You probably know that I work in a health care setting. As you would expect, there are many good-hearted, sincere people that I work with who genuinely care for the people they serve. But, it really strikes me odd the lack of compassion many show toward their fellow workers. Everyone has problems, some worse than others, but when a problem is yours it is significant. I work with a lot of single mothers who struggle with money problems, child care problems, their children's behavior problems. I work with middle-aged people who are starting to have health problems, or their spouse is having health problems, or they have elderly, possibly frail, parents who they must assist or even have primary care responsibility for. These people don't have the worst possible problems, but they have legitimate worries nonetheless. So, it kind of irks me to see co-workers with signs like this in their office space:
I wonder how they can show so much compassion for some people and little or none for others. Did they use up their allottment . . . "Sorry, no understanding left for you!" I came up with a little saying that tries to make fun of this viewpoint that "you don't have problems compared to me/someone else" (so stop complaining):
The blind or deaf person is still glad they can walk;
The paraplegic is still happy they can use their hands;
The quadriplegic might still be happy to be alive;
The dead person could be happy to have gone to Heaven:
The dead person who goes to the hot place could still be happy to no longer pay gas and electric bills.
But . . it's not wrong for the blind/deaf person to wish they could see or hear . . . or the paraplegic to miss walking . . . or the quadriplegic to wish they could move. Yes, "any day you wake up is a good day", but it is not wrong to want more than simply to wake up and still have a beating heart. It is not wrong to want more from life than that.
Some people will never understand.
I guess that's what they call "compassion fatigue". After dealing with people's problems all day they just run out.
This is common with big disaster- earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, etc, at first there is a great outpouring of compassion and aid but it soon tampers off even though the need for it has not.