Everyone has problems, and people tend to look at their problems through a biased lens. Since people experience their own problems first-hand, they’re more closely aware of what they go through. This causes them to perceive their issues to be bigger than that of other people. While this behavior, on a certain level, is common in many of us, help-rejecting complainers take it to the next level. They feel a sense of pride in making people believe that they’re going through unfixable problems.
What are Help-Rejecting Complainers Like?
They have friends, sympathetic and caring ones. Whenever these friends spend time with this chronic complainer (let’s call him Bob), he seems to be dealing with an immense load of problems. Now, of course, everyone’s entitled to their share of bad days and tough times. However, with Bob, it seems as though that dynamic never shifts for the better. Whether it’s his naggy neighbor, the chores he has to deal with, his financial problems, or someone always taking his parking space – he’s always got complaints. Each and every day you’re with Bob, you’ll find him complaining about something.
Naturally, a caring friend responds to such behavior with plausible solutions to the problems he’s facing. Friends analyze what’s been bothering Bob, and they come up with ideas to help ease the situation. These could be pieces of advice to ignore his neighbor, divide chores over the day, and drive to work a few minutes earlier to secure parking. But no, he’ll be quick to immediately nullify these ideas, and often mocking them as to how they wouldn’t solve a thing. Despite being the most caring and genuine friends, all they get is a “pfft… that’ll never work”. That’s pretty annoying, not gonna lie.
They’re Toxic, and You Could Be One of Them
Toxicity is the key quality in all such people. They’ll spread negativity without even trying, whenever someone talks to them. No matter how good someone’s day been, they’ll bombard them with complaints and smirk at the solutions they get in response.
Many examples of such people can be found on television, in some of the most popular shows. Unless you’re the one person in the world who hasn’t watched Game of Thrones, you’d be well aware of the annoying character of Joffrey Baratheon. He’s always got something to be naggy about, right? The characters of Ross Geller and Olivia Soprano are also a few other honorable mentions.
‘Help-rejecting complainers’ is actually a pretty widely used term that’s coined by psychiatrists. They’re known to complain constantly as if only they’re the ones with problems in their lives. They tend to perceive their issues to be much bigger than they mostly are, and exaggerate even further when communicating them to friends. They don’t have any intention of finding a solution to these problems, and that’s evident from how they reject all sorts of guidance or advice. Soon, it all gets a bit too toxic to deal with day in and day out, eventually leading to a loss of genuine friends.
There’s always one such person in most peoples’ lives. If you can’t think of anyone, you could actually be one of them yourself – as harsh as that may sound. We can’t know that for sure, but there are a few signature qualities of HRCs (help-rejecting complainers) that you can check for within yourself. If you find yourself guilty of these, it might be time to make serious improvements. Let’s get into it!
Signs that you’re a Help-Rejecting Complainer
1. People don’t feel safe talking to you
No matter what someone does, they could end up upsetting you in one way or the other. This affects how they act around you socially and verbally, as they look to play safe. Just to avoid a sudden conflict or fight with you, they’ll succumb to your venting needs. Sadly though, they’ll still only get negative reactions out of you. If all of this is even remotely true for how you are with your friends, this could be an indicator that you’re an HRC – or you at least tend to be one sometimes.
Such behavior causes a lot of stress and anxiety in people who genuinely care about you, and that’s not fair. Good people are hard to come by, and if they do genuinely feel the need to help you with your problems, handing them negativity in return is never the right move.
2. You use friends as a negativity air-vent
From the second your friend sits down with you, your train of venting leaves the station. Going off about how bad the traffic was, how long it took you to get here, and how bad the place itself is. It’s all just the tip of the iceberg, because the actual venting has yet to begin, as you bombard him with another 45 minutes of stories he doesn’t care about – but is too afraid to say it.
3. You compete your friends for having it worse
Do you know when people try to one-up someone? Like showing off and looking to state how they’ve got the better phone, the faster car, a bigger house, etc. It’s the same with HRCs, but they do the opposite of that. They hunt for pity and constantly look to overstate their problems, completely overshadowing what you might be going through at the moment. “Oh, you had a rough day? Pfft… Wait till you hear mine…” – that’s a typical help-rejecting complainer. Spoiler alert, they probably had it wayyyy worse than you.
4. You refuse help
No matter how toxic you might be, friends will be friends, and they’ll feel bad for you. Real ones truly want you to be happy, and naturally, respond to your plethora of problems by offering help. They hope to lend you a hand, get you out of a pickle, and you might be grateful for it. But that’s not the case with an HRC, after all, they’re known to ‘reject help’ quite often. Fact is, they’re not looking to solve things, and they like being proud of how they’re life’s somehow ‘screwed beyond repair’. Even any advice that friends offer gets immediately booed off.
5. You 'accept' advice just to sabotage
Here’s the worst quality that’s only found in the top-tier toxic complainers. They’ll sometimes choose to accept the advice you have for them, but with an added twist. They’ll apply the weakest, the least thought-out version of your advice, only to prove that the idea sucked, and wouldn’t work. Boom, now they’ve got a whole new topic to complain about, which is the listening friend himself. The helpful friend gets trapped in a situation where any advice he gives gets shot down, and if he gets frustrated, the complainer is all the more ‘oppressed’.
How to Deal with It
No one should want to be a help-rejecting complainer, as there’s no good that comes out of it. It eventually scares all your friends away and leaves family members confused as to what exactly they should do to help you. None of it yields fruit, even if you had ten seconds of attention and sympathy for all the problems you vented about.
If you find yourself focused on ongoing problems whenever you’re talking to friends, or always tend to blame others for the situation you’re in, you might just be the person this article talks about. Moreover, when people try and help, they tend to respond negatively, without even considering if their advice could actually help. Thinking your problems are bigger than everybody else’s, and it’s disgusting how nobody realizes it, is simply a toxic thought process. Attributing responsibility for your problems to the cruel world and the folks around you is also a bad sign.
If you have enough insight to actually accept that you’re a help-rejecting complainer yourself, you deserve to be congratulated. Not all HRCs possess that ability and don’t know what they’re doing to themselves and the caring people around them. It takes a lot of honesty and bravery to acknowledge responsibility for our choices, and you’re there already!
If you strongly feel like the descriptions apply to your regular personality, and it’s not just a phase you’re going through, it’s a good idea to seek out a therapist and a good friend to support you. Find helpful mentors and life coaches online and in the real world who can help you understand deeply about what you’re feeling, and the steps you can take to achieve positive improvements.
Remember one thing though, when you move to eradicate the HRC within you, appreciate the people that help you in the process. It might be hard, but try to keep your ‘help-rejecting’ tendencies subsided, because that’s exactly what you need help with.
Like any change, making such a big reform in your personality will be hard, but it’ll definitely be worth it. You’ll need guidance, determination, and the will to be better. If you’ve made it this far into the article, and are brave enough to accept that you might be one of these people, you’ve already conquered the hardest step. Moving forward, promise yourself to be brave and honest! With all that in mind, go for it, change your life for the better. All the best!