I kept meaning to suggest that you can turn it into a positive too. While so-and-so is busy bad-mouthing “Melissa” you can say “oh poor Melissa, maybe she never had a decent family to learn these subtleties from…we/YOU should say a prayer for her!” “Oh I know you must be frustrated, but it must be so hard to not notice you are offending people, I hope your prayers help…or have you said anything to Melissa to let her know she is being unkind/upsetting/unfair (worthy of your bad-mouthing?)?” Oh you haven’t? Why? Let me guess - it’s easier to talk badly about people BEHIND their backs rather than trying to help the “offending” soul? OK DONT add in that part, but you can nicely suggest it…while suggesting they cease the gossip.
My own aunt (vital statistics of Crazy Town) is no longer speaking to me because she talks so poorly about my cousin’s friend(s) but one in particular. I did all of the above. I suggested she pray. I suggested she be forgiving. I suggested she not hate “Jill” so much and oh boy – is she MAD! She hasn’t spoken to me in months…which is fine because I don’t care to hear about my cousin’s friends nor how they behave. Goodness lady, get your own friends and talk **** THEN. Oh wait? What’s that? Nobody will be friend’s with you because you are so bitter? Sorry to hear that!
It’s sad, but the same gossips will get their own just desserts.
Yep, you need to no longer listen, or you need to turn tables in the kind way that God would want you to. No matter the supposed person who is doing the offending. Offering another point of view and forgiveness, kindness and the suggestion for prayer will stop people in their tracks. Really – how do you continue to be vile when you are being told that prayer and charity is the way to go?
You could call my aunt and ask…but she’s no longer speaking to me! Tell you what - I don’t miss it at all. I even suggested “gee I wonder what you say about me?” OK really – I think that did it. But it’s TRUE.