I used to be the type of person that simply just hated asking for help. It was not a means of stating I was better so I could do this on my own. Rather, it was mostly because I had not been taught that it was okay to ask for help or that there was such a thing as “healthy dependency”.
If you are the type of person that lives with expectations of yourself in which you say “I’m independent, I will never depend on anyone”, you start treating yourself as a socially acclaimed version of a superhero. The socially acclaimed version of a superhero is the societal expectation of superhero’s doing everything on their own and whether you realize it or not, you internalize all of this. You think you can handle anything and everything that comes at you. You forget that even superheroes have a whole group of people they depend on in a daily basis.
Look at the Flash for example (which by the way is my favorite superhero story), Barry, the flash/lead/superhero, always has a group of people he depends on emotionally and physically to help him out sometimes. Even though he has all these super powers he too realizes he could not save all these people on their own, not without help. It would just be too overwhelming to have to feel like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders.
Barry was dependent on the people surrounding him in a healthy dependent way. He was not expecting them to “take care” of him but he knew that if he needed help he could count on them. This in turn made him the greatest superhero to be known(to me, of course).
Laying out your weaknesses doesn’t make you weak. Being vulnerable doesn’t make you weak. Being vulnerable and accepting help when needed shows how accepting you are of the fact that we are all just mere humans. It makes you a superhero in my eyes. We do not carry the power to know it all or be it all. Nor are we ever expected to take everything that comes at us all alone, we set these expectations up for ourselves internally.
Of course it takes a huge ton of courage to be healthily dependent on anything or anyone. It feels like you’re constantly putting yourself out there when you’re asking for help. But think about how much courage it takes to understand you’re human, understand that it’s okay to ask for help, and be vulnerable enough to say you do need it and accept that help. Without accepting that help given, this version of healthy dependency won’t work.
Remember, take it one step at a time. Your challenge today is to ask for help, be it as minor as it is, and accept that offer of help. After this exchange, take a step back and see how you feel about it. Do you feel freer in the mind and body both? Do you feel stronger? Do you feel like a huge weight has been lifted off of your shoulders? Do you feel more human, more humble? If you feel all of these and more, then…. You are in the right place.