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Can we stop acting like if people ask for help, it will magically appear?

Updated: Jul 7, 2023

I’m so tired of this trope. And the thing is, this is bullshit on a micro to macro level; personal to systemic.


We have systems that continuously fail people; systems that continue to oppress and destroy; systems that never prioritize resources for trauma-informed root causes.


But also, people.


I’m so tired of being told that if I just ask for help, I’ll get it - even from a majority of those who I would have considered close to me.


A few years ago when I was really hitting autistic burnout before knowing I was autistic or what burnout was, I told a good friend of many years that I was in a dire place. This was in response to them asking to make plans to see one another because they needed some support; I RARELY ask for emotional support or admit how badly I need it, but I did. I said the timing was good because I too could badly use a hang-out session, and alluded a bit to how I was feeling emotionally and mentally. I asked for help.. at least in the way I did at that time. When the time came, those plans got cancelled on me. I was told they’d follow up to reschedule, but they turned around and booked a weekend trip to go out of state the next day. Look, escaping is their way of dealing with things and I get it; I really do. But this wasn’t the first time they cancelled plans and booked a flight before ever thinking to reschedule with me. And it wasn’t the last. I finally stopped responding a few months ago. I know they don’t mean to hurt me, but that doesn’t change how I feel and what I need. So, I’m not angry… just, resolved.

Around the same time, I admitted to another friend that I could use some major emotional support. I admitted to this person the only reason I was still here was to take care of my diabetic cat Kingston. Again, this was very rare and was in direct response to them saying they wanted to be a better friend to me and asking how. I was explicit. I asked them to just keep checking in on me. Again, burnout without realizing… not being able to reach out but knowing you need people. I asked for what I needed. They made effort for, like, a couple of weeks. Then gave up. I asked for help. Again.

I keep trying though. I keep asking. It gets harder, but I keep freaking trying.



Anyway.


Stay regulated,

Shauna

2 Comments


Yes yes yes yes yesyesyes. 💯 Thanks for spelling out the difference of not being willing to ask for help vs. not having qualified helpers in your circle. That just opened up a shit ton for me. Also, due to no one initiating contact with me, I have moved on from what I thought was my circle and am now seeing what I can build next.

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Shauna
Shauna
Jul 12, 2023
Replying to

Ugh, I feel this deeply. Look, I know that a lot of times it's hard to ask for help, but I feel like often people ignore that the reason it's hard to ask is the fact that when we do, no one helps. I often say that healing is really lonely, but also, at least those left are the real deal, I guess. ❤️‍🩹

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