Sympathy: It Can Be Toxic


Most times people will tell you to share with someone your problems, that problem shared is problem half solved. Well, while I couldn’t agree more with that, it is something that I rarely do. Here’s my thought process about how I deal with personal challenges. I never share my predicaments with friends or family or any human for one major reason, sympathy. While being sympathetic to a person about their predicaments gives this assurance that the person is not alone and that they have the support of the people being sympathetic, it does the very opposite to me.

I am more logical and prefer being strategic about my challenges. I usually only let anyone know about whatever the predicament is when I believe the person has the solution to it or can help in solving it. I am not trying to dismiss sympathy, because it is important and essential for most people. We all need the right people as our support system, especially in difficult times. But what I am getting at is this, don’t allow sympathy to become a thing you always look out for from people in your life, it becomes toxic to you.

See, when you live with the perception that you need to always get sympathy from your folks, the day you go through a challenge and you don’t get the sympathy, it could lead you to become depressed, start thinking otherwise of your folks or something else worst. So, while you cherish the support system you have, learn to be self-sufficient, that way even when your folks don’t realize your predicament and sympathize with you, you still know that you are enough and are capable of handling it by yourself and that they care regardless. 

Self-sufficiency comes by practice, the more you exercise it, the abler you will be at dealing with your challenges with or without the intervention of others. Self-sufficiency comes easy for me because of my firm belief and faith in God. I know that he’s supreme and he cares for me, so I know I am self-sufficient in his sufficiency. I am sure if you believe and have faith in him, you too will enjoy this benefit.

The best part of experiencing or dealing with my predicaments is when I share it with any individual or folks long after I overcome or deal with it. I find it more fulfilling and meaningful sharing some of my challenges with people that are going through similar challenges, If I see it fitting to share, I often do. So, you could apply this principle too in your life if it makes sense to you. I am in no way trying to encourage or propagate self-isolation, not at all, I am talking about self-sufficiency because friends and family could disappoint you especially when you need them the most, in such case all you’ve got is yourself, thus the significance of self-sufficiency. 

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