Just Listen

When I ask you to listen to me,
And you start giving me advice,
You have not done what I asked.
When I ask you to listen to me
And you begin to tell me why I shouldn’t feel that way,
You are trampling on my feelings.
When I ask you to listen to me
And you feel you have to do something
To solve my problem,
You have failed me,
Strange as that may seem.
Listen! All I ask you is listen.
Don’t talk or do—just hear me.
Advice is cheap
And I can do for myself;
I am not helpless.
Maybe discouraged ad faltering,
But not helpless.
When you do something that I can
And need to do for myself,
You contribute to my fear and Inadequacy.
But when you accept as a simple fact
No matter how irrational,
Then I can stop trying to convince
You and get about this business
Of understanding what’s behind
This irrational feeling.
And when that’s clear, the answers are
Obvious and I don’t need advice.
Irrational feelings make sense when
We understand what’s behind them.
Perhaps that’s why prayer works—because god is mute,
And he doesn’t give advice or try
To fix things, God just listens and lets you work it out for yourself.

So please listen, and just hear me.
And if you want to talk, wait a minute For your turn—and I will listen to you.