In Focus: Antisocial attitudes of others can breed bitter outlook
I recently learned an important lesson in one of the most unexpected places.
When I peruse articles and blog posts on websites, I try hard not to read the comments from readers that follow.
No matter the topic, there always is some reader who responds with something that is so rude, off-topic, illogical or nonsensical that just gets under my skin. I have to make a conscious effort not to “feed the trolls.”
But sometimes I just can't help myself.
Last week, after I was finished reading some random article, I found my eyes wandering down the page to the comments section. In it was a discussion between one reader and another who apparently frequents the website and posts nothing but negative things about its content.
In one part of the conversation, reader “A” told reader “B” that he or she needed to stop the unnecessary anger over petty things, and that they better watch themselves or else they'd end up bitter and alone.
Those words really made me check myself.
I'm the kind of person who finds it hard to simply ignore the small injustices of the world.
If you say something unnecessarily cruel to someone, I want to tell you about it. If you're on your cellphone at the grocery store while a clerk is trying to ring you out, I want to tell you about it.
But I'm finding that being angry about all of the insensitive and selfish people out there is counterproductive and that it's turning me into a bitter person. I don't want to be that way.
I keep trying to remind myself of something one of my friends said. She always seems so happy, so I guess it has worked for her.
She said that you can't control the things that other people do, just how you respond to it.
Kristina Serafini is a reporter and photographer for The Sewickley Herald. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Sewickley-area nonprofits rethink ways to raise necessary funds
- Quaker Valley weighs policy on private-vehicle transportation
- Sewickley resident fights tall-grass rule, pushes council to update ordinances