Weeding The Garden

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I’m 35 and have friends of all ages ranging from 19 to 70 plus. One of my male friends, 20, has less than stellar morals. For example, he slept with an engaged and later married woman, cheated on past girlfriends, sleeps with an ex he calls “crazy” and “annoying” behind her back, and omits important details about his sex life to his friend-with-benefits girlfriend.

It gets to me, even though I behaved less than stellar when I was 20. I then spent years weeding out people like him in my life because, well, they were toxic, and I spent just as much time working on improving my self-esteem and making better choices.

When he told me about these things, I couldn’t help but be repulsed, and I said so. I don’t believe in lying or sugarcoating to my friends. Now he’s mad and called me judgmental, when I just feel I have standards.

It was quite an argument. I don’t know whether to make amends or walk away because he’s so young and it will likely take him time to figure all this stuff out on his own. He also has self-esteem issues.

Am I being too hard on him? If so, is it worth apologizing and saving the friendship? I appreciate your thoughts.


Lori, on the surface the idea that we can’t judge others sounds plausible, but if you think about it for a minute, and try to apply it, the idea reveals itself as moronic.

If we can’t judge others, then there are no role models and no best friends. If we can’t judge others, parents can’t correct children and teachers can’t tell a student when they got it wrong. A moment’s reflection reveals that life is nothing but judgment, and if you can’t make good judgments, we don’t want to share the highway with you.

Those who say you can’t judge others are people in the wrong. They say it to disarm people in the right. Good people living good lives don’t have a problem with being judged, and in fact, your “friend” wants you to judge him. He hopes you will see him in a positive light as a shrewd chick magnet and man of the world.

If you apologize, it would tell him he was right and you were wrong, his judgment is good while your judgment is bad. After a scolding women tend to think, “I was too harsh.” That’s a woman’s nature, but it says something about you and nothing about him.

The most extreme case we’ve seen of someone unable to make judgments was a woman who, with her husband, owned a cattle ranch. Their mailbox was on a gravel road a third of a mile from their house and barns. Each day her husband would get the mail and keep it away from her because she couldn’t cope with the plethora of offers and decisions the mail brought.

At a nursery, this woman could spend two hours trying to decide whether to buy tulips or daisies. Though her husband often worked cattle on horseback, he never took her with him because she wasn’t decisive enough to handle a horse.

What does decisive mean, anyway? It is a positive way of saying you are judgmental, and being decisive is a positive trait. It means you know right from wrong, up from down, forward from backward.

At some point, holding too much information makes you culpable. If you know this man betrays others and you stay silent, it puts you on the side of the betrayer.

The danger in life is not in making judgments, but in making wrong judgments. If this young man doesn’t meet stiff opposition, he will grow worse not better. By your own description he is a toxic person, the kind of person you should weed out of your life.

Wayne & Tamara

Wayne and Tamara

About The Author
Authors and columnists Wayne and Tamara Mitchell can be reached at www.WayneAndTamara.com

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