• This article isn’t literally about dogs, although a dog’s tail is an extension of their spine, has small hairs and is extremely sensitive.  Hence, when you pull it, even the nicest dog in the world might turn around and bite you.  So, as a general rule, it’s cruel, so don’t do it!

    This metaphor came to me on the heels of a heated argument with my husband and I needed to vent.  Actually, it was more like a full-on blow-up where I totally went off on him.  What can I say?  It happens and I’m not proud of it!  Yes, I know there’s no excuse, but he was definitely driving me crazy.  He kept pestering me about a minor incident where I forgot to pick up some items for him, when I went shopping earlier that day.  I had to leave in a rush to pick up the kids from school and simply didn’t get around to it.  Okay, so I messed up. No big deal, right?  Well, not for him.  He blew it up out of proportion and made a whole theme out of it.  He couldn’t let it go, for more than fifteen minutes, and ended up dragging my whole family into it.  Attacking not just me, but every relative of mine.  I have no idea why he lost it because he, himself, forgets things all the time.  So, there must have been something else.  Either way, it was totally uncalled for.

    The good thing is that it taught me not to judge people when I see someone reacting in an aggressive manner.  Simply because I don’t know what the circumstances were that led up to their behavior.  Not that the aggression is justified.  I can clearly see how people can push buttons that cause others to react.  It might even be an instinctive reaction, triggering their fight or flight response.  I understand that the the key is to know your triggers and to learn to control your behavior or get away from the source (see our Playdate article Anger Management).  In general, there is no justification for ‘blowing up’ or any type of abusive response.  Yet sometimes, it’s the only way to defend yourself.  My aim here is to address those who push other peoples’ buttons.  I realize that it takes two to tango.  But stop the mental abuse because eventually the build-up will cause even the nicest of people to respond aggressively and possibly even physically.  But then again, maybe that’s what bullies need every once in a while – a little reminder!