Monday, September 12, 2005

Learned Helplessness with a Dose of Goold Old Catholic Guilt

Concerning Apathy and Learned Helplessness
Hurricane Katrina and Rita : I feel helpless watching the news coverage, and wish I could go down there and help. But I know I won't, because I'm too busy being a medical student and moving forward with my life. I couldn't possibly take a few months off to go down there and help, because I've got to finish med school, and that would just not be convenient for me. And then I yell at myself because it's not like having a hurricane run through one's home meshes with one's life plans, so why shouldn't I self sacrifice and help people out, because at least I have a home to return to when I get back. And then I argue with myself and convince myself that I will be able to help people out more if I finish my education, and feel better because I at least feel bad for not going down there and helping, and at least I contemplated thinking about taking time off of med school to go help. And then I just feel stupid and selfish and helpless because I know I won't interrupt my schedule to go help, and instead I'll watch and shake my head and say "Oh, that's too bad", and donate some money to the Red Cross (but not the Salvation Army because they can keep their propaganda away from my money), and rationalize that there is probably plenty of help down South right now, and even if I could help stupid FEMA wouldn't have its act together to even know what to do with me, a medical student, who can hardly juggle my clerkships, studying, and trying to maintain my humanity.

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