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  • One of the key desires of love

    愛的最核心的需求之一

  • is the wish to help another person

    是希望能幫助另一半的心

  • but an intention doesn't always or automatically translate

    但是,這樣的意圖並不總是能自動轉換成

  • into a ready capacity for true assistance.

    真正的幫助

  • Picture a five-year-old

    想像一名五歲的孩子

  • who's stumbled into his parents bedroom

    搖搖晃晃地走進父母親的臥室

  • and surprised his mother crying

    驚訝地看到自己的母親在哭泣

  • She's normally so strong and ready with help for him

    她一直都很堅強,而隨時隨地都能照料他

  • Now he longs to do something to staunch the tears but he's at sea

    現在,他想做某件事情來止住母親的眼淚。但是,他卻手足無措

  • The sobs might be about the mortgage,

    母親的啜泣可能是因為房貸問題、

  • a turbulent time at work, or

    工作的不穩定、或是

  • an argument with her partner

    與另一半的爭吵

  • But all these aren't for a child to grasp

    但是,所有這些事情都不是一個孩子會懂得

  • He sweetly suggest a glass of water

    他貼心地給母親一杯水

  • and pipes up that he might run downstairs to get Knitted Rabbit

    並且突然說他會跑下樓拿布兔子要來安慰母親

  • The impulse to help floats

    想幫忙的衝動浮現

  • logically free of any actual ability to do so

    但是,卻沒有任何實際的行為能幫助到

  • Two people can long to be supportive and generous towards one another

    雙方渴望彼此的扶持以及關愛

  • and yet lack all the skills to deliver on their good intentions,

    但是,卻缺少了表達好意的能力

  • and therefore end up feeling isolated, resentful, and unloved

    因此最後雙方會感到孤獨、厭惡、以及缺乏關愛

  • We cause ourselves trouble because we're too slow to recognize an odd, largely unmentioned phenomenon:

    我們太慢意識到一種怪異,不常被提及的情況,而製造自己的麻煩

  • how varied and particular our notions of help can be.

    那就是我們對「幫忙」這字眼的解讀有多麼的不同以及特別

  • We take our own preferred style of being soothed as the natural starting point for how to soothe others.

    我們會自然而然地用自己喜歡被安慰的方式來撫慰他人

  • But when we're wrong and our partner's original distress is compounded by their sense of having been ignored or insulted.

    但是,當我們誤會時,我們的另一半會因為感到被忽視或汙辱而加劇了原本的悲痛

  • We take them to be ungrateful and cruel and vow never to attempt to be kind again.

    我們會覺得他們不知足,並狠心地發誓再也不要對他們那麼好了

  • An urgent task is therefore to try to understand the particular way in which we, and our partner, need love to be delivered in order to feel that it is real.

    所以,最重要的是我們與另一半要試著了解彼此想要我們如何表達愛,以便感受到愛是真實的

  • We might be types who, when we're sad or in difficulties, need first and foremost to speak.

    當傷心或是遇到困難時,我們可能是很需要把心事說出來的那種類型

  • What we say may not be entirely sequential

    不過,我們的陳訴方式可能是混亂的

  • We might go back over things a few times and omit to cap our stories with neat endings.

    我們可能會把一件事情重複講很多次,並忘記給予一個完整的故事結尾

  • But that might not matter because what we want above all from a partner when we're suffering

    但是,那可能不是很重要,因為當我們覺得傷心的時候,我們最想要從另一半得到的

  • is that they sit with us, at length, and listen

    是能與我們促膝長談和細心聆聽

  • We want them to signal their engagement with their eyes but not with their mouths,

    我們想要從他們的眼神中感受到專注,不是只有嘴上的回應而已、

  • to register our anger, to observe our disappointment,

    想要他們知道我們有多生氣、知道我們多失望、

  • and at most, at opportune moments to prompt us with a "Go on…" or a small supportive sound.

    而且最重要的事情是,在最佳的時機時能說出:「繼續講...」或是小小的支持聲

  • Yet what we absolutely don't want: answers, solutions or analyses,

    不過,我們絕對不想要的是:答案、解決方式、或是分析

  • for them to open their wallets, to give us a plan, or to rush to fill in our silences

    不要他們給予金錢上的慰藉、不要他們設定的計畫、或是為了填滿沉默而匆匆提出意見

  • We want them to sit listening because the real problem we need assistance with

    我們想要他們能夠坐下來並且傾聽,因為我們最需要幫助的真正問題

  • isn't so much the specific issue we are mentioning

    並不是那些我們提出的特定問題

  • (the parking ticket, the in-laws, the delayed delivery)

    (像是違規停車罰單、討厭的姻親們、延遲的遞送)

  • It's the overarching sense that most people we encounter

    而是我們普遍得感受到遇到的多數人

  • can't really be bothered to take the time to imagine themselves correctly into our lives

    都不想花時間設身處地替我們著想

  • Perhaps there was a history to this:

    或許這事情是有跡可循的:

  • our parents might have been practically minded, busy and successful

    我們的父母親可能都是務實的、忙碌的、以及成功的

  • but somehow rather callous and distracted

    但是,不知道為什麼他們就是有點冷酷又無心的

  • in the way they sought always and immediately to push our difficulties out of the way with logic.

    因為他們總是希望用邏輯,理性且快速地解決掉我們的困難

  • Now we feel how an immediate "solution" can be an excuse for not listening to the problem.

    現在,我們就知道一個立即的「解決方案」就只是一個不傾聽問題的藉口而已

  • That's why just being heard feels like the quintessence of love

    這就是為什麼光是有人傾聽,感覺就像是愛的典範了

  • We might almost deliberately take our time,

    我們可能會刻意地花時間

  • go back over points our partner

    一直跟另一半重複話題

  • go back over points our partner had thought were finished

    一直跟另一半重複那些他們以為已經結束的話題

  • and re-explore a jagged bit of our story, not to mislead,

    然後,再次續速故事的片段,不是為了誤導

  • but because such rehearsals

    而是因為這樣的反覆敘述

  • create the backdrop for the only style of help we crave and trust:

    創造出我們渴望與相信的唯一一種幫助:

  • receptive, quiet attention.

    另一半的包容且無聲的關注

  • Then again, at another end of the spectrum,

    但是,在另一種極端

  • love might not feel real

    愛可能無法確切地被感受到

  • unless it's accompanied by precise and concrete solutions

    除非它伴隨著幾個精確又具體的解決方式

  • Vague sympathy is worthless

    模糊不清的同情心是無用處的

  • We might want to hear a flow of ideas as to what we should do next,

    我們也許想聽到幾個想法,以便得以知道下一步要怎麼做、

  • what sort of strategy we should deploy,

    我們該用什麼樣的策略、

  • whom we might call, and how we can get answers.

    我們可以找誰幫忙、以及我們要怎麼得到答案

  • It's all very well for someone to say they feel our pain;

    如果有人說他們能了解我們的痛苦,那固然是非常好的

  • we would prefer a plan.

    但是,我們會偏好有個計劃

  • Love is a sheet of paper with a list of bullet points in your partner's handwriting.

    愛就像是一張由另一半寫的重要清單

  • In addition,

    除此之外

  • we might not be averse to evidence that our partner has spent some money on our problems,

    我們可能不反對另一半花錢來解決之間發生的問題

  • time isn't a currency we respect.

    時間並不是我們所敬畏的貨幣

  • We might want them to pay for an accountant or a lawyer

    我們可能會想要他們雇用一位會計師或是律師

  • or offer an evening in an expensive restaurant.

    或是在昂貴的餐廳中吃一頓晚餐

  • After an economically fragile childhood, to feel really helped, we might long for evidence of financial outlay;

    歷經了一個經濟拮据的童年後,我們希望有實際上的金錢開銷才得以真實感受到被幫助

  • we can't be reassured just by what someone says

    我們無法單從他人話中得到安全感

  • We've built up a residual suspicion and distrust around lone verbal offerings

    因為我們對單純的口頭承諾還存著懷疑以及不信任

  • We remember how nice it was

    我們還記得

  • when an elderly relative unexpectedly gave us a very well-chosen present when we were nine and in hospital after a bad fall.

    在我們9歲跌倒住院時,老一輩的親人出乎預料地給我們一件精心挑選的禮物時有多開心

  • They never said very much to us

    他們從未跟我們講很多話

  • (perhaps they were rather shy)

    (或許因為他們非常地害羞)

  • but this gesture truly touched us

    但是,他們這樣的舉動實實在在地感動了我們

  • We felt sure of that kindness, as if for the first time,

    我們彷彿第一次確實地感受到了好意

  • when we learnt just how much the present had cost.

    因為我們知道了那禮物的價格

  • Differently again, when we divulge our agonies,

    又或者是,我們表達出自己的痛苦之後

  • our priority may just be to hear that everything will eventually be okay

    其實,我們就只是想聽到的一句話是:「一切都會好轉的」

  • We don't mind a little bit of exaggeration.

    我們不在意是不是有點誇大言詞

  • Despair strikes us as cheap, reasons to give up are always obvious

    絕望能輕易地打敗我們,放棄的理由總是容易找到

  • For us, love is a species of hope

    對我們而言,愛是一種希望

  • Or, alternatively, it's hope that may be enraging.

    也有可能,是希望本身造成我們憤怒

  • What calms us down is a quiet walk around the prospect of catastrophe.

    能平息我們的是安靜地看看可能會發生的災難

  • We don't want to be alone in our fears

    我們不想要單獨面對恐懼

  • We long for someone to explore the grimmest possibilities with bleak sangfroid:

    我們希望有人可以冷靜沉著地來探索最恐怖的可能

  • to mention prison, insolvency, front page headlines and the grave

    提出坐牢、破產、上了頭條新聞、以及死亡...

  • Only when our partner is ready to match our most forbidding analyses

    只要當另一半能同意我們那些最可怕的分析時

  • can we be reassured we're not in the hands of a callous sentimentalist,

    我們才會相信自己沒陷入一個冷漠無情的手中

  • rather someone honest enough to see the dangers and to worry about them as much as we do

    而是一位誠實得足以看出危險,並且跟我們一樣分擔著擔憂的人

  • and perhaps stick with us while we serve out the prison sentence.

    或許當我們坐牢時,他們還依然會支持著我們

  • A cuddle can sound to some like a petty response to bad news,

    擁抱可能會像是個對壞消息最小氣的回應

  • but for us it can be the most reliable evidence of heartfelt love.

    但是,對我們而言,擁抱是一種感受出愛的最可靠的方式

  • To help our minds, we need someone first to reassure our bodies,

    為了來鞏固我們的心,我們最先需要他人來撫慰我們的身體

  • to hold us tightly and quietly while we close our eyes in pain and surrender to their firm embrace.

    在我們傷心地閉上雙眼時,寧靜且緊緊得抱住我們,臣服於他們結實的擁抱中

  • Help in adulthood may for others be associated with the gift of insight,

    對其他人而言,成年時的幫忙可能與個人見解相關

  • but for us, it is touch that soothes.

    但是,對我們而言,觸摸才是一種安慰的方式

  • We're picking up on memories of early childhood.

    我們正在回想童年時的記憶

  • Wise parents know that a distressed child doesn't need a lesson or a lecture;

    有智慧的父母親會知道一個傷心的孩子不需要訓誡或是開導

  • they should be laid down on the bed, held, and their head stroked by a giant, soft adult hand.

    他們只需要躺在床上、被緊緊地抱住,以及被大人的大手溫柔地安撫著頭

  • The misfortune lies in how easily we can irritate with the wrong offer of love

    不幸的是,我們很容易就會被錯誤表達愛的方式給激怒

  • and in turn, how quickly we can be offended when our efforts at loving go unappreciated

    也因此,當我們表達出的愛不受到認可,我們會立刻感到不被尊重

  • Recognizing that there are different styles of help, at least alerts us to the severe risks of misunderstanding.

    知道這些不同的幫助方式,至少可以警告我們誤會所帶來的嚴重風險

  • Instead of getting annoyed at our lover's inept and sometimes wildly misdirected efforts,

    與其因為另一半的遲鈍,或是努力錯了方向而生氣不已

  • we can grasp, perhaps for the first time,

    我們可以了解,也許是有生以來

  • the basic truth that these blundering companions are in fact attempting to be nice

    事實上,這些遲鈍的同伴們都只是出自於善意

  • In turn, the clearest clue of the kind of help our partner wants is the help they offer us.

    因此,想知道另一半想要哪一種幫助,最大的線索就是他們提供的幫助

  • It seems love can't remain at the level of intentions alone:

    愛似乎不能只停留在意圖上

  • it must involve constant strenuous efforts to translate our wishes

    愛必須要持續地積極努力來轉換我們的意圖

  • into interventions truly aligned with the psychology and history of another human being.

    成為與他人心理以及過去真正符合的幫助

One of the key desires of love

愛的最核心的需求之一

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B1 中級 中文 美國腔 幫助 母親 父母親 想要 意圖 幫忙

如何幫助我們愛的人 (How to Help Those We Love)

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    clara.english.0001 發佈於 2017 年 10 月 17 日
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