Judging a book by its cover

Growing up, I was continually being judged because I was angry, judged because I failed to make headway in school and that was put down to me, judged because of my difficulties around my disability that others didn’t care to understand. Those others reacting in a way that made me more reactive ensured the pattern continued.

Other people’s reactions to us are a copy of their reactions with themselves. When we judge a book by its cover, we are influenced by our own biases more than we are by evidence, but we also have expectations and those expectations are triggered by how others look, and how they present themselves.

We draw conclusions about people through our own filters and then write them off. Even over time people and their personalities will alter these conclusions, but our opinions may still remain highly biased. We err on the side of overestimation, either thinking people are worse or better than they actually are.

In today’s society it is even more important we are open, more than we have ever been that we act fairly and not judge.


11 May, 2020

4 thoughts on “Judging a book by its cover

  1. Boy, I know the feeling of being judged harshly well. They like to say that kids can be cruel, but I would have to say that they can be sadistic to put it mildly.

    As a child, other kids never ever tried to get to know me first, but we were also considered to be poor white trash, which only made things worse.

    It’s no wonder that eventually I joined my siblings in doing drugs and alcohol to numb the pain that I was feeling.

    I have been clean and sober for over 17 years, but so much of the pain and torment still remains which I am working hard to cut free from.

    1. Thanks Randy. Yes, judging anyone is wrong. Institutions like school aren’t easy to navigate.

      Being a child isn’t easy either, and families and institutions must work together to make sure all children are treated equally so that children know how to behave.

      Your story would have come out differently had they been taught and your parents had parented you correctly.

      But the people who matter in your life will never judge. It’s a learning curve for us all.

  2. We should never judge anyone let alone by outward appearances. Who are we to judge others and would we like to be judged? Our judgements based on appearance are bias, prejudiced and flawed.

    That said I can cite an exception to this rule, involving an orange ‘leader.’

    1. Behind every outward appearance there is a reason. As my experiences show judgments must STOP.

      People present differently and particularly around disability, there is no excuse, period.

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