With a lot of the response from yesterday and a post by another friend, I want to cover something that is always a sticky issue: caring. This is what one friend in the UK posted on a social network: “We say ‘I care’ like it makes a difference, as though caring does some tangible good. We say it as though it must count for something, as though we’ve done our bit. How often do we care enough to act?” Frequently in our world, no one does anything other than saying “sorry” or “I care” or “*hugs*”. Don’t believe me? Take a look on FaceBook or what is being tweeted. You can also care too much. What is that happy medium? Is there one? At what point should someone act?
As a person who works with and advises a lot models, it tears me up when one of them has been taken advantage or manipulated. Worse is when I see they are being manipulated or taken advantage. From the model’s point of view, they only want to blame themselves for what happened and think they deserve what they received. Many times, it is well beyond what anyone could expect from a normal person. In about a fifth of the situations, from the model’s own description, they were raped (even if the model doesn’t call it that). One of the clear indicators of this behavior is when the photographer states something to the effect of “the photo session should have been kept between us and no one else.” Why? What needed to be hidden? Why shouldn’t have anyone else been told? Once this has been said, I know the model has been manipulated and coerced into something they wouldn’t have normally done. It also amazes me that many of these models only need an apology, and then they go back and try again with the same person. This only ends up being worse for them if I hear about their next session. Think about the situation in Fifty Shades of Grey: what would you have done had you known something like this was going on?
So, where is that line of caring? When is it not enough? When is it too much? Is there a line?
I have to say there is a line. Repetitively this has been the case. Too little or too much causes a backlash from the person. What is bad, from the person’s perspective who was in that bad situation, That time can be one of the best days in their life… and still to me, it is something that is wrong. This is especially true when their significant others contact you and want to know who was this person who they worked with and what happened because they aren’t the same person the day after. Why is it that their significant other is upset? Why would they say it is something good and they have put their relationship with their life partner at risk or pushed their life partner away? Is being manipulated or abused really that fulfilling that they are willing to walk away from everything you have worked hard to get in life including their relationships with family, friends, and everyone else around them? Once this happens, they are even more easily manipulated by the instigator.
I do care about people. Unfortunately, I error on the side of caring too much. This usually happens when things are falling apart for the person, and they least want to hear what I have to say to them: what are you thinking? I am not a mind reader. And yes, I do ruin their perception of a good time or good day when they talk to me before they do it. As one model asked me a while back, “Why do you _always_ poop at my party?” The reason: I care. I don’t want harm to come to them. I don’t want them to die. I want them aware of all the risks they are taking. In some cases, I will just flip out with the amount of risks the person is taking. Having over seven years in first response type work, I have seen quite a bit when things go horribly wrong. You can’t convey this to someone who is determined to take risks. Besides, they are consenting, of age, and willingly choose to do something risky.
When is caring too much? When is caring not enough?