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liz

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OK, so I'm one year past diagnosed and haven't asked for help outside of our household. My family lives 7 hours away but my husband has three single, healthy, childless sisters living within 10 miles of our home. We've been trying to get our raised ranch home ready to sell and all we asked for from these three women was 2-3 hours cleaning to get a few rooms ready for some painting to be done by a gang of volunteers from where I work. Their response: "we're too busy". What are they busy with? Their new cats, a book club, the curling team, etc. I'm a Pennsylvania Dutch girl. I come from the land of barn raisings. I literally cannot comprehend this response from my husband's family. Where I come from the question would not be whether but when and how help would come. I've done my bit on the helping end whenever called. Not sure how I'll be able to deal with these people in the future. Am feeling their response is very cold.

Bummed out,

Liz
 

CindyM

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Liz- its selfishness of the highest order on their part, if you ask me! That and a healthy dose of denial. Maybe the fool themselves into thinking you don;t need the help but it is time for hubby to have a sit-down. You were brave to ask, btw. A lot of PALS don't like to ask for any help. I wish they were more understanding.:sad: Cindy
 

brooksea

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Liz I guess we know why they are all single and childless now!LOL Too selfish to have anyone else in their lives, might take away from "me" time.

Cindy is right, might be time for the hubby to have a little talk with the gals. It is hard enough to ask for help and then to be denied, how insensitive! Perhaps they need to be educated on what you and your husband may be looking at down the road and ask them if they are saving their energies to help out later on...:mrgreen:

Hope you find the help y'all need!
 

ZenArcher

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As Whoopie Goldberg would say, "I hope they get pimples on their butt." It's something that has to be taken care of but it's hard to reach and awkward to ask for help.

I understand where you are coming from Liz. My wife and her family have a strong PA Dutch heritage. As soon as they found out about my diagnosed they were offering whatever help they could. If I were in your husband's shoes I wouldn't be talking to my sisters I'd be putting my size 11 where the sun don't shine.
 

liz

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It was actually my husband, with encouragement fom me, who approached his sisters about getting a little help. He's overwhelmed trying to do everything himself, including remodeling our kitchen. What really frosts me is that even when we had four little kids to manage, they never hesitated to ask him for help and he has always said yes - patch the roof, run over right away to fix the computer, repair the car, you name it. This was a real kick in the teeth. :evil:
 

brooksea

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Well Liz,

He certainly won't have time to help them anymore will he? they'll have to find someone else to do all those things for them.

My Dad has a sister just like them. He's had four heart attacks and still cuts her grass and is an all around Mr. Fixit for her. Takes her to doctor appointments and stays at the hospital when she's hospitalized for another hypochondria episode and gives her money to boot!. (her own sons won't do anything for her because they know she will suck them dry) In the meantime he also sees after his mom in the nursing home and helps his wife with her Alzheimer's mom. Some people are just takers and you cannot change them.

Are you moving closer to your family or staying in the same area? In a situation like this you just gotta believe in KARMA! When people do others wrong I always think of the lyrics to the Phil Collins song:

Well, if you told me you were drowning
I would not lend a hand
Ive seen your face before my friend
But I don't know if you know who I am
Well, I was there and I saw what you did
I saw it with my own two eyes
So you can wipe off the grin, I know where you've been
Its all been a pack of lies

(Drums please!)
:twisted:
 

liz

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Yes well, I've done what any big girl would do under these circumstances - I called my mom and told on them. After a little boo-hooing, we started talking about her upcoming visit in November and she's going to bring lots of my favorite home-made meals to stock up my freezer. I feel better already. Thanks for letting me vent. :)
 

Frizzel

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I could fry eggs on my head I'm so hot!

Liz,

We have PM for a while now and anyone who wouldn't help you is either so self centered they can't see past their own back door or as Cindy M said, they are in a whole lot of denial! I think that may be the case. They are missing out on a real opportunity to build relationship with your kids, too.

I feel both angry and sad they don't comprehend the value of helping your family and it's your brother's sisters. Cheech! Have they seen what ALS does? DO they realize even though you sound great and may even look great that your body won't do what your mind tries to tell it to do no matter HOW HARD your try?

I wonder if he approached it this way "Sis, remember how great you felt when I helped you when you needed my help? I am sinking with trying to get everything ready for our home to sell. Our family now needs your help. Not forever, just long enough to get our home ready to sell." If they don't help...let it go and move on AND DO NOT help them like jimmercat suggested.

How about a hearty drum roll on their heads! I better stop while I'm a head! :evil:
 

Frizzel

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AND one more thought from Frizz to Liz

GOOD FOR YOUR MOMMA! :-DSHE LOVES YOU! :-DTell her we send a big 'atta momma!' for coming out to help you AND good job asking for help. We CAN NOT get through this alone. It's just NOT possible. That the reality for us and the blessings for those who help us.:)
 

westjlittle

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Liz,

I know that you are hurt by your husband's sisters. I had the same reaction from other close friends. Even in an emergency situation a close friend told my wife that they were going to a baseball game and couldn't watch my kids for an hour while she took me to the ER. We never expected that reply since we would have dropped anything to help them.

I have found that some people cannot deal with the situation and avoid you. Your situation disrupts their 'happy' lives. They don't want to believe that it could happen to them. I would say that a good 1/3 of my friends turned out to be fair weather friends.

The pleasant surprise have been the friends who stepped up and did things I never asked them to do. We basically got a new group of friends since DX; some friends just faded away while others are doing too much. I hope you can find these friends too.

"The ultimate measure of a person is not where they stand in moments of comfort and convenience, but where they stand at times of challenge and controversy" - Dr. M. L. King

Jim
 

brooksea

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Liz,

I'm sure your Mom will help you out tremendously! Sometimes those that we expect the most out of disappoint us greatly. I'm betting you'll find help in unexpected places without even asking in the near future.

You sisters- in-law will soon regret their aloofness.
 

CindyM

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Hey Liz- everybody's right. You deserve help and the sisters can go pound sand! I was thinking out you all day. I am only 5 hours away and could be out there in a half a day. Course I get so wiped the only thing I am good for is giving directions and I doubt hubby and the teenagers would like a stranger doing that. Just call up your sisters in law and tell them your friend from Massachusetts offered to help.

Maybe we can guilt them into getting off their a**es. :-D Cindy
 

liz

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CJ and Jim -

A perfect example are the guys who volunteered to paint our house. These are a bunch of guys from where I work who were falling all over themselves looking for a way to help me. My mother had the same experience when she had cancer - friends who evaporated into thin air; neighbors who came out of the woodwork to give rides to chemo.

As for the SILs, we're just going to have to let that wash over us. There is plenty good in our relationships over the years; too much to toss the lot over one bad moment. At least we know where we stand. Besides, Frizz is right.....it would be a privilege to help me out. So much so that I think I should be charging folks for the honor and not giving it away for free! :-D

And yeah, my mom rocks. Her chicken corn soup is "to die for".

Thanks all for your kind words.

Liz
 

liz

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Hey Cindy -

We must have cross-posted. Don't you worry - my mom and I have the whole guilt trip thing well in hand. She's going to make them a big Thanksgiving dinner which we'll be serving in our ripped up kitchen. I'm considering pushing all our living room furniture into the middle of the room, covering it with a drop cloth, and making everybody stand. Maybe that will help them get a clue. :twisted:

Liz
 
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