Last night Geekheart and I watched the video of this talk. It got me thinking a little bit about how often we as husbands, wives, and people, tend to speak unkindly to each other, and children, even in jest.
"Gosh," the husband says sarcastically, "Maybe if you weren't such a klutz you could make me dinner without spilling all over yourself!"
"You're such an idiot," says the wife, "I can't believe you didn't see that turn back there!"
"Kid! Why can't you do anything right? You're such a slacker!" says the irate parent to their child.
If you go pretty much anywhere, you'll find husbands and wives and parents all perpetrating pain on their loved ones. It's a difficult thing to honestly examine one's life and keep an eye out for the pain we cause. Most of the times we won't even see it, because we dismiss it as "oh, I'm just joking, and (s)he knows it."
The problem is that even if we know it's a joke, it doesn't make the words any kinder.
I think one of my favourite comics that sort-of deals with the subject is the Calvin and Hobbes where Calvin breaks his dad's binoculars. His dad starts yelling and screaming, and Calvin says, as near as I can recall, "Dad, here's an idea. Let's pretend I already feel bad enough and you don't need to rub it in anymore." I believe that most of us know when we make mistakes. We tend to feel bad about them. And at the very moment we need comfort from the ones we love, they get angry and disappointed with us.
It's not good for anyone. So let's resolve to speak kinder to those we love, and those who love us. I have a sneaking suspicion that we will find ourselves happier, and life will be a lot nicer.