We all get offended, no matter how thick our skins. Is it always necessary to state your feeling, or is it part of free speech to allow offense? I’m sure we all know people who are quick to jump in when they feel they’ve been offended, or a group has been offended in some way.
In life there are many many ways to find yourself feeling offended. It’s that question that lurks in the back of your mind, “did I really hear that?”. So, what does being easily offended mean? To me it’s about taking offense for others as well as yourself.
In some circumstances, it can be tempting to feel as though the offended person is unable to defend themselves. In some circumstances, we are actually offended because of something in our history. If you find yourself feeling offended multiple times in a day, you may want to change your environment.
Free speech changes everything
I think free speech is about being able to express your opinion on any subject. There are things that no one wants to hear, but everyone has the freedom to say what they believe. When things are said that give offense, is it always effective to react?
In my experience, reacting doesn’t often stop the offensive behavior. Ignoring is more effective.
What is the right reaction?
There is no right reaction. For me, I usually ask myself why I’m offended. Often it’s about baggage I bring to the interaction. I get offended when people demean anyone – but I tend only to react when I am being demeaned as an individual or part of the group. I hate it when someone adds a suffix to a job to indicate a woman is doing it. I know that means using the male version, but I would prefer to be known as an author rather than an authoress because I hear the ‘not quite as good as a man’ in the ess. I know that’s my baggage.
What offends you? How do you react?