Recently, my father went through a minor surgery with overnight stay in the hospital. It was fascinating observing behaviours of parents while it was frustrating getting involved in it.
I am aware that I have tendencies to become overly helpful and responsible for family members, particularly my parents. This time, it was fascinating observing behaviour of myself and other family members.
My father – become a vulnerable person, seeking for care and attention.
My mother – handed the whole responsibilities of caring to me.
My sister – didn’t know what’s her role but tried to be helpful.
My brother – sick.
So, what happened?
I assisted my father to be admitted to hospital, escorted him to pre-op room just before anesthetics. Went to work, and visited him after work, made sure he is comfortable and all his needs are met. Wake up early in the morning before work and discharged him with necessary instructions for home care. I had to work today; however, because I was able to discharge him before work, so I delayed my starting time. Called mum and organised her to pick him up.
So, what happened been overly helpful?
I have been accused by my mum to discharge him too early. Following is our chat.
Mum: Can’t you put him on the train to come home by himself? I can pick him up from the nearest train station.
Me: Mum, he’s just been discharged. I can’t do that.
Mum: He’s well enough to walk by himself right? He should be alright.
Me: He said that he’s feeling a bit dizzy.
Mum: How dear you discharge him so early. He could stayed in for another few hours and get discharged after lunch.
I was so upset and cut our phone call.
Be helpful to all who need your assistance, but don’t overdo it.
Over-helpfulness too often results in under-performance.Mardy Grothe
Probably, I went into rescue mode. Probably, it was easier to do it than explain. Probably, I had become too capable that I wasn’t aware. Probably, I tried to do right thing for me. Probably, I modelled how I want to be treated when I am in their position. Probably, that was my nature.
However, I already know the result of over-helping and over-responsible. Neither over-helping nor over-responsible would nurture anyone but rather it may ruin a person by discouraging their growth.
Who are you assisting today?
When do you stop or where do you stop?
How is that encouraging the growth of you and the other person?