Day 26: Name one popular notion that you think the world has wrong.
That people are too damaged to be loved.
Everyone says that. “Oh, they have too much baggage,” “they’re too messed up,” et al. I don’t believe that.
I think too often we cast aside some of the finest people in the world because they have baggage, they struggle. People suffer from depression, etc. Why do we then isolate these people and cut them out of our lives because “they’re damaged?”
We’re all damaged in one way or another and we shouldn’t stop caring about someone because they’re damaged. If anything, we should love them even more to show them that the things that make them feel “broken” don’t affect that you care.
I have a friend who’s son struggles with mental illness and she has made more sacrifices than anyone I know to make sure that he is cared for, but she has always been sure to draw him closer with love. In fact, that’s how she cares for everyone; with love. I would rather love someone 10 times more when they’re struggling, when they can’t handle things, when they’re gripping the steering wheel with white knuckles and can’t handle things than make them handle those times alone. Perhaps if they knew someone would understand and care enough to want to listen to them, maybe even support them, maybe they wouldn’t feel so damaged anymore and more people with mental illness would feel comfortable going to get help.
When someone has a physical ailment, we help them, but when they’re psychologically ailing or even just struggling emotionally sometimes, we pushed them away. We need to erase the stigma of mental illness so that people feel comfortable talking and we need to love people when they’re at their worst, so they can be their best.
Naturally if someone is abusive or hateful, then yes, you need to step back. But if someone just struggles or has emotional baggage, that’s not a good reason to leave them behind. If they have mental health struggles, that’s not a good reason either. If anything, you’ve validated their self loathing!
People are not disposable. We need to open up our hearts more, love more, protect more and not make people feel unworthy.