Don’t Need Help Now that I am Older

Picasso frugal.jpg

When I was younger, so much younger than today
I never needed anybody’s help in any way
But now these days are gone and I’m not so sefl-assured.

I don’t relate to these lyrics from the classic Beatles’ song “Help”. When I was younger I was not more self-assured and now that I am older, I am not now less self-assured than before. Furthermore, if anything, I no longer need someone else’s help. As a matter of fact, I think that when we’re young we have a greater dependence on others, precisely for the reason that we are not comfortable with out insecurities. Here is what I mean.

As young adults (20-30), we are much more likely to seek help in groups or support from a significant other. We never recognize this as being per se due to our own insecurities. But, what we are actually doing, is seeking companionship to justify our insecurities as being tolerable or at least insignificant. We hide, cover-up, put make-up over our insecurities in the arms of others. We seek approval of others and in others.

But since I am older now, a generous touch over 30, I can say that I am more comfortable with my faults and insecurities. I no longer seek the acceptance in the eyes of others to disimulate my insecurities. This does not signify, though, that I am more self-assured. Rather, I am simply more comfortable in my skin and have come to terms with myself.

This also has a negative side. As we get older, instead of hiding ourselves in other people, we hide ourselves from others. Instead of living through the nagging, complaining, and telling us what to do or how to be, we accept ourselves as we are and go home alone to enjoy our insecurities in peace. It’s not that we grow strange and intolerant, we only prefer to caress our own lacking without the criticism of others.

For example, last night a friend was insisting that I celebrate my birthday with a night on the town. I explained to her that going out until 7am was her idea of fun, not mine. I’d end up celebrating my birthday by doing what she wanted to. When she ask how I wanted to spend my evening, I said by reading quietly at home. If my friends really want to share my birthday, then they should all do what I want. When she said that we could all go to my house and read, I amended the plan with a slight nuassance.

I like to read alone. So, why don’t all of my friends, instead of coming to my house, each go to their own houses and quietly read a book, and celebrate my birthday by leaving me alone?

Or better, yet. Each one of my friends should go out tonight with their other friends and dedicate at least 20 minutes of conversation centered around me. They could even start the conversation as such, “Do you know what Eric told me today?” After asked who is this Eric, the fun would begin. If I could only be a fly on the wall!

In sum, we all have insecurities. Some times we hide them by seeking the acceptance of others, and at other times we hide them by shielding them from others in our own private solitude.


Filed under Digressions

12 responses to “Don’t Need Help Now that I am Older

  1. TheCommentKiller

    Happy Birthday! I hope you have a good day whether it is hanging with your (very nice and cool friends- even though they add too much tobacco to their chocolate) friends or reading. Remember books will always be there, but friends won’t. That being said, one could argue that books are more loyal, and thus better friends.

    In other news, the tv show- South Park, recently aired a show called “The Snuke.” It was hilarious. They do a spin on the show “24” and play Hillary Clinton too. I can’t find it yet on YouTube b/c it just came out, but you gotta look for it.

    Anyway, Happy B-day,

  2. dani

    Happy birthday Eric!

    Try not to get the cake smashed on your face.

  3. Charlie

    Eric, reading your birthday missive reminds me of the greatest celebrator of that occasion of all, my mother, your grandmother. I still recall that Commentkiller’s day is in late January, but most of the others are gone from the memory bank since my mother isn’t there to call with a reminder like, “you know it’s Carol’s birthday today, don’t you”. Your grandmother’s list of family and friends to send cards to probably numbered five to 10 a month, and there would usually be a phone call involved too. She had an amazing urge to boost people with remembrances like that especially those that probably didn’t have too many people thinking about them. I remember in those teen days when you tend to question things about your parents, and being basically selfish, shamefully wondering what was in it for her -all of the acts of kindness she performed for others. I’ve concluded that was one of the things about her that was pure love which comes only from the god source. About five years before he died, my father called me to get all of my family phone numbers. I think he was thinking about carrying the ball for my mother on that important birthday recognition that is one small part of keeping us together. After he died, I thought about doing it myself. Even if I don’t do that, I know it is my calling to be a part of bringing us together as often as possible as he did so well right up until the end of his life.

  4. TheCommentKiller

    last night i saw the movie “The Namesake.” It is wonderful. Below are two links to the movie; one is various trailers, etc. and the other is an article in the economist about the movie. I think this movie would be one of dad’s all time favorites. There is a scene in the movie which reminded me of what Uncle Charlie was saying about Grandma and how she would send cards and call people. In the movie the mother is the exact same way and in one scene she is home alone hand-making cards for various people. Definitely worth checking this movie out.

  5. Chrissy

    I can’t believe you put the Bar Mitzvah song on your birthday commentary! Are you still sore that you never had one?? I’ll bet it’s not too late…

  6. eric

    Ha ha. You know I asked Rye the other day what “Celebrate” reminded him of, knowing full well what it reminded me of, and he said Bar Mitzvahs. Then I explained this to someone I work with, how I few up spending more time at Temple than in church, and how I still to this day of the open Bar Mitzvah prayer memorized. Can you believe it?

  7. eric


    Believe it or not, my sister is pretty much like Grandma in the sense that she remembers birthdays, sends letters and cards. Those old days made childhood so special, and I see my parents doing their best to follow Evelyn’s grandparenting model and very much succeeding. Not all is lost!

  8. Eric, as per your request, I spent your birthday reading quietly and alowing you to read quietly alone without bother. Now that it is well past your b-day in the hopes that I’m no bother, I’d like to wish you a happy past quiet birthday.
    Happy quiet birthday past!

    you see? you still have freinds that like to do what you wish for on your special mooments.

  9. eric

    Gran Huja, no te preocupes, me emborracharon igual! Cabrones egocentricos!

  10. TheCommentKiller

    I ended up having more fun on your b-day than on mine. On friday night i hit up three spots; the first the typical happy hour nonsense ; then a wannabe hip-hop lounge; third a Caribbean spot (where i was the only cracker in the place). You gotta move to NYC. There are also lots of bookstores here too.

    has this song hit Madrid:

  11. I say “NO, NO, NO” cheeeeeeeettt…

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