Respecting The Dignity and Choice of The Pain Sufferer
There are numerous people around you that might be suffering from pain. These could be your friends, family or even your spouse. Pain sufferers are often stuck with the feeling of loneliness and hopelessness. However, you can play a vital role in recovering their energy, optimism, and joy of life only by encouraging and supporting them. One of the biggest challenges that we often face when the pain sufferer is someone who is close to us is frustration when that someone refuses to accept our help. This frustration can lead us to take many actions that can end up being of more harm than good for the pain sufferer. You might want to impose your decisions on them only for the sake of helping them out but respecting the dignity and choice of the pain sufferer is very important. Regardless of your intentions, forcing pain sufferers to do something they might not want to do can lead them to further isolation.
The Importance of Choice
Being able to choose is the right of every individual. It is what makes them different from the other and gives them an identity. It makes them who they are as a person. Regardless of what state your health is in, being able to choose is the fundamental right of every human being. This is exactly why we need to respect the choice of the pain sufferer as well. Respecting the dignity and choice of the pain sufferer is vital when you are trying to help them recover. Regardless of how good your intentions are, forcing such people to do something that they don’t want to do or aren’t comfortable with can have the opposite effect to what you actually intended. This could not only weaken your relation with the pain sufferer but also lead them to further loneliness. This is exactly why one needs to be careful when trying to help somebody who is suffering.
Below are a few tips on how to help a pain sufferer without disrespecting the dignity and choice of the pain sufferer.
Engage Them in Activities THEY Are Interested in!
One of the best ways that psychologists prefer for people that are in a depression is to keep themselves distracted and engaged. One mistake that we tend to make while trying to help a pain sufferer is forcing them to engage in activities that we ourselves are interested in. For example, you might force the pain sufferer to join an art class whereas he has zero interest in art. A person is already suffering and forcing him to do an activity that he is not even interested in can lead to harm. This will not only make the pain sufferer frustrated but will also leave him feeling more alone than before. Instead of forcing such people to do things you want to do or things that help revive your mood, try asking them what they would like to do instead, maybe they would rather be interested in attending a language learning class they’ve always wanted to, or go for a walk on the beach etc. Let them decide.
Don’t Impose Your Views and Beliefs
Sometimes when we are trying to make a pain sufferer feel better we often end up imposing our views and beliefs. Something that works for us doesn’t mean that it will work for the other person as well. For example, you might force your friend to join a group where strangers talk about their feelings or problems but he isn’t comfortable with that as he is unable to express his feelings and problems in front of strangers. No matter how good-hearted your efforts are, imposing your views and beliefs and not respecting the dignity and choice of the pain sufferer can lead him to further seclusion and hopelessness.
Everyone Has Their Own way of Releasing The Pain
Some people prefer not to talk about it and stay busy while others prefer to vent out till they can make peace with their problems. We all have different ways of relieving our suffering, some cry, while some write, we all do it in different ways. Another mistake that we make while trying to help a pain sufferer is stopping them from doing what makes them feel lighter. For example, a pain sufferer might like to vent out and talk about his suffering to make himself feel better, while you might think that it’s a wrong approach and you might start forcing him to do the opposite instead. Every individual is different and we all need to respect that. If a pain sufferer prefers to cry to make himself feel lighter and better, let him, it is very important to discharge all the pain and suffering first in order for a person to heal.
Know When to Stop
Sometimes we tend to forget when to stop and we keep pushing the other person till he or she either gets more frustrated or annoyed. It is very important to know when to stop. If a pain sufferer wishes to be alone for a day and is very serious about it even after you have persuaded him numerous times, you need to respect his decision. Even though you might feel that that pain sufferer is in depression which is why he says no so you keep insisting. But sometimes, pushing a pain sufferer too much can lead to further harm than good that was intended.
Be an Empathetic Listener
Always remember that it’s always best to listen rather than to speak when dealing with someone who is suffering. When somebody is suffering they don’t want to listen to sentences like “don’t be upset”, “stop being so depressed” etc. They cannot just snap out of it. You might feel like advising them but sometimes it’s best to hear them out, let them vent, being a compassionate listener is all they want from you.
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Respecting the dignity and choice of the pain sufferer is crucial for a quick healing! Forcing them to do something that they wouldn’t do will make them suffer more and even weaken your relationship with them. Follow the tips above whenever dealing with someone who is suffering so that you end up helping them without overstepping your boundaries.
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