This weekend we were speaking at the Women of Purpose Conference on connection. Women had a lot to say that I believe both men and women can relate to.
When my son was in the heat of his crisis with suicide I found myself drinking myself to sleep every night – not because I woke up one day wanting to be an alcoholic, but because I was hopeless. I didn’t think my situation was ever going to change. During this season, some well meaning friends wanted to ‘fix’ my drinking problem. I know they meant well, but every time I left their presence I felt… yucky. I felt like they only wanted to fix my behaviour, not get underneath WHY I was drinking. One day a kind friend sat down next to me one day and said, “I know you’re struggling. Welcome to humanity. I believe in you. I know you are going to get through this and I’m going to help you.” That felt different. It didn’t feel yucky, it felt empowering and it got me out of my slump. I haven’t drank myself to sleep since.
When I seek to “fix” someone for MY benefit, not theirs, it’s manipulation…. and it feels yucky. We bring the hurting closer by seeking to help them starting with where THEY are, not where we think they should be. When we patiently walk beside others, anxiety and depression don’t get the final say.
Belonging creates resilience.