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On Being Homeless And Desperate

January 16, 2012

Being homeless sucks. It really does. Days of living out of a suitcase, wearing the same two to three outfits over and over again, sharing a bed at all times, eating whatever doesn’t involve a heat source to cook it or from whatever fast food is closest and cheapest, trying not to freak out over the steadily declining bank account balance and getting one’s hopes up over and over again that maybe, just maybe, we’ve finally found a place to live – only to have them dashed to the ground – has really taken its toll.

I will be the first to say that I have a slight inclination to be exceptionally stubborn and prideful. I handle my own business on my own as much as possible. My experiences have proven to me that relying on others has this unfortunate tendency to end badly because people don’t come through when you need it the most. I couldn’t tell you if it has to do with people at large not knowing how to handle it when the “strong” people in the bunch need help or if it is simply that I rely on the wrong people. Regardless, I will go out of my way to avoid relying on others. No expectations, no disappointments. And yes, I definitely cafe at the moments when I have no choice but to rely on others for something to get accomplished.

The circumstances my family and I have found ourselves in has proven to be very interesting because of the people who have stepped up and how they have chosen to help us. One very wonderful lady has given us a place to crash until the end of the month or we find a place, whichever comes sooner, which has helped drastically slow down theĀ hemorrhaging from my bank account. It is a temporary relief, if nothing else. But it does not remedy the actual and ongoing problem.

A couple days ago, at the request of my mother and a couple of friends, I created a cause page for people to submit donations to to help us pay the rather large security deposit amounts we’ve had demanded of us in order to move our gang of misfits into a permanent home. I was really reluctant to do this, but knowing that we really had nothing left to lose, I figured I would give it a shot.

The response to my plea for help has been interesting. On the public page, most of the donors chose to be anonymous, however as the page administrator, I get to see the names of everyone who donated. What I have found the most fascinating was not actually ho has chosen to donate, but rather the people who have not. The knowledge that some of the people I consider my closest friends have not in any way contributed has really left me aching to ask “why?” Knowing all too well that many cannot contribute because they are also hurting financially, it makes me somewhat angry that the ones who are capable are not helping. Then again, I am a bit rueful to watch strangers on the internet be more willing to help fund surgery for a cat, as quickly as possible, yet unwilling to give even a dollar to help a fellow human being.

I don’t know how to handle the hurt and frustration I feel. I don’t want it to be fury fueled by entitlement. Do I deserve the help? Maybe. Everyone has their own criteria for giving aid to others. Do I need the help? Well, yes. I don’t know that people really understand my level of desperation and complete humiliation to publicly start begging for money because I’ve tapped out every resource currently at my disposal without taking out the military equivalent of a payday loan and I’m saving the couple hundred dollars that will be in case I hit the point of broke that I can’t pay bills or for food.

By asking for help, I’m admitting that I’ve failed in my role as provider for my family. Lord help me, I’ve tried. If I had known that this move would end up so terribly, I would have come out here alone and left them in our established home. By asking for help and having the response be minimal and mostly localized, I feel a goddamn fool. I would rather have continued struggling with this alone than have the reality thrown in my face of who, of those capable, actually is willing to help.

I have 526 friends on Facebook and between that and the friends of the people who re-shared my link on there, Tumblr, Google+ and a few other websites, easily a couple thousand people have potentially seen our cause page and have had the opportunity to help.

Of my 526 friends: six have donated on the page, a couple more have donated offline and about six have re-shared the cause page.

And people wonder why I don’t ask for help.

I hate myself for feeling like anyone should be helping me. I hate that I can’t handle this myself. I hate that I’m more upset about the people who are fully capable of helping that aren’t than grateful to the people who have helped. I hate that I want to go cause physical harm to all the people who told me “if I ever needed anything” that are suddenly unavailable. I hate that I know this will fuel the intensity of my pushing people away in the future. Trust no one and you’re never left vulnerable and helpless.

I’m tired of being a failure. I’m tired of not being good enough.

Until Next Time,

~Rose

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