Is your help hurting others?
Helping others unconditionally gives a worthy, complete and happy feeling. Since childhood you are taught to help others in all possible ways. When need arises you help others by solving problems, advising, providing financial help or lending a helping hand. You help with a feeling that your help is benefitting the other person but is this feeling always true? May be your help is causing destruction, hurting them or not doing good at all.
HELPING OUT OF PITY
When you see a handicapped or blind person and feel like helping him then hold yourself back. May be the person does not need your help and is independent enough to do his work. The person has worked hard to be at par with ordinary folks and by helping you may hurt his dignity and make him feel inferior.
Reha sought medical help for her neighbour’s autistic daughter out of compassion without their asking. But she emotionally hurt her neighbours by doing so who were doing their best as parents to make their daughter self reliant. Reha lost their friendship in return.
HELPING AS AN ADVISOR
This is the most common form of help you give by advising or counselling. But are you the right person to counsel? How authentic your solutions are? Did you properly understand the complexity and depth of the problem? As Rudyard Kipling says, “Words are of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” What if a wrong drug is given? Instead of benefiting it will aggravate the situation. Sheena was going through depression and a rough phase in her relationship with her husband. People did not understand that her real problem was depression but kept speculating and giving varied advises to either mend the relationship or break it. Each time she followed an advice the situation would worsen and irritate her husband. Finally she met a psychiatric who cured her depression and rest all fell in place. Never advice if people are not prepared else if anything goes wrong you will be blamed for it.
Some have a habit of discussing personal issues of others in length and breadth without realising that it makes them feel uncomfortable.
HELPING FOR A CAUSE
Shri Ramakrishna has said, “Even in giving food and alms in charity one should discriminate that the recipient is not a vicious and sinful person who would use the gift for evil purposes.” It may happen that the money you give to some beggar or someone who approaches you for help is actually not needy and may use the money for addiction or some evil purpose.
You may want to celebrate your child birthday in an orphanage by distributing expensive gifts and celebration. Your intention is to make those kids enjoy but in turn you are somewhere making them realise how unprivileged they are. Most orphanages do not even allow outsiders to meet the kids or celebrate there.
HELPING AS A PARENT
A bird must struggle in order to emerge from the eggshell. This is the bird’s first lesson to deal with problems. A well meaning person might crack open the egg, releasing the baby bird and walk away with a feeling as though he has done a wonderful service. But he has left the bird in a weakened condition, unable to deal with its environment. So instead of helping the bird the person has destroyed it. It is only matter of time until something attacks it in the bird’s environment and the bird is left with no ability to deal with what would have been a manageable problem.
Each time Sara had a problem with her mother-in-law or husband she would consult her mother who in turn would interfere between Sara and her husband. Her husband got so irritated that he asked her to make a choice between him and her mother. This happened because since childhood her mother controlled all her actions, friends, and activities. If she had any friendship disputes, her mother would interfere and solve it so Sara never learned to deal with problems.