I decided to write about it as it comes to my attention both in daily human interactions and/or work with my clients.
I ll mainly use examples to help you understand the concept.
When you interact with people that directly or indirectly have informed you of health challenges they encounter or “weaknesses” they try to overcome, you at the end of the day, may choose to ignore them or put the information given to you aside in the name of generosity, kindness, or hospitality.
What am I talking about?
Someone who s diagnosed with diabetes and obviously craves sugar and sweets comes in your space, home or business, you offer sweet to welcome him/her.
You are aware the person shouldn’t be having sugar, yet you choose to make the offering sympathetically counting in his responsible reaction to you ie to say no although culturally a no could be an insult. Likely the person will get the sweet, have it, and both of you will have ended up being polite to each other and conform to the rules and manners taught to you earlier on in your life.
What an irresponsible act and weakness from both sides. Each one should claim responsibility and each one instead throws responsibility to the other.
It could be that this person, isn t diagnosed with a disease however, he has a sweet tooth and can t say no to sweets. After having it, he feels bad and blames himself for accepting to have it. You feel good because you did the polite thing + you think “anyway, I had to offer, he could say no, the fact he didn t, indicates he wanted it and it s ok I did it”.
Some people are addicted to sweets, others to drugs, others to adrenaline rush, others to sugar, others to sex, others to politeness and being liked. Add whatever else you can think of in the list.
I m here to tell you, your politeness when you are aware of the other person s weakness, can be harming. You become a co-creator in someone else s misery. You re not polite by doing this. You indicate insensitivity, lack of discernment and you become a part of a weak vicious cycle. You re a contributor and part of the weakness too. The person has a hard time saying no, you have a hard time controlling your self indulging politeness.
Next time a friend or a family member expresses or shares with you a disease, a weakness, ask him/her “how can I assist you?”
Listen to their response. When the person demonstrates the weakness, assist him by acting on his response to your above question. Usually, they share their burden but also say what it is they have a hard time with. Assist the person in the way that validates their need and support them through the kind act of saying no to their weakness.
If you have a burden, a weakness, share with people you trust and tell them how they could assist you.
If you re ill or suffer addictions that are more serious please contact a therapist who can support you.
©Eleftheria Pagkalou 2022