Today I am thinking about what you do when somebody you know has a problem that affects you so much that it’s a problem for you too. It’s a situation where it’s not really your problem, only it is.
It makes it so much harder to figure out how to get support. It’s hard to talk about it without being gossipy or feeling like you’re bad-mouthing the person. It’s hard to feel like it’s yours to talk about.
At the same time, it can be something that affects you deeply. Something like a family member with an addiction, mental illness or other problem can be so taxing on a person.
The addict has the option of asking for help by saying “This is my problem. I need help.” But for the bystander, it’s trickier.
Often, our closest confidants are also people that know or have relationships with the person in question, which makes it even harder for us to feel comfortable sharing.
For example, I can share on my blog my struggle with the fact that I still haven’t lost the ‘baby weight’. This is just my problem. But the problem that’s on my mind today isn’t something I can share for all to read.