Don’t ask someone to help if you don’t like what they say

Many years ago I said to the Garden Gnome “Please don’t ever let me become like xxx”.
It is not that I don’t love this person. In actual fact I adore them but as I interact with this person I see the pain and suffering caused by their choices. Choices that I know that I make as well from time to time.
I don’t want to experience the pain and difficulties that I see my loved one endure on a daily basis. Perhaps that is selfish but it is also a self-preservation instinct I guess.
The Garden Gnome promised me that he would do this for me and I was pleased.
As the years have gone on, he has at times reminded me of this request and his subsequent promise. My reaction has not always been pleasant.
You see, the problem is that I can see in myself that the choices I am making are not the best for me and I know that they need to be changed. I know what I should be doing but I keep letting myself down.
When I realise this, I berate myself and encourage myself to change. However when I am actually reminded by someone else about my choices, then my defenses rise.
Which leads me to the title of my blog post.
Basically, if you want someone to help you with something then there are going to be times that they will tell you things that you don’t want to hear.
It can be tough to hear someone you love and care about telling you that you are not doing (or behaving) in a way that you believe you are.
Basically, the truth can hurt.
Very much.

So what do we do about it?
Do we tell the other person to back off and forget that we ever asked for their assistance? Or do we decide to actually listen to their words? After all, they are only trying to help.

It’s a hard question to answer isn’t it?

Do we want to be left to our own devices and hope that we don’t become what we fear? Or do we accept the words of those we entrusted to help us and do something about the state of things as they are right now? After all, it was as a result of our desire for self improvement that we requested assistance in the first place.

What to do?
Decisions, decisions!

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31 thoughts on “Don’t ask someone to help if you don’t like what they say

  1. I think it depends how much we trust the other person, and respect their opinion. And perhaps how much we trust ourselves, as well! I think we usually know, deep down, the difference between truth and an opionion that has genuine validity, but hasn’t taken certain factors into account. We can justify ourselves all we like, but when it’s the truth, it has a different ring to it. And boy, does that hurt!

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  2. As much as it hurts to hear it, we should always listen, especially if we were the ones who requested it in the first place. I’m just like you in the sense that the hardest things to hear are the ones I already know. The same ones I already scold myself for every day for not doing.

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  3. We don’t always recognise what we’re doing may be on a path that isn’t best for us so a gentle nudge from a loved one is often enough to make us rethink. We may not like to hear it and we don’t actually have to abide by it, but just thinking about it afresh gives us new perspective.
    I doubt if one of us hasn’t been told at some stage “You’re turning into so and so”and cringed at the thought but maybe it’s the only option we see at that moment. Said with a bit of a laugh takes the sting out of it.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

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  4. I try to listen with my heart open. It may hurt and usually I go away dsagreeing and then once I’ve given it some thought i will try to implememnt what they suggest or at least move in that direction. Are we back at the pre-holiday problem of being grumpy? If so, it takes a long time for the level of stress you have been exposed to Suz, to fade – sometimes years.

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    1. I’m not grumpy Paul – just reflective. Within my family circle there is a similar situation right now and I was discussing it with the GG when he reminded me of our conversations. I guess by understanding myself, it helps to understand the other person in the family right now.

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  5. Ask, and listen. Even though you may know it’s true, and you asked for help, I think it is the shock that someone else notices what you already know. What I hate is when I have asked my husband for reminders or to notice if I am not acting *normal*, to let me know. His reminders always come to me in an offensive way…such as, what’s your problem? Little grumpy today? He knows those type of questions make me blow my top, but that is his way of keeping me in check. (We’re working on better responses on his part) Maybe it’s the tone or the way the GG reminds you?

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  6. Boy this hits home. I totally relate to this. I’m also working on this myself which is so timely for your post. Last night my husband and I had a discussion about things we do to each other that we’d like to work on. It’s much easier being the person on the outside when it’s not our emotional demon rearing their ugly head. Fortunately we got through the discussion and were smiling at the end. 🙂

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  7. I don’t think we can help being hurt, or angry, when confronted with our own stupidity. Maybe best to say, ‘I need time to think about that.’ and leave it until emotions cool off. It takes me a few days, for sure!

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