In every friendship or group dynamic, there is always the person everyone decides to go to when they’re in trouble or just needs advice. This person could be known as the hero, reliable, or the counselor of the group. Let’s be honest, everyone has someone like this and if you don’t then it may just be you. These people are generally good at talking sense into us and helping us to realize what we should and/or shouldn’t be doing. These same people can be the loneliest in the group. Why? The answer is simply because everyone counts on them to have all the answers, but when it’s their turn to need help it always feels like no one is around.
From the point of view of this group counselor, he or she feels a bit taken advantage of. Being one of these people myself, I can say that we know that our friends love us and aren’t purposefully taking advantage of us. It just feels that way all the time, especially when we’re the ones in need. Most times it’s hard for us to even speak up about how we feel, because it seems like it goes ignored.
For instance, recently I had a friend come to me about this person's problems. Normally, I’m all for helping and I give good advice. The problem is that this time I was dealing with my own personal mini-crisis and I was a bit down about it. I tried to explain before the conversation got started that I wasn’t feeling the best so it wouldn’t be the right time to talk about my friend's problems. What did they do? Bulldoze right on through and unleash the issues right onto my lap.
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So not only was I dealing with my own problems that were weighing me down, but I also had to deal with my friend's stuff too! Not saying that this friend was selfish or anything, but this person could’ve shown a little more consideration to my own feelings instead of just pouring the life drama out on me. I don’t know about for everyone, but it really takes a toll on me when I’m supposed to be having fun too.
Whenever my friends and I decide to go out to the bar, I’m usually always the one that drinks less (whether I’m driving or not--and remember: no drinking and driving, kids). I’m always the one that mentally decides to hold back on my fun to make sure my friends aren’t making any possible drunken mistakes. This includes: going home with someone they don’t know, drinking until they pass out, getting into fights, stripping in front of everyone, and so on and so forth. I guess that’s what happens when you’ve been deemed the responsible one of the group, but sometimes we want to let loose and have fun too!
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Sometimes the counselors of the group can be the biggest babies, but just not speak up about it. So as our friends, you all should be able to notice the small signs. Now the signs are different for everyone, but there are ways to make the time easier. For one, don’t always come to us for advice over the smallest things. If anything, get at least two people who you can talk to and spread your time between them so you’re not oversharing with just one person. If you’re going to go out, make sure that you don’t let them drive all the time. Uber and LYFT are fairly popular, so if those are in your area then use them as much as you can.
Most importantly, if they come to you for advice (which will probably be rare), or just need someone to talk to then be there for them. They are pretty much always there for you, so make sure you can return the favor.