Because of a recent unfortunate incident, I have seen people posting be good to people quotes. But then I thought, if we consider being good is giving your hand voluntarily when you thought someone is in need, does that work? Do people seek help when they are not ok? And does being good to people works? Here are some of my thoughts.
I can pick up the signs when someone is not as in their normal days. I generally ask them what happened and I usually get, "yeah, I am good." kind of answers. I know there is something deeper so I keep the conversation going. But in the end, I fail. Most of the times. I succeeded only in a few instances. I will share some of my experiences here.
Let's call this friend, Maroon. We both were really good friends but time separated us. After 8 years I guess, we met because of a common friend. We shared our numbers and we exchanged only a few conversations. Later I noticed sad WhatsApp statuses coming often from Maroon. So, I asked what happened. "Nothing much, some issues..." said Maroon. A few days later I saw another status. So, I asked again. Maroon replied, "I am not feeling good." I told Maroon, "See, we were good friends, and I still consider you the same. I know you are going through a lot. But being with such negative and sad emotions is not at all good for you. Especially for long durations. And I don't want that to happen to you. So, you can share with me anytime and I will always be there." Maroon replied, "Thanks for that."
A few weeks later, after seeing another status, I messaged, "I think you are going a painful breakup." Maroon said yes.
And I thought, if Maroon could share what's inside, she could feel better. And I replied, "Won't you tell me what happened?" I got an 🤦♂️ emoji as a reply. I did not message Maroon since then.
Let's call this friend Silver. I know Silver for years and we are really good friends. When something is not going good with Silver, as usual, I will label the emotion, I try to be with Silver, ask what has gone wrong and do all that I could. I think that I can make some difference. But Silver is not the kind of person who likes someone to assist. Yet, I try to be there. Like the emergency backup ready to deploy any moment. But most of the times, I will just be there and till today I don't know if I made any difference during the tough times.
Let's call this friend Jazz. Jazz and I are schoolmates. Jazz was very unsatisfied with his life at the age of 18. He dreamt of a college utopia but got the harsh private college reality after joining. I will not go deeper into the details but he gave a really hard time to not just me but also to his family, relatives and many other friends. In the end, no one could help make the situation better, not even doctors. Till today, I see Jazz oscillating like a pendulum between his unsatisfactory reality and his utopia of life.
I still don't know why people don't take help even when they need it the most. A lot of things might be going inside but they are failing to admit the situation and failing to make a conscious decision to come out of it. I know people who are living in hell and yet they don't take steps to come out of it. No matter what we say, they will always have more things to confront the inability to make a step forward.
In all of the above cases, I feel like an uninvited fireman at a burning house. I know I can do something to bring the situation down but they did not want me there nor called for me. I am like an uninvited guest. I think many people face this. Especially people who care and who can see much deeper into the problem than the person who is facing it.
That uninvited feeling made me think a lot. Why am I doing it even though they never asked for it? Why should I face harsh responses when I was there for something good? What did I do wrong in my conversation? What I could do better the next time? I may not be needed most of the times. Yet still. I want to do it. Because I don't want people to go through a struggle for a long durations. It's my choice. And whether to take that help is the other person's choice.
What to do if someone does not take any help? Jordan Peterson said, "If you want to help someone and they don't want to take it. There is nothing you can do for them." I experienced this first hand and this is true.
This is what I think people should do - most of these words and ideas are picked up from Jordan Peterson. You should know the difference between Hell and Heaven. Like order and chaos. You should not swim in chaos for a longer duration. It will take you down in multiple dimensions of your life. Fight with yourself to come out of the hell. That's the starting point. If you have a thought and intention to bounce back, you can slowly figure out things. A deep look into the situation, how you got there and what are the possible ways you can take to come out of it.
There will be a lot going with people who are struggling. But they need to admit it and think about what they need to do about it and where they want to go next. It will not be easy, yet it's not impossible in most cases. Once they are ready to make a difference, they can seek external help. In the meantime, the first thing you should be doing is not make it more difficult for people who are going through tough times.