In an ideal world, all relationships would be equal. Where we work as a team, the relationship becomes equal, but where there are those who patronise, are condescending, talk down or belittle us as if what we’ve said is misplaced or wrong, or they think they’re a cut above the rest. Those relationships are not equal.
When someone continually works at being patronising, or condescending, it’s often for a reason unbeknown to them, the reason is often somewhere lurking below their conscious that will need addressing. We’re not born patronising, it’s something we learn to do over time.
So how do we deal with someone who is patronising or condescending?
What we’re seeing is what we’re getting, so perhaps we must choose to change what we see. Perhaps we need to learn how to focus on their redeeming qualities and not take what they say personally, because what they say is never personal to us, it’s personal to them, but they make it about us.
If we change our reactions on how they talk to us, they will eventually learn to talk differently. There is a train of thought about whether what the other person is saying, mirrors a quality in ourselves that we don’t like. I believe there is an element of truth in this, although I’ve never met anyone who will agree or own up to how they are.
Even if it’s not true, we must work on being better by changing our own internal dialogue. Perhaps we must accept that some relationships aren’t for changing, unless the other person wants it to. Some people will always continue to push our buttons, no matter what.
Although we may have moved on, how others communicate with us may still awaken some of the same old childhood patterns in us, brought about by our own family. We need to be careful those patterns don’t affect our own internal dialogue.
It’s important for us not to dwell or continue to fall into other people’s emotional patterns, or compromise our own feelings in the process.