Someone once told me that “a person doesn’t get extra credit by doing what is right.” In theory I agree with this statement. I believe in a basic expectation of kindness and compassion and trying to do the ‘right’ thing whatever that is. I think treating individuals with a dignity just because they are human is imperative and that it should be a given not a bargain I make or with expectation of acknowledgement outside of hoping that others are doing the same.
On the other hand I struggle with this statement. It isn’t that I think we should be rewarded for doing the correct thing but there are always so many variables. For one, we don’t all start off on an even playing field. Some people just have it easier than others. I don’t say that so people use a hard childhood or crappy experiences as excuses. I say it because I think it should count for something if a person does “what is right” after having done what is not right or having to learn it on their own or overcoming obstacles vs. someone doing “what is right” because that is all I know.
I think I may also struggle with this because I think that some people feel superior because they do the “the right thing” when someone else does not, when if they were living the other person’s life “the right thing” may be much more difficult to achieve.
Life is full of joy but it is also often very difficult. I think that people should be recognized for overcoming struggles to get on the best path. I don’t know. Just random ramblings from Julie Fanning LCSW.