In understanding others

There is a price to pay.

Sometimes, we just get it wrong,

Dismissed, go on our way.


It’s hurtful when that happens

And I’m sore so deep inside

That reaching out brought you no comfort.

You chose to hide and not confide.


I don’t need or want your secrets,

Your worries and your fears.

I don’t need other burdens.

I have enough to last for years.


I suppose I’m just this person

Who cannot see a need

Without reaching out to offer,

To try to help you feed.


A way of being, a pair of arms,

If you want, a listening ear.

But, mainly, offering love, support

While you cry internal tears.


I recognise this need in me.

It’s a need for feeling needed.

Ignoring doesn’t work at all.

I’ve tried, but it won’t be heeded.


Video reading Needed


14 thoughts on “Needed”

  1. You’ve got me wondering: How does one lend a “listening ear” to another’s “internal tears” without picking up a few “secrets,” and “burdens”?

    Now, I’ve got a friendly face, I’m often the confided. I guess I’ve learnt most people don’t want the answer, they just want someone to share the way with. To know they are heard, and understood. You only shoulder people’s burdens when you think, because they are shared you are now somehow responsible.

    A beautiful treatment of the paradox of need, and human nature.


    1. I like this comment. You’re quite right. No need to carry everyone’s burden just because they share it.
      I recognise someone’s need but don’t necessarily want to hear all the details. So, I’ll let them cry on my shoulder or just give them a cuddle if that’s what they need. Big secrets I can live without!
      Thanks for your comment.
      I’m going to shrug off other people’s worries. I think. Maybe. I hope. 🙂 x


  2. I understand completely how you feel. It hurts to see others in pain, and you want to help them, but there is only so much you can do. Just knowing that someone cares, however, can be a huge source of comfort and support. Never think your words do not reach someone because they do; however, it is up to the receiver to decide what to do with them. Really heartfelt and wonderfully expressed poem.


    1. Thank you, Cubby. You’re right, of course. Some acknowledgement of support is sometimes all that’s required. It’s my own fault if I take other people’s problems too much to heart. Sometimes people have gotten over something and I’m still worrying about it for them. Like that helps who? I’m going to learn to say, ‘no’ sometimes and see if I can stick to it! x


  3. The difference between empathy and sympathy…and with a friend it is a tricky tango I will admit. Close friends and my children are difficult to just show only empathy, I do sometimes carry their burdens and if ONLY that would relieve them a tad, eh? I have changed over the years however to be selective with whom I am willing to embrace that burden for personal survival.


  4. You’re welcome! I had to learn this to be able to continue working in my field. The rate of burnout is high as well as people changing careers. I want to keep doing this forever…and actually wordpress has been my salvation with my writing here, I am able to sustain my equilibrium.


Comments are closed.