Please, DON’T Help Me!

I recently found myself nursing an extremely painful, although minor injury. I was bedridden for several days, and unable to participate in anything other than sleeping off the prescribed medications. I’m grateful to be feeling more like myself today.

While I was injured, I had to do something that causes me tremendous stress, anxiety, and guilt; I had to ask for help. I am a very independent person. I am calculated, and an excellent problem solver when I need to be. As such, I am often independent, and stubborn to a fault. I will do for myself whatever possible before asking for assistance of any sort.

When I ask for help, it’s because I’ve exhausted any, and all possible options of taking on a task, or an issue solo. If I’m asking for help, it’s because I trust the person I’m asking to assist me to meet my needs with care, compassion, and empathy.

Sadly, I’m often gifted a negative attitude, resentment, and worst of all, an expectation to do what someone else expects of me, rather than what I need in the situation. Of course, when I point out that my needs are important, and that I’m asking for specific help because it’s what I actually need, I’m sent on guilt trips, and gaslit into self-doubt, and regretting my inability to do everything for myself.

I find myself constantly having to reiterate that I will ask for help when I need it. If I’m not asking for assistance, it’s because I’m able to meet my own needs, and care for myself accordingly. At one point while trying to nurse this injury, I was told that I should accept all help that is offered to me, regardless of whether, or not I want it.

Perhaps if the help was useful, I would. I however was being thrust into situations where the assistance being offered would actually have caused considerably more harm to my already injured body. I know what I need. I should be trusted to care for my own body!

Interestingly enough, when I do ask for help, I’m told that I don’t need it, or I’m left waiting while the person I asked tends to unnecessary distractions. Sometimes the wait is valid, but often times, my immediate needs are put on hold for something that should be paused for the moment. No, I can’t wait a minute for you to finish your game; I need help getting to the washroom NOW! Since I don’t want to be seen as demanding, or ungrateful, I usually bite my tongue, and bide my time waiting. At this point, guilt, and resentment creep in. Guilt tells me that I should be independent and not need help. Resentment tells me that I deserve to be valued and assisted when I need it. Guilt quickly reminds me that my needs are no greater, or more important than those of another person, so I should continue biting my tongue and be grateful. Resentment doesn’t care about guilt… resentment just needs to pee.

The person defaulted into helping me was present while I received medical attention. I, a grown adult woman, was talked over while they cracked jokes at my expense with the doctor. No, I wasn’t there to get “the good stuff” in terms of strong medications! No! I was there because I, who normally has extremely high pain tolerance was in absolute agonizing pain. I despise taking medications because I hate how I feel when I take them. Making fun of me to the doctor about “how high” I was going to get and “how fun it will be to watch me” made me extremely uncomfortable. It also could have impacted the medical attention that I received. What if the doctor believed that I was there for drug shopping?!

I guess the person I was with was trying to cut the tension, and make me laugh to forget my pain. Unfortunately, that didn’t work. Instead, I ended up feeling angry, and resentful on top of extreme pain. I also felt as though my voice wasn’t strong enough to be heard. I am able to advocate for myself. I wanted to advocate for myself, but I was spoken over. I didn’t have an opportunity to ask questions about MY body, or my treatment. I was told what to do, and dismissed.

Several days later, when I was feeling stronger, I stated that I was no longer in need of pain management medications. This declaration was met with strong opposition. I was told that I still needed the meds, whether I wanted them, or not! This is MY body though! Do I not have a say in what goes into it, and when I need support? The doctor was clear that I should take the pills AS NEEDED. If I don’t need them, I don’t have to take them. I personally would rather NOT take medications that leave me dizzy, feeling nauseated, and sleeping for more hours than there are in a day!

This person was “only trying to help” though, so I should listen to them. I should allow, and accept all “help” that is offered, even if I feel it is detrimental to MY needs.

You see, by not allowing this person to help, they feel out of control. They feel as though they aren’t appreciated. They feel as though their efforts are being wasted. It’s up to ME to boost this person’s ego by accepting all offers of help, regardless of the impact it has on my personal wellbeing.

I don’t understand. Where is my autonomy? Where is my personal space? Where is my self-regulation? Where is my self-awareness, and decision making? Why am I not allowed to speak my mind and ask for what I need, or want? Why is the assistance that I receive based on what someone else perceives, rather than what my reality is?

If this is what I am going to face every time I ask for help, then please, I beg of you, please DON’T help me!

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