Not that we do good to make people feel obliged, but often the outcomes are surprising. We always extend a helping hand — in monitory terms and other ways — whenever we can, to people who need help. For instance, we got Vasudha’s previous maid (around 15 years) admitted to a school. My wife went with her, met with the principal, and bought books and dresses for her. When she was caught letting our daughter eat mud in the play ground (our daughter was around 3 then and the maid was simply looking at her while she ate the mud — Alka saw it from the balcony) we asked her to leave. Then we thought, well, let us give her another chance, as she had just started going to the school (she used to come to our place after her school and still we paid for the entire day) and we thought it’d be very bad for her to leave. So we called her back while she was leaving.
In the evening her mother came and said her daughter was not going to work for us as we had yelled at her. Although we told her the reason, she said no. Then my wife told her that her behavior was totally uncalled for, especially when we had got her daughter admitted to a school and we were still worried for her schooling despite how nasty she had acted. Her reply: I never asked you to get her admitted.
Although it never crossed our minds that they should feel grateful or something, but by this we were totally caught off guard.
Similarly there have been many incidents in which we were simply trying to help people and instead of acknowledging they simply made us feel as if we had to gain something out of it.
So, we’ve been quite confused. Why do people act so nasty even when you are so nice with them? I found a partial answer today while reading “Of Human Bondage” by Somerset Maugham.
Thinking he had done a generous thing, he had expected that Monsieur Ducroz would overwhelm him with expressions of gratitude. He was taken aback to find that the old teacher accepted the present as though it were his due. He was so young, he did not realise how much less is the sense of obligation in those who receive favours than in those who grant them.
“he did not realise how much less is the sense of obligation in those who receive favours than in those who grant them.”
Whether this is right or wrong, it does manage to explain a bit.