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An unfriendly friend freaks out:

I have a friend on facebook – and a friendly acquaintance in real life – who is in the same line of work that I am in, though in a completely different school of thought (in our field).  He frequently, almost exclusively – posts condescending remarks about my segment of the profession.  Calling it, variously, a fraud, overrated, stupid, simplistic, etc.  I have always been very complimentary about his work in person, and of course he’s never mentioned mine.  It’s really getting on my nerves, but I don’t know what to do.


Stop reading his facebook posts?  Get better nerves?  Come up with a response better than “You’re hurting my feelings, so stop!!”

Look – so the guy doesn’t like what you do.  Big deal.  Do you like what you do?  Do you think it has legitimacy?  Do other people?

Is this a matter of life or death?  No?

Then fuck it.  What it sounds like to me – unless you are also guilty of criticizing his field of study or work as invalid for your own petty reasons, is that this guy has a major case of sour grapes, or insecurity, or good old-fashioned butthurt.

Do you know what butthurt is?  The Urban Dictionary has it defined…well, lots of ways, but the first definition I saw seemed to fit the bill, as an “…inappropriately strong negative emotional response from a perceived personal insult. Characterized by strong feelings of shame. Frequently associated with a cessation of communication and overt hostility towards the aggressor.”

I mean, if what he’s doing is constantly attacking your side of the argument – I’m making the assumption you’re not attacking his, at least not on facebook, and reserving the internet for it’s true purpose: cat videos – without any particular reason, then there’s something pathological going on there and the best chance you have is to steer clear.

Ergo, the very first thing I wrote.

Look, some people just aren’t comfortable being successful in their own right.  They can’t be happy unless they are told that not only are they the best, but that they are the only people worthy of consideration.  In this case – his segment of the field.  That’s why you have MDs calling DOs “not real doctors” or Ph.D.s saying the same things about D.Ed.s, etc., and so on and so forth.  Sand flung in the sand box, everyone wants to be King of the Hill.

You have your choice in front of you – lookie here, I’m giving it to you:

You can either go ahead with your own work, toiling with honesty and competence, admiring what your competitors do well, critically thinking about the arguments raised by naysayers and listening to your own heart and training to produce the best work you can – or – you can get mired down in the poo flinging shit show.

Which would you prefer?


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