Saviors of the family
Did you grow up in a home where you ended up with the role of listening to everyone’s problems? Maybe you were the go-to person when something went wrong in your family home. Did you try and be the peacemaker or problem solver in your friend group? Maybe in your adult life you are still in that role. Are you trying to help your friends when they have a problem, listening to your mother or sister or best friend talk about herself and her feelings day in and day out? That role may give you a purpose, may make you feel good, but it also can be burdensome. Do these same people listen to you when something is wrong or if you just want a loved one to listen to you and hear about your day good or bad?
Many of us grew up in a home where our parents or our siblings and our friends sought us out because we have good listening skills, a kind heart and we want to help. Many of us even went into the helping profession for that reason. But often times, we find that these very same people don’t return the favor. They are so accustomed to you doing the listening they don’t think about asking you about your day or being there for you. Many of these people might not have the emotional capacity to be there for you the way you are for them. You may love these people dearly, like I said, some of them are your closest family members, and best friends. That does not make it okay for you. Who do you turn to when you need to ponder an issue, talk about your day and feel heard?
Often times the biggest helpers need more help than others. What are some ways you can take care of and express yourself when you may feel you don’t have a listening ear?
- Journal and write down your feelings
- Turn to a friend or family member that maybe you didn’t think of that could become a closer person to you
- Play music and sing aloud to your favorite song
- Move your body. Don’t underestimate the power of walking, dancing, jogging, exercising in some way.
- Talk to a therapist