Protect the ones you love is such a simple principle. Individuals that are linked to you through kinship, mutual understanding or admiration are the ones that enjoy such a privilege. While few people can really claim to be altruistic, the idea of defending those we care about is crystal clear logic, despite evidence to the contrary.
Of course this begs the question, what if that show of obvious affection is not reciprocated? What if efforts to belay harm from the mark does not even warrant a reaction much less recognition? Is this a sign of blind martyrdom or vain attempts at soliciting a reward and forward an agenda? Why protect someone who doesn’t even want you around?
Selflessness manifested in this manner would seem ultimately hapless. However who is to argue that the reasons given to continue this futile crusade are faulty? Never mind that perhaps the reciprocation or reward could still be remotely possible. Given the right context, this could be a clear sign of unconditional love. It’s a rare context but it does seem probable.
Is discontinuation the best option? Persistence is an admirable trait, no doubt. However one is exposed to the danger of foregoing other opportunities due to the effort exerted in protecting this person.
Protect the ones you love IS a simple concept, but we should always remember to protect ourselves first. After all, if you can’t help yourself, how do you expect to help others?