies for escaping it. Because as chagrined as I am by my failure, remaining mired in this muck for another six years would be really pathetic.