It’s amazing to me how relationships between humans work. A human being’s psyche is so complex but a relationship (mother/daughter, mother/son, boyfriend/girlfriend, friends, etc…) depends on the psyche of two people. I watch daily, as people have relationships that do not work due to pride or misunderstandings. How sad. I am guilty of this, too. My pride has gotten in the way of relationships in the past or my inability to empathize with the other half of the relationship. Or my inability to explain myself. It’s not all up to one person, however. When there is a misunderstanding between two people, one (the one who was misunderstood) must honestly explain themselves without getting mad and the other person has to be willing to listen and forgive. Both require putting your pride aside and being honest, opening your heart a little bit and accepting that you might get hurt, the other person may run away or completely disagree with you. Worse, they might say something hurtful to you or even worse yet, tell you that you hurt them. Then there comes the feelings of guilt and shame and feeling bad, “how could I have said that?” “why did I say that?” It’s OK, you’re human and you said it, but explain that you didn’t mean it and when on the receiving end, trust that they didn’t mean it, put yourself in the other person’s shoes, be compassionate and understand that you, too have been there and done that. It makes me think back to my sophomore year of high school, in Mr. Bussio’s class when we read Nelle Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus says to Scout, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view . . . until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” This piece of moral advice can be applied to many circumstances in life but in this scenario, I just urge that when you find yourself in a disagreement over a misunderstanding with a friend or loved one, to take a step back, step into his/her skin and walk around in it. Try to experience what the other person is experiencing, why did they say this, what did they mean? And accept at the end of the day that this person loves you and never meant to hurt you. This is perhaps the most difficult of all and requires great strength, but give that to yourself.