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Promises, promises (repost)

Posted by Foster Mom on April 15, 2005 at 16:23:27

Jim LaMattery wrote: "I prefer to have anyone who feels offended to speak for themselves. I will never promise you that I will agree with you, but I promise to listen."

I'm skeptical about Jim's ability to listen empathically when he makes statements like, "I will never promise you that I will agree with you, but I promise to listen." Listening to an offended person has nothing to do with agreeing or disagreeing with that person. It doesn't matter if you intended to give offense or not. What's important is to acknowledge the fact that someone is offended as a consequence of your behavior. To do this, Jim would actually have to listen to my friend's distress over his behavior and quit offering explanations for why she misunderstood because he never intended blah, blah, blah.

Do you have any idea how exhausting and unproductive it is to have a blow-by-blow conversation with an overbearing, controlling personality? It gets old REALLY fast.

I chose to stand up for my friend and speak out publically because Jim didn't appear to hear my friend when she initially spoke up for herself. In followup communication with my friend, Jim has continued to make what I consider insensitive, offensive statements. The interesting thing about private communication with offended people is that Jim can continue to get away with behaving like an overbearing jerk and nobody's the wiser.

Do you think that may be a reason why Jules decided to give public comment on Jim's behavior another shot? The worst he can do in his public responses is appear arrogant and defensive.

Jim is a human being just like the rest of us, and he's allowed to make mistakes. However, a persistent pattern of mistakes--without significant change as a consequence of negative feedback--is a character problem in my book. With the care and feeding his obsession taking up to 14 hours a day, Jim is obviously too busy promoting his cause to hear much beyond his own monkey brain chatter.