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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Sad Situations

One of the exasperating things that can happen to a Florida resident is to find one of the little chameleon lizards (anoles) that are prevalent outdoors and are so cute in many ways on the inside rather than outside of one’s house.  When a chameleon gets in (and it’s always a mystery just how he got in) it is almost impossible to coach him out the door or to catch him to release him outside.  Since he will die of starvation and dehydration if not returned to the outdoors, it is sad thing to see him destined to an early death because of his fear of humans who, if he only knew, yearn to help him.  Yet the tautology is insurmountable--he cannot know what he cannot know.

I have seen similar responses in human behavior.  A person can be over their head in some situation or other, and rather than accepting proffered help, thrash about frantically and ignore all life preservers thrown to them and instead passionately fight rescue efforts.  The bigger struggle comes to be not the original task at hand, but overcoming the desperate fear and anxieties of the floundering individual.  People want to help but find it almost impossible to do so and find themselves experiencing guilt and exasperation even while attempting to assist.  The better course—for the struggling person to seek and accept assistance—while it would seem readily doable, tragically encounters insurmountable mental and emotional blocks.  

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