I met a guy the other day, with whom I disagreed about something. In the end, it was not an issue that would change either life, it was an academic sort of discussion. We had plenty of discussion on other topics both before and after our disagreement.The disagreement did not become heated, neither of us was angry or frustrated. We just didn’t see eye to eye on that subject.
It doesn’t really matter what we talked about, what is interesting to me, is that although we had lots of great conversation both before and after, that disagreement stopped what might have been a friendship. We were both aware that this small inconsequential thing was hanging over us, and yet neither of us did anything to resolve it. I like to understand myself, and so I am asking myself why. Why did I let this unimportant topic hang over the conversation for the rest of the day?Why didn’t I at the very least address that we disagreed and solve it in a way that allowed us both to be okay? I didn’t and now am frustrated that I didn’t. Was it my ego? Was it unwillingness to perhaps have an unpleasant conversation? Was it apathy?
As I sit here today, I am really not sure. I am also unsure why that little thing hanging over us, colored the rest of our conversation. From that moment forward we were more careful in our conversation, we only sought out safe subjects and strove to find agreement. without addressing the other topic, nothing we did or said would ever result in a deepening of the relationship and at the end of the day we parted as we began, without really knowing much about the other person at all.
I can’t help but feel that it was an opportunity wasted. We may not have become friends, but I had a chance to know another person and I let it go, because on a topic that wasn’t important, we didn’t agree. I am disappointed in myself. I am saddened that i am still that petty person that thinks of things as “us” and “them”. I need to do better, I need to be better. I’m just not sure how to get over myself in that moment. I hope another opportunity comes up and I hope I react differently.
Agree or Disagree – that is not even close to the question. The question I should have asked was, person worth knowing, or not worth knowing – because that is the question.