Conditional help requests (?)

Last week was a bad week for me. Three friends died and my Dad’s 90th birthday (my Dad died a few years back) all at once.

Two friends call me requesting my help. What I found most interesting was the fact they wanted that help on their terms. It would seem to me that if they really wanted help, they would accept whatever help I could offer under almost any circumstances and NOT the “I need help but only under my specific conditions”.

I guess I come from the old school where I very seldom request help. When I do request help, it is because I need it and I am willing to accept any help under almost any conditions I can get it.

“Robin, you have a truck. Can you help me move. But I have all these other commitments with other people that I need to complete first. My son has a baseball game on Thursday. And I need to turn my library book. Can you help me move please, pretty please?”

Well, I didn’t help her move. And she got very angry with me and told me where to go. I went there but she wasn’t there either. “There” was not a nice place and I shan’t go there again.

The other friend wanted a loan but wanted me to drive across town to deliver it. I did not deliver the money and she told me where to go as well.

I am tired of “going there” and I have decided that I’m not going to “go there”and if someone suggests that I should “go there”, I shall return the favor. In my library, I have an OAG (Official Airlines Guide) that lists every airline and every flight in America. I will tell them where to go, which airline to use, which hotel to check-in to, and what to do when they get there.

The point of this post is to ask people to think a little before asking for help. Sit down and ask your self what help do I need who is the best person to call and what am I willing to pay for their help. When I say pay for their help, I am not talking about money. I am talking about the “quid pro quo” of the help. Are you going to fix them dinner? How about a massage? Is there something you can do to make their life a little more enjoyable or stress-free.

If you were going to ask them to use their truck are you willing to pay for the gas. Or here is a unique thought-is there something you can do to help one of their friends as payment for the help you received.

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One Response to Conditional help requests (?)

  1. Tammy says:

    Dear Robin,
    I agree that people should look to themselves first, to see if they really do need help, or if they are just seeking “convenience”. If a person is hungry, really hungry, they will eat whatever they can, whatever is available. There is urgency, there is gratitude for even a small amount of food.
    If a person says that only lobster will do, or that you need to cook for them, ( and they have the ability to do it for themselves), maybe they are really not that hungry and just want the convenience.
    You may need $100, but I can only give $20.
    I can only offer what I can offer.
    Do you appreciate the thought, the intent, and take what I can give?
    Or do you say “It’s not enough”, or “You have to bring it to me on the back of a dromedary, in the heat of August?”
    A person can only do what they can do.
    And, if someone is willing to help you, at least meet them half way, make life easier for them as well.
    Or at least easier for them to fulfill your request.
    (Ever try to rent a dromedary in August?)

    I do hope that you did receive comfort and support from family and friends during your sad days.

    Life does go on, and it does get better.


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