As I’d mentioned in Mindless, I enjoy my daily dose of watching quirky law enforcement officers battling crime and criminals.
Not surprisingly, in most cases, the impact of certain crucial relationships are triggers for people to commit crimes – the type of crime might vary based on intelligence and intensity of their emotions. Revenge, ambition love, passion, hatred, insecurity, failure, jealousy are all great motivators. Just as in real life, relationships can make or break us depending on our capacity to process the emotions they elicit and our response to their impact.
The experience based technique, Johari Window help people better understand their relationship with self and others. Similarly these serials help highlight the frailty of human emotions while some dialogues tug a chord within. Some relationships I can relate to, some emotions are mindbogglingly close to the ‘real me’ while some dialogues eloquently, express my thoughts and feelings. Perhaps I (or people I know closely) won’t commit a crime (in law enforcement terms) but I do strongly believe that everyday, we do our little bit – even, if it is to show petty jealously!
I recently watched brothers Don and Charlie (Numb3rs) argue about how they made each other feel while they were growing up. Charlie is a Math genius while Don is an FBI officer. Charlie’s intelligence led him to catch up with his brother and at one point in their lives they were studying in the same class. Although Charlie looked up to his brother and wanted to be like him, he always felt the need to compete as Don was popular, outgoing and street smart. Don, on the other hand, felt like an idiot to have his much younger brother study with him. They fought bitterly when Don took the girl Charlie liked to the prom. Charlie wanted to take her out too but didn’t know how to ask! Today, Charlie uses his mathematical approach to help Don solve criminal cases. Today they work together quite congenially but could never have imagined doing that in the past.
It reminded me about my relationship with my sister – two years elder, she had physically matured at a very early age which led her to being ridiculed in school both by teachers and students. It made her insecure and she stammered. Her grades dropped and I was always hauled up by teachers to make a complaint about her. It not only irritated me but made me feel insecure as well – I felt like I was always being watched and compared. I felt like it was all my fault! We hardly spoke to each other. Her failure to pass twice to the next class soon had me catch up with her. One day she refused to go to school. It changed our lives forever.
We dealt with this change in our own ways. She graduated through open school while I went the ‘normal’ way. Growing up in different worlds helped us to become two very different people. She developed some strong friendships, stopped stammering, became confident, was always the heart of the party and turned out to be a stunner. She had successfully blanketed out the hurt and pain to become witty, smart and gregarious.
I was her opposite – quiet, introverted, kept to myself and was always wary about being acceptable. People’s opinion mattered and so did conforming to authority!
On the whole, yes, things worked out for us but deep down we both still carried the guilt and feelings of being ‘responsible’ for that life changing experience.
Interestingly, later in life, we too started to work together in the same organisation! We each did well in our respective departments although no one could tell we were sisters. Today we can talk and relate to one another. We’ve even helped each other professionally.
Some years ago, one evening, we sat down to chat – it wasn’t planned but we just talked. She was the first to let me in on a secret. I don’t know how it happened but her confidence to confide in me led me to respect her even more. I opened up too and we slowly found that there was a lot in common between us. Life had doled out some similar instances and experiences and the only difference was that we had each dealt with them in our own ways.
Suddenly the past didn’t matter – we felt mature enough to accept that we were only responsible for what we said openly. We were not responsible for what the other understood. We accepted our individuality and knew that we didn’t have to react the same because we were sisters! We were accepting of each other’s abilities and limitations. Although we had reacted differently in similar situations, there was nothing right or wrong with either. It was just who we were. Today we stand strong for each other and personally relate to one another too.
I must say that I truly enjoy watching those serials. They are the windows to my understanding and acceptance of life as it is – the harsh realities!