Displacement…

October 30, 2010

Yesterday at our perm final, many of my fellow students brought in their mothers as models.  One girl in particular, who I often find annoying as she is constantly apologizing, brought in her mother as well.  I understand much better now, why this young woman is like a cowering animal most of the time.  Her mother was not nice to her.  Oh, she was sort of sick and sweet to everyone else, but as I was in the station next to them, I overheard many of the not-so-nice things she said to her daughter.  Small, digging statements to constantly undermine someone’s opinion, actions, or just their being-ness.  I felt sorry for my fellow student, and was very grateful for the fact that my mother never treated me in such a demeaning fashion.

Displacement is defined as:  “the redirection of an emotion or impulse from its original object (as an idea or person) to another”.

I’m guessing this mother is not a happy person, and pushes all her emotional upset onto her daughter.  Perhaps her mother did it to her.  Who knows??  Whatever the case, it’s being passed on…

What if we weren’t allowed to do that?  What if we followed the rule that if you don’t have something nice to say, you don’t say anything at all?  What if we all believed in the Golden Rule?  What if we weren’t snarky to our friends, our lovers, our kids, our parents?  What if we just allowed ourselves to feel what we feel when we are upset, and then took a grown-up time out before speaking?

As I work my way through cosmetology school, I find that I am seeing and hearing a lot of stories that tell the history of these women.  Sometimes these stories are sad and sometimes, even tragic.

Dad was right:  don’t judge someone until you’ve walked a mile in their mocassins.

And… thank you, Mom, for always being so loving and supportive.  I think I’ll pass that on…

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One Response to “Displacement…”

  1. Sara gretlein said

    Nicely said and wouldn’t it be nice if we could all follow that rule!

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