How am I supposed to tell someone that they are a self-centered jerk without sounding rude?
I read a blog post recently where a parent was explaining how they don't enjoy doing things with their kids, and they would rather just be the one who took care of their needs. The parent was looking for support of this idea, asking rather insistently if they were the only person who felt that way. Although I can guarantee that this person is not alone in feeling this way, that does not make it right.
If you look at your kids in this light, you are basically treating them like a chore - taking care of their bare maintenance needs and nothing else. The parent becomes a simple caretaker, a person that the child can only go to when assistance is required. There is no choice in the relationship (I don't know about anybody else, but I want my children to enjoy spending time with me and - GASP! - actually choose to do things with me). In time, the child will begin to sense this relationship and withdraw from the parent, only to reappear when the child needs something.
Of course, I wrote none of this in the blog's comment section because I was afraid it might have sounded callous and insensitive. My Aspergers makes me extremely proficient at sounding insensitive. I'll write it here because I don't think anybody reads this crap anyway.
This fear of "rubbing people the wrong way" creeps into many of my daily interactions. I'll go along with a lot of stuff just to avoid rocking the boat. I also find it difficult to express my actual opinions when talking to people; I usually just allow them to express theirs and then critique them (once again, coming off as insensitive). I assume when people express themselves (like in the blog I mentioned above) that they want people to agree with them, and disagreements are going to start fights
I really don't like pissing people off, so most of the time I avoid the confrontation and either pretend to agree or ignore the whole situation totally. I do need to learn how to say no, disagree with someone, or express my true opinions without worrying how other people will react.