Have you ever had to deal with a person who just does not like you? Someone who acts as if they would rather spit on you than give you hand?
It doesn't matter who you are or what your circumstances, at one time or another you will come into contact with people with whom you will just not get along. At work, at church, at the little league field, anywhere.
Try as you may, it seems that some folks just make up their minds that they don't like you and there is nothing you can do to change that.
Believe me, I have never claimed to have the perfect personality and am the first to admit my flaws, but I find it difficult to believe that I have ever done something to cause a person to genuinely dislike me. If you know me at all, you know that I am a generally likeable gal and usually strive to maintain harmony among those around me. As the old phrase goes, I'm a lover, not a fighter.
In my past, there have been several instances when someone's personality has clashed with mine, creating a very uncomfortable environment. On select occasions, these differences in personality traits have caused things to get downright ugly.
Attempting to resolve the conflict is futile, as the other person refuses to even tell you what it is about you that bugs them. They, on the other hand, may ignore you, provoke you, or even discuss the conflict with everyone else but you. This type of situation does nothing but distract from what is really important.
I graduated from high school a long time ago and I don't particularly enjoy revisiting that level of teenage immaturity.
I try very hard to adapt to the many different personalities of the people in my life and usually find some common ground with each one to create a serene situation. Unfortunately, friction still happens no matter what I do, and I have to accept it.
Having discussed the topic with others, I find I am not alone. It will happen to everyone at one time or another. A friend recently conveyed a similar situation with a coworker who, for some reason, did not care much for him at all. He also could not understand what might have caused the conflict, and the colleague refused to tell him.
Generally speaking, most people dislike conflict in their lives and strive to coexist in harmony. What, then, causes these kinds of insurmountable personality conflicts and what can be done about them? I believe several factors influence how another person treats you. Preconceived opinions and prejudices, a lack of or misinformation and a lack of conflict resolution skills are some of the things that may contribute to another's negative opinion of you.
I have heard we are only treated as we allow, but I am not sure this applies with everyone. To me, some just seem to be predisposed to negativity and conflict. What a sad way to live.
So how do you deal with it? The way I see it, you have one of two options; you can either try to talk it out and resolve the issue or just ignore it and avoid them in hopes that you can stay out of each other's way.
By the way, in my attempt to resolve a conflict once, I politely questioned a person who had been particularly nasty toward me and was once again met with condescension and contempt. Oh well, I tried. What can you do?
Weatherman is a Trumbull County resident. Email her at email@example.com.