In Nonviolent Communication and other communication frameworks, there's the concept of having responsibility for your own feelings and needs. In other words, if you want something from others, it's your job to ask for it. If they're not willing to help you, you should find another way to get your needs met instead of trying to manipulate or force them into satisfying your request.
At the same time, there's also the moral concept of having accountability for your actions. If you do something that hurts someone, you are accountable for that pain. If you're willing and able to stop hurting them, you have a moral obligation to try and do so. However, this seems to be in conflict with the first concept: by being accountable for hurting others, you are (in a sense) taking responsibility for their feelings and needs.
How should one reconcile these things? If something you're doing is painful to someone else but isn't otherwise wrong or harmful, should you hold yourself accountable for the consequences? Or is it their responsibility to deal with it on their own, making whatever requests they wish? How do you decide which principle wins out?
Examples of this sort of conflict:
- You and an ex-partner frequent the same bar. You know they find it unpleasant to be around you but they haven't asked you to stop. Should you adjust your behavior?
- You're going through some depression and are engaging in self-destructive behavior that your friend finds hard to watch. Should you hide it from them, or trust that they will make a request if necessary?
- You're going to a family gathering where relatives have conservative ideas about proper dress. You only feel happy in more permissive clothing. Should you wear something you dislike to avoid offending people?
I'm looking for answers that offer a general approach to resolving these dilemmas, not solutions to a specific one of these examples.