There are three kinds of people in this world: Those who need others, those who need to be needed, and those who need no one.
Mini version for the lazy: There are those who, if left alone, cannot proceed. There are those who, if left alone, proceed albeit aimlessly. And there are those who, if left alone, are unfazed by it. The first 2 kinds, while weaker alone, enjoy the uniquely human experience of love and companionship. The third, understands that it's missing out on this, is saddened by it, but continues on anyway.
Normal sized version: Some people are simply incapable of surviving on their own. They lack the strength, knowledge and skill to make it on their own; but more importantly, they lack the mental constitution to proceed independently. They require the support of others. They need to know someone cares for them, is looking out for them, loves them. A younger me would have called them a bunch of spine-less pussies. Good for nothing. Yet, now I see the subtle techniques mastered by these people, knowingly or unconsciously. They are master manipulators. They keep themselves one step away from danger, work, and responsibility. I still think they are a group of gutless cowards, but I can respect their abilities and can see where they might be useful. The needed and their protectors form a mutually beneficial arrangement. The needed get someone to do their dirty work and make them feel loved. The protectors gain purpose, a reason to go on.
Those who need to be needed are capable, strong, and virtuous. Although, they suffer from a complete lack of direction and are quite empty inside. They find their purpose in others. They help people reach their goals, and in helping them do that, they feel they have fulfilled their own. Alone, the protectors are lost. They feel hollow. All of their strength masks an inner weakness. They harbor self-defeating tendencies that are only lifted when in service to others,
The third type are the rarest. They embody the qualities of both of the previous types, with none of the weaknesses. On paper, these are the best people. But do not envy them so quickly. Human beings are meant to have weaknesses. They are designed to need each other. This last group of freaks is an aberration. A class of weirdos I myself belong to. Our strength is our weakness. We lack the need to connect with others. We judge them harshly. We walk alone. Yet, we understand that we are missing out on a massive part of the human experience. We never experience the joy of having just what we need, because we do not know what it is. It must be found for ourselves.
A lesson can be learned from all of these people. Even with my biased perspective, I can see that each have their own unique rewards and drawbacks. I've always prided myself on not needing anyone or anything, but only recently have I tried opening myself up to others. It's nice. I'm happy I know you. I like you, I may even love you, but I will walk away if I have to.
Momus said it best.