(A Blog Every Day in May 2013 Challenge Entry)
Time for a short entry. No time to get all elaborate tonight! I was kind of stumped when it came to the following prompt:
Day 8, Wednesday: A piece of advice you have for others. Anything at all.
Sounds easy. Don’t eat the yellow snow, don’t pee into the wind, don’t eat the yellow snow after peeing into the wind...
I Can Be Your Hero Baby
I suffer from what I and others have dubbed: White Knight Syndrome. I’m not sure if that's an official term, but it’s fitting and kind of sums itself up nicely; I like to help people. I’m very empathetic towards people and their emotions, whether positive or negative. Much like that positive/negative aspect, this attribute can be a gift or act as a curse.
I’m naturally drawn towards those that need help. Some would say “broken”, but I feel everyone is “broken” in some shape or form. I want to help them; people use the “fix” term. Many of those I’ve dated throughout my lifetime have suffered from some variety of depression. Not just the “blues”, but severe depression, are bipolar, etc.
There are a multitude of worries I’ve had as to why I attract these people (given I believe in like attracts like) into my life. It surely doesn’t make it any easier. In fact, it naturally makes everything — almost every aspect of a relationship — more difficult. This depends on the severity of the affliction, but you get the idea. There is a very good chance a good handful of you know exactly what I’m talking about. This all would take a lengthy amount of time to delve into and, for purposes of this post, would act as a tangent.
What I want to say — the advice I have to give — for those who have a loved one (friend, family, lover) suffering from depression is: don't make yourself believe you can save them. You cannot save them. This statement still emotionally assaults me in a volatile fashion, because I don’t fully agree. I think any help you offer another is helping them. They may not accept it, but that isn’t on you. Though, helping isn't the same as saving.
More importantly, what I’m trying to explain is that a lot of times they don’t want/need you to save them. Sometimes it’s best to just be there for them. To support them through their hardships, to listen, to comfort, and to be compassionate. They don’t need you to be their doctor or their therapist; they have those (or really, really should) of a professional level. Though, I do feel I would make one hell of a therapist! Even if I were one, though, I wouldn’t want to be one to my significant other or loved one (even with the savings involved across the board).
It isn’t your job to fulfill these roles, and believe me when I say most individuals don’t want an “extra” playacting as one in their day to day. What they want is to be held. To be loved and know they have someone they can talk to, someone to share their feelings with, a shoulder to cry on. Someone to tell them everything is going to be okay and that they aren’t alone.
They don’t want you to be their superhero — a White Knight — tasked with fixing every perceived problem in their lives.
They just want your Love and Compassion. To simply be there.
Random Fun Fact #235: If you are able to balance and moderate helping someone — being there for them in their time of need — 9 times out of 10 you will end up being their hero.*
Do you, or anyone you know, suffer from a form of serious depression? Have you found yourself trying to help or “fix” someone you cared about?
*This fact is not backed by solid data or facts. Results may vary.