Have anyone been in a position to help someone? If you have, how do does it make you feel? Did you help them because you genuinely had some type of empathy towards their plight, or did you help them because you have expected something in return? There is one thing that gets me is the attitude of those willing to help. When I’m in a seminar giving information on a program that is supposed to benefit a set of people and I hear some of the attitudes of those in the room who will be in a position to help display. They praise the program administrators, and then they view the people they are supposed to help as helpless creatures. They believe they are doing some good, and some may think that god put them on the earth to do the job of helping. This sounds like a “Kum By Yah” to me. It just makes me want to reach out and slap some sense into them.
I can’t but help to think about the people that need help. Well some people may get themselves in a rut and can’t get out of it without some help; while others cannot live day to day without some type of assistance. Then you have those who will exploit people’s good nature and suck everything they can out of those who are there to help then move on to the next helper. This gets me to think about the psychological aspect of helping.
Looking at the psychology of helping:
It is said that helping is a form of pro-social behavior, voluntary carried out so that other people could benefit from the behavior. Yet some people help others due to their own personal goals. This is called egoistic helping, a form of helping which the ultimate goal is to increase the welfare of the helper. While others do not have any goals or expect anything in return, we call this altruistic helping, the ultimate goal is to increase the welfare of the person being helped without expecting anything in return.
Nothing is written in stone, the psychologists are bias when it comes to identifying the gender that will help people, it is said that men are more likely to help in dangerous situations, and women are more likely to provide long-term help.
What are the rules of helping? The society in which we live all have established rules when it comes to helping others, mostly it is what people have in their mind and their reasons to help others; these are the norms of reciprocity, responsibility, and justice.
Reciprocity: this is based on maintaining fairness in a relationship. As you know or should recognize; there isn’t such thing as fairness in any relationship. From time to time there is a balance, and that one party helps the other because there is an invested interest for the party that is doing the helping.
Responsibility: there is the premise that we as people are living in a society that should help when others are in need and dependent. This norm of society works better in small towns where people tend to know each other. In the big city like New York City, there are factors involved getting help from strangers.
Justice: One may think that another deserves to have our assistance. If one party thinks the other deserves assistance, they will give it no matter what; or if a person thinks or believe the other doesn’t deserve any assistance then they won’t help that person no matter what.
It reminds me of those bums begging on the street, they work the same area, saying they have nothing or no food, or even someone with one leg, or are blind. They expect that you should give them something. I can assure you that these people make more money than some average Joe by begging. Plus the government money and food stamps that they get. So don’t waste your money, time and effort on people crying for help, the odds are they don’t need it.