Hero’s Syndrome


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Calm down! It’s not a disease. Though it sounds like an awesome disease to have, don’t you think? Moving on, Hero’s syndrome has different meanings in different situations. Let’s look at two of those:

Wikipedia defines hero’s syndrome as a phenomenon affecting people who seek heroism or recognition, usually by creating a desperate situation which they can resolve.

Urban Dictionary says it’s a situation where you fall for someone who came along and treated you well when you were down or in a bad place.

Today’s post is going to touch on the Urban dictionary definition. I first heard of Hero’s Syndrome from Tyler Perry’s ‘Why did I get married?’. I had experienced this a number of times before I got to know what it was called.  For the most part, I like to be the source of refuge. I have come to believe I have a Messiah complex that draws me towards distraught people. But that’s a story for another day.

Usually, soon after a messy relationship or break-up, you meet someone who gets you. In typical human fashion, you compare this new person to the ex and the ex obviously falls short in so many ways your new person starts glowing. You start to talk all the time because you need someone to get you through the mess you just came out of and this person gets you. It goes on long enough (or not even long enough) and bam! Attraction. You think of them all the time, start wondering when the next phone call or text will come through. You probably start stalking their social media – it gets worse and you’re on google trying to find their myspace and hi5 to see what they used to be like. And it’s a beautiful feeling. The only problem here is, 99.9% of the time, it is NOT love. It feels like it, sounds like it, looks like it. But NO! It’s not love.

Now, without the issue of a messy past relationship or break up, you are very likely to fall for someone you constantly talk to if the person isn’t a terrible human being with super annoying abilities. Now with a broken heart that was denied love, it is easier – way way  easier – to fall for someone who is helping you out of the mess. Most people believe that it’s hard to fall in love after you’ve been deeply hurt. From experience, I’ve come to realise it’s the reverse. No matter how high the wall that’s built after a heart break, a heart – every heart – needs love. And on a subconscious level it seeks love even when the mind has decided against it.

A lot of hearts have been broken because someone expected that since you were the one who broke their fall you have to keep carrying them. Some people are just natural knights in shining armour. Serial ones at that. After they break your fall and get you out of harm’s way, they are on their way to their next distressed damsel. It’s not personal, it’s just how they are wired.

I’m not saying it is impossible to fall in love with your knight. I’m just saying 9 out of 10 times, that feeling is a heightened level of gratitude and fondness. Even love in its basic form is misunderstood. It however is possible and a beautiful thing when it is able to move from there into love.

As difficult as it is, the mind has to be given veto power when the attraction starts to surface. Look through the relationship and the dynamics of it and figure out what the knight’s stand is. Some people are too nice they won’t be able to tell you the feelings are not mutual.

If you’re already in a relationship that was spurred by hero’s syndrome, make it worth more than appreciation for the person who saved you from hurt. Relationships are always bigger than just us!


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