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wundayatta's avatar

What kind of self-sacrifice is inappropriate?

Asked by wundayatta (58367 points ) September 7th, 2011

Some people will let themselves die for others. Sometimes this seems reasonable. Some people will never do for others. I don’t know if that is ever reasonable. But what I’m wondering is if you can think of situations where people go too far in being self-sacrificing? What are those situations and why do you think the people go too far?

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13 Answers

SpatzieLover's avatar

I’ve gone too far in what I thought was helping of others. Turns out I had to learn the hard way that those people had chosen the boats they were in. They didn’t want to take responsibility for their actions and they needed to fall/fail to learn.

IMO, it goes to far when the sacrifice is detrimental to one or both parties involved.

RubyB's avatar

I think the key word in your question is self. Anyone with the courage and conviction to sacrifice themself for the benefit of others is already following the path least traveled. How could anyone not on that path understand it to judge it?

peridot's avatar

Being self-effacing in order to make or keep the peace. It’s a strength to be able to laugh at yourself, but if you go too far, you convey the message to others that you’re not to be taken seriously. What also can blow about that is if you internalize it yourself. Talk about detrimental!

Celebrities like Hugh Grant, Jeff Goldblum, Steven Wright, etc. do self-effacing well, but it’s just part of their schtick. It’s not as profitable as they make it seem… :D

Coloma's avatar

I agree with @SpatzieLover

There is a great saying that ” Help is the sunny side of control.” lol

Caring and genuine helping is not codependent at the expense of oneself and by preventing others from suffering their own consequences.

Caring and helping does not mean assuming others responsibilities.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@Coloma Finding out you’ve become someone’s crutch is like getting hit on the head with a club once you know what co-dependency is. ;)

Coloma's avatar

@SpatzieLover
Yes, and we are always going to be succeptable. I relaized I was starting to become a bit codependent with an ex friend who was relying on me far too much and, of course, manipulating me as well.

It’s an effort in diligence and is a sneaky thing. haha

Blondesjon's avatar

The self-serving variety.

woodcutter's avatar

If you do too much for some people you tend to loose a lot of their respect.

YARNLADY's avatar

in a situation like that right now. I helped my son buy a house, and then he lost his job. In this economy, with his skill level, he is unable to find another job.

We can’t sell the house because the value has dropped below the amount we borrowed. We are stuck with their expenses that aren’t’ covered by the welfare he receives.

Pandora's avatar

People who blow themselves up for their faith. Its a little much. I think forming a rally would be much more effective.
People who put themselves at financial risks for lazy adults or adults who are frivolous in nature and get themselves in a bind.
People who stay in a harmful marriage in order to try to keep their family together.
People who always put others first and feel miserable all the time because they never seem to have an fun in life making sure everyone else is having fun.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Oh sure. Many mothers self-sacrifice for their kids when it’s not necessary in order to entrap them into being thankful, needy and guilty for years. I’ve seen it often.

fremen_warrior's avatar

The question is one you need to decide between yourself and your conscience. Nobody can tell you you are a fool for doing something, because nobody will ever BE you. Your motives are yours alone so IMHO it all boils down to your inner compass.

If you truly believe you NEED to do whatever it is that you are thinking of doing, for the benefit of the world around you, by all means do it!

Naturally, there is a catch though – we often think we are doing what we consider good or proper, all the while ignoring our ACTUAL beliefs and our consciences. Before you take action, be SURE you will be acting in alignment with your moral compass (I haven’t mentioned taking others into consideration simply because once you are in line with your conscience, that should come naturally).

In short: know thyself, and you will always know what course to take!

augustlan's avatar

When the harm to yourself outweighs the good to the one you’re sacrificing for.

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