Everyone has an opinion. What’s the saying? Opinions are like assholes, everybody has one. True. I’d be concerned if you didn’t have one. Opinion that is, but asshole applies as well I suppose.
It’s natural to have our own views, our own beliefs. We have each lived different lives, had different experiences. We come from different cultures and households. We are different genders, have different sexual identities and kinks. We have different tastes in food and fashion. We have different dreams and goals. It would be crazy to think we would all have the same opinions with such diverse lives. We can share many of the same opinions as others but others will differ.
My brother and I grew up in the same house with the same parents. We are twins so we are at same point in our lives. We both shared many of the same experiences, even after we left home. We are both single parents raising our children without any involvement from their other parent. It would be natural for us to have similar opinions. Still, we have vastly different views and opinions on most things. This I find odd.
I have a friend at work who has a very similar outlook on life as I do. We share more opinions than we have opposing ones. This I find even odder than not sharing opinions with my brother. She grew up in a different culture in a small village on the other side of the globe. She lived in a house without floors that was shared with chickens, goats, and about a dozen relatives. She is Hindu, has lived in several countries, and is ten years younger than me. How we have so many similar opinions is, as my son says, a mystery.
We tend to voice our opinions to people when we see them doing something we don’t want them to do or don’t think they should do. We tell them about our experience, or in some cases somebody else’s experience, and urge them to heed our warning so the same doesn’t happen to them. We don’t know the same thing will happen. It is only our opinion that it may. We are only trying to help. Opinions aren’t fact and we don’t have to agree with someone else’s opinions, or even entertain them if we don’t want to.
There are times we ask people for their opinions. A pregnant woman may want to know what to expect during her pregnancy and how to alleviate pesky morning sickness. Another woman’s two year old won’t stop biting. How did you get your kids to stop biting, she asks. A couple celebrates their wedding day. Rather than kiss at the sound of glasses clinking, they ask for advice. They want to know your opinion on what makes a long and healthy marriage.
One thing I see is that people can often not accept others who have a differing opinion than their own. That’s where problems arise, when we are too narrow minded to be able to accept that others may think differently than us. It’s ok to be different. We don’t all have to agree, even in relationships. We just need to be ok with agreeing to disagree, to not push our opinions onto each other, and to compromise when that serves the greater good.