A WORD FROM OUR FOUNDER
OH, so you think you can help
You know...nothing irritates me more than me TRYING to help...TRYING to do some actual good in a non-sarcastic way, and then getting a bunch of grief.
In response to my divorce blog a bunch of do gooders took offense to the "your friends can't help you" section.
"blah blah blha you don't have to be divorced to understand it hurts blah blha blah friends are what you need when times are tough blah blah blah i helped my buddy alot he told me so"
...yeah well your friend also told you he'd stay with that girl forever so...that's what his word is worth?...but I can see I'm fighting the ocean here and you are all just sooooo compassionate that you are going to try to help anyway. Fine here are some important bullet points if you have a friend going through a divorce
-If the divorce subject comes up, listen that's all...don't change the subject... DON'T try to relate it to you breaking up with someone...NOTHING IRRITATES US MORE than listing to you go- "remember when i broke up with Jenny after four years...that hurt too so i know blah blah blah blah"...oh, you broke up with your girlfriend this one time...gee that's awful cute, except that you and your girlfriend DIDN'T PROFESS TO GOD AND EVERYONE AND THEMSELVES THAT THIS UNION BETWEEN THE TWO OF THEM WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN THEIR LIFE AND THEY WOULD NEVER LET IT BE BROKEN...and then have to turn around and admit to God and everyone AND THEMSELVES that those vows/their word wasn't worth the paper it was printed on. "yeah but still i get ya with the emotional pain of it because..." Oh shut up...you comparing a break up to a divorce is like comparing you missing your flight to MY FLIGHT EXPLODING IN THE AIR ABOVE A CITY.
-Do not bitch about the other person...you weren't there, you are getting half of the story, and just because right now they are in "think that she was a total bitch" mode doesn't mean three days later they won't be in "I was a total asshole mode" and resenting you for what you said three days ago.
- We don't know what we want. We'll tell you we just want to be alone. we don't. that doesn't mean bug us every single day, but keep an eye on us. if you stop by and we're wearing kleenex boxes for shoes and that apartment is littered with pizza boxes it's time to take out out to a movie or something. it is tempting to just give us a wide berth and wait it out. that...while not harmful...is unhelpful and lazy. THIS IS NOT LICENSE TO BUG US EVERY WAKING MOMENT LIKE YOU ARE SUICIDE WATCH.
-At some point you getting us out of the house or telling us to get our head out of our ass is going to start an argument or perhaps result in us telling you to fuck off. Possibly severing the friendship. Well...do you want to help or do you want to feel good because you are helping? Helping someone often times means telling them things and doing things that will result in them never talking to you again. If we tell you to fuck off and we don't listen, you have at least planted the seed and laid the groundwork for the next guy who tries to get us moving. PLUS whatever drama we go through with you is at least distracting us from that other drama. A solid day of bitching about what an asshole you are might be just what we need. (do not take that as license to go start a stupid argument or poke your nose in where it doesn't belong) AND...this doesn't mean three weeks after the split you read us the riot act and hold us down and brush our teeth. You have to use your judgment...this means your judgment has to be worth a shit i.e. you've been coming around to check up on us...you've been listening...AND error on the side of caution when you think we need a kick in the ass.
-At some point you will be prematurely thinking "geez when is he/she gonna get over it already?" Well, as soon as you go fuck yourself...that's when. He or she will likely be walking around with this baggage the rest of their life...you know why? Because it happened, that's why. There is no higher relationship than a marriage so even if the person gets re-married he/she will be looking over his/her shoulder to a certain extent for quite some time.
-Don't bring it up. We'll bring it up. Don't ask what happened. People ask that as if their gonna get a simple "she aborted my baby so she could have pregnantless sex with my brother" and it's gonna be cut and dried. Nope...People get divorced 9 times out of 10 because of a million little things...sometimes those million little things set off an abortion/brother sex incident, but that's the grand finale not what lit the fuse. Two people don't just go from being in love to doing something horrible sh*t to each other. "what happened?"...we don't fucking know. Even if we think we do. It will be months before we truly figure it out. Maybe we stabbed her dog...and right now your answer would be "I stabbed her dog" when in reality we are currently selectively forgetting, do to guilt or stress, that her dog was biting our leg at the time as we were chasing her and our naked brother out of the house. Or maybe just a million little insensitive things done on purpose by her, eventually broke the camels back and we stabbed her dog, or maybe we are just an asshole and stabbed her dog. It would take a CSI team to unravel all the things that went on and who did what why ...so now you see why "what happened", while well meaning, is a stupid question.
-Give us something to do. We need to feel useful, have us help you move something heavy or paint something. we need to be reminded that people care and that we have a life outside of the life we just screwed up.
-Do not invite us to do something involving your family. we appreciate being invited for thanksgiving dinner but it's going to do more harm than good for us to sit there and watch someone else's family. If my grandma died you would invite me over to hang out with you and your grandma? no. Take us to a ball game or a movie or something were it is a bunch of guys (or a bunch of girls) no couples no families...got it? I mean does that sound FUN to you? To go through a divorce and then spend an evening watching how happy someone else is? Why don't you just go down the the VA hospital and tie your shoes over and over in front of someone who lost their hands...numbskull. It's another example of you being well meaning...but harming. We appreciate it but...
-Don't take us out to get drunk or laid and think that that's gonna do the trick. We are self destructing mentally we don't need to self destruct physically with booze, drugs or loose individuals of the opposite sex. A lot of times marriages CAN be fixed...it is more helpful for you to make sure we are not drunk or in bed with someone else when the second party shows up to reconcile.
-We are going to be a big pain in the ass for MONTHS accept this as fact. We'll run to you for help and run away just as quickly when you try to help. we're going to be moody and probably be full of off handed insults. So, just deal with okay. That doesn't mean we get to treat you like shit and not have to hear about it. Again use your judgment...that you have formed from being around us for awhile.
That's really about it...of course some of this advice overlaps and somewhat contradicts itself, well you wanted to help assholes GOOD LUCK.