Advice

4-24-10                 1:07am

I just turned the tv off. Mom’s playing Chinese checkers on the computer. I’m sick of people giving me advice, of telling me not just what to do but what not to. The person who gave me a ride home tonight asked about S—. He listened for a bit, then gave me a long explanation of what I shouldn’t do and how he doesn’t understand why all people don’t function like he does. Blah blah blah. I did not solicit this advice nor do I want or appreciate it.

I don’t know where people get off thinking my sharing is equivalent to giving them permission to tell me what to do and tell me all of their largely unrelated examples. If I want your advice, I’ll ask for it. Otherwise, just shut up.

It’s a group rule at DBSA that we don’t give advice unless someone asks for it or you ask first. It’s just courtesy. More people need to learn the art of listening. I may know the solution to someone’s problem, but that doesn’t mean they want to know, or that they want me to tell them, or that it’s even appropriate for me to get involved.

There are two things in particular I do not want unsolicited advice on. 1) Relationships. Just don’t. 2) My Health. 99.9% of the population has nothing that could remotely help me, no knowledge that even approaches what I need.

And if you don’t want to know, don’t ask. Okay? Yes, I’ve lost a lot of weight. No, I’m not on a diet. And no, I don’t want to hear your diet stories, or why I shouldn’t eat ice cream and ramen, and how salt makes you bloated, or how your cousin’s 4th ex-wife’s best friend’s brother found some magic healing food in Africa. I don’t care. It’s too much information. Just because you covet losing weight doesn’t mean it’s a good thing for me. I’m grateful to look healthy and be thinner, but I lost the weight because I’m sick.

Resist the urge to ask. Ask yourself first, “Do I really want to know?” I’m almost sure the answer is no. If not you can send me an email. But for most people that’s a good enough description. I’m sick. Period. If you ask me my symptoms, you will be overwhelmed and I in turn will feel shitty. For now, I’m just sick. I can live with that…

My Advice:

Please, think before giving advice. It can really change a life.

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