A shoulder to lean on

Support System

A shoulder to lean on

No matter how old a person is, having a certain support system to turn to during troubled times is always important.

Sympathetic ears are always welcome — whether the issue regards seemingly frivolous college problems, professional burdens, family worries or in some cases, simple loneliness.

What’s interesting, however, is that the kind of support that people tend to seek changes over the years. ‘Metrolife’ caught up with a few Bangaloreans of different ages, and from varied walks of life, to find who they turn to when they need help the most.

Not surprisingly, most college students incline towards sharing problems with their friends. Juhi, a student of Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, points out that the bonds that form between friends and roommates are strong enough to warrant this.

“Since I stay in a hostel, away from my family, this is quite natural. Right now, my friends are extremely close to me. What’s more, there are certain issues over which my family might unnecessarily panic, whereas my friends understand me better and know how to reassure me,” she explains.

She admits that over the years, she has come to believe that she can handle her own problems without assistance from her family — but when things get really serious, she makes it a point to turn to them. “If something is very important, I’d definitely discuss it with my family — they would be able to help me,” she adds.

Surprisingly, a lot of young professionals feel the same way. Aditya Badami, who works in the finance sector, too admits to categorising his problems and then deciding where to seek support from. “If it’s an extremely worrying issue, I’d turn to my family.

They’d know exactly what to do — I speak from experience,” he says. However, he admits that day-to-day trifles are often brought up while chatting with friends. “When it comes to things like taxes and other little issues, I always turn to my friends. Besides, I have two or three very close friends who I can discuss practically anything with,” he explains.

While Aditya agrees that the support he has sought has changed over the years, he’s quick to add that his attitude towards handling a problem has also undergone a transformation. “Earlier, my friends and I used to continuously discuss and painstakingly analyse every little problem. Now, we’ve learnt to tackle things and take them in stride,” he says.

Iris, a retired English professor, has all the support she needs from her family. “I can always depend on my family — when I fall sick, it’s my children who will take leave no matter what and come to take me to the hospital,” she says.

However, although her own family lives close to her, she understands that a lot of senior citizens might not be as lucky. “Family is important, but scattered; one has to find alternatives. For example, I have friends all over the world, and I use the internet to keep in touch with them,” she
concludes.

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