Devotions from Henri Nouwen’s book, The Inner Voice of  Love

Sometimes we blame others for difficulties we experience in relationships but we can also end up blaming ourselves. .  But self-blame is not a form of humility, it is a form of self-rejection. It is a form in which we ignore or deny our own goodness and beauty.  When a friendship does not blossom or a word is not received, we can blame it on ourselves. This may be both untrue and hurtful. When we do this we idealize others, and make ourselves emotionally dependent on others to fill our expectations. This can make them withdraw from us and thus begins a downward spiral of self-rejection and neediness.   Let us avoid all forms of self-rejection. Let us acknowledge our limitations but claim our unique gifts and live as an equal among equals. This will set us free and enable us to give and receive true affection and friendship.