I got hit by a Negative Nellie this week! I was telling some friends about my new blog and some freelance work I was doing. I'm pretty pumped about both things and just wanted to share my new beginnings with people that I thought might care. I was right that most of the people were happy for me and asked nice questions and all that sort of thing. Most of them didn't even really know what a blog was, but if I was thrilled about it, so were they.
But there is always one person who has to make negative comments about anything that someone else is excited about. She said I was just "lying" for my clients, and she knew all about that because she did proofreading once for a copy writer for a catalog. Hmmm. OK, then. Shoot me down, ruin the whole good vibe that others were giving me. Change the subject to something you want to talk about, or complain about, and shove me off the map! Which is exactly what she did.
I realize that this person is just a Negative Nellie. Everything that happens to her is worse than anyone else has ever experienced. Her woes give her the right to disparage others and rain on their parade just as the whole world has rained on her. She really has had some sad things in her life, but slamming me isn't going to make those sorrows go away.
So I've been thinking about what I could have done, or should have done. She has no idea she made me feel bad. Responding to her negative comments would only be met with denials as to her intent and indignation that I would even think she could be so callous. Yet I suspect she is really hurting inside and wishes she had something exciting to share with others. I know people with far more serious situations who are always upbeat and positive with their friends and acquaintances. One friend who has experienced great loss in her life says she cries alone in the shower, but in public you would never know it. She is always friendly, outgoing and cheerful.
What makes the different response? I don't know, but maybe I'll just be extra attentive to both of them. Negative Nellie probably needs some extra support and caring, and Cheerful probably needs it too, just like all of us at one time or another.
Filed under: Uncategorized