The Hidden Damage of Subtle Indifference - The Scapegoating Pandemic Series
From The Caring Heart with Dr. Joyce from Spokane Washington

“And all that believed were together and had all things in common” (Acts 2:44).

“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” (Gal. 6:2).

The lack of response is usually not even noticed.  Most importantly, it is not supposed to be noticed or remarked upon.  Far too often, when one person tells another person about something really important in his or her life, a hurt or disappointment, a loss, an accident, an illness, or even something joyful and exciting, the listener shows no outward response, no change in facial expression or eye contact, or body movement.  No words are spoken about it.  The listener can’t even seem to muster up the empathy and compassion to say, “That’s great,” or “That’s too bad,” as the case may be.  No interest or concern is shown, and usually the listener changes the topic as though the other person has not said anything at all.  The message’s content is never brought up again.  (What the listener may be thinking, well, who knows?)

One very damaging consequence of such displayed indifference can be that the hurting, or joyful, individual, having experienced many disrespectful, indifferent response scenarios, concludes that it is inappropriate and unwanted to express one’s own experiences and concerns. He or she undoubtedly feels:

  • Uncared about, disliked, and/or unloved by the listener
  • Low self-esteem
  • Alone in life at a deeper level
  • Possibly lacking in healthy connectedness to any caring others
  • Scared
  • Angry inside, often without realizing why
  • Acting out, possibly, in meanness to other people and/or animals.


Why does showing we really care seem to be just too hard for too many of us?

Do we really want to be involved in fostering pain, unhappiness, and maladjustment in our fellow humans? 

Do we really want to foster consequent cruelty towards helpless animals and other people perceived to be weaker by the individuals we are indifferent to?

I’m for PRACTICING real sensitive responsiveness, keeping our minds and hearts ON what is going on right in front of us.  (I hope my skill in this area is improving!)  ---Being present “in the moment.”   ---Thinking about how we are coming across. 

We have the power to make a difference.  The point is, what kind of a difference do we want to make?

Copyright 2015 – Dr. Joyce – The Caring Heart

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