As caregivers, we want to “fix” the hurting person. We feel that if we can rush in with the right “golden nugget” of wisdom to hand to the hurting person, all will be resolved. Then we can make a quick exit and get on with our own life.
The truth is, seldom can we fix another person’s pain and suffering.
If you told me, “My marriage has been shattered into a thousand pieces. I just found out that my husband is having an affair.” How should I respond?
If I am a “fixer,” I might rush in with a solution to your problem. I would be thinking that all you need are my resources and wisdom. I can fix your problem. I might say, “Jane, what you need is to pray harder. Get a good counselor. You really, really need to read this amazing book that worked miracles for my friend. Buy yourself a new negligee. Lose some weight.”
In essence, the fixer says, “If you do this and this and this, your problem will be solved.” Are you a “fixer?”
We rarely can fix another person’s pain and suffering. What we can do is be there, encourage them to tell their story and then just listen.