We hear a lot about the Me Mentality that so many people have; people who are so fixated on themselves that nothing else and nobody else matters. To them, it’s all about ”me.” What’s good for me, what makes me happy, what’s in it for me?

As frustrating as it is dealing with people like that, it’s even worse dealing with the “Not Me” mentality that is just as pervasive in our society. You can always tell a person or a business cursed with the Not Me mentality, because no matter what happens, it’s never their fault.

Case in point is the California woman who met a man on Match.com, and is now suing the online dating company, alleging that on their second date, the man sexually assaulted her in her home. Last year, the man entered a not guilty plea to two felony sexual assault counts in Los Angeles Superior Court, and is awaiting trial. In this case, his attorney says the sex was consensual. In her lawsuit, the woman says that Match.com should have screened its clients to weed out those with criminal pasts.

My question is, if she had met the man in a bar, or at church, would she now be suing those institutions? She met a man online, had one date with him, and then accepted a second date, and invited him into her home. Doesn’t she have to accept some responsibility for her decisions?

Another example is an incident that happened a few weeks ago with a friend of mine, who was parked next to me at a fairgrounds RV park in Tucson. An outside company contracted for grounds maintenance was trimming the hedges behind our motorhomes, and the next day my friend discovered a deep gouge in the rear of his motorhome, right where the crew was working.

When my friend contacted the fairgrounds staff to report the incident, the immediate reaction from their guy and the representative from the outside work crew was “Are you blaming us? No, it couldn’t have been us!”

It didn’t matter that nobody else had been working around the back of his RV with power equipment, and that nobody else was in the area between our two coaches, and that the damage was not there the day before. The Not Me mentality had kicked in, and nobody wanted to even consider the fact that they were to blame. 

It’s everywhere. We see it in people, we see it in businesses, and we see it in our elected officials. Nobody is ever willing to  stand up on their hind legs and take any personal responsibility. 

A few years ago on a talk show, comedian Dennis Miller said “You know, just once I want to see somebody talking to a news reporter say “I didn’t grow up in a broken home, I wasn’t molested or abused a a kid, my mom was great, my dad was great, I’m just a loser.””

Yeah, I’d like to see that too, but it’s never going to happen. Because whatever goes wrong in life, no matter who goofs up, no matter what mistakes are made, it must be somebody else’s fault. It could never be mine. Me? No, not me!

Tags: , , , , , , ,

8 Comments on Not Me Mentality

  1. When these people won’t admit they did the damage the next time you appeoach them bring a couple of very large rough looking men and watch them change thier attitude it is amazing

  2. Janis Thomas says:

    Nick, The “Not Me” mentality started long ago with Adam and Eve. It’s not about to stop any time soon.

  3. Closely related is the “Why me?” attitude. The only answer for that is “Why not me?” That’s what I finally asked myself when I was asked to run for the Board of Directors at our park; that’s what my lady has to ask when she considers her medical issues. Unfortunately, when medical issues hit, there is no “Not Me” available, because there it is, and there’s seldom anyone to pin the blame on. It just happens.

  4. Regina Ellis says:

    And that, my friend, is why we have and need law enforcement and a judicial system. The step that your friend left out was to call the cops and report a case of “criminal mischief” and allow the officers to do what they do. It might have worked out differently if that step had been taken. Maybe not, but why not give it a whirl “next time”. And there will be a next time. Had it been me, I would have at least informed both the workers and the park management that I intended to call the police. That, in itself, is frequently enough to loosen tongues.

  5. Pat O'Brien says:

    There is a word missing from many peoples lives. The word is “consequences”. When our young people are protected from the consequences of their actions (usually by Mom and Dad, sometimes by the system) they grow up basically believing they can do no wrong. They become irresponsible.
    I don’t think this goes back to Adam and Eve. After all, didn’t they suffer for their actions?

  6. Linda Sand says:

    Yesterday, a woman pulled her car into the only available parking space for our RV even though the site was clearly marked as Bus/RV Only. When I confronted her she said someone else did it first! As my Mom would say, “Two wrongs don’t make a right!” At least she did move her car.

  7. Susan Wilson says:

    I think the lawyers tell their clients “Never apologize, because that is admitting guilt. And if you admit guilt, they can sue you!” But if people would just own up and apologize, I think fewer of them would get sued!

  8. Barbara Kirkhart Palmer says:

    It seems to me that since the late 1960’s, when all the “feel good” movement hit public schools, and when mothers starting working outside the home in much greater numbers than before, there has been a great decline in public civility and just plain responsibility for one’s actions. If you are tought in school that there is no wrong spelling, no wrong grammar, and you can’t fail a grade because it would hurt your self image, why in the world would you own up to causing damage that might cost you a few bucks? I worked as a medical writer for many years before retiring, and can attest to the fact that almost no one below the age of 35 can write a coherent sentence, let alone paragraph! I think that the clarity of thinking required to write correctly is closely aligned with the clarity of morality required to take responsibility for one’s own actions! (Perhaps a bit of a stretch, but not much!)

Leave a Reply