Now don’t think I’m a cold-hearted, narcissistic a-hole for telling you to forget other people’s problems. I care very much about the people who are close to me, and I pray for their well-being. However, worrying about, or stressing about their problems is really just a waste of my time and energy.
A couple of years ago really close friend of mine confided in me that her boyfriend cheated on her with one of her best friends. My heart broke. I was angry, frustrated and hurt. I wanted to exact revenge on the perps. However, people who know me know that I’m only 98% words and 2% action (makes sense that I’m a writer, right?) Legally, I have no right to do anything anyway….
So I told this friend of mine that she deserved no such treatment, and I advised her to move-on from both of these people. I raged and I fussed and I whined and cried to myself. And what has happened? My friend has decided that everyone makes mistakes and they deserve forgiveness. Another punch in the gut for me.
The thing is, people are going to do what they want to do. Doesn’t matter what advice you give them, 9 times out of 10, they’ve already made up their mind. When someone comes to you with their problems, they want one of two things 1) Confirmation that they are doing the right thing and/or 2) Emotional support.
Another really frustrating situation is when one of your friends should be angry about something and they aren’t. And for a span of time, this seemed to be happening to me quite frequently. Something bad would happen to a friend, and they were just so blasé about it. And boy would I rage and fuss and tell them to take up arms. I just knew that I could fix their problem for them, if only they would let me completely take over the situation and fix their life. Do you know what happened after I went on my rampage? They became even more blasé about it
I’ve learned that if someone you love should be angry about something, let them be angry. If you get angry for them, then they don’t have to get angry. If you take action on their behalf, they don’t have to take action. Sometimes, it takes time for people to realize what has happened to them or what they have done. People come into their own understanding about life at their own pace. Everyone lives and breathes at their own rate, and you have to let them do so. You can love people and support those around you, without completely taking on their problems.
Besides, if you are taking on other people’s issues, you aren’t handling your own. Handle your business, and maybe, just maybe, those around you will follow suit.