People often demand a great deal from us. Sometimes, they feel they need more than they really do and sometimes we do more for those in need than we should. When feeling stretched beyond your limits because of someone who is not doing as much as they could for themselves, remind yourself:
A caring relationship conveys a message of faith in the ability of the other.
An image of what this may look like was provided by Soren Kierkegaard in 1938…
“The loving mother teaches her child to walk alone. She is far enough from him so that she cannot actually support him, but she holds out her arms to him. She imitates his movements, and if he totters, she swiftly bends as if to seize him, so that the child might believe that he is not walking alone… And yet, she does more. Her face beckons like a reward, an encouragement. Thus, the child walks alone with his eyes fixed on his mother’s face, not on the difficulties in his way. He supports himself by the arms that do not hold him and constantly strives towards the refuge in his mother’s embrace, little suspecting that in the very same moment that he is emphasizing his need of her, he is proving that he can do without her, because he is walking alone.”