Analysis of Being Offended

In recent events, it has occurred to me that J. K. Rowling has written an essay on her opinion on certain topics. It is not the purpose of this article to get into those opinions and ideas on those topics, but to explore what it means and the psychology behind getting ‘offended’.

To be offended to the point where one feels it is in natural to do something as such to take an action, one must be highly offended. I can only imagine that to take action against offense one must be beyond the point of ‘hurt feelings’ or ‘angry’ to the point of feeling attacked and / or a need to defend.

We cannot control the fact that we are offended. But, we can control how we react to it.

We have all been offended at least one time in our life. It is not wrong to be offended. Being offended and admitting the feeling of offence is honesty and great in itself. It is not wrong at all in it’s most simple sense to be offended. After all, our feelings are our feelings and that’s that. What could be ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ in the opinion of others is how you react to your feelings of being offended.

Another aspect of being offended that I think should also be explored is how long one would stop to think and analyze what is happening before taking the stance of being offended. Because somewhere along the way after taking a series of information into your brain, whether consciously or unconsciously, you have decided to become offended.

Personally, I pride myself on having an open mind and welcoming the idea of different points of view, often running new ideas over old ideas to gain different perspectives. That sometimes has the effect of giving me the ability to overcome my being offended.

A major player in being offended is the clash between value and differences in thought or actions that challenge those values. If I value something so strongly and someone attacks that value ( whether it be a tangible value or not ) with a difference in opinion, or more extremely – they attack that idea and a part of me feels threatened by that idea – I might feel offended. However, this is only at the core of ourselves, inside ourselves. There must be external factors, outside the mind and body that contribute to the fact of why we might be offended besides our values and the thing that offended us. There could be something as simple as not feeling validation that could lead to being offended.

So far we have identified three factors for being offended:

  1. Internal or external values
  2. An idea or action that threatens those values
  3. An external motivator to be offended that could affect how offended we are

Could there be a motivator for someone to offend another? Absolutely. Control dramas are interesting insights into these scenarios.

Let’s back out of that for now and explore the idea of why an idea or action would make me so offended I would take an action against it.

We all know that every conscious action starts with an idea. So it is possible that an offensive idea might lead into some kind of action that I don’t like or it might threaten my state of being, so I must attack!

We find comfort among those who agree with us – growth among those who don’t – Frank A. Clark

Could something as simple as a state of mind where one is compelled to want others to think the same way as them lead to being offended?

Stance or status in life can also be a big attributer to offense.

Where do you draw the line and become offended? What are some other reasons that would lead one to become offended? I am very interested in your thoughts and ideas on this topic.

Guys, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S. D. McKinley

By S.D. McKinley

S.D. McKinley lives in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia. He was born in the first half of the 1980's and grew up in Wisconsin as a young boy, then moved to Georgia when he turned exactly twelve years old. During teenage years, he raced dirt track go karts and played guitar. He discovered his current love for all kinds of art after his mid-life crisis at 25 years old. S.D. McKinley began writing books in 2017.

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