Riddle me this. How is it so easy for us to separate kindness and love? Is it possible for us to be kind to someone without feeling love for them? Is it possible for us to love someone, but not show them kindness? The short answer to the latter two questions is tricky, but most would answer yes to both.
Think about this for a moment-people who identify as liberal love their country just as much as any conservative. However, some liberals who love the United States might not be so kind to those from the opposing party- not because they know them as individuals or have listened to their stance on any particular issue, but because they believe that individual can in no way be correct because of who they voted for in the last election. The same goes with some conservatives views on liberals. What should be a discussion turns into a heated debate and ends with the liberal being called a “hippie” or “snowflake”. None of this is fair. None of this accomplishes anything.
I took a moment while writing this to reflect on the shutdown that occurred this past weekend. Trump took to twitter, democrats blamed republicans, and republicans blamed democrats. There was name calling and there was nastiness. The very real media broke down the “winners and losers” from both sides-and the world watched as the trend of us tearing each other apart continued. What a lot of folks fail to realize is there are no “winners and losers” in situations like these. You can disagree with someone and still show them kindness and love. I am getting married in t-minus 9 months and I couldn’t imagine loving him, but not being kind to him. Showing him kindness, but not loving him for the individual he is..an individual with his own thoughts and feelings.
I began this piece by asking you three questions… I said most would answer yes to the latter two and that is perfectly fine-- But when it comes to the first question “How is it so easy for us to separate kindness and love?”, my answer is very simple…It shouldn’t be. Sometimes you just have to put your work boots on in order to build lasting, loving, and thoughtful relationships.