Friday, October 9, 2009

Nicknames

Today I was walking through the store and I'm began thinking about nicknames. We all have nicknames. Some nicknames are nice. For example: We call our children, Beaner, Monkey, and Boo/Bekaboo as the mood fits. Often these days I affectionately call them Peanut. Some nicknames however, are less than nice. For example: when someone who is driving in a rather infuriating manner, we call them an assortment of names (moron, bozo, or genius) Genius I reserve for those who have especially irked me and it often is accompanied with dripping toxic sarcasm (I know, you are stunned aren't you. After all, I am never sarcastic).

As I thought about this, I wondered what damage we may or may not have done to others with our use of nicknames. You know the ones I'm talking about, the ones we whisper between friends about those who we think/hope cannot hear what we are saying. We are all guilty of it, at least we are if we are truly honest with ourselves. The nicknames we develop as private jokes about a person. Most often these are nicknames we choose because we hold malice towards this person.

So here is my question for the day: What are your nicknames? Would you share them with the person they are intended towards? If not, then should we really use them. After all, even those people who drive us nuts have feelings too and I think more often than we'd like to realize our nicknames inflict harm on others. Whether intentional or not.

The purpose of these questions is not to accuse, for I, myself am guilty of using nicknames in a derogatory manner. It is mearly meant to invoke thought and reflection. For as I said, I realize that I too have been guilty of using nicknames as a way to inflict harm emotionally on others.

I hope you have a good week.
In Christ,
Maureen

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