Assume: to accept something to be true without question or proof
Assumption: the action of taking on power or responsibility
It is mid-summer’s day here in the UK and the amazing sunny weather we’ve had for the last 10 days has gone for the moment and it’s now quite cold and wet. Like many other aspects of nature, weather can be rather unpredictable!
Unpredictability, though, is also part of human nature. We make predictions based on our beliefs about other people’s behaviour and even those people close to us don’t always do what we expect!
We often think we can predict or know what someone wants or how they are feeling based on the way they have acted in the past. Therefore we don’t ask them, we just assume that they will be happy with whatever we have decided on their behalf. Maybe this is OK when we are endeavouring to surprise them with something nice but very often we are just taking away their freedom to choose for themselves.
Decisions may be made for us by other family members because they think they know best how to deal with an issue. How would you feel if your partner chose not to tell you that he/she was in huge debt, had been made redundant or was terminally ill and had decided to “protect” you from the truth?
Assumption can cause a great deal of friction between family members, leaving all parties aggrieved.
“Why did you think I would want THAT?”
“Why didn’t you ask me first?”
“Why do you always assume I want what you want?”
“How can you possibly know how I feel about … xxx …?”
“Why would I call you? You knew where I’d be.”
When we are children growing up our parents make many decisions that they believe to be in our best interests. However, as we learn to assert our independence we may resent parental interference and want to do things our own way. A wise parent knows that in order to learn, a child has to make his/her own mistakes and that any guidance must be subtle and discreet.
Stating the very obvious: men don’t think like women and women don’t think like men! Before you make any assumption
remember that only you can think the way that you do. Everyone else will have his or her unique perspective based on upbringing, beliefs and environment.
Think before you make assumptions and you may avoid a lot of unnecessary conflict.