Do People Really Have it That Bad?

I’ve only been out of the military for a relatively short period, in contrast to the amount of time I was in. Since my exit from the military, I have noticed a trend. It seems that people are more than willing to tell others, how horrible their lives are, or how they are continually down on their luck.

At first, my heart went out to the many people I crossed paths with. Sometimes I was able to help them out or help them to figure out a problem. Other times, all I could say was, “good luck and God bless”.

I have begun to understand that these people really don’t have any massive problems. Instead, they’ve learned that it is much more advantageous to highlight things that are not necessarily problems, rather, they don’t want people to know how good they actually have it.

I’ll admit, I am quite gullible, and I am always willing to lend a hand. I tend to believe what I’m told, unless it is too far out. But, this recent discovery has me wondering…

How many more people are quick to discuss their “issues” rather than their blessings? Is this merely a negotiation technique or a method to exploit handouts?

I guess, when people see a person who is in relatively in good spirits on a regular basis, they are perceived to be living the good life. That may or may not be true. In my case, my life is pretty good, better than I deserve quite frankly. But that doesn’t mean that I couldn’t use a helping hand from time to time, as well. I must say though, I do find it hard to reach out and ask for help, so that part is on me.

– How do you maintain a working relationship with a person who is always complaining?

– At what point do you finally turn away?

– Have you ever confronted such a person?


20 thoughts on “Do People Really Have it That Bad?

  1. Maybe guilt factor? Make others feel guilty? Gain attention…????
    In my family, I have to put up with complaining younger brothers almost on a daily basis, which is so darn aggravating at times. Yes, I have “confronted” them about it.

  2. I don’t have a rosy, easy life. I also don’t spew it everywhere, either. My reunion last weekend was a bit tough because, even at our age (early 50s), there is still this “whipping it out and measuring” going on. My classmates start asking me the *questions*, esp. now, since I left FakeBook. They are basically good folks but, my private is life is just that. I didn’t follow the normal path after grad….four years of college, a job in my field of grad., 2.5 kids, lots of family vacations, 3.5 grandkids, tidy retirement, more traveling…

    Folks, today, they are products of the programming of our society. Consume. Consume. Consume. Get what you can, when you can, from whom you can. Personal responsibility and integrity took a death hit a long time ago.

    I could be considered naive, too. I will believe what you tell me until you give me a reason not to believe you, anymore.

  3. I have noticed that some people just complain. It’s like it’s their default mode and they dont even realize they’re doing it. You say “how’re ya doin?” and they tell you about their aching back and the hole in the roof or whatever… With those kinds of people its easiest just to ignore it. I’ve tried asking if they really felt as bad as they complained about and it didnt go well.

    I’m bad about asking for or even accepting help. I’m working on that. I give help all the time, it’s only gracious to accept it in return.

  4. Being around complainjng can be incredibly challenging for sure. It can zap so much energy from you. Its like being submerged in cold water…its going to eventually get to you.

    In response to your questions, I like to make sure the juice is worth the squeeze first. If its not , I try to give myself permission to distance myself. Im not always good at it, especially with my siblings, but over the years Ive learned that its totally cool to love people from afar.

    One cool thing I like to do is flip the script. Ill start talking about all the good shit in my life. I find thay doing thay annoys them as much as their complaining annoys me. Eventually they stop talking to me. Its kind of cool.

    Im terrible at confrontation, unless somebody fucks with my kids, then Im like Liam Neeson in all 17 of the Taken movies. But I digress….

    My wife confronts me about my negativity all the time. Right after I tell that bitch to shut up (in my mind) I usually find that she is right.

    Im not really sure why it seems easier to focus on the negative. Maybe from an anthropological perspective we always had to be on the lookout for danger…Who fuckin’ knows, right? In my work with the homeless in my community, I find that a lot of people who dont have shit have a way more positive attitude and, for the most part, are grateful for the little things.

    1. bottomlesscoffee007

      Thanks Bulldog, I appreciate the insight.

      Like I said, I’m still kinda new to this side of the fence and maybe it’s always been there, I’ve just never noticed.

  5. Interesting post, BC 🙂

    Are you complaining about people complaining?

    Just messing with you… serious mode is now enabled.

    It sounds as though you have a bit of “fixer” element going on in you which (is great but can also cause problems with certain people) means you have a tendency to want to heroically swoop in and solve someone’s problem. As in – you saw, came and conquered… job done, all sorted, you can stop complaining now and can smile again.

    Some people will appreciate that and others might resent it because having a problem is their thing. Complaining is their style of communication. So if you fix one of their problems, they’ll simply have a new one or the same one again.

    If you’re genuinely perplexed and those questions are ones you want answered, you might find it worth checking out – Games People Play by Eric Berne – you don’t have to buy the book, there’s a website which explains things for free.

    Best wishes in solving your problem! You’re smart, you’ll figure it out.

    1. bottomlesscoffee007

      Thanks Ursula. I guess maybe I am complaining about people complaining.

      What I’m trying to figure out is if I am selling myself short, with my lack of complaining. Maybe, if I complained more, I would get more out of people, for free.

      That is why I asked if this technique is a negotiation method or if it is genuine hardship.

      Maybe I do want to please people, I don’t know.

      1. There are many different types and styles of complaining – listen to the sound it makes when people do it rather than what is being said to ascertain what is going on. You can do that with writing as well as speaking voices.

        If it sounds like “stroking” then it’s someone soothing themselves with their complaint. They don’t want anything from you other than perhaps a stroke = poor you, I feel you, etc. Sympathy and empathy.

        If it sounds like someone is talking more to themselves than to you or others, then it’s someone figuring something out for themselves with themselves out loud maybe using you as a sounding board.

        If it sounds like “wheedling” then that person is bargaining with whoever will listen – they might get something for free from others, but free things may have strings attached.

        Use you own power of complaint wisely or you might end up in a symbiotic relationship with someone who needs you to constantly be in a state which inspires complaint.

        Complaining in the right way at the right time is often useful, but it tends to work better if you’re not a regular complainer and you’re someone who rarely complains so when and if you do, it’s serious and needs immediate action to resolve it.

        From what I’ve gathered from your recent posts, you’re doing well… trust your way of doing things as it is working out well for you. It may feel slow, but slow and steady lasts longer 🙂

        1. bottomlesscoffee007

          Thanks Ursula. It seems you have a sound grasp on how to decipher between thinking, working out and genuine problems that may require assistance.

  6. This is definitely a topic that gets me riled up. “They’ve learned that it is much more advantageous to highlight things that are not necessarily problems.” – THAT.

    I thought “go fund me” pages were for disasters. Now, there are account raising money for any and every thing. Funerals can be expensive, but why is it that I should fund your funeral instead of saving up for mine?

    Yes, I think if you are willing to play the system, you can get away with a lot of less work and more money. Does that upset me? Yes. Will I jump on the bandwagon? No. So all I can do it vent.

    Working with someone who constantly complains is a pain. Been there, done that. I’m a good listener, so I can just sit there and nod as they talk about stuff that doesn’t even register with me after a while. I think the important thing is to realize what these people expect from you. If they just want to vent, I let them. If they are looking for a solution (very rarely), I try and give them my two cents. If they want pity and preferential treatment, I tell them about other people and their hardship and then I turn away.

    If you spend all your money on things you don’t need and then complain about not having money for your bills, I have no mercy for you.

    1. As always, Goldie and I are thinking alike, again. I have become very jaded. There are two things people can do if their life is as bad as they say. They can “shit or get off the pot”. No, life is not easy or fair. It’s not easy for any of us, But our lives are what we make of it. No one is responsible for our lives being good or bad except us and the decisions we make. It’s never to late to make a new start, but it is hard work. Today, sadly, most people just want they easy life, and are not willing to put in the hard work and efforts required to make their life better. it’s much easier to complain and to be the victim than it is to be the successful victor.

      1. bottomlesscoffee007

        I tend to agree Jeanne. If it’s really that bad, then I would assume that they would take action, rather than waiting to be saved.

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