Friday, August 04, 2006

He ain't heavy .. he's my brother

In your experience, can people ever really change who they are?

For example, will a cheat always be a cheat? A felon always a felon? Etc?

Do you know anyone who has successfully changed for the better?


At 1:33 PM , Blogger Tamara said...

I am young yet, but, at this point, I do not believe people ever really change.

Except when they have strokes.

And I'm actually pretty firm on this. You can change a lot, but hardly anybody has the strength to really, truly, make a hard, permanent change.

But, more importantly, you can never expect anyone to change. You have to take people as they are, because if they are going to change (to the small degree that they are able), it's not going to be for you. That desire comes from within.

At 1:36 PM , Blogger Tamara said...

(And by "you", of course I mean: "me".)

At 1:41 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

ppl dont change
they grow more hair.

that said...i like to think ppl can change. im an obstinate optimist now and i'll be 1 4ever.


At 1:49 PM , Blogger punky said...

that MUST be Bangi. Hi Bangi ;)

At 2:35 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

oops...hehe...yep it's me


At 3:11 PM , Anonymous Sallyacious said...

I think a person actually can change. But life may have to get pretty rough before they want to. Plus, I think that in order to change, a person needs to be fairly self-aware. Otherwise, they're not going to see a connection between their behavior and their situation.

I've done some work with theatre and disadvantaged kids, though, and sometimes all somebody needs in order to make a major change is to know that there's a person out there who believes in them, who believes that they are capable and worthy of a better life.

At 1:09 AM , Anonymous boo augustus said...

Punky, I am beginning to think that it's time for me to just take these hypothetical nonchanging persons out. You need some closure, and what better way to get closure than with a baseball bat, a couple railroad spikes and a pillowcase filled with grapefruit.

At 6:55 AM , Anonymous Jeff Meyerson said...

You mean, will Mel Gibson always be an anti-Semitic drunk?

First, I do NOT believe we can change people.

Second, I DO believe we can change ourselves. It may not be easy in some cases, and relapse is always there, but we can if we want to badly enough.

When we were dating, Jackie was working for a public health doctor. She brought home a book showing people with emphysema for my father, showing pictures of people with tubes in their throats still smoking.

At that point he'd smoked two packs a day for 25 years, but he stopped - literally - overnight, and never had another cigarette.

At 5:32 AM , Blogger Kafaleni said...

I absolutely believe that people can change, and do every day. Otherwise there wouldn't be organisations like AA (and many other help groups) - they'd just push all the alcoholics (or other hopeless causes) over to one side and let them wallow in their own addiction until it kills them.
So yes, we can and do change, but it has to come from within ourselves, and we have to work to make it part of our natural selves. We also need people who believe in our ability to change, people who will support us while we work to make ourselves into different and (in most cases) better people.

At 11:48 AM , Anonymous insomniac said...

how many therapists does it take to change a light bulb?

only one, but the lightbulb really has to want to change...

cpwus- according to Barbara Walters, an island in the Mediterranean

At 2:43 PM , Blogger Kafaleni said...


At 8:53 AM , Anonymous Zoodle said...

Ditto Sallyacious 100%.

Yes, people can definitely change, if they really want to and if they work hard at it.

You're right about needing someone to believe in you though. When the world is beating you down that one person can be the difference between making it or not. (And people sure do like to kick someone when they are down don't they?!!)

At 9:02 AM , Anonymous Zoodle said...

I forgot:

Do you know anyone who has successfully changed for the better?


So far so good. 1 year and counting.

At 9:50 AM , Blogger punky said...

I am a very different person than I was in my teens and in my 20s. It took a committed effort. I went through many forms of therapy and did a lot of work on my own. For those who only met me in the last few years, the changes may not be obvious. But for those who have known me for many years, as many of my friends have, they see the difference. But more importantly, I see the difference. And truthfully, it didn't matter if others supported me or believed in me, the courage to change and the desire to change and the determination to change came from within ... I was no longer willing to live the way I was living ... and that was all it took. But the change didn't happen over night. It's been many, many years of consistent and dedicated effort.

I really wanted to change.

At 4:07 AM , Blogger Kafaleni said...

{{{Punky}}} I'm a member of the "last few years" crowd, but I know you to be a woman of amazing depth and beauty. You should be incredibly proud of what you've done with your life

At 10:37 AM , Blogger Higgy said...

I do think people can change who they really are. I think people have and continue to reform themselves as they age and mature.

Offhand, don't know anyone besides my best friend from high school who has really changed for the better. He took control of his life and improved many areas for himself.


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