Well, yes, actually I probably do. Am I going to ask for that help?
Not on your sweet ass I'm not.
JoyT posted a really interesting blog yesterday about asking for help. She can't. Her husband does at the drop of a hat. Joy wants to know if the rest of us do. Or don't.
Rather than write an essay in Joy's comment box, I thought I'd try and sort this one out over here because this is a subject very close to my heart at the moment.
I have never been averse to asking for help. I've frequently had physical jobs in male-orientated environments (farming) and, whilst I've always pushed myself and done what I can, there have been times when I had to acknowledge my own limitations and ask for help. Though it pains me to say it, women are not always as physically strong as men, we're just not built that way – our strengths generally lie in other areas – but, as always, there are exceptions to that.
The ex-Himself was very good at doing stuff around the place – it's what he did for a living after all – and it was easier to ask him to do things. One of the reasons it was easier to ask him to do things was because if I tried to do things myself, there would be comments like "why are you doing it like that?" or "that won't work, let me do it" as the tools were taken out of my hands, or a wry smile and a shake of the head with "that" look. I gave up trying in the end, it wasn't worth getting worked up about.
The guys at work were also susceptible to a pathetic "girly" look and a plea for help. Getting them to do stuff for me was fun!
But since I've been on my own, I need to do things for myself. Because my cottage is owned by the company I work for, I can easily call on our Property Maintenance guy to do stuff for me, and my boss has said if I need anything just call in the Maintenance Team. But you know, these guys are busy already and I don't want to be seen to be getting special favours. When I mentioned I was going out to get a small chainsaw this weekend to cut my own logs for the fire, the boss gave me that despairing look and said "oh Angela.....you don't need to do that". Ditto when I go to collect the logs, "get the guys to help you" he always says to me. Why??
I need to do this stuff On. My. Own. I don't know if I have to prove something to other people or whether I have to prove something to myself. I'm guessing it's mostly the latter. It's not only an adjustment to single life but also a need to rebuild my confidence in my abilities after letting them sit and rust for so long. I may not be very good at doing some things and I'm learning a lot as I go along, but I get them done. The end result may not be pretty, but it's functional and does the job.
So, right now, I will not be asking for help. For anything. Even if it means cutting off my nose to spite my face.
Thank you very much for offering, it is appreciated, but I'm getting by on my own.