Blog / Why have I decided to become a donor? / I couldn’t care less…
Why have I decided to become a donor?
I couldn’t care less…
Dragan Ilić,
I couldn’t care less…
The Serbian translation of the world bestseller by Mark Manson, in its euphemistic version reads: ‘I couldn’t care less…’

The word, which the author hasn’t used in the original title, has made me think for days about our willingness to empathise. Paradoxically, when you don’t want to empathise with other peoples’ problems, if you don’t care for others, you would say: ‘I couldn’t care less!’

Metaphorically, you say in a symbolic way that a certain part of your body, either male or female, aches, the one you don’t talk about in public. Nevertheless, it is the pain which, as we say, is neither important nor significant, it is transient and a bit vulgar.

Here we come to the point when we dive deeper into the nature of our relationships with others and the way we treat ourselves. If you really have a problem, of physical nature, most common symptom is pain and you will say: ‘My (body part) aches’. You will expect from others to understand your pain, to recognize and understand your facial expression, to show sympathy and offer you some help. Our culture allows talking about pain, on the street, in a shop, you will often hear intimate stories about diseases and pain from complete strangers. We wave them like a flag and expect sympathy and support, maybe even to be excused or take a sick leave.

When we feel pain we expect others to give us an advice, a painkiller, a nice word or at least to ask us – ‘Does something hurt you?’

If you find yourself in front of a sick person, or the one in pain, it is humane to show understanding for their suffering. If the person in pain is rather close to us, we will say ‘I feel his (her) pain’. It can be anguish as well, but we will nevertheless feel it and share it with others. Though our upbringing, Christianity, Immanuel Kant teach as that everybody’s pain is Weltschmerz, that we should have understanding for all living beings in the Universe, unfortunately it is not the case in everyday life.

The pain we feel for others is reserved for a small circle of close people, family and friends. While we were growing up, we learnt or trained ourselves to become immune and deaf and blind for the pain of others. I guess this is how we protect ourselves, but who is the wise guy in the world who will clearly explain to us where the limit for the pain of others is, at what point we become indifferent.

This is exactly the story about organ donation. Many people wait for years, they live their pain and hope that they will live long enough to get a piece of somebody’s body that will save their life. We can all be donors, at the moment we get to the other side of pain, where physical pain no longer exists and is erased. This is why we are not expected to literally suffer in pain to make others feel better, it is enough to be aware of their suffering and with our donation we increase the chances of others to live. So, all that needs to happen is that we feel their pain, and the cure for both of us is to accept donation as the most humane act. No effort and little sacrifice.

Therefore, instead of ‘I couldn’t care less’, change direction in your heads and hearts and let yourself ‘feel for the pain of others’, and the cure can be found in all of us, in our true nature, it is our very essence, our humanity.
Dragan Ilić,