Dec 1, 2011

50 The Lie 'Reflecting on an old saying' (Verbal Abuse)

“Stick and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me”
sticks & stonesThis is one of the most well intentioned lie perpetrated against children/youths by their well intentioned parents, relatives and guardians in the aim to motivate them to rise above negative name calling/verbal bashing. But let’s face it, “Stick and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me,” is a lie, it’s just simply... a BIG, OLD, STINKING lie. I guess in defence of parents, grandparents, guardians and mentors the world over they are/were doing the best they knew how with situations perhaps they did not have the answer to or were inadequately equipped to deal with. None the less well intentioned or not, it was and still is a LIE.
Work with me here, let me ask you this, how many of you carry the wounds of the past delivered in words like; “you are stupid,” “you worthless piece of shit,” “stupid bitch,” “stinking whore,” “you’re nothing/will be nothing and will amount to nothing,” or you are unfairly compared to a sibling or some other supposed ideal with words like, “why can’t you be more like,” etc., words wound, they may not break your bones but they very well can break your psyche. impact of wordsThose who have been recipients of verbal abuse in the past that have not been resolved unfortunately carry it through to adulthood impacting their present and informing their future. It resonates and poisons the self-worth and esteem. It can dictate how we treat others and how we view the world. Those negative bashings are as prevalent in the world today like the dreaded “N” word and all the other demoralizing debasing words used to demonize the “Other”/ “People of Colour”, differing creed and class, homosexuals, two-spirited peoples etc. Who is going to tell me that those nasty insidious words including that of racism and all the other isms never hurt? Who is going to say that some did not in fact have the consequence of broken bones or worst?
Each nasty destructive word is carved in the insides of a person, its weaves itself into ones thoughts, breath, hopes and dreams. it’s toxics remnants seep insidiously through the veins and melds with ones DNA. Words wielded destructively can deconstruct and negatively reconstruct the human psyche with dire consequences.
Carelessly delivered with malice intent words become weapons that have the power to start wars, end marriages, convince nations of their “imagined” inferiority and divide peoples among their selves. Words if not considered before utterance can devour a person, people, and nations. No one likes to be slighted, disregarded, or disrespected, so the next time you open your mouth to say something demeaning try and think of the consequences and intent of your words.
MINDFULNESS THOUGHT
It would be wise to remember that..."If you dish it out, you must be prepared to take it" because you may get a surprise retaliation to your verbal castration.
Question of the hour…
What’s you take on “Stick and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me?”
thanks jebelleami for the powerfully provocative photo

50 comments:

  1. I remember my parents saying that to me and I of course said it to my kids too but I know that it didn't help them anymore then it did me.

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    1. hmmmmm, i know, there is so much we tell our children that is passed on from generation to generation, many without full examination. This one being the top one parent tell there children as a sort of coping mechanism.

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  2. Sticks and stones do break your bones, but words can break your heart into pieces! It can even hurt more than stick and stones (not really though). What I mean is that...nowadays people are too quick to dish out their opinion without first processing in. Words can create immense damage to a human being. It can even lead to the point that some people get depressed from what someone said to them and leads to suicide in worst cases.

    Think before you speak...

    foreversweetlybroken.blogspot.com

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    1. Original Reply: December 1, 2011 at 11:04pm/Update due to blogger reply option added.
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      Exactly, that is the toxicity of verbal abuse, it is woven into the psyche and works its way into every breath while the person or persons who inflicted the damage is long gone.

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  3. Wow! that is some question you asked. Coming from a large poor family I do remember things that were said to me as a child. The hurt is still there when I think about it.

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    1. Yes! Such is the power of words, it is the reason for us to be more mindful of what we say and the tone in which we deliver said words.

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  4. I sooo agree. I have witnessed it and been on the receiving end of it. When I was raising my children I would work at catching them being good. Amazing results! We also had rule about hitting below the belt. Today I hope they remember these things.

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    1. Its wonderful that you not only had the awareness but that you were living consciously as to hold yourself accountable and break the pattern of verbal abuse. Good for you, I think they will in fact remember.

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  5. I well remember hurtful comments from my youth. None of them were racial ( I am sorry you had to endure that) but I still remember the humiliation.

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    1. Humiliation goes to the heart and soul of a person. We must all be mindful of the power of our words.

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  6. That is quite the lie that adults tell kids because it is so very untrue. Sticks and stones may break my bones – but the bones will heal. The hurts inflicted with words are sometimes there for a lifetime.
    And why is it as humans, if someone says something negative to or about us (you are stupid, etc.) we are pretty quick to believe them. But when it is something positive, it takes many repetitions before we even come close to buying into it, and those many positive repetitions can be undone with a single negative.

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    1. Reply: December 1, 2011 at 11:02 pm
      I guess we remember the negative because the hurt goes so deep it becomes entrenched.

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  7. "verbal castration" sounds very painful and I don’t even…oops! Very true. Harsh words indeed hurt and can have lasting detrimental effects on our psyches well into adulthood. Some things once said can never be taken back and sorry will NEVER heal that wound. Outright lies…don’t even get me started!

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    1. Original Reply: December 1, 2011 at 11:06pm/Update due to blogger reply option added.
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      That's my point, it is indeed painful and people must be more mindful of what they say and to whom they say it.

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  8. You know, from the first time I heard that I was puzzled, because I already knew words could hurt…
    I have never had one bone broken by a stick or a stone either.
    I agree it is a well meaning mantra, but how positive can a lie be?
    More better I say to give other’s truth, like…angry people hurt others and themselves, and best to not hurt yourself or others, grin and bear it, turn the other cheek, that sort of thing.
    You must be a very good HR person I would think, I am happy I came accross you.
    Hugs from me in Alaska

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  9. @Kuskulana hmmmm...true but there is an old saying "one can only teach what they know." So right or wrong, inadequate or inappropriate is the tools they had and its what they used. Now its our responsibility to do better since we know better.

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  10. It brings back so many things my mother had said to me when I was a kid. I did rise above it, but it also made me mindful never to say such things to my sons as they go older. I did not want to pass on the pain. Great blog.

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  11. @CC Gill Right on sistah, its not an easy task in practice because many times if you are not conscious we can live out what we know. Hats off to you for living in consciouness.

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  12. You’re absolutely correct here, Fab. Hurtful things spoken against us can carry far more power to destroy than many people realize –or are willing to admit. Especially when those hurtful words come from those who are supposed to protect us, or love us, or be on ‘our side’. I’d say, in all truth –painful words are much more damaging than the sticks or the stones. If you are actually hit with a stick, stone, or fist –there is physical evidence of the wrong against you. When your are demeaned, belittled, or in any other way "hit with words" this is not so. Add to that the ongoing replay "I can hear my father in my head…You’re an IDIOT! What is WRONG with you…" issue. Those words cut into a persons center –and so easily stay with them, doing more and more damage with each instance. I worked for a time with abused children. It was heart wrenching more than not —but I witnessed over and over how much more emotionally damaged the children were who had to lived with being screamed at, cursed at, or told they were good-for-nothing. I’ve really tried to focus on "saying the good stuff" over the past few years. I think we are all bombarded by so much negativity each day, that I just hoped it would help my family and friends, even in the smallest of ways. I’m afraid I have not been so good about it this last little while. Thank you for the reminder. May we all be mindful of our mouths’…

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  13. @Ellen hmmmm, I hear that and you are preaching to the choir girl. You are most welcome. I try to be mindful of my humanness and my tendency to fall in to patterns that is determental to my being.

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  14. It’s pleasure to see you ad thank you for your kind comments,
    Our written words are reflection of ourselves. Its sort of like a fingerprint to a person’s personality …
    that why before write the words to other people that make sure not hurts.
    I’m very careful to what says that before opend big mouthLOL! My mum told me when I was young, thank you mum.
    Have a great day,
    Michiko

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  15. @Michiko hmmmmm, beautifully said, "words, a fingerprint to a person’s personality." I like that and you are so right!

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  16. The words that one says can never be taken back. I have been learning it the hard way, and now I take care! :)

    Cheers!

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  17. @Trouble Learning from one's mistakes, that is one of the keys. Keep on keeping on, it sounds like you are on the right path.

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  18. I can’t speak to others that way. I would rather leave the area than say something harmful and malicious. And thank you for the visit. I truly appreciated it.

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    1. hmmmm, the beauty of exercising ones choices, walking away is certainly another way of dealing with things.

      you are welcome.

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  19. Yep, it sure is a big ‘ol stinking lie! Words do hurt more than getting a beating. The beating will leave you brusied, battered or broken for a moment, but the words, you hear for a lifetime!

    I guess we’ve all been programmed with this lie for "peace sake".

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  20. ………yeah..for me now, may be one breathe at a time. :Poh and on this saying, “Stick and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me”……………i kept trying to recall a verse from the Bible. eludes me but essence of which, i paraphrase: fear not the man who bleeds you but fear Him who after death can condemn you in eternity.

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  21. @Dawm Wow that is deep and powerful. Thank you for sharing.

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  22. Wow i was thinking of this exact thing just the other day. Of course I would not have said it so eloquently. You are dead on. Words have a more lasting effect than a broken bone. Because only in some instances do you find your broken bones not healing right. But a hurtful word can stay with you for years and years even for some taking it with them to their death bed.Wonderful and deep as usual Rhap.

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  23. @Wahzat hmmmmmm...you are right some do take it to their graves because it is the most challenging thing to purge from your system, body, mind and soul.

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  24. Sis you are so on point! I could not agree with you more! Words cut like a knife and leaves a lasting impression!

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  25. Hey Fabulicious,,,i liked your message. In your pics,there are two guys,wearing ecuadorian or colombian t_shirts :):)

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    1. Thank you, exactly what pics were you referring to?

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  26. Can there be two opinions on this?It is indeed a lie.Hurtful words leave an indelible scar unlike the other physical wounds that disappear over a period of time.There is no place for slight or insult in human relations

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  27. words can break what sticks and stones cant break.
    somebody once told me im hopeless(in a bad way), im sure she forgot but i always remember everytime i see her. physical wounds can heal easily and most times we forget but the wounds inflicted by words are sometimes forever

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  28. @KParthasarathi There can be as many opinion on the subject as there are people in the world. AS we all see, feel and interpret things differently. None the less works do a lot of damage and we should be mindful how we dole them out.

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  29. @Luciano I am sorry she said that to you. The truth is you are not, we as human beings have hopeless moments but we are not hopeless.

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  30. For me, words are very powerful. This cliche is very far from the truth as words break a lot of people. More than physical abuse in some cases.

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    1. Absolutely, it is why we need to keep these knowledges upper most in our minds when we interact with others.

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  31. Yeah you are so right! words hurt and carry scars that never disappear I remember being called "Fatty" and "Fatso" while in school. It has damaged my self worth so much that at one time I considered myself extremely ugly and even today neither the mirror nor my husband, friends and family can reassure me

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  32. I have always wondered about that saying, because it is so not true, its not true at all..

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    1. No it is not. How many lies we have been told, told ourselves and our children as a way to cope with difficult situations? While we cannot undo what once was said to us, what we have said to others, we can do differently now that we know better.

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  33. I used to always teach my first graders just how painful words can be and the power they have to make the world a better place by choosing kind and gentle words and actions.

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  34. Physical wounds eventually heal, some leave scars others don't.

    Words leave scars that neither heal nor do they eventually fade away. They are always present...below the surface... waiting to be dealt with.

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  35. @Meera Sundararajan Oh i remember those names Fatty and fatso not flattering at all.

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  36. @Kay hmmmm, thats commendable, lets hope your teachings took.

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  37. @dellgirl ain't that the truth though? Beautifully said.

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You Are Enough. Right here, Right now, In this moment, YOU. ARE. ENOUGH!

By All Means Speak Your Mind. However, Please Observe These 3 Basic Rules.

1. No form of abuse is allowed, everyone is entitled to their point of view (pov) as we all see and articulate the world differently, be respectful and speak without offending.

2. Please stay on the topic of discussion

3. Agree to Disagree

So what say you?

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