I was talking to someone recently about how people interact
with me, and something came up that has come up before,
and that is that how people act in relation to me has everything
to do with THEM.
Whatever they say or do about my situation - not always - but
often - has to do with what makes them feel better. It is not
If it was about me they would:
*be less apt to try to fix something unfixable.
*know that a rote saying won't mean much - if anything.
*know that my tears can be a good thing.
*think more about me and what I need instead of trying to
be in their head trying to figure out the right thing to say, or do.
*allow me my moments.
*allow me to be whatever me I need to be to get through
what I am dealing with.
*support me in the ways I ask, instead of what they think is best
*realize that my situation is hard enough without those who care
about me disappearing.
*realize that while I don't often feel "lonely" that when facing what
I am it is all too easy to feel "alone."
*realize that if I reach out for help, an acknowledgment of the
request would be appreciated. They would realize that being
ignored is more painful than a lack of any kind of support.
So the question to ask yourself (if you care - and it's ok if you don't)
is who are you focusing on when interacting with (or refraining
from interacting with) someone you care about who is struggling?
If you are focused on yourself you are less likely to know how
best to be, and are most likely to feel awkward. (How can you
ultimately feel better if what you are doing isn't making the other
person feel better? You could potentially fool yourself, but is that
what you'd really want to do?)
But if you focus on the other person,
you are likely to find the cues you need.
In the process, both of you will likely feel better.
When you don't know what to say or do about a situation a person
is in...consider making it about them. And see what happens.