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Who Cares?

Sometimes, when in conflict, we may react with a resounding “Who cares?” as a way to dismiss the interaction and make it sound unimportant. Such a response might seem to be somewhat of a defence rather than a true proclamation of our perspective on the dynamic and its impact. The question “Who cares?” is reminiscent to me, too, of that oft-used expression from a number of years ago that went something like, “Tell someone who cares”.

It occurs to me that often we care more than we show it or want to, and possibly, the degree to which we are experiencing emotions about the interaction and its effect on us is really quite significant. Maybe, we don’t want to admit how much the conflict hurts or our fear of being hurt trumps admitting it.

When thinking about the times you have asked “Who cares?” in response to a conflict or situation, consider these questions to check out whether it matters, or if you or someone else cares.

  • What was happening in the conflict when you said “Who cares?”
  • To whom did you say that (to the other person, to a friend, other)?
  • What prompted you to ask “Who cares?” at that moment in time?
  • What may you actually care about with respect to the dispute that is niggling at some level of consciousness?
  • How is your response having an impact on the outcome (that you haven’t referred to yet)?
  • What do you care about regarding the other person?
  • Who else may care about the outcome of the dispute? Why is that?
  • What do you think the other person cares about regarding the conflict between you?
  • What might you both care about that you are not mentioning?
  • How are you not caring about yourself?
  • What else occurs to you as you consider these questions?
  • What insights do you have?

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