January 17, 2019 by jeliwobble
Asking for help. Do you do it? Can you do it?
I don’t. I can’t. I have a pathological problem with saying that I have a problem and could do with a hand. If anyone offers a hand, I literally stand there with 50lb bags of groceries in each hand and say, ‘No, I’m fine, thank you for offering’ and struggle on. I even feel slightly virtuous that I have managed to ‘do it myself with no help’, despite the fact I never ask for or accept help.
Even when I was up to my ears in debt, and plainly drowning, I didn’t ask for help. I had got myself into the mess, therefore it was my problem to get out of it. It took a decade and a bit to climb out of the hole I had dug. No help.
I used to get really upset that other people seemed to get all the help. They didn’t even ask for it, they just got handed stuff. Whenever I questioned it, the helpers just looked at me as if I was an idiot and said ‘well, they need help’, and I would be screaming in my head ‘well, so do I!’ and then the person would carry on ‘and you don’t’ and my internal scream would combust in a storm of metaphorical incoherent sputtering. But did I say any of this out loud? No, of course I didn’t.
Then, a few years ago, we were in another sticky situation and my PiL helped out. Didn’t ask, they just did. I still feel awful that we had to lean on them like that, and pathetically grateful that they stepped in.
And this is my point. I won’t ask for help. Unless you step in and actually take those 50lb bags out of my sweaty, puffing hands, I am going to attempt to do it myself regardless. Because, let’s face it, no other bugger is going to.
Do I want people to step in? No, I don’t. Am I grateful when people do step in? You betcha! Are you going to bruise my tender ego if you take over something I’m struggling with? Maybe. Am I going to hate you for helping? Nope.
Do you want to help me?