Is it unloving to avoid people who do not have our best interest at heart?


#1

I often feel guilty for distancing myself from people who just aren’t good for me. I feel like I’m being unloving.


#2

Some people we can pray for and love from a distance…there are such things as personality clashes.


#3

Sometimes boundaries and limits are necessary and even good. As @greenfields said you can love and pray from afar.


#4

No. It is permissible and sometimes advisable. Jesus did this many times up until his eventual capture.

Surrounding yourself with good role models is a major part of becoming good yourself.


#5

This often produces negative feelings especially when these people used to be friends . It hurts and we can become a little bewildered .

Sometimes for the good of both parties we have to keep that distance , and avoid being led on to a guilt trip . It’s not always easy but at times is necessary .


#6

Having Christian love for a person does not mean you need to spend time around them when they are having a negative effect on your mental, physical or spiritual health and you are not responsible for their care or well-being, like they’re not your elderly parent or child or someone else you need to care for.


#7

Sometimes it works out for the better. From my own experience, I distanced myself from relatives who fell away and became argumentative in-your-face Protestants. The time away served for both parties to cool down and reflect and now I can meet them respectfully without bringing up our differences.


#8

Romans 16:17 says “I appeal to you, brethren, to take note of those who create dissensions and difficulties, in opposition to the doctrine which you have been taught; avoid them.”

So, if St. Paul said to avoid some people, its not innately wrong. We are called to forgive and pray for all including our enemies and to try to make peace when possible and to treat all with kindness. So, I think the important question is both how and why you’re avoiding them. Are they near temptations for sin? Is it possible for you to make peace with them? When you do encounter them, do you set boundaries as respectfully as you reasonably can and with a loving heart?

(Note: Them believing you’re being respectful and loving isn’t required. The question isn’t if they like how you’re setting boundaries, its if God, who knows your heart - sees that your doing this out of love for Him and your salvation or safety or out of pettiness and a lack of forgiveness.)

One of the greatest kindnesses is to continue to pray for people.


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