Robin Williams was one my favorite actors, and his passing last week was shocking. So much have been written and said about his life and his death, particularly the demons which had plagued him. One of the most poignant thing I heard was ” it is inconceivable that a man who brought so much joy suffered so much .” He certainly hid his pain well with his “zaniness” and humor, he could make jokes out of anything including his pain.
On the day of his death, a psychologist on CNN had urged people to talk to someone if they are in pain. The call is for people to reach out and get help. This is a horrible disease which has inflicted so many people, and there are many I know who are victims of depression one way or the other. As it is important to talk to others, it is imperative for people to listen with empathy. I certainly have my share of people who might have the best of intentions, but some how can turn me away from talking about my struggles. Nothing is more demoralizing when they tell you that ” your troubles are not that bad, someone has it worst”, or they are more interested in telling their stories, or offering you a quick fix. Each person has his or her own pain and to have it trivialized is like adding salt to one’s wound.
I saw this quote the other day which says volume about this: ” Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.” I could not agree more, the best gift we can offer to someone who is hurting is to listen without judging, it is only when we are able to listen well we can then earn our right to speak.