Shrimp Teeth: When it comes to other people’s actions, be okay with not understanding

shrimpteeth art

You don’t need to understand


We hurt ourselves by latching on to the notion that we need to understand other people’s actions – or by hoping they will behave differently.

Sometimes we simply don’t get the satisfaction of understanding other people and how their choices impact our relationship.


It’s easy to fall into the trap of searching to understand why someone broke up with us, why they ghosted, why they can’t or don’t show up in a certain way, why they don’t see our perspective on certain issues… and on and on, we always want better explanations. But sometimes there is no explanation, or the answer is unsatisfying or hurts the beliefs we hold about ourselves. Sometimes, others just don’t want a relationship anymore.

Sometimes people behave spontaneously. Sometimes they have explanations they don’t want you to hear.

We don’t get the satisfaction of fully understanding other people, even those who are closest to us.

We think we know other people so well, that we can predict their behavior, but people aren’t always consistent! Pals grow and change. Sometimes we just don’t get them.

We can let go of so much pain or anxiousness when we learn to accept that we aren’t always privy to other people’s inside worlds. We won’t always get an answer, or sometimes we’ll ignore the one that was given.

Either way, we can release the need to understand to move on.

shrimpteeth art

The unfortunate truth is that many relationships throughout our lives will end. Lots of unexpected things will continuously happen. We won’t always understand why. We won’t always get our pals or other people.

We can still accept the conditions we’re presented with regardless. It’s perfectly valid to struggle to move on after situations were left ambiguously, but it doesn’t mean that you’ll necessarily get a clearer answer the more you struggle to understand or fixate on finding the answer to other people’s motives.

You get to let it go if you want.


Get more from Sam by following the Shrimp Teeth Instagram.

Sam is a sex educator and artist who explores queerness, polyamory, and sexuality through their work. She’s passionate about exploring ways to broaden relationship structures to foster more connections between people. They use art and illustration as part of their education process.



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