Do We Have To Hurt People In Order To Grow Up?
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Do We Have To Hurt People In Order To Grow Up?

Sometimes it's inevitable.

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Do We Have To Hurt People In Order To Grow Up?
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I was re-watching the "How I Met Your Mother" season 1 finale the other day.

A few years ago when I watched it, I hated Lilly's decision to leave Marshall to "find herself" in San Fransisco. I thought it was one of the most selfish and careless things she could have done. At the time, I thought I would never hurt someone that much in order to "find myself". Coming back to that episode a few years later, I had a horrifying realization. I had hurt people while taking time to find myself. I don't think I did anything as extreme as Lilly did, but I certainly did some selfish things that hurt the people closest to me.

After feeling guilty about that for a while, I began to think about all my choices that were selfish and probably hurtful. The choices I made were necessary for me to find my own path. Some of them I knew would be hurtful, and some I had no idea that they would hurt people. I would argue that we have to make the difficult choices in order to find our purpose in life. I am not entirely comfortable with the idea that the people we love have to suffer until we figure out who we are supposed to be though.

Something I have been struggling with lately is the line between selfishness and self preservation. I don't think it is a clear line at all, and probably differs from person to person. My favorite analogy to understand the line is the oxygen masks that fall down in emergencies in airplanes. The flight attendants always tell the adults to put on their masks first, and then help their children with their masks. The parents first instinct is to help the child first, but in extreme cases, the parent could suffocate while trying to put the child's mask on if they don't have one on already. The thing is though, I would feel terrible if I put my mask on and then the child suffocated in that time. I would rather die trying to put the child's mask on than have my child die while I put my mask on. But that could lead to both of us suffocating. It is not an easy situation, and I think it's similar to trying to make choices that lead you to find yourself and won't end in those you love getting hurt.

So - do you have to hurt people in order to grow up? I think it depends. I think it is inevitable that people who love you get hurt. We all make mistakes, we cannot be perfect all the time. If you end up hurting them, I guess all you can do is hope they forgive you later.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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