“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” Remember this mantra from childhood? Thing is, words do hurt. They don’t leave bruises like punches or pinches. They won’t put you in a cast with a broken bone. Nope. Their pain leaves scars on hearts and souls and psyches. We carry those hurts with us throughout our lives. Sometimes, people are just thoughtless. Sometimes, they are mean. Sometimes, they intentionally set out to cause harm for a wide variety of reasons.
As a writer, I want to mine those depths. I want to find out why this character has such trouble trusting, why she wears a coat of emotional armor, yet can still be susceptible to a bad boy who desires her. As I writer, I want to dig into the history of that character to discover why his happy-go-lucky demeanor is nothing more than a mask he hides behind, letting no one close.
When you can look beneath their behavior that hurt you, Silver, and you can see the frightened child, it becomes nearly impossible to be angry or carry a grudge.
And you so can.
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Besides, Silver, your happiness, abundance, health, and friendships are not dependent on how others behave.
I don’t happen to agree with the big U in this matter. Granted, there are those who strike out due to their own hurts, but there are those who are deliberate and vicious. My writer brain wants to delve into all the whys and wherefores. The ones who set out to hurt intentionally–whether to train or control or just subjugate make for the best villians. To experience the good, a character has to be exposed to the bad. To appreciate the light, they have to know what it’s like in the dark. Right? Now, I just wish that real people didn’t have to experience the same.