The Stranger

Once i encountered a person on internet; some complete stranger. He had been roaming around on net, and had seen my website, got my email address and added me in msn. Usually i am not very enthusiastic about talking with strangers, but i could sense that he was different. And as we started conversing, it became apparent to me that he was deeply and mentally troubled. There was a strong conflict going on in that person's mind; he was in psychological turmoil and wanted to talk about his problem with someone (I being the available to him at that time), and yet, he did not want to reveal the actual problem to me as well. As a result, he talked but talked in a very vague, ambiguous manner. Things like "I'm STUCK! I'm helplessly STUCK!" and "I want to cry!", often interspersing his tale with the statement, "I have no idea why i'm even talking to you!". I listened to him with patience, saw him tentatively trying to trust me, and then immediately shying back, again and again. Despite my desire to help him, i couldn't, because i had no idea what his problem was. So, i just became what he perhaps needed the most at that time... a listener.

I never encountered him again. But sometimes i wonder, would it have been better if he had decided to trust me? Even if he had told me his actual problem, what possibly i could have done except give him some advice... which would have been useless; the last thing such people need is someone giving them advice. Perhaps the knowledge that someone had actually listened to his problem, and understood it, would have given him enough psychological support to survive the rough, 'evil' night that he was having. Maybe, maybe not. Who can tell?

Comments

Awais said…
This is not a random piece of text. Nor is it fully accurate... it is part fact, part fiction.

To the stranger: How do you expect me to reply? Telepathy?
gaya said…
Listening must hv helped...it always does.
your comment throws me off... Its fiction? I thought it was something that actually happened to you.
Well if its not fiction, and this incident actually happened, I feel bad about you writing this in your blog. You said he visited your blog and who knows he still visits your blog and wouldn't it hurt to read that you are calling him a person who had serious psychological troubles? Who knows may be he is a completely normal person but was having a really bad day? He couldn't tell you because his problem would have been serious to him and he would have been concerned abt it,.. ashamed may be. and now he is out there on your blog to be read by a thousand other people. Wouldn't he be glad that he didn't tell you about his troubles after all?
How can you expect him to trust you?