Someone being addicted rarely hurts themselves first. Addiction usually hurts the people around the addicted person first and most.
One of the hardest parts of recognizing addiction all around is seeing it in people you love, hearing them rationalize and justify hurting people for their pleasure, comfort, and convenience.
Someone in my family flew to a birthday party of someone who lives a few miles from her. Instead of a party at home or nearby, they flew to Cancun. To hear her talk about it, the only factors she had to balance were her feelings; nothing about the people and wildlife hurt by her actions. Mention them and she attacks, clearly protecting herself from making conscious her feelings of guilt and shame she’s trying to suppress.
Another family member talks similar nonsense, not seeing his selfish craving hurting people and lowering Earth’s ability to sustain life. He shuts down thinking of others when he thinks about flying or buying plastic bottles of water. It’s sad to see someone capitulate on thinking critically or considering his causing others pain and suffering to avoid facing responsibility for hurting people doing things for his comfort and convenience.
Am I overly critical of people who don’t know better or are doing their best? They know what they’re doing. I’m just like them in having to balance my interest not to hurt others by polluting with practicalities of living in a culture I didn’t ask to be born into that makes it easier to ignore how I might hurt others. By contrast, I’ve worked at challenging myself to move that balance to consider others more. My challenge to live sustainably and resources to do it are like most others’.
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