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Old 04-21-2012, 11:39 AM   #1
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How can you tell if somebody has bad intentions?

So this question is not necessarily about M/F relationships, but about relationships and dealing with other people in general.

I don't know if I am realizing this reality late in the game (I'm 26 years old) but it suddenly dawned on me that not everybody has good intentions. Over the past 8 years, I've realized, I have repeatedly put myself in situations where I am a victim of a person who has bad intentions for me. It is because I tend to share personal things about myself with people and do not suspect them of having ulterior motives or of having anything other than a genuine curiosity about my life. Nine times out of ten, these situations have blown up in my face and turned out, well, awful.

Is this lesson something that everybody must learn? Am I learning that late? Some people might be unimpressed with this post, but I kind of feel like "WOW, why am I just now realizing and that's a really great feeling to understand and see a pattern in my life/maybe I can try to break out of it."

Has anybody ever had this realization or something similar? How do you distinguish the bad people vs. good people vs. people who are neutral?

Last edited by mistycloud; 04-21-2012 at 11:42 AM. Reason: forgot s/t

 
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:14 PM   #2
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Re: How can you tell if somebody has bad intentions?

Well, it happens to different people at different times. For me, it happened super early, but that's because I watched my mother go through cancer treatments and die when I was a kid, and the emotional and social fallout from that sort of thing will make any person a lot more perceptive. For one of my best friends, it took her until she was about 14-15. For some people I know, it took them longer.

As for telling people's intentions, a lot of it is paying careful attention to what they say vs. how they act and how well the two match up. You don't have to actively call them out on discrepancies, but definitely take note of them, because often if what they say doesn't match up to what they're doing or how they're acting, you need to trust that the ACTIONS are the truth. Words can be twisted any way you want them to.

But I'm guessing is that you've chattered about something personal and then have had someone either use it against you or throw it back in your face. This is purely something you need to fix, because sometimes you just really need to look out for yourself.

I'm fairly honest myself, and will candidly talk about things like my mother's death and some of the more awful things that have happened to me. But I also know that I have the emotional fortitude to handle any backlash or awkwardness that comes from those topics.

You probably need to go through your head and categorize out what you should share and what you shouldn't. You don't have to stick the list completely, but being like "This part of my life, strangers are allowed to know about it", "this part, this part and that part are OK to tell acquaintances and co-workers" and "I'll keep THIS part for close friends and family - people with established trust".

I hope that helps?

 
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:43 PM   #3
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Re: How can you tell if somebody has bad intentions?

I agree with the above post up to a point. There is definitely wisdom in keeping tender and sensitive things private until you know you can trust somebody. A good way to do this is to become a good listener. Study up on active listening and communication, and work at it. It teaches you a lot about non-verbal communication, and congruity (what is being said, versus what is being done). It enables you to observe people and get to know them better on a deeper level than just mutual disgorging of facts. You will become better at "reading" people, which is what you wish to do. Cheers, Seraph

 
Old 04-23-2012, 07:55 AM   #4
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Re: How can you tell if somebody has bad intentions?

one thing to keep in mind.....people usually always have their OWN best interests at heart.......protect yours!

 
Old 04-23-2012, 09:58 AM   #5
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Re: How can you tell if somebody has bad intentions?

Thank you very much for your insights. It is very helpful to hear other people's experiences and opinions...

I suppose in the past, when dealing with others, I haven't actively thought about my own best interests. It's not that I would put other's interests ahead of my own, it was just not something that I considered. I suppose I was haphazardly my thoughts and information, but not intentionally.

And I think taking the time to categorize and sort which pieces of my life are okay to share and with whom is a really great idea. I guess I didn't realize that looking out for yourself actually takes some work!

 
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