To Say “Don’t Judge” IS Judging

Published April 17, 2015 by Maryanne

judge

I’ve noted in the past how much modern lingo annoys me, which is why I love watching television shows from the 1990s like “Beverly Hills 90210” and “Melrose Place” — the last time English language really was hip.

Over the past year, maybe a little longer, I’ve been hearing a phrase that makes me cringe: “Don’t judge.”

Other writers friends have agreed with me that it’s just so condescending. Oftentimes I feel like I’m walking on eggshells. Because in this day and age of everyone being in competition with each other, you are just not allowed to speak freely of what annoys you or it’s translated as “judging.”

The first time I heard this phrase, a client was sharing a quality about herself that wasn’t too attractive. And immediately afterwards said, “Don’t judge.”

I immediately felt belittled. (And as I always say, “To belittle is to BE LITTLE.” But a lot of people still have to learn this.) What did I do? I didn’t say anything? And who the hell are you to assume I’d be judging you?

I am the most open-minded person in the world and freely accept people as they are, as long as they are not breaking the law or hurting others — or themselves. I’ve always been of the live and let live mindset, which is probably why so many people share their secrets with me. They know that I understand that people make mistakes and that life isn’t always a bed of roses.

But if someone thinks of me as a friend and asks my opinion — he or she is going to get it. There are things I feel strongly about and the biggest one is to not put yourself in a complicated situation. That is when you definitely make your own misery.

For instance, if a woman wants true love and keeps dating someone who is obviously unavailable, I will tell her that she’s making a big mistake and wasting her life. Or if someone comes to me asking for my permission to cheat while they are in an unhappy marriage, I’m sorry, you’re not going to get it. Get out of your unhappy marriage first. Then you can do whatever you please.

It’s not a matter of morals, but a matter of common sense.

And if someone wants to “judge” me for what they feel is “judging” then it’s the pot calling the kettle black.

Can we please go back to having heart-to-heart discussions where we can learn and grow from each other without using hipster cliches like, “Don’t judge.” If someone is sharing something with you, hear him/her out first. Maybe you’ll learn something if you, yourself, “don’t judge.”

What do you think?

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