In psychology terms, the word TOLERANCE typically is defined as meaning, “A situation that occurs with continued use of a drug in which an individual requires greater dosages to achieve the same effect.”
But the word drug implies something in the specific, while tolerating (in general) implies accepting negative behavior in the abstract. To tolerate someone or something implies in standard English grammar a willingness to accept treatment that is subpar or sub-standard.
If you tolerate someone’s bad behavior, it means (in pop culture vernacular) that you are willing to overlook and arguably ENABLE another person or peer group to behave in ways that are unacceptable. To tolerate does not mean the abusive actions of another are made right in the mind of the victim; literally, the person being abused makes a conscious choice to trade their own personal discomfort for some other gain, profit, or pleasure.
One example is staying long term in an abusive marriage. While blaming the children for making them stay, many co-dependent Narcissists choose to overlook abuse of themselves and their children to rationalize staying.
While reaping the financial and social benefits of remaining part of a couple and blame-shifting responsibility for their unhappiness and lack of personal acumen discerning what is and what is not a normal or healthy romantic relationship, the co-Narcissist (as the weaker N who depends on the benevolence of their abuser) forces minor children into a position of effectively needing to tolerate abuse in order to psychologically tread water.
Other people might tolerate religious abuse attempts to shame or socially invalidate the fundamental human rights of others made by fundamentally egocentric and grandiose people by nature. People who hand out tracts (Christian pamphlets) are such types, foisting their religious beliefs onto other humans in a judgemental way while striving to undermine spiritual and moral self-consciousness by telling people they are going to hell or guilty of some original sin in some way.
Those who smile and nod and make pleasant conversation with such people but wholeheartedly disagree with their religious beliefs are said to be “tolerating their behavior”, meaning treating them with a respect that the person promoting their religion does not (most likely) have for other people.
Tolerating something is never a positive connotation. A wonderful way to remember what the word TOLERANCE means is to picture a dripping faucet that the superintendent of a rental apartment won’t fix; the constant noise of dripping is likely to leave a resident feeling constantly on edge (both psychologically and physically debilitated) when they are home, the water bill is likely to inflate at the expense of the tenant, all residents in the apartment who can hear it are likely to lose sleep — subsequently negatively impacting their health and academic or job performance, and the water waste negatively affects the entire community.
But, in true CLUSTER B fashion, the lazy home repair person and the property owner BENEFIT from leaving the problem go unattended. Enablers encourage and train younger victims of abuse to overlook social predators’ issues.
Ignoring bad grandparents, for instance, or your abusive sibling’s bad behaviors never lead to health or success for anyone other than the Abuser, their preferred favorite Flying Monkey, and those not forced to listen to crying or legitimate complaint from the scapegoat target most often abused.
There is always an implied victim striving to be the socially wiser, more emotionally in tune, and insightful person. Tolerating abuse in workplace bullying or domestic abuse and violent situations is never advised, as tolerating while desensitizing one’s self to abuse only ensures unchecked abuse continues.
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