There’s a part of me that wants to share my struggles with some people and friends. Even though I love to listen, I also need to be listened to. But for the most part, I’m a bit hesitant to confide because I’m paranoid to get unsolicited advices as I have experienced before. Most people, when you share your problem with them, will tell you, “oh I think it’s better for you to do this, and do that,” or “you know what, I’ve been there, done that. These are what I did and what you should too,” or “be thankful that’s the only thing that happened to you, it could have been worse.”
Actually, I don’t need solutions when I share a problem. If it’s solutions that I want I could just look it up on the internet and books and even get expert advices. When I do share, all I want to feel is to be listened to, to be understood, to be accepted no matter how irrational my feelings are. Someone who relates with me her own experiences is also helpful as it makes me feel that I’m not alone. In fact, that’s how most people feel too. In emotional sharing, I need more human connection than information.
That is where probably my being a counselor gets in the way too, because I’ve learned how to listen and make people feel that I’m trying to understand where they’re coming from. Imagine I paid a few hundreds of thousands in graduate school just to learn that basic human need. So yes, when I share myself, I want to experience someone’s empathy. But I’m glad that my husband has learned to listen and try to see things in my pov. Although sometimes, being a man that he is, he couldn’t help but offer up solutions, but that’s okay. What matters for me is that I was able to get it off my chest, to verbalize my thoughts, and to experience someone’s loving acceptance. In reality some life problems have no solutions at all. And the best that a friend confidant could do is to share the burden by being there for the person.
But I have learned to do just fine. In blogging, I could write my thoughts and experiences coherently that are relatable to some readers. And aside from having a personal blog, I also have a private blog. It’s like a personal diary. My thoughts there are incoherent where I jump from one topic to another. It also serves as my prayer diary where I write to Jesus and pour my heart out. The act of writing to Him makes me grow closer to Him as if He is walking with me everyday of my life. I share when I’m bored, furious, happy, excited, inspired. In writing my jumbled thoughts, I am able to sort myself out, put the puzzle pieces together, and see the bigger picture.
Now that I’ve written this, I realized one other reason why I don’t confide much to other friends. It’s because I have enough confidants in my life – Jesus, my mom, and my husband. And for me, they’re more than enough. 🙂