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Old 02-13-2020, 11:20 AM   #1
poshgirl
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Default When being helpful has to stop

I'm probably not the only person who is taken advantage of/treated badly because they've been helpful. It feels like a slap in the face.

A neighbour is taking advantage of my generosity. She's recently divorced, with a 12 year old son. He and I talk about sport a lot. Over the past six months I've noticed she wants my help more with financial stuff as she doesn't have a computer. Last Sunday, we sorted out cheaper car insurance. Instead of being pleased, she shouted at me for not getting her name right then accused me of not understanding her culture (Indian). That's when I finally realised I was being used. She's also got me to print out documents for her, not offering to pay towards the printer ink. Here again today, she wanted me to help her sort a birthday present for her older son.

Thankfully, she doesn't just turn up but texts first to see if I'm in. Made her wait today. Also, she's currently off sick from work and sometimes appears confused when talking to me. Not finishing sentences and shoving things in front of me as if I'm a mind reader. I've now decided to take the risk and tell her I'm not in, even when I am.

Am I being heartless in wanting to distance myself from her? When will I learn and keep my distance until learning that not everyone wants to use me.
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:40 AM   #2
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

Hi Poshgirl,

I'm so sorry about the situation you are in. I think your feelings are very understandable.
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Old 02-13-2020, 01:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

Oh, she sounds like a nightmare. Yes, just keep saying you're not there. And if she comes round, don't open the door.

It doesn't matter if it's obvious that you're hiding. She is the one who will have to go away and reflect on why a pleasant neighbour has suddenly withdrawn.

It's not your fault at all.
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Old 02-13-2020, 01:23 PM   #4
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

My husband and I had a neighbor like that. He's a lawyer and the neighbor was always coming over to ask for legal advice about some medical bills she couldn't pay. The worst thing was that she was very dense. He'd find himself explaining the same thing over and over. She also got mad when she came to us with this great idea - she was going to offer to agree to a new payment schedule and promise to start paying once she got a job (she was unemployed). When he told her that things don't work that way, she blew up at both of us.

Finally, my husband told her since she was unemployed she should go to the legal aid agency here that helps low-income people. After that we just held that line and said she needed to take up her questions with them. I pity the lawyer at the agency. that was assigned her case.

I don't think you're a bad person for getting tired of that. You are well within your rights to set boundaries with her.
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Old 02-13-2020, 03:08 PM   #5
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

Shouting at you because you made a mistake is absolutely unacceptable, @poshgirl. She should apologize for that. There's nothing wrong with helping other people but you can only do what you can. I feel like it'd be best to be honest with her and tell her that you're not feeling like you're being treated fairly by her. That is just my opinion of course. In any case, I do not think you're doing anything wrong by backing off a little. Hopefully she will understand what you mean. I'd still encourage open communication if that's an option though. Sending many safe, warm hugs to BOTH you, @poshgirl, your Family, your Friends, your Neighbour and ALL of your Loved Ones! Keep fighting and keep rocking NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS, OK?!
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Old 02-14-2020, 05:47 AM   #6
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

Thanks for your very supportive comments.

Switched on mobile phone earlier to find two messages from her already, sent at 0818 today! Charging it is a great reason for not replying. When I finally agree to her coming round again, there will be a comment about me not answering immediately and possibly that I wasn't telling the truth. Did this before, so took her into kitchen to prove washing machine was actually on!

Already wary due to her comments about my not knowing what the neighbours are up to. I'm not one for constantly going in and out of people's houses, especially when they need space due to illness.

She's taking up valuable time, that I should be using for myself, so do need to limit her neediness.
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Old 02-14-2020, 08:15 AM   #7
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

What if you simply say that you are not available now?

You don't need to have or prove a reason that meets with her approval.
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Old 02-14-2020, 08:57 AM   #8
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill3 View Post
What if you simply say that you are not available now?

You don't need to have or prove a reason that meets with her approval.

Yeah I agree with this.

It's so hard to do the first few times, to tell someone you're not available or to tell them "I can't do that."

And then don't add an explanation or a rationalization. If that seems too tough, practice saying it out loud a few times or something. But your boundaries are most important to you. I hope this helps.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:23 AM   #9
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

Just got rid of her! Thankfully she only stayed just over 30 minutes. First thing she asked was where I'd been this morning. Reminded her that I'd texted to say phone needed charging. Very glad our lounges are at rear of house, otherwise I think she'd be in the window watching me.....

Wanted me to advise on giving permission for ex to take her younger son to India soon. Told her to contact lawyer, airline or consulate on what she needed to do. Don't have the expertise to advise properly. Of course, I was tactfully suggesting that she did the work herself.

Also had audacity to ask what I was doing tomorrow. Told her I was out; yes it's a lie due to horrible weather forecast in the UK. Then added I was out on Sunday, possibly Monday and part of Tuesday. It's the school's half-term holiday next week so she's got plenty of time to sort out all these issues.

Will see if she's now got the message....
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:27 AM   #10
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Default Re: When being helpful has to stop

0818 in the morning? That would not fly with me at all! People are taking care of personal things in the morning. You are not a business!

Isnt there a library or post office in town where she can access a computer and print things off?

It seems to me like she is kind of bullying you.
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