Wisdomology

GO AHEAD, GIVE UP – (REVISED)

GO AHEAD, GIVE UP – (REVISED)

“If someone seriously wants to be a part of your life, they will seriously make an effort to be in it.”
-Unknown

If you’re read my previous articles on this site, you’ll notice that one thing I always stress on is never giving up on anything that’s a passion and close to your heart no matter how many obstacles try to stop you. But are there exceptions to that philosophy? Are there instances when giving up will actually be advantageous?

As human beings, we can only try to embark on any endeavor to the best of our abilities. We cannot, by law of nature, be perfect at anything. There comes a stage in life when the unlikely becomes impossible, literally. There are many such examples of this but one I’ve encountered recently has led me to have another perspective on things.

You can’t help someone who doesn’t want to be helped. I’ve recently had a friend who’s been going through one roadblock after another. I’ve always supported that person and when that person’s issues started, I let them know that I’m with them all the way even after many others turned their backs.

In an effort to be a good friend, I would constantly ask them if they’re okay and tried sending them positive messages every few days. I thought I was being helpful.

But in that person’s mind, I apparently wasn’t. Slowly but surely, they increased their distance and the went from hours to days before responding. And the responses went from detailed to terse. That stung a bit because I thought I that person would appreciate some positivity in difficult times.

But as I thought about it, I realized my anxiety over that person’s well-being was doing me more harm than good. If I keep showing my support and they clearly don’t want it, I’m being more stressed about it than I need to be. By talking to a brick wall, I’m wasting my voice and energy.

When we see friends and family hurting, we want to help them. That’s natural, especially if you’re an empath. But help has to start with the person themselves. They have to let their guard down and allow it in. Till then, anything and everything we do is futile.

It’s a similar process to having a friend or a family member who’s an addict. The first universally acknowledged step to curing any addiction is always admitting you have a problem. You can try your best to convince them but if the addicts themselves don’t admit it or even realize it, it’s a vicious circle.

Care for others as much as you can. Shower them with love as often as you can. Be a good friend and a wall of support. But make sure they want it and more importantly, accept it. Otherwise it’s a waste of energy both for you as well as the people you’re trying help.

Have you had experiences trying to help someone that resulted in futility? How did that make you feel? Were you able to treat it with nonchalance or did it hurt? Do you feel there’s a limit to offering help to someone who doesn’t want it? Share your thoughts and experiences by commenting below on our secure servers.

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NEEL TRIVEDI
Hi, I'm Neel! I'm a writer (fiction and poetry), a journalist and currently working in the advertising business. I'm also a mental health advocate, having been diagnosed with clinical depression a few years ago.
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