“Are You Judging Me?”

| October 16, 2013 | 2 Comments

When I was in high school, I was hanging around a local pizza parlor when my friend showed up with a beer in hand. I asked him how he got that and he replied that a coworker bought it for him. He paused for a moment and asked, “Are you judging me?” And I said yes, despite the fact that I knew it wasn’t the kind thing to say. But in all honestly I was, I really was judging him.

So I went home that night and thought about why I said that. Why was I judging him? Did I suddenly think he was dangerous? No. I realized that when I told him I was judging him, it wasn’t in a way that he thought I meant.

People judge each other every second of every day. We judge the way people act, dress, and talk. We judge the places we are and the places we go. We judge ourselves. But this isn’t in a sense that we judge people, places, or ourselves as lesser. We simply are judging what is safe and what is wise.

Judgment is a human mechanism used to decide what is best for the individual. It is less about other people and more about what we, as individuals, is best for us to succeed and survive.


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Who said that judgments are negative or positive? “Becky is pretty” is a judgment as well as “Stan is loud and annoying.” I could use these opinions to encourage Becky to enter a pageant or Stan to try speech and debate.

And who said that we act off our judgments? All I gathered that night at the pizza parlor was that my friend was interested in alcohol and less interested in age requirements to drink. That doesn’t necessarily mean I was planning on ending my friendship with him. I was merely thinking about the situation and deciding what I thought about it and what was safe and wise for me.

We live in a society that tells us to use our best judgment but don’t be judgmental. What? Forget that! Here’s my judgment, judge people. Use your gut to decide what you want for yourself. Being judgy isn’t really judging. It’s deciding. It’s deciding what you want and whether you want someone, or something in your life. It’s taking in information and understanding the world around you even better then you did before.

Above all, we shouldn’t judge people who judge.

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Category: featured, Philosophy and Religion

Emmy Parks

About the Author ()

I write to validate and solidify my feelings. Make them less fleeting and more concrete and real. I'm ready to be judged.

Comments (2)

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  1. DS says:

    there’s nothing wrong with judging people, depending on what you do with that judgment once it’s made. i was involved in a big facebook (surprise?) argument with someone who had posted a video of a music artist who had been arrested for molesting a teenager. i left a comment that said, “no thanks. not interested in music artists who rape teenagers.” the friend told me i was wrong for judging him.

    really? wrong for judging? so if someone rapes a teenager, i’m supposed to be okay with that? if someone rapes a teenager, am i allowed to judge for myself if i want him to babysit my kids? if someone is known to be a thief, am i allowed to judge for myself not to give him the keys to my house?

    like it or not, we all judge constantly and justifiably. judging is learning. if i have to pick someone with which to collaborate on an important project, it would be foolish to not use a judgment to decide which co-worker with which to join.

    part of the problem is this “everybody wins” mentality. everybody wins, everybody gets a trophy, everybody makes the team. this “reward everyone” mentality is concerned too much with individual self esteem and not concerned enough about individual achievement. some people prove themselves as performing above others, and there is nothing wrong with that. some people prove themselves as more trustworthy and competent than others, and there is nothing wrong with using that information to judge who you will or won’t spend time with.

    do we not occasionally break up with significant others? is that not a judgment? if we are expected to put aside judgments, then are we supposed to stay with the boyfriend or girlfriend who cheats on us? are you supposed to shake hands with the neighbor who kicks your dog?

    if a friend walks into a pizza place with a beer, and that friend is underage, you better judge that friend as willing to break the law and endanger others. and you also better judge the person who bought the beer for the underage friend. if you don’t make those judgments, then you put yourself at risk.

  2. Kate Conroy Kate Conroy says:

    This is exactly what I’ve been thinking. All of a sudden, the word “judgment” has a really negative connotation, but I can’t help having an opinion on the things I encounter every day.

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