Every human relationship faces challenges. We are each unique and, in this uniqueness, different from each other. Since no two people are identical, how we communicate with each other tests our differences. Are we willing and able to have genuine dialogue that accepts our differences, or will we insist on agreement with our singular position? Consider the differences between parents and children, grandparents and grandchildren, teachers and students, boss and employees, people with different political and religious beliefs, etc. Because of these differences, is communication/dialogue possible, or is this the primary problem between us—or could it eventually destroy us?
The facts support that we are different from each other. The differences may not be imposing stone walls, but they exist, and we must acknowledge this. And if we accept this, does that mean we support the other’s position or that they have a right to have one? In other words, can we recognize that we can disagree with each other, and both feel heard and understood? How likely are we to learn something from each other?
So not only are we different as a matter of our life experiences, we are different in the way we see, hear, feel, and think. Also, we are often generations apart. Take the example of grandparents and grandchildren: Two generations separated, and do we expect because we have blood in common that we would understand each other’s views? Impossible… unless we experience genuine dialogue with each other.
“Time” is a huge factor in our lives. The world constantly changes, along with the environment and so much more. Those who grow and live in one generation cannot know another generation except through what they are told and have read. Experience is the powerful force that makes us what we are and will become.
Love and acceptance are just a beginning, but an important one, to be sure. It nurtures our need to be ourselves and who we are at that time. Yet, who and what we become is made up of a bunch of tomorrows. Tomorrows bring life experiences and people that may or may not influence what we become. We enter each day knowing what was, and if lucky, we come out knowing a bit more.