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Melissa

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Reply with quote  #1 
Here's some fun food for thought.  
 
Would you say the word "gossip" is a Jackal term?  Is there a difference between "gossiping" and talking about others?


Examples

I never thought of this before one of my guy friends said he found a girl in our group of friends to be a gossip, so he distrusts her (maybe wanting privacy and trust?).
 
Whereas her story is that she's just curious about what makes people tick, so she talks about the person she is confused about to other people, trying to get support from others in figuring out how said person(s) operate (maybe wanting to gain awareness and understanding?).  
 
Google defines gossip as "casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true".
 
She would say she's just talking about others to figure them out.  She also has said she enjoys talking about others because she likes being the one "in the know" in the group (perhaps a desire to matter?), or to protect her female friends from a guy in the group whose character is likely to hurt them (based on his historical track record) if they ever dated him (maybe she's intending to contribute safety and awareness?)
 
And yes, that chatter might sometimes include details that aren't confirmed as being true; sometimes they are speculations. But I'm guessing her intent isn't to spread stuff that isn't true, just that sometimes there's no way of confirming the truth of the matter, and its stuff she heard from others and her speculative interpretations. 
 
Maybe when we are talked about, and it brings an outcome we don't desire, we call it "gossip".


I'm talking about my friends (above) and haven't yet confirmed that they still think the same way as when I last talked to them.  Does that mean I am gossiping?  Or could it be that I am just trying to figure out the nature of the way we in society (including my friends) categorize and think of things like "gossip"?  [smile]


My speculation
If the outcome (or fear of outcome) of talking about this stuff is undesirable to the people involved, maybe thats when its labeled "gossip". If being talked about brings a desirable or neutral outcome (or you dont fear the outcome) then maybe we label it as just "talking about people".
 
 
Thoughts?


Semiral

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Reply with quote  #2 

The way I see it, One can talk about others with different intentions. 

For example, I might be talking to you about "John’s mother" whom we both know.

1) 1) Melissa, I received an invitation to John’s mother’s 90th birthday and I am feeling very excited about it. I am feeling so grateful she introduced me to NVC and would be delighted to connect with her again and celebrate. I know her life situation is limited now with old age and but I also know her heart is still young looking at the way she dresses and loves watching people dance. 

2) 2)      Melissa, I received an invitation to John’s mother’s 90th birthday and cannot believe they can even think I would go. I mean, yes, she helped me get started on NVC and all, but for God’s sake, she cannot even speak or walk and still wants to celebrate in a dance club, go figure!  Have seen her how she dresses? Like she is still like 25 year old, she should be ashamed of herself. My mom would never do that. ... and so on.

 

In 1) I am talking about somebody to inform and share joy. 

In 2) I am talking about the person with the characteristics below:

I am making moralistic judgments. 
I am demonstrating righteousness and superiority over the other person. 
It may feel like I’ll never stop and I have no interest in listening to you.
You’ll probably hear me talking about other people with the same characteristics

So, the main purpose of my talking about others seem to be inflating my "ego".

This is what I consider gossiping and as a jackal I love it.
J




Melissa

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks Semiral!  I'm appreciating you engaging in this conversation, and taking time to write back. Fills me with a sense of community engagement!


Here are my responses to this part:

Quote:

In 2) I am talking about the person with the characteristics below:

I am making moralistic judgments. 
I am demonstrating righteousness and superiority over the other person. 
It may feel like I’ll never stop and I have no interest in listening to you.
You’ll probably hear me talking about other people with the same characteristics

So, the main purpose of my talking about others seem to be inflating my "ego".

This is what I consider gossiping 

 


I hope I've understood your message clearly.  If not, please give me a heads up.



The Upshot:  Overall, in my responses below (as well as in my initial message), I am mainly just wondering that if I call someone a gossip, if that just means that I am triggered and need a good measure of empathy.  Plus, I wonder if the term "gossip" is just another jackal term.




Response #1.  I`m hearing you say that the intention of the person is the key to seeing if they are "gossiping".  And that we can use key indicators such as "am I demonstrating righteousness and superiority?",  "am I inflating my ego?", etc. to see that we are gossiping.

When I imagine checking my intentions, using your indicators, what I'm hearing are thoughts that are implied evaluations of myself --  since I`m not attempting to connect to what's truly "up for" me.

When I imagine using the same key indicators to apply to another person, such as "is he demonstrating righteousness and superiority?",  "Is he inflating his ego?", etc. I am also hearing thoughts that are implied evaluations of another.

So I'm wondering if these thoughts are a reflection of my being triggered into jackal mode -- rather than a reflection of the person we are labeling "gossip".



Response #2.  In the quote above, are you saying that people who go into jackal mode, are "gossipers"?  (I am only warmly curious here).

If the answer is yes, here's what I'm thinking:
Many of us in practice group and who have used empathy buddies (myself included), and have used our empathy sessions to talk about things people have done that trigger us.  And during that empathy session have expressed jackal thoughts (here, we are unlikely to open up about our triggered moments to inform people nor express joy). Usually, we are in jackal mode in an empathy session because we could use an empathic ear.

Maybe we might "go on" about this person that triggered us, and not know where the end is, because there is so many parts and layers in us that are screaming to be acknowledged and met (with empathy, inner clarity, understanding), etc.

(This is why, I wonder if the term "gossip" is really just a jackal term)




Response #3.  
Quote:
You’ll probably hear me talking about other people with the same characteristics


There could be many people who have certain characteristics that I don't enjoy.

I don't enjoy being cheated on.  And maybe I have a number exes that have cheated, or I see many of my friends have experienced being cheated on before.  And if I am ranting to someone about a pattern of cheating in the world (in an empathy session or otherwise) I don't think this makes me a gossip.




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Melissa
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