People Are Supposed to Be Good

The Heartbreak of Betrayal

Excuse me if I get a little emotional this morning. I woke up hearing everything that is going on in Boston and the manhunt being ensued. Today also happens to be the 18th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombings where I happen to live. I feel violated, defenseless and just sad. People are supposed to be good.

People Are Supposed to Be Good

A couple months ago I had something happen that sent me and my family into a tailspin. Someone we were close to violated our trust and stole right in front of our nose. They smiled about it; probably even grinned. They walked into the home we invited them in and violated me and my family. I took this person in, mentored them and they found their opportunity. I am still very, very sick and mostly angry. These feelings for this former friend and evil human being are not unlike how I feel about the men who violated our trust while visiting our country because people are supposed to be good.

I’m also feel sad for this person and the circumstance that led them down this path. I wonder about the lies they were told or the anger that led them to choose this life; a life of hurting others, taking advantage of me. I wonder about how they view the world and their reality. But mostly, I’m sad and angry because people are supposed to be good.

I hate that sick feeling realizing that there are things in life that you can’t control. I try to resist being cynical, but you are left to the mercy of others either their kindness or hate. This reality is very unsettling to me because people are supposed to be good. My family, my friends and those that I love are what keep me strong. These influences are things that I can control. I can help them find kindness in their heart and the whole body warmth you feel when you wholeheartedly believe that people are in fact good.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.

Reader Interactions


  1. Mary Wright says

    You’ve got to be taught to hate and fear,
    You’ve got to be taught from year to year,
    It’s got to be drummed in your dear little ear,
    You’ve got to be carefully taught.

    You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
    Of people whose eyes are oddly made,
    And people whose skin is a diff’rent shade,
    You’ve got to be carefully taught.

    You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late,
    Before you are six or seven or eight,
    To hate all the people your relatives hate,
    You’ve got to be carefully taught!

    — “You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught,” (Lyrics from South Pacific.)


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