Being and offering support

2014 045In Hindi, there is an adage- doobte ko tinke ka sahaara– which means, to a sinking person, even a little dry twig offers hope. This is also true for those who suffer, for them anyone who can offer a little hope means a lot.

I always believe that everyone should create a whole system or network of support around themselves and never underestimate anyone. On the other hand also be a part of someone else’s support system, because we cannot just take from others and not offer it back to them- sometimes we offer in cash, in kind, in the same coin or what have we. Symbiotic exchange is always longer lasting than parasitic dependence, or one sided transfer, for then it would have a limit.

If we use everyone around us just as our support system then we are just plain users or opportunists and opportunists are nobody’s friends. They are just opportunists, and they look for ways to satisfy their own needs and not really compensate the other person for that. They may do that again and again and again, but in the end their relationship with everyone is just that– using others and letting them go when their own need is satisfied.

So beware of opportunists in any garb, for their garbs are one too many- including family, friends, employers, employees, neighbours, colleagues, relatives and so forth. Letting support be a cyclical process always helps and that is how one needs to see it as well- pass on a good deed. Seeking support is always a wise thing, for that also shows an element of trust, openness and willingness to understand more than your own perspective and unless we enlarge our view, the complexity of the world is too much for one person to comprehend. Seeking guidance, even if be with a therapeutic goal, is also a part of this process. (In psychological parlance this is called help seeking behaviour)

Long back I when I had expressed gratitude to my own therapist- she had told me that, “You are equally responsible for the change that happened, because you were perhaps the One person, who read everything I recommended.” And that is a fact– she saddled me with many books and I made sure to at least photocopy all of them or buy them myself, and in due course slowly read them. I always counted her among my support systems and knew when in a crisis here was one voice that would still come from  a position of great calm and objectivity- no matter what storm my boat be tossing in. I was right and today I am in the same position and where I see how another little boat tosses and how it calms down too…I know I have carried the process forward, just by learning/studying with her. Thanks to her once again.

And thanks also to the writer of this message- Hi Prateeksha, Good to connect with you earlier. I was going to send you an email but I can(not) find your email address. Suffice to say i though today’s session was a success. One of the parts that stuck in my mind was that I may be able to streamline my life and focus my interests on some productive areas. After I got off …I removed the huge piles of books that have been building around my flat and shelved them… Later this evening I went out to the supermarket and instead of feeling stressed and anxious I felt calm and clear. (some parts of the message have been deliberately dropped to protect the identity of the person)

We build slowly, one day at a time, one trip to the market at a time, one little assignment or one exam at a time…that is how dialogues happen and we change our stories- just being there for one another and offering support. Ultimately everyone has to be the hero of their story, not the one who offers the support. In helping this re-scripting, is our collaboration any real success, and in the fact that one gets identified as that support system is the first step in establishing a therapeutic collaboration.


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