It is the weekend, a time when people often pause in their hectic and emotionally charged lives to reflect. So this weekend, I pose the question to you:
Can you love and hate someone at the same time ?
I have encountered this question, personally and otherwise, over the years. It recently came to mind again; and, I thought that it might be something to share with you.
Don't think of something temporary, such as when a teenager says " I hate you ! " on being told that he or she cannot go to a party with a true love; but, something more profound.
I think, for example, of the Nigerian man who reported that his son was about to commit a terrorist act, causing him to be identified and prosecuted as a terrorist. Or, recently in the USA, a mother who called police when her son had collected weapons and was planning to commit a mass shooting. She was reported to have said that he was bad from birth. Did she love him? Did she hate him or something about him?
Such was a conversation a couple days ago with a young person who I met in a local coffee shop, my favorite "Juan Valdez".
The youth was having conflicting feelings over a parent for whom there was thought to be strong love; but who, because he had behaved badly, failing to provide parental emotional and practical (financial) support over years, triggered strong negative feelings as well. Add to this that he could be proven to be a liar and had been in jail, an expression of society's condemnation. - On hearing the story, I didn't like the person and we had never ever met.
I tried to be objective; suggesting that one could love someone but dislike the way they behaved. This is sometimes an approach used in child rearing. You want to focus on the behaviour, that can be changed, not to pronounce a fundamental character trait; condemning them as forever being bad/ evil.
That attempt to rationalize was rejected outright. There was an over-riding moral element, I was told. Bad is bad.
I often think of profound questions like this, wondering, looking for answers; but not wanting to do a deep study or thesis to answer. I am a common person who likes some reasonably simple answer that I can live with: Yes, No, Maybe in certain understandable circumstances.
How about you ? Do you believe that one can love and hate the same person at the same time?
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