I had an experience years ago before I had children. So that puts it at 20 years plus.
My husband and I had our own business at the time and it was a mobile business...literally. We had a mobile dog grooming business. And we were on the road at the time this incident occurred and in the middle of morning traffic. Granted, we were not on a major highway or freeway, but it was still a crowded street all the same.
We were sitting in traffic, or possibly at a red light, but whatever the case, we were not moving. Then I heard someone, a female yelling for help. I turned in my seat and saw her running, like she was running from something. It turned out to be a someone. She kept yelling for help and no one would assist her. I turned and then saw who she was running from. It was a male figure. Most more than likely her significant other. Whether he had been a friend, lover, relative, he was after her and with a vengeance.
I then asked my husband to let us take her in our work van and get her to the nearest police station, our appointments be damned. But he said no without a moments hesitation. Right then and there my entire outlook toward my husband changed. A part of me died inside. How could he do that? Just swat this woman away who was evidently in need of help. And what if that had been me running from someone or something and he was not there to help me out and the entire world turned a deaf ear? How would he have felt then? He would have been pisssed off at the fact that no one took the time to help his wife when she needed someone the most.
My husband has done a 180 in his life since that time. But it still dwells inside of me and when I look back on it, I get all choked up inside and a knot forms in the pit of my stomach. How can anyone be so callous? And how have we gotten that way? What has changed us so much in the last century or so to make us look away, as if things were not happening under our noses.
Case in point, the case with the kidnapping of Jaycee Dugard. It's not the kidnapping I ma here to talk about, it is those who probably knew something was amiss and did not follow their gut instincts. They chose not to get involved. That say by thinking if they were wrong and called the authorities, then made a mistake, how would that neighbor see them? But usually our gut instincts are correct, they are there for a reason. They are our alarm, our warning system, if you will.
I enjoy helping my fellowman, and possibly to a fault. And every now and then my husband falls back on his old way of thinking and says we need to look our for ourselves first. And I will not deny him that. If I had to do for my children over anyone else, my children will always win. But right after that I do not mind helping others as long as we are not taken advantage of, but that is a different post. I am under the guise that you will only get back what you give. And there are those who think it is all about financial help. That could not be further from the truth. There is much more to giving that just opening your wallet. Open your heart. Open your mind and see what you can do once you let yourself get involved with others. It does the body good.