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c88mh
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I'm terrible at accepting help because I hate to be a bother and prefer to try to sort things out on my own.  But no, I don't automatically assume that anyone who offers it is doing it purely for his/her own gratification.  I do think there are those out there who mean well and don't know when to back off, but while that can be irritating, I don't believe that it makes them bad people.

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I'm terrible at accepting help because I hate to be a bother and prefer to try to sort things out on my own.  But no, I don't automatically assume that anyone who offers it is doing it purely for his/her own gratification.  I do think there are those out there who mean well and don't know when to back off, but while that can be irritating, I don't believe that it makes them bad people.

Bad people? I never implied that. They are normal people pretending to be great.
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Okay, if you want me to phrase it differently: I don't assume someone offering help is pretending to be great because I prefer not to assume that everyone has ulterior motives.  I have to say you sound very cynical about this issue.

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Okay, if you want me to phrase it differently: I don't assume someone offering help is pretending to be great because I prefer not to assume that everyone has ulterior motives.  I have to say you sound very cynical about this issue.

I have to say that you seem to imply that being cynical equals being wrong.

Everyone has ulterior motives. Life is about giving vs getting.

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I think you meant getting vs. giving.

 

It's too bad you feel that way about all humanity. However, making sweeping generalizations can be self-serving as well. Perhaps you think you have everyone's number. Believing that is your prerogative. But it doesn't make you correct.

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I think you meant getting vs. giving.

 

It's too bad you feel that way about all humanity. However, making sweeping generalizations can be self-serving as well. Perhaps you think you have everyone's number. Believing that is your prerogative. But it doesn't make you correct.

No, I do not think I have everyone's number. What made you draw that extreme conclusion after a few short posts? Maybe you believe you have everyone's number?

I just observe behavioral patterns. I think this is just one of those truths about life and human nature that we all hide in a corner and live with. It's not the worst thing about people. It's just a simple fact of life.

I find it very interesting that you believe that we can live life outside of profit vs investment paradigm. Can you imagine a situation where you'd help a stranger, although you are sure that you'll suffer from it before getting any positive result, if ever? Emphasis being on "stranger" and "ever".

Edited by c88mh
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Undoubtedly one of the motives for helping others can be that we feel good for doing it.

No bad thing, of itself.  It makes it easier to help people, for a start.

 

Yes it can be done wrongly: for that reason alone, for example, or when it involves judgement or an expressed sense of superiority.

 

I can't do much to help my neighbour who regularly helps.me, but when he had taken two parcels to the post for me, before Christmas, I did say "Thank you.  Do have a bit of a warm glow on me."  

But perhaps that couldn't be used for everyone: only two people who understand each other.

(in that I KNOW he's not doing it for the warm glow, and he knows I know that.)

 

Chris.

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Undoubtedly one of the motives for helping others can be that we feel good for doing it.

No bad thing, of itself.  It makes it easier to help people, for a start.

 

Yes it can be done wrongly: for that reason alone, for example, or when it involves judgement or an expressed sense of superiority.

 

 

^^That is a good way to say it.

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Well...I have trouble with emotion. I don't always remember to participate in the give and take of human relationships. I don't do empathy well, or naturally. For me, sometimes it is simpler to think of it as a ledger. I get a lot from others: support, help, a listening ear, sometimes money or other tangible things. It helps me remember to give back if I think of it as something I owe. 

 

From an outsider's perspective, I will say that, to me, it's clear that give and take is an integral part of human relationships. Like Chris said, there's nothing wrong or bad about getting happiness from helping another. There are definitely those who only give out of the expectation of receiving. But needing to receive validation and connection is also something that most people seem to need emotionally. There's nothing bad about that, either; I fail to see how such a basic need as connection can be bad, even where individuals' methods of getting that connection may be flawed. 

 

Nobody's perfect. It seems to me that the culture in which I live, for one, tends to cultivate insecurity as a facilitator of capitalism. Is it someone's fault if they've been exposed to that culture their entire lives, before they were old enough to think critically? I think it is not. I think "fault" is a bad concept for this situation, in fact. 

 

I struggle constantly with analyzing other people's motivations. I have a problem with paranoia, and I literally cannot bring myself to trust another person, even when they deserve it and I know it. I struggle to accept help, and yeah, there have been times when I've wondered if the reason someone is helping me is only that they feel obligated, or that they're hoping for something from me. But at this point I'm also trying to at least recognize that those thoughts are often flawed. People may not always relate perfectly, but can I criticize them for that when I struggle with the same thing? Yeah, not really. 

 

I'm not saying that this is what's going on for you; I'm not a doctor, thank goodness. But I will say that this paranoia and inability to trust anyone are part of what got me diagnosed with a personality disorder. I'm in therapy to work on these issues. If you don't see a therapist, maybe someone like that might be helpful to you. I don't trust my tdoc, either, but at least she's legally bound to keep my secrets and she's pretty helpful to me in unraveling them.

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I think you meant getting vs. giving.

 

It's too bad you feel that way about all humanity. However, making sweeping generalizations can be self-serving as well. Perhaps you think you have everyone's number. Believing that is your prerogative. But it doesn't make you correct.

No, I do not think I have everyone's number. What made you draw that extreme conclusion after a few short posts? Maybe you believe you have everyone's number?

I just observe behavioral patterns. I think this is just one of those truths about life and human nature that we all hide in a corner and live with. It's not the worst thing about people. It's just a simple fact of life.

I find it very interesting that you believe that we can live life outside of profit vs investment paradigm. Can you imagine a situation where you'd help a stranger, although you are sure that you'll suffer from it before getting any positive result, if ever? Emphasis being on "stranger" and "ever".

 

The profit vs investment paradigm? Excuse me while I roll on the floor laughing.

 

I think you don't know me very well. I can easily imagine your hypothetical, because I have done what you find improbable.

 

You *are* making sweeping generalizations, by the by. And when you do that, it implies you think you have everyone's number. Sorry, it's called English: implicit meanings count.

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This is different, but I didn't want to accept help (mainly financial) from family because I knew it came with a price. There was an unspoken agreement that you forever owed them and it was held over your head and you were obligated to do tasks for them. ugh!

 

As far as the OP, yes I think there are people who offer help because it makes them feel good.I am not sure about the second part. I have had people offer things that were probably just generous, but I felt like they were insulting me somehow.

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I have to say that you seem to imply that being cynical equals being wrong.

Everyone has ulterior motives. Life is about giving vs getting.

I don't know whether being cynical equals being wrong, but I do know that being cynical often leads to bitterness and unhappiness.

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Well you've already got your mind made up, so why bother arguing about it?

Maybe my mind is made up, but maybe that can be reversed. At any rate, would you expect that reversal to happen suddenly and without any actual reason?

 

Yes, once I gave a homeless man my last $5.00 though I knew he'd probably blow it and it would leave me broke for a few days.

Maybe you're joking, but chance has it that I once had a conversation with someone about this. He knew this girl who likes to give money to homeless people on the street. That is not help, that is hipocrisy, he thought and I agree. Really helping homeless people would mean to take them home, endure the stench, allow them to have a bath, give them new clothes, a good warm meal and accept that they may run with your iPhone will you don't pay attention. And maybe beat you up while they're at it.

 

I think you don't know me very well.

I fail to see where I implied the contrary. I don't know anyone here the slightest bit.

 

 

I have had people offer things that were probably just generous, but I felt like they were insulting me somehow.

Exactly. It is insulting and hipocrytical.

I once was down. After I recovered, one guy told me you know, when you were down I many times thought, does this guy need help or what? But now you're ok, right?

I'm not even sure he realised how insulting that sounded, I actually think he went home feeling great about himselm for telling me that. Did I need help? Yes. Was anyone morally or otherwise obligated to give it? No. Did I get any? No.

There was this girl. During that time when I was down, she used to constantly tell me that, and I quote "things don't seem to go too well for you, don't they?" I got an infection and because I didn't have the money she told me that she knew a good doctor who owes her something and can look at it. I really wanted to go see that doctor. Somehow she never got the chance to call him, although I insisted. Instead, all she somehow managed to constantly do is bring up bad memories and make me feel bad about myself.

Maybe it's bad luck. But the first lesson to teach my kids would be that they're alone in this world and no-one gives a ****.

And I didn't ever start.

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Maybe it's bad luck. But the first lesson to teach my kids would be that they're alone in this world and no-one gives a ****.

And I didn't ever start.

 

I don't know about bad luck, but seeing the world as a dangerous, harsh place could backfire. They could have problems trusting or taking chances. Maybe you could let them develop a world view on their own? 

 

And my point about insulting was different For example, If someone would offer to help with housework I would think they were implying I wasn't good enough or couldn't do it on my own. That may have been true, but they also may have just thought I could use a hand.

Edited by confused
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 I have had people offer things that were probably just generous, but I felt like they were insulting me somehow.

 

In the reverse position of offering help (in any relevant form), would you feel you were insulting the person to whom you were offering assistance?

If not, you may want to consider giving more people the benefit of the doubt.

 

Roughly, I carry "be helpful" as my default setting, subject to being overridden in certain circumstances.

apart from considering it being right, it does tend to make life a little smoother, overall.

 

Chris

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