Speak and Share

Friendship

No matter whether it is time, money, youth, health, family, friends, a career; we never seem satisfied or happy with our lives. We always want more or want what we perceive others to have. Please notice the word “perceive”.

Sometimes you can see someone and think they have it all. They have a nice house, a nice car, a nice job and maybe even the perfect family. But, most of the time, there is some sort of issue, problem, dilemma, or crisis that no one sees, even those closest to them.

Sharing our “crisis” with the world has been a blessing in many ways. Part of the benefit of sharing our story, is hearing stories from so many others from around the world. When I read other stories, I know I am not alone in many thoughts and feelings I have. I know my children are not alone. I have made new friends I don’t think I would have ever met or gotten close to otherwise. Such irony. I know that I am making a difference to people. I know that our story, our hurt, our trials and tribulations will benefit someone, somewhere. And sometimes that has to be enough to push me through another day.

There are times I will be chatting with a friend and they apologize to me for burdening me with their troubles. Although I understand why they do this, it makes me feel uncomfortable. Am I that on edge that I can’t handle hearing about someone else’s life? Am I that shallow? Am I that fragile?

I want to hear about your day and what you really think about your boss and your husband and your kids and your neighbor and our government and the school system and environmental issues. I want to have that sense of belonging and normalcy that comes with the give and take of a friendship. You tell me your woes and I tell you mine. It goes both ways. Seriously, one of my favorite things in life is to talk. And listen. And talk. And listen. I love conversations and hearing other peoples’ stories and sharing mine. I can do it for hours.

When no one talks to you, the world gets much smaller. You become isolated and alone. Talk. Listen. Share. Care. Hug. Laugh. Cry.

We all have the same emotions and the same life problems. Mine are out here for the world to see. I now know by sharing my burdens and troubles, many others don’t feel so alone, which in turn helps me feel connected and not so alone. So, if you have a friend or family member that is going through a rough patch in life, keep the communication lines going both ways. Please do not just ask them how they are and then have that awkward silence when it is your turn to share. All of this being said, you also don’t need to give them a 30 minute dissertation on every single problem you have had; especially if it involves getting sand in the wrong places while vacationing in the Caribbean or how long the lines were skiing the slopes of the Alps. Please use good judgement.

I get a certain comment all the time, “You write what I am feeling but I can’t say it to anyone because they won’t understand.”  I think the reason so many of us feel like we won’t be understood is because people tend to judge. We tend to judge based on what we believe others should be doing or what they should be feeling. Who are any of us to know these things? Each family has their own story, their own best way of dealing with it and we should all accept the mantra,” they are doing they best they can.” Period.

I learned a long time ago; the minute I say I would never do that or my kids would never do that is the minute I set into motion for that very thing to happen.

That doesn’t mean I don’t sometimes start down that path of judging. I do try to catch myself. Do you?

So, let your friends share, vent, open up with honest thoughts and feelings. Then let them know you still care, you still love them and you have stuff going on in your life too. Then let them hear all about it so they don’t have to think about only their crap. It is nice to hear other peoples’ lives aren’t perfect sometimes. Remember the adage “Misery Loves Company”? This world has a lot of sadness and a lot of  hurt and anger and injustice. No need to add to it. Instead, try to add a bit of love and understanding. It might just make your world a little brighter too.

posted by Karen in Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (4)

4 Responses to “Speak and Share”

  1. diana hull says:

    I so agree with everything you said. Thank you.

  2. Wendy says:

    I struggle with writing things that I know my husband will read. I see how embarrassed he gets with the deficits he sees with his AD. I long to vent on my blog, but don’t do it as much as I would like. What you write resonates so much with me. Thank you

  3. Michelle Fox says:

    Excellent post and so thought provoking. You nailed it!!

  4. Cassandra says:

    I just stumbled onto your blog through the Alzheimer’s website. Wow, I am so sorry you are going through this. My mom is 52 and suffers from semantic dementia. It has been so hard to lose my mom at such a young age. Fortunately, my mom was very young when she and my dad started their family, so I had the “normal” mom in my life through my young adulthood. My heart breaks for your sweet children. Thank you for sharing with others. If you want to keep in touch, I also write a blog. http://www.journeywithdementia.com Take care!

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