Author Topic: How do you cope with asking people for things?  (Read 2005 times)

blue

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How do you cope with asking people for things?
« on: March 17, 2016, 12:20:28 PM »
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« Last Edit: October 07, 2016, 03:25:30 AM by blue »

Mrskro

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2016, 01:47:17 PM »
My kids are older, so babysitting isn't so much of an issue as help getting them to there various activities when they overlap.   I hate asking and only ask when desperate too.

What I started doing was sending out a group email or text to a group of friends (they are all friends as well)..."hey everyone I'm stuck...or I would like to go do this and ....I need help with  xx.  Can one of you please help me out?  I found it saved me from going person to person. 

imissdow

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2016, 02:59:22 PM »
Are you on Facebook? I have friends who ask for help all the time on there. Granted it's usually not personal however some times it is. The few times I have gone that route someone unexpected usually stepped up. My car was stolen and I needed a ride to the dealership to get my replacement. A friend who lived 15 mins away drove over picked me up and dropped me off.  I've posted a few other things and usually someone comes thru. It saves me asking and I have a much wider circle then I would ever call and ask anyways.  I do have a few friends I call all the time. I also see them socially and will have them over for dinner every so often.

canadiangirl

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2016, 08:36:25 PM »
Sadly, I rarely do any more. I got good advice on this forum early on to ask for help and be specific.  I specifically asked for people in my quite broad social circle to ask my child over for playdates, not only to give me a break (and much-needed time to grieve and breathe) but so that my only child felt connected, not lonely and had fun.  I asked again and again and was extremely grateful when it happened, once in a blue moon.  It is so rare now that I have begun inviting those kids over to our house...and it is not necessarily resulting in reciprocity.  But I will keep doing it, because even though it helps me very little (except my child is entertained while I work around the house), my child needs friends.  The connected part is real and necessary, even though I could happily hermit and cut myself off from all those around us, in some small part because I feel so let down, even if that is not quite fair.  People have their own lives and they think others are helping us when the reality is no one is.

serpico

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2016, 08:51:20 PM »
Rather than asking someone, are you able to pay a neighbor kid a little bit to watch your child for an hour or two?
'I think I got some of your pickle'

TooSoon

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2016, 09:31:27 PM »
We used to live around the corner from a huge Greek Orthodox church and there were a ton of "yiayias" (grandmothers, many widowed) who chomped at the bit to come play with our daughter and who either refused compensation or would only take something nominal (and as a bonus, they sometimes brought food).  Try a church, mosque, synagogue or other religious community).  I doubt it will matter if you're a member.  They're reliable, experienced, loving and very often in as much need for something to do as you are for help and my kid, at least, loved her surrogates.  It was mutually beneficial.  We're not religious, far from it, and it never mattered. 

Also, I sometimes have to bring my kid to these things (she's 9).  The teacher gives her an activity to do - something fun - in the hall while we talk for 15 minutes.  You are absolutely not the first parent with this conundrum.  Tell the school what you need; they will more than likely help you. 


Not easy, I know. 
« Last Edit: March 17, 2016, 09:39:40 PM by TooSoon »

luvmy2babies

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2016, 09:19:42 AM »
I have gotten to the point I pretty much only ask when I absolutely have to, which was always days when school was closed and I had to work.  The job I have now allows me to work from home whenever I need to though.  I also occasionally use their afterschool care destination as it is also a drop in facility. 

Getting turned down or getting no response at all gets to me after a while.  My daughter?s closest friend though we take her places with us, she would not normally get to go because her parents just aren?t into those activities (zoo, museums, aquariums, etc.) so I can call them; but everyone?s super busy it seems.

I miss quite a few events because most of the time, anyone I would ask to watch my children would also want to go to the event.  As to meetings, I?ve taken my children to plenty of them.  They?ve learned to sit quietly with a book or tablet.  I don?t even worry about inconveniencing people anymore.  My situation is no secret.  And my feeling is my children are way more put out by having to sit through it than anyone else is because they are there.  Half the time I?m sitting in a meeting between them and others have sent one spouse and the other has stayed home with the children.

Now, thankfully my daughter is getting to the point where she can watch her brother for short periods of time.  I?m grateful for that because within the next year; we are probably going to have to move to the next town, further from my mother and their Godparents.  This could actually make things easier on me though because we?d be moving mainly to be closer to their charter school. It will hopefully broaden my circle living closer to the other parents.  Lots of SAHM. 

When I was going to have to turn down free tutoring for my son because I couldn't get off work in time to get him and the aftercare van wasn't going to run twice, the mom of another boy going to tutoring actually offered to get him for me.  Her son and my son are friends.  I actually got emotional from getting the offer.  That's how few and far between they have been.  In the end, since the aftercare facility is across the street, the school decided his teacher could take him over after tutoring.



ieh21

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2016, 04:25:01 PM »
I have become the expert of help-getting. It was a major adjustment and at first I was horrified at the imbalance between helped required and help reciprocated. I gave gifts, wrote thank you notes, until I realized that people did it to make themselves feel better, or because they truly cared about me and the girls. So no one thought anything of it.

The other thing I realized is that ALL parents need help. I became part of a group of moms and I was astounded to see that they all relied on one another "can you pick up Johny" "do you mind buying an extra set of colouring pencils when you're at the store" "I need to buy tiles, can I drop off Ann?". I had always thought I was singular in my need to ask people, and there I was in a group of people who were in perfect situations and STILL needed help.

That's when I realized that getting help is just a good parenting skill. Like the ability to change diapers with one hand. It's not a widowhood/widowerhood skill, it's something you develop with you have children that is a useful way to make sure your children don't suffer from your inability to be at all places at all times.

then I also understood that my own ability to reciprocate came in ways I never anticipated. Sometimes someone needed advice in a field I know well. Hey, I can do that! The reciprocation of help is wider than the transaction between two people. that helped me too. I felt less like things were going in one direction since I was actually overall keeping a good balance. It also helps to offer others help a lot. Even if it's small things, and even if you are turned down. "I'm at the farmers' market, need carrots?" At least this way you feel like you are trying to reciprocate to the best of your abilities. Make you feel less of a taker and more of a giver.

Lastly, I also learned that I had to get over that internal hurdle for the greater good. You say it yourself: the momtobe's feelings count too. that is worth trying to set aside your discomfort. You are not doing this for yourself, you are doing it for someone else. Maybe seeing this way helps you reach out.

Good luck. So many adjustments. It isn't easy.





blue

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2016, 12:19:11 PM »
There are a couple parents who my son has had playdates with since he was 2.  Since kindergarten started I've been working during the day, and so I have a nanny who picks up my son at school and watches him until 6pm. When it's a playdate, I have her bring the other kid home to our house and she watches both kids. I'm never far, since I work from home. Anyway, the playdates kind of dried up in the last four months. One of the mom's confided that she is not comfortable with my nanny looking after her son. Then the other mom said it as well (they are friends since childhood, I've lived here 7 years).

Today I got a possible insight into it. I asked a friend of one of the moms for her advice. She, like me, also moved here from the city and also has a career (most of the moms here don't work). She has an older daughter and we've commiserated a few times in the past on not being all that enthusiastic about parenting. She said that she thinks my issue is because I am "outsourcing my half of the playdate bargain" and that if I hosted playdates on weekends, balance would be restored.

This had never occurred to me. So many things to keep track of as a widowed mom!

MrsDan

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2016, 07:00:32 PM »
That is fucking horse shit. How would they like it if they needed to outsource it for the reason you do? I'm sorry, but I am so sick of people's petty complaining over stupid shit.
You are the Bear of my heart dear,
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Portside

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2016, 07:14:17 PM »
She said that she thinks my issue is because I am "outsourcing my half of the playdate bargain" and that if I hosted playdates on weekends, balance would be restored.

This had never occurred to me. So many things to keep track of as a widowed mom!

Yeah, sometimes we are so caught up in our own lives (rightly so!), that we fail to see things from another's perspective.

Most likely, the other mother involved within the playdate has, mentally at least, vetted you and come to the feeling that you are a positive influence for her child during the playdate and thus, she has no issue with her child visiting. Your nanny however, has possibly not been cleared in the same manner.

Good luck! Mike
The war is over for me now. But those of us who did make it have an obligation to build again, to teach to others what we know, and to try with what's left of our lives to find a goodness and a meaning to this life.

twistedmensa

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2016, 08:49:57 PM »
Perhaps she has had a bad experience with a caregiver in the past. I have some serious issues leaving my kids with ANYONE other than my mother. But then I had some pretty traumatic experiences with caregivers in my childhood, so trust is not something I give easily...especially when it comes to people with access to my kids.

blue

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Re: How do you cope with asking people for things?
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2016, 10:12:29 PM »
yeah, I can completely understand not wanting a stranger to watch your kids! The thing is, eveyrone knows I searched for a nanny for months (I asked the other mothers first, but they don't use paid childcare). The woman I hired has an early education degree and passed a background check. She's an older woman in her late 50's and also happens to be my neighbor.

I'm suspecting the reciprocity thing is close to the truth. This parent also mentioned that I'd "gotten some slack" in not being expected to volunteer at the school last year but now that it's "been a while" (her words. my husband died 14 months ago) other parents might be expecting me to get back to normal. Whatever normal is,  I can't help noticing that none of the fathers volunteer or organize play dates either!

I'll try the weekend thing. My son misses his friends.