Have you ever known someone who was so nice that it was hard to believe they were real? Usually these are the people who are pleasant and nice in all circumstances, even where others would be upset. They seem to accept you and everyone without condition.

Perhaps surprisingly, many of these people became nice because of earlier abuse. They were bullied at school, physically or emotionally abused by their families, or exposed to the abuse of people they cared about.

We all make decisions about what kind of career we will have, what kind of person we will marry or whether we will get married, where we will live, where we will go on vacation etc. However, we also make decisions about what kind of person we will be. For example, if someone was physically and verbally abused by their parents, they decide to parent their own children with love and nurturing. If someone grew up poor they decide to go to college or learn a trade that will give them a lucrative life as an adult.

When someone suffered abuse by one or more people, they either become a nasty person, or go the other way and treat everyone well. They become the one whom others love being around.

As the title of this article suggests, there is a catch to this. People who are nice because they were mistreated become a loud spoken and convicted advocate when someone violates their principles. I have friends who make anti bullying speeches because they experienced bullying. People who are human rights activists were often violated by others.

I can write about this because I am one of those people. I treat everyone well but often surprise people when I express a strong opinion about something. Occasionally I have complained about poor service in restaurants and once complained about a rude nurse. People act as if I committed a federal felony for rocking the boat, but I see it as doing the right thing by saving others from future misery having to deal with rude people. I have known people who went far and above the call of duty in their human services job and left their coworkers shaking their heads that they would do so much for so little pay.

The perceptual problem lies in the fact that people don't have time to really get to know others. When someone meets another they form a quick stereotyped impression. If someone is nice they think they are nice and pleasant, and only loud spoken people would fight for something. We could all make our lives more interesting and rewarding. If we really got to know each other, we would respond to nice people's heroics with respect instead of puzzlement.

Author's Bio: 

Frank Healy is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Life Coach. He is one of about 50 people who have been classified as having Hyperthymesia by the University of California. Frank participated in their reserch studies because he remembers every day of his life since he was six years old. He is now 53. His memory of each day includes the day of the week, the weather in his locale, news events and personal experiences. Recalling so much in his life had it's advantages and disadvantages. The advantages include recall of every happy experience he had with friends, family, school, and his wife. The corollary of that is that he remembers all of the negative things. Bad days at work and school, slights from people, bad days at jobs, romantic breakups etc. Before he began his own journey he would recall bad memories with the same emotional intensity as if he was experiencing it now. He had learn to let go of the feelings. He now counsels and coaches people to heal from the ill affects of their own traumatic and unpleasant memories. This can help people be happier and move on to a successful present and future.

Frank lives with his wife in Dennisville, New Jersey. He is in private practice at Associates For Life Enhancement in Northfield, New Jersey. Frank enjoys going to the beach, reading, writing, playing quizzo with friends (It's a trivia game) and playing ball wth his grandsons.