Friday, January 19, 2018

On Whining

I confess I don’t like whining, and I don’t tolerate whiners well. It may be a character flaw, but I own it.

My daughter learned this early in life. If she tried whining, which she did a couple of times, I ignored her. She didn’t try it often. If she told me her problems, I listened and tried to help her find a solution.

I see a lot of whining on Facebook. Some people seem to use this as a platform to express self-pity. Sorry, they will get little sympathy from me unless they are actually doing something to change their situation.

I don’t mean sharing hard times. Several friends are currently fighting cancer. I want to know where they are in the battle. Others are enduring different tragedies, and I want to be there to support them. I’m talking about those people whose every entry is complaining about situations they could change if they wanted to. They just don’t want to.

This same intolerance led to a decision Larry and I made early in the writing of our first book, 31 Months in Japan: The Building of a Theme Park.

We could have told all about the problems and difficulties—and there were enough to fill a book. We didn’t skip the hard times, but we wanted to make the book a celebration of our team’s accomplishments, not a list of complaints.

Despite setbacks, budget problems, personnel issues, we managed to complete a world-class theme park ahead of schedule and under budget. Now, that is something to celebrate.

Please share your problems with me. I want to be able to be of support. My mother-in-love used to say, “You have to tell me what’s wrong. I can’t pray for you if I don’t know you have a problem.”

However, constant whining and feeling sorry for yourself will cause me to dismiss your perceived problems. It may be a huge character flaw or the result of a difficult childhood where I had to pretend everything was okay so my mother could save face. I don’t know where it came from, but there it is.

Does anyone else have this same intolerance?


  1. Because we share our home with two young girls, 3 and 5, we hear a bit of whining, but their mom doesn't tolerate it either. Good post.

    1. Two of them probably feed off each other. Kim was an only child, so she lived among adults.

    2. Anybody who worked for Disney can whine all they want.

    3. We didn't work for Disney. We worked for Universal Studios.

  2. I agree completely! I hear a lot of it at work and realizing that I hate hearing it makes me less inclined to whine about my own problems. It gets tiresome to hear nothing but whining and complaints every time someone opens her or his mouth! In the grand scheme of things, there is so much more for which to be thankful than to complain about!