"... 30 years later an extensive body of scientific evidence would emerge on the therapeutic effects of helping in groups such as AA. Sometime we help most by encouraging people out of the helpee role and into the helper role. Historically, letting those we serve help us would be considered a boundary violation and a breach of professional ethics. Do you think there are circumstances in which that position needs to be re-evaluated?" - William L. White, "Recovery Rising," p. 55
My response to William L. White's question, as the Headline for this post indicates, is that it depends on the situation. As an example, someone in my AA group was feeling so helpless that they were unable to see that (as true as that may have been) they were still able to help others (specifically, me!). Proving the power of reciprocity to him opened a door, a window, a pathway that in his helplessness he had not seen before. His ice of self-pity began to melt and he could finally see that he was in the Springtime of his recovery.