To give up or not give up- that is the question.
I sometimes feel like giving up; to some this may be surprising. I wish I could say that my depression was completely gone, and that it never surfaces again, but that would be a lie. There are more days than I would like to admit when it takes every bit of energy to just get out of bed and try. Clinically that is called doing the opposite action.
Fighting the urge to give up it is something I have struggled with as long as I can remember. There have been times when I have given up or set things on pause. There have also been times I did just the opposite and I pushed through, sometimes even over compensating for the thoughts of wanting to give up. When I would do this, others would give positive feedback stating that I am an over-achiever and although in some ways that may be true, a lot of times it was more a way of surviving.
The flip side of this I am always encouraging others not to give up. I don’t lie and promise a bed of roses, but I do believe that if they want to make changes and they are willing to do the work, I am all in to help them. I won’t give up on them regardless of how many barriers they face or if things go wrong. Even if they give up, I won’t give up.
This past week I had a phone call where a mom was trying to get her adult son into our co-occurring program. She said she knew he has to come in and do the work. She said she has been told he was a “lost cause and she should give up”, but she didn’t want to give up on him. As a tear rolled down my cheek, I told her she should never give up on her son and that we would never give up on him because myself, and my team, do not believe in lost causes. I explained that none of us can guarantee the outcome but we can never give up.
I am so disappointed in my field that other professionals encouraged this mother to give up on her child. As professionals, we owe it to all we work with to have an attitude that never gives up and not only have that attitude, we need to go further and let those we work with know that we won’t give up on them. We can’t make their decisions for them, but we do control the way we view the people we work with.
As I processed this call with a colleague and friend, it reminded me, how much I rely on those who don’t give up me.
To give up or not give up is the question; the answer is never give up. Not on yourself, not on me, not on those we work with and not on anyone. Sometimes our support is the only strength that they may have.