If you believe you know a better way, a healthier way, a more loving way, you can express it to them, but then it’s best to leave it at that. If you try to force your opinion on someone, or convince them when they don’t believe it, you could actually be pushing them to do the opposite because no adult wants to be told what to do.
In trying to help, you could be doing harm by activating a stubborn reaction in them. If their choices affect you negatively, then you have to decide if you can accept them “as is” or not. If not, you need to create distance until it doesn't hurt you.
It’s unhealthy for both of you if you stay close. It creates pressure in them and disappointment in you. Plus, it takes your focus off your own life, your own struggles, your own lessons, if your attention is on fixing them.
When we care about someone, we don’t want to give up on them or abandon them, but sometimes not givng up on them means trusting them with the freedom to figure their own life out, and not standing by for drama and pain until they do.
If you stand by for pain, you are choosing to create future regret in them and future resentment in you towards them. Those may be able to be repaired, but time lost can never be brought back.
By Doe Zantamata
Author of "The Law of Attraction, As Easy As Pie"
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