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Jun 202013

AppeasementThe term appeasement is commonly understood to refer to a diplomatic policy aimed at avoiding war by making concessions to another power. Historian Paul Kennedy defines it as “the policy of settling international quarrels by admitting and satisfying grievances through rational negotiation and compromise, thereby avoiding the resort to an armed conflict which would be expensive, bloody, and possibly dangerous…” The word “appeasement” has been used as a synonym for weakness and even cowardice since the 1930s, and it is still used in that sense to denounce policies and behaviors that conflict with firm, often armed, action in international relations. But “appeasement” is also what many of us try to do with those people in our lives who are abusive.

I have a little dog who was rescued from an abusive prior life where his owner’s adult sons didn’t like him and apparently physically abused him. He is a Jack Russell Terrier, which is known for its feisty nature and general  hardheadedness as well as for being quite smart. My little dog, though, if spoken to roughly will cower, belly crawl, and attempt to appease what he thinks is my anger at him.

Appeasement is something done from a “one-down” position of weakness from a lower status individual to a higher or more powerful individual who has become angered at the  less powerful individual, it is meant to calm the rage  of the  more powerful.

Dogs have “castes” within a “pack,” which can include other dogs, other animals or humans. Because I don’t want my dogs to do things that are harmful to me, others, or the environment of my home (like pooping in the house) I establish my gentle dominance over  my dogs. I become the “alpha” (highest) member of the pack. If they do something I don’t want them to repeat, I respond to them like another alpha dog would, I growl at them to indicate that is unacceptable behavior. If they repeat it or refuse to acknowledge that I am alpha, I may grab them by the scruff of the neck and actually pinch it or shake them a bit (not enough to give them have shaken baby syndrome or harm them, but essentially the way their mother weaned them). Dogs understand this kind of pack dominance and do not “resent it” or cower from it for long, but if they have been beaten or screamed at,  they respond by cowering in an effort to appease their owner from some rage that they are not sure what caused it.

Humans also have appeasement behavior. If your boss is in a foul mood and you’re not sure quite why, but s/he yells at you or someone else, you may try to appease this angry behavior by being quiet, not asking questions, or going about your business to avoid running into him or her.

If your spouse is in a grouchy mood  you may fix their favorite drink or offer a back rub, or some other thing to make them feel better.

If you have been seriously physically or emotionally abused though, you may respond a bit like my rescued dog and go into serious appeasement mode if you become aware that someone is angry or out of sorts, and do the human equivalent of the dog’s “belly crawling, tail wagging” appeasement routine.

You may have even been trained to do this as a child if you had controlling or over-bearing adult caregivers or parents. You may have been told and shown that certain behaviors would elicit rage from someone more powerful than you were, or you may have experienced random rage from those powerful people that you could not discern what had prompted it so you might be hyper vigilant  around people, continually wondering when the next outbreak of rage might come, and doing all you could to appease that rage even before it happened.

For some people, I am one of them, I was convinced early on that  the happiness and satisfaction of other people depended on how I behaved, and that it was my responsibility to make them happy. If they were not happy, it was because I was deficient in my “happy- making behaviors.”

This way of thinking about myself and my behavior made me try hard to keep everyone happy all the time, to blame myself if someone else wasn’t happy, and to continually try to work harder to appease them if they were unhappy. I continually did the human equivalent of the dog’s belly crawling appeasement behavior. I would rush to wait on them to show my hospitality, fix everyone’s favorite food so no one felt left out. I would ignore patently rude behavior because I didn’t want to “hurt their feelings” (that would have been a big crime I felt.) Just like my little dog, instead of fighting back against abuse from a one-down position (and I realize an 18 pound dog doesn’t have much chance against a 180 pound man), like him, I cowered down, made appeasing noises,  polished up my whining voice, and jumped at any request or suggestion, ignoring  however passive aggressively it might be phrased. In short, I learned to “let’s pretend it never happened” no matter how hurt I was, or how bad the emotional abuse had been.

I learned to savor the “pats” and to quickly forget the “slings and arrows” of every day life from those who I allowed to be in the “one-up position” from me.

My little dog didn’t have much of a chance to defend himself, or to find a new home, but as luck would have it, his previous mother asked me to take him in, and though I’ve not been able to totally reassure him that he is not going to be beaten or kicked, he is living a much more normal life now.

Unlike my little dog, though, I DO have a choice in how I live, and how I react to those “slings and arrows” that are thrown out by others who would place themselves superior to me and expect me to dance to their tune, regardless of how abusive they are to me. I do not have to endure endless physical or emotional kicks any more. Because I have realized that you can never truly appease someone who is abusive to those people around them. Not all bosses are abusive to those who work under their supervision, not all spouses are abusive to their spouses or significant others. As human beings in the western culture and civilization we have the right to  choose who we associate with. We are not required by law to associate with someone who is abusive (except in the  case of people who have to “co-parent” with these individuals, even then the abuse and the association can be limited.)

My problem is though, that because I, like my little dog, was trained as a child to appease those who show their displeasure toward me in any way and this is the natural “fall back position” for me, just like it is for my little dog. Because of that, if someone shows however subtly that they are displeased with me, my almost immediate almost INSTINCTIVE reaction is is to think “what did I do wrong?” Then “what can I do to make them happy?”

During my healing journey, though, I have learned that if someone is  unhappy with me it is not necessarily that I have done anything wrong to cause their unhappiness. Even if something I have done to make them mad is why they are mad, it does not necessarily mean I have done anything wrong, or failed to do something right. I have learned intellectually that I am responsible for my own happiness, and not responsible for the happiness of others, and if I do my best to treat others fairly, honestly and politely, if they are not happy with that, it is absolutely okay for them to not be happy and is not my problem. I do not have to belly crawl, whine, whimper, and beg other people to appease them. I do not have to FEAR the displeasure of others unless I was  breaking the speed limit and the cop is standing by my car door asking for my license. In that case, I am going to do my best to appease him, my pity ploy, and my very polite little old lady act! 🙂

In short, when other people are demanding or abusive, we do not have to appease them to our emotional detriment. Sometimes it may mean finding another job because your boss is abusive, I’ve done that. Sometimes it may mean leaving a love relationship because your partner is abusive, or sometimes it may mean severing one or more  family ties because your relatives is/are  abusive (and by the way, passive-aggressive IS AGGRESSIVE!)

Trying to appease the demanding and abusive though, is a continuing and impossible task to accomplish. If you appease them on one issue, then they will raise another one, then still another one. It is like a game with them to find things about you to abuse you for. Learning to not “instinctively” respond from this “one-down” emotional position though, will take some practice as well as continual  vigilance of your own responses. In fact, last week I found myself trying to appease someone who was very demanding, I was very unsuccessfully trying to appease them, by the way. Then, I pulled myself up short and asked myself, “Why are you trying to appease this person, Joyce? Their demands are unreasonable and rude.” I didn’t confront the person about it, they were not someone who was important in my life so there was no need to make  a big “to do” about it, but I did adjust my own thinking, my own emotional response to the their narcissistic demands. It didn’t change anything about how they acted, but it went from being an irritation to me to a laughable exercise in my own growth.

Back again to the bottom line of dealing with dysfunctional or abusive people, we can’t change them, but we can change ourselves and  our responses to how they behave. We can quit trying to appease them, it wouldn’t be successful anyway. We may have to sever the relationship if they are close to us, but we do not have to ever endure abusive behavior, or try to appease the abuser.

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  22 Responses to “Appeasement of abusers, an impossible goal”

  1. Funny you should post this as I have been having an ongoing discussion with my bestie for the last week or so. Her mom has guilted her into doing things with her, then says she seems like she is acting as if she is obligated to be with her. Well DUH!

    Bottom line- Her mother is not happy within herself. Nothing anyone says or does can change that and meanwhile she is making the lives of everyone around her miserable. Walking on eggshells much?

  2. Pixie, we can NOT do enough to appease those who are trying to CONTROL us, whether it is a mother “guilting” us or an abusive spouse or child, or friend. We must STOP trying to appease those who would control us through the old FOG=Fear-Obligation-Guilt.

    When we belly crawl and try to appease these people we are just giving them the “go ahead” to continue to abuse, use and control us.

    Now I admitted I try to appease a cop standing by my window after he caught me speeding, but that’s just “good sense” a smart mouth gets you a ticket and “the old lady act” usually gets you a warning and an admonition to slow down, but you know that is the only time I try to appease anyone. It only makes them despise you for “being weak” and hey, they don’t like you much or they wouldn’t be trying to control or abuse you in the first place.

    When I first started trying to “set boundaries” for my own mother, she became FURIOUS, I wish you could have seen the look on her face of utter RAGE.

    I had assured her I would be there for ALL true emergencies, but that other things that could wait would have to fit into my schedule and instead of taking her to town on Mondays which is the day she had “always” gone…it might be tuesday or Wednesday, she glared at me and said “well, what if I WANT to go on Mondays” and I said well, then get someone else to drive you. (She is perfectly able to afford to hire a driver) That was when she began to buddy up to my now-ex-DIL and loan her money, give her a vehicle, etc. and then later, when I was in hiding, the DIL and her BF tried to kill my oldest biological son the husband of the DIL….and WOW, mom was so surprised! BETRAYED even….and wanted me to come back and be her servant…but I had stopped trying to appease her. That didn’t sit too well either. But at age 60+ I had grown a back bone and realized that I couldn’t appease my mother, or anyone else for that matter. Time to grow up Joyce! I did and I am very glad.

    It hurts to realize that anyone you love wants to control you through whatever method, but Ii realized in hind sight that my mom had tried to control me my entire life…and I so wanted to please/appease her. No more. I’m at a point now that I don’t bow and scrape to anyone. If they like me the way I am, great, if not.;..not my problem.

  3. Joyce, this is a terrific article and it resonates with me.

    I remember the first exspath and what visible GLEE he presented when I was groveling in an attempt to appease him.

    Oh, yes…..it is an attempt to smooth things over, and it only provides the abusive individual a tremendous sense of power and control. It NEVER solves the power and/or control issues.

  4. Yea, Truthy, there just ain’t no making these folks happy, and debasing ourselves in an attempt to appease them just makes them despise us more.

    And yea, it seems that they ENJOY our debasing ourselves.

  5. Truthspeak,

    Isn’t that the truth! Just appeasing an abusive type does not mean that you’ll get on their “good” side. These people don’t have a “good” side. They will go a time before “sticking it to you,” over some perceived slight, or just because they enjoy creating drama, being bullies, taking pleasure in attacking people.

  6. It took me a long time to grasp the concept that you can’t appease control freaks…and I still grapple with it.

    growing up I had the idea that I was responsible for everyone else’s happiness, and of course that is not true at all, but it is a common thing taught to our children….”we can’t let the neighbors know daddy gets drunk and falls down, if you tell anyone it will be YOUR fault if daddy loses his job.”

    We cover up the “family dirty laundry” and try to appease daddy (or mommy) when they are drunk or disorderly to keep them from “getting upset”—I finally realize I am not responsible for any one else’s happiness, they are responsible for it. Just took me a long time to figure that out. LOL

  7. Spathx accused me of being controlling because I was setting boundaries and not being ok with being treated like a hotel maid/ whore. Insisting, or trying to, that my home and ME be respected. MF’er…….I fell for it. I tried so hard to let things go and play nice and gentle and walk on egg shells. I just was so worn down and confused and couldn’t get my feet under me. I am picky about my home, how things are done, where things go,,,,,Also, probably not the most diplomatic person in the world because I have a hard time finding the right words in the moment so I put things off then they build up…..It seems to me that is he really cared about me, he would help me learn and work through things like that. I certainly was willing. And I was willing to do the same for him…..he wasn’t willing. Tossed me a crumb of effort from time to time and acted like it was a steak dinner.

  8. Dotty, when we “let things build up and then explode” this is dysfunctional functioning on OUR part. I suggest that you read Dr. Eric Berne’s book “Games People Play”, it is an older book but available used almost everywhere and is a quick read and also o ne you want to study. It has a lot of information in how people interact with each other. He calls them “games” but they are serious business for sure, but by looking at them as “games” with “rules” we can see how we ourselves did not respond in a healthy way.

    Just going over and over how the offender acted doesn’t help us much in the long run, we must change the only person we can change and that is OURSELVES, so that WE are functioning in a healthy way whether others do or not.

    When we let little things build up and build up and then “explode” Dr. Berne analogizes them as “saving trading stamps” like we did when I was a kid. When you spent money at a store you got “green stamps” and you pasted them in a book and when you got X amount of books you could trade them in for a small appliance like a toaster or a bigger thing if you had many books. So when we hold in all those little things and don’t resolve them, we are “collecting stamps” and keeping them until we finally get the last stamp and we trade them all in for a guilt-free explosion. LOL Sometimes people even try to trade in old stamps that have already been redeemed, and then the fight is ON.

    Get the book dotty and read it with an eye to finding out what you have done that is unhealthy. You can’t change him, and you can analyze what HE did wrong all day every day but that won’t help YOU. The healing starts out learning about them, but then MUST move on to learning about OURSELVES….what we can to to make ourselves think and be

    • Joyce, Im really not usually like that but became like that with him. It was impossible to deal with any issues in a productive manner. Nothing got resolved….I grew weary……more and more confused. PTSD, etc. I wasn’t like that at the begining and I have been working on saying what i really think and feel for a long time. I really do get confused sometimes, over think things into a loop.
      Anyhow, in the world at large, i do tend to speak up for myself, say no, etc. It was with him that I just lost myself. There was no winning and I use the term loosely. I got caught mentally and couldn’t get out. so now I’m out and if I’m ever with someone again, that will be another red flag that something is wrong….not feeling safe to speak up for myself. THIS is the pattern……..it’s in dysfunctional situations the I get tripped up because I think to hard about what to say so it comes out right and it’s a sign that I’m NOT safe. I don’t have that problem in healthy relationships. idk, not making sense. I hope beyond hope that I will never ever allow myself to get hooked like this again. With alcohol removed from the picture Im hopeful.
      Thanks for the book recommendation Joyce….

      WOW!! 1964! I Just looked up the book!

    • Joyce, with Spathx, there was such a damned if I did, damned if I didn’t dynamic going on. Im still feeling the effects of the mental turmoil. Just thinking over some of the encounters, I feel drained. At the time, it was like I was driving in fog. My mind was so cluttered with confusion,,,,,now, it doesn’t even seen real to me. Or like it happened five years ago. it’s so strange! I can remember lying on the bed during an incident between us and just staring out the window and not even being able to find words in my mind to say. just blank. I think I was so drained I just couldn’t find the words. Then he would push the envelope and I’d snap like a beat dog……enough! Then he would walk out, as usual. I’d cry and just couldn’t figure it all out. this was all before I knew about Spaths. I just couldn’t imagine someone doing something to their GF intentionally and malevolently! My frame of reference was so off base. I was looking at everything through love lenses, not spath glasses.

  9. Joyce- Her mother has issues and I know what you mean about them getting angry when we no longer cater to their whims. I have had that lately with my spath.

    I will have to look for that book as it sounds like an interesting read. If you realize how you play into their hands, from then on you can see it more clearly, recognize it sooner and put a stop to it.

  10. “Stockholm Syndrome” is a misnomer – it had been a recognized psychological defense mechanism long before the hostage situation that resulted in it’s current identification. “Trauma-bond Syndrome” should be how it’s referred to.

    Individuals who endure long-termed and/or prolonged traumas experience the following:
    * a perceived threat to their psychological and physical safety
    * the perception and belief that the abuser will follow through with their threats
    * the perception and belief that the victim cannot escape or leave the situation
    * deliberate isolation from views and opinions OTHER than the abuser’s

    These dynamics occur in situations of:
    * Incest victims
    * Concentration camps or prisoners of war (remember “Bridge Over The River Kwai?”)
    * Cult memberships
    * Hostage situations
    * Situations of domestic violence and/or domestic abuse
    * Abused children
    * Battered women

    The most glaring consequences of this recognized psychological defense mechanism is that victims of this syndrome experience an inability to facilitate or engage in their own escape and that they feel extremely negative reactions to family, friends, coworkers, agency representatives, and anyone else who is attempting to help them.

    For me, the perception that an ABSENCE OF ABUSE is a PERCIEVED ACT OF KINDNESS resonated with me on a huge scale. One minute, Victor was threatening to shoot the children, then me, then himself, and later in the day he would take us all out to eat. My mind would be screaming at me that this situation was WRONG, on every level, while the other half of my mind would be insisting, “See? He’s not such a bad guy, is he?”

    Yah……..there’s no ending a cycle of abuse on a friendly or hopeful note. The only solution is to GET OUT in whatever manner is safely possible. Even then, with help from trained professionals, agencies, and legal protection, it’s STILL a cr*ap shoot whether the abuser will let their victim escape and continue living.

  11. GREAT points, Truthy, and from “the horse’s mouth” so to speak. Having lived that bonding to our abusers we can definitely connect with those concepts in retrospect, but at the time we were just as locked in as Jaycee Dugard or Patty Hearst.

    I’m not sure why WE eventually got out, saw the light and so many others don’t. I wish I knew the answer to that question.

    • Joyce, I think that when there is ANY kind of dependency involved, conscious or unconscious, people tend to not only be stuck but inextricably stuck until something forces the issue.

  12. Yea, Dotty, sometimes something FORCES the issue, and we start to come out of the FOG,– the fear, obligation and guilt.—and it us usually a very painful thing that knocks us out of the river de-nial, and that’s not a river in Egypt. LOL

    Denial protects us emotionally, and SHORT TERM, it is very beneficial, but long term it keeps us from acting on the FACTS of a matter. Short term it helps protect us emotionally from a grievous loss, like the death of someone we love “OH, it can’t be true!” but if we never accepted that person was dead, we wouldn’t bury them, and you can imagine the problem that would have been. Sort of like the Bates Motel movie.

    But we can not successfully live in denial, it only keeps us from acting to help ourselves. But getting out of denial and into the grieving process is painful and we don’t want to do it, we would many times rather play “let’s pretend it is rosy and everything is lovely” but in a domestic abuse situation or any abusive situation for that matter, getting out of denial is the only way we can heal and become healthy emotionally.

    As long as we deny that we had any part in staying with the person who was abusing us, then we will not be able to process the healing. We can not change THEM, we have to change ourselves. In order to change ourselves, we must see where we made poor choices, and resolve not to make them again with another person. We must learn to set boundaries, healthy ones, and that’s a difficult job when you are an adult and h ave been trained NOT to have any boundaries. It was extremely difficult for me, and I am still a work in progress. Healing is a journey not a destination.

    • Joyce, It’s interesting…..in the begining of this Spath encounter, I did set boundaries….BUT I was still drinking so some of it was all, forgive and forget type things and he made such a point of telling me that he was the most forgiving person…..it kind of planted a seed i think, like Dorothy…..you don’t have to be a hard a** about everything, learn to be forgiving and understanding…….mind games. I was coming at the whole thing, the whole time from a totally different place than he was Joyce. I wouldn’t want someone to just drop the hammer on me so I didn’t drop the hammer on him……then it was too late! I was hooked!
      I just read an interesting article on LF today about the addictive quality of ANY relationship and why it’s amplified with a Spath. I need to reread it but it was very enlightening. I’ve said for a long time now……I feel like i was date raped only the drug he used was oxytocin and he administered it with physical, not sexual, closeness, touching hugging, hand holding, etc. THAT was my hook. I’m starved for physical contact. I was when I was born, I was growing up, and i’ve basically “prostituted” myself for it, off and on, to one degree or another, my entire breeding years life.

  13. Dotty,. you make a good point about oxytocin, people do need to be touched, and there is a hunger in humans. We are herd or pack animals and need contact from others. That is one reason that solitary confinement is so bad for people and why even hardened convicts hate it.

    We need interaction with others of our species.

    You mentioned that you were drinking at the time, and that may have been part of your problem with the abusive relationship. Again, your choice to self medicate with alcohol was not a good choice, and it made it easier for you to continue the abuse.

    I’m glad that you are sober now, and I hope that you will continue to stay sober. We all make better choices when our brains are not fogged by drugs of any kind. Since your biological mother was a drinker while she was preg with you, it is pretty likely that you have the genetic tendency for alcoholism. That makes it more difficult for you to resist the alcohol, but not impossible. I hope that you are going to AA or some other program to help you maintain that sobriety.

    Many of us have “prostituted” ourselves by trying to appease the abusers so that we will get the love that we need and want from them, but there is no appeasing them, they will always be abusers and whatever the “excuse” they have is not good enough. We deserve to be treated with respect, not only from others, but also treated with respect for ourselves.

    Respecting ourselves means that we do not do things that we know are bad for us…that includes drinking, over eating, and other bad health habits, and that we DEMAND that those in our circle of intimacy do not abuse us. If they can’t respect that boundary, then they don’t need to be in our circle of intimacy.

    I’m glad you are out of the relationship and sober, so now you can work on healing yourself, doing for yourself what you need to do to stay sober and to set appropriate boundaries and STICK with them.

  14. Thanks Joyce…..my sobriety is the silver lining to this mess, that and the lessons. I would be lying if I said I didn’t envy people who can drink…..which is ridiculous because it’s like saying,,,,,oh I envy people who can stick their hand in the fire. But, since I was drunk before I was even born, I’m sure it will always have some pull on me in that direction. I see clearly now how dangerous it is for me. Any shred of ability I have to protect myself goes right out the window the moment I touch alcohol in any form. Im naked and a walking bullseye. Im actually lucky to be alive probably several hundred times over.
    When I was younger, I didn’t know what I know now…..just running on auto pilot again. drinking came natural to me and I started very young. My parents were fairly oblivious and I certainly never was dissuaded from it by them……they were just so clueless in the parenting department…..straight across the board!!

  15. Dotty, taking care of ourselves is very important in our healing. My drug of choice is nicotine, and smoking was killing me, I had to STOP, so I know how it is craving something that I know is not good for me. I quit sometime in the summer of 2009, and haven’t had a cigarette since then, but from time to time I sure WANT one. I made up my mind though that no matter what, I WILL NOT SMOKE AGAIN. Period. I don’t k now if I will ever quit wanting one sometimes, but that doesn’t matter, I will NOT SMOKE AGAIN.

    Some of my friends smoke, and my son that lives with me smokes a pipe, but I don’t make them stop, or not smoke around me, I just must take control of MY urges and keep away from the cigarettes, Whether others smoke around me is immaterial to how I behave. My choices are what I must make and do.

  16. More than 6 months ago an 82 year old friend of mine who still has some livestock and has shopped at the local feed store for 50 years was complaining that they didn’t have a handicapped ramp (he uses a walker) and the one step up is too high for him to get in.

    Well, I called the nice young man at the Disabilities Commission (not a state agency, but actually a non profit) and the young man went out and checked and yes they did need a ramp legally. Well time went on and no ramp, finally I got a call yesterday that they were going to put one in.

    While not having a ramp is against the law and can get you a fine, the Disabilities Commission has to turn the case over to the department of Justice to prosecute and that takes YEARS if it ever happens at all.

    The man’s wife went to the store the other day and they asked her about her husband and she told them he couldn’t get in. Well they said he should go around the back and come in that way (about a 1000 foot walk) she said that wouldn’t work then they suggested that he honk his horn and they’d bring stuff out. she said, No that wouldn’t work because he wanted to shop.

    I heard from the young man yesterday that the store is maybe going to put one in. But I will never shop there again unless I need something I can not find anywhere else in the world or on line.

    These people were made aware months ago that they were in violation of the law but they did not care until the man’s wife informed them that they were opting for a BIG fine. (Well in reality it would have been years before that happened if at all) but apparently the self interest, rather than the interest in others prompted them to act (well, I’ll believe it when I see it) I will vote with my $$ and my feet to businesses or people who are not willing to reply to a reasonable request for which they have an OBLIGATION to perform.

    You cannot get these people to act for your benefit, but sometimes they will act for their own.

    • Joyce, you are 100% spot-on. Unless it interferes with business or a fine is involved, businesses will often do nothing for as long as they can get away with it.

      This goes both ways, as well. Anyone who has ever been a rental manager/agent/owner KNOWS that there are people out there who stop paying rent, legally, and it can take MANY months to get someone out of a property who isn’t paying rent. These people do this with full intent – they go to court, hire attorneys to represent them……and, it’s atrocious.

      But, it is what it is. Sadly, there is no law against being an a$$hole, and a person can be a jerk, legally, and enjoy the same benefits of the Law that a complainant will.

      (sigh) I hope that store is fined, and GOOD FOR YOU for upholding integrity!!

  17. Well I think they are going to put in a ramp…finally! But you are right, they dragged their feet as long as they could until they were threatened with a fine.

    having had rental property for many years, I can tell you that you are FULL ON RIGHT! Boy could I tell you some stories! You have to be very careful with renters and watch them closely and be ready to act within the law, and even then, sometimes, you lose out.

    I had a young man who lived in a small rental property, and a land lord is legally able to enter a property. One day I tried to get in for some legitimate legal reason and my key wouldn’t fit. That evening when he came home I went up to talk to him and he admitted he had changed the locks (I think he had drugs in there and didn’t want to take a chance on me finding them) and I informed him that I had a LEGAL RIGHT to enter the property and that he should give me a key NOW…he didn’t want to, so I told him, “Young man, this house is owned by ME, and as long as they make crow bars and axes, I will have a “key” to get in.” He gave me a key, but moved out not long after that and dumped about a bushel basket of fire place ashes on to the carpet. Yep, renters are “fun” to deal with sometimes, but I have also had some EXCELLENT renters who became friends of mine.

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