I’m not the best at helping people. I’m not an emotional person, and I often analyze everything too much. If somebody gets in an argument and needs somebody to talk to, often I’ll ask what happened and consider how the argument could have been avoided on either end rather than how I should help the person in front of me right then. It sucks, because it makes it very difficult to be of any use in the moment.
I never know what to say or do ever. It gets pretty difficult, really, because when somebody needs my help everything I do either makes it worse or deflects the problem elsewhere. It gets to a point where I just want to tell people to inform me of exactly what they want of me whenever they come to me with their problems. I’m intuitive, sure, but not in an emotional sense. If somebody calls me just to rant, then it needs to be stated outright. Otherwise I’ll be looking for a solution to your problem because that’s how I solve my own problems.
What it comes down to is the fact that I have no friends or experience with this sort of thing, so it’s a vicious cycle. I don’t know how to help because I don’t do it a whole lot and I don’t have experience, which means people don’t look to me for help.
The worst part is that I don’t know how my words and actions are ever perceived (since we can only see through our own eyes), so the only way I can practice is through communication. In general, I don’t know if I’m seen as a conceited know-it-all (which, let’s be honest, isn’t too far off), or if I present myself as a kind friend, (which is what I intend to be).
I wish I could use these moments of emotional instability as a means to get closer to people. I want people to think they can trust and rely on me. I say it all the time, but that offer is never tested, and I wonder why that is. It could be that I’m referring to somebody being distraught as an “emotional instability”, but I know that if I can just say the right thing and cheer them up, I can improve my social standing and they’ll ask me for help in the future.
I think one big problem with this is that I find a lot of problems people come up to me with as ludicrous. Many of my initial reactions to hearing about issues people have relate to “This wouldn’t be a problem if you didn’t make it one,” or “This isn’t as big a deal as you would have me believe.” Now, obviously I can’t say things like that, because things like that would definitely worsen the scenario. The most difficult thing is putting away these reactions and approaching the issue with the standpoint that this is an emotional problem that needs to be handled. I can analyze what needs to be done, but I can’t factor emotion into it, so most often I think my resolutions get lost in translation.
If you have this issue, just know that you’re not alone. We aren’t all cut out to be therapists. If you know somebody with this issue, remember that they are trying to help. They are just terrible at helping.