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I have shared things with others after

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they have shared things with...
I have shared things with others after they have shared things with me, and they go silent and I never hear from them again. Or I help them and am generous and when I ask them to do something simple in return they refuse. Is this because I am a caring, generous, empathic person by nature and many people are not? Recently a neighbor of my sick brother whom I was conversing with by phone told me things about her personal life, family, etc. I in turn conveyed that I do not converse with my brother's in-laws from his deceased spouse due to the fact that my brother's wife was serially unfaithful to him. In other words I shared this because I was asking her for info about my brother and not the relatives (I do not live in the same country). My brother gave me this neighbors number as an emergency contact. This neighbor said they would visit my brother in hospital and give me an update, they never did and stopped responding to my calls/emails. My brother told me this neighbor visited him in hospital a week ago and I got no update. When I told this neighbor about the deceased spouse's infidelity they replied they did not want to get involved in family matters and would only deal with my health queries. This spouse is dead! So how is relating this detail in any way involving this person in a family matter, esp. as she shared with me details of her spouse's birthday party, childrens' activities, her own health, etc. (all none of which I could care less about!).
Submitted: 4 years ago.Category: General
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Answered in 11 minutes by:
6/29/2013
Expert: A. Schuyler, Research Analyst replied 4 years ago
A. Schuyler
A. Schuyler, Research Analyst
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 16,378
Experience: 30 years in research
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Hello,

Welcome to our site and thanks for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will do whatever I can to help you.

 

I think in this particular situation it was a case of too much information. Casual conversation about a birthday party and children's activities is one thing. However, sharing personal information about serial infidelities with someone you really don't know is really more than the person was comfortable hearing, as she let you know. Whether the unfaithful spouse is deceased or not wasn't the point. People generally don't discuss such intimate family details other than with their own very closest confidants. That she was uncomfortable hearing this about her neighbor and upset is possibly why she did not call you back with news about his health.

 

You probably are a very generous, caring person, but it pays to go a little more slowly in forming close friendships. Some people can feel overwhelmed by too much attempted intimacy too soon. Do you think this might be part of the problem?

 

Looking forward to hearing from you,

 

Schuyler

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Customer reply replied 4 years ago
When she offered me the phone number of my brother's wife's daughter by her first marriage (she was married three times) I did not want it. In normal circumstances one would get info from family but given this detail about infidelity it explains why I do not want to converse with them. I was trying to explain this to her. Frankly many people have told me very personal things and I always listen with interest and sympathy but I find few people can handle it if you share personal details. I also hate secrets and lies and not speaking the truth to me is tantamount to the same deception of the offender. I find her husband's birthday party of 60 people and weekend baseball games unimportant. I was trying to share a fact as a means to an end, a very relevant detail.
Expert: A. Schuyler, Research Analyst replied 4 years ago

Yes, I can totally understand why you shared the information. But I can also understand why that amount of very personal detailed information might make some people uncomfortable. Something along the lines of "I'm sorry to say that we don't get along with my brother's in-laws" would have made the picture clearer to her and might not have made her uncomfortable. People have various levels of tolerance for personal information from strangers. That you are willing to listen is just part of your very open nature, but many people are not that open. People are sometimes reared in cultures where personal information is not shared outside the immediate family. I guess they are just socialized differently. That isn't to say either is wrong, just that they are different Smile

 

All the best,

 

Schuyler

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A. Schuyler
A. Schuyler, Research Analyst
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 16,378
Experience: 30 years in research
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Customer reply replied 4 years ago
I get that but I don't bore other people with day to day mundane details. I do not have children and don't care to hear about other people's kids and their activities (I have my own hobbies and interests and to inflict that on others would be boring). I find it comical that she made comments that I could perceive as very judgemental about my brother's condition, why she thinks he is ill, how she doesn't like to have her children see him this way. I was understanding and sympathetic with her, rather than saying 'hey quit belittling my family, this is my family not yours' as most might do. She is just a very rude jerk of a person, that is my conclusion.
Expert: A. Schuyler, Research Analyst replied 4 years ago

I'm sorry she was rude to you. You hadn't mentioned that before. That would put an entirely different spin on the matter.

 

I hope you can let it go so it doesn't bother you. And I do hope your brother is improving daily.

 

Kind regards,

 

Schuyler

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