Author Topic: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?  (Read 1800 times)

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Hollanda

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How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« on: October 12, 2012, 01:24:50 PM »
Co worker and friend is having a bad time. Mostly work stress but she gets no help with her 2 year old son from her BF. But all my suggestions are shot down...her BF works nights so her coming to my place in the evening is out. She can't do coffee as she doesn't have time. Going out is not an option...babysitters and money, or lack of.

How can I cheer her up? I help at work when I can...I don't want her to think it's charity? Xxxx
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Moray

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Re: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2012, 01:30:43 PM »
Sometimes the best thing to do is let the person know you're there if they need to vent and then drop it :)

However, I did notice something; you say much of the stress is because she isn't receiving help with her kid, but all of your suggestions involve her scheduling childcare arrangements to go hang out with you. You're in no way obligated to do this, but maybe she might be more receptive to an offer to babysit while she has some "me" time, KWIM?

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siamesecat2965

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Re: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2012, 01:56:33 PM »
And not to be mean, but some people simply like to whine and complain, for the attention, and if you suggest anything to change whatever is going on, they won't do it.  Not saying this is the case here, but there are certain people I try and avoid for this very reason.  We all have our issues, but the constant whining etc. gets old, esp when they make absolutely no effort to cahgne things.

jmarvellous

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Re: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2012, 02:12:31 PM »
I don't understand why she can't come to your place because her boyfriend works nights. Don't you both have small children? It seems like letting them interact while you socialize would be ideal for both of you. Or maybe you or your husband could watch 2 kids? You've mentioned many times that he watches your kid when you go to bars.

It's also possible that she's making excuses so she doesn't have to go out with or visit you, or she just likes to complain.

Don't make it a big deal. Invite her once or twice more to use you or your husband as baby sitters, then drop it. Be a kind ear but remember you can't solve other people's problems!

QueenofAllThings

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Re: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2012, 02:40:58 PM »
Sounds like she's venting, not asking you to fix it.

What makes her smile? Cute puppy pictures? Memes? Celebrity gossip? Send her the occasional email/link/text withe one of the above to let her know you're thinking of her. Sometimes that's all it takes.

gorplady

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Re: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2012, 03:46:17 PM »
As previous posters have suggested, you should invite her and her child over to your house, or offer to babysit so she can go and do something, or offer to have your husband to watch both kids while the two of you go out and do something. I would offer those suggestions a few times and if she keeps saying "no," then let her know that you're available if she ever needs help and then let it go and don't worry about it.

Also, and I say this very gently, you've had some trouble in understanding work relationships before, so remember that just because she's your co-worker, it doesn't necessarily mean she's your friend, so continued refusals may be a reflection of that.


Onyx_TKD

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Re: How to help someone who doesn't want to be helped?
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2012, 04:33:24 PM »
As previous posters have suggested, you should invite her and her child over to your house, or offer to babysit so she can go and do something, or offer to have your husband to watch both kids while the two of you go out and do something. I would offer those suggestions a few times and if she keeps saying "no," then let her know that you're available if she ever needs help and then let it go and don't worry about it.

Also, and I say this very gently, you've had some trouble in understanding work relationships before, so remember that just because she's your co-worker, it doesn't necessarily mean she's your friend, so continued refusals may be a reflection of that.

Alternatively, the activities you're suggesting may not be things that she finds relaxing/helpful when she is stressed. All of the things you mention in the OP involve her going out somewhere with you (or her going out to come over to your house), as well as requiring childcare arrangements.

For an introvert, for instance, spending time with someone may be the last thing she wants when she's tired and stressed. If that's the case, it has little to do with the specific person she'd be spending time with, and simply the fact that socializing is tiring rather than invigorating for introverts. If what she needs is some alone time to recharge (which it sounds like she isn't getting due to lack of childcare), then "get together and chat" type outings aren't likely to help.

Or the issue could be going out. With a 2-year-old, she would have to either find a sitter or get both herself and the 2YO ready to go out together. Either might be more work than she wants to do when she's tired and stressed.