Let’s face it life is hard enough with all of the hoops you have to jump through during a day. Why add to that by carrying the burdens of other people’s needs on your back—people who won’t get up or move to change their situation. Sure, it feels good helping others out from time to time but that can come back to haunt you if you are not careful. Do not become a safety net, ladder, or crutch for someone who is not doing what he or she should be doing in life to get ahead. Everyone wishes to be home enjoying life and family, but that is not reality. You do what you have to do to make sure you have what you need.

If it has been a few months that you have been helping out that loved one or close friend who’s trying to get their life back on track, it may be time to pull back. There is nothing worse than going over to visit them only to find they have not left the bed or couch. Ouch that good deed is making them spoil. Stop putting stress on your bank account. If you can get up every day and go to work, so can that loved one or good friend. Know when to stop handing people your bank card and learn to say no. Your relationship is not dependent on taking care of them because they are in a rough spot in life. That is not your fault. They must get up and work because it is their responsibility to do so and not yours.

Know that people will gladly rest their feet on your shoulders, having you carry and take care of them and their family if you let them. Do not be out here struggling for someone else who does not care about you. Know that if you do not get to the bottom of this and decide what you are not willing to do, it will cause major damage in your relationship. Here are the ways they can use to manipulate you.

  1. They make you feel guilty for them being out of work.
  2. They play on your relationship and how close you are.
  3. They are always “sad” and “depressed.”
  4. They know you can’t or shouldn’t continue to help them but they still ask.
  5. They keep you in the loop with everything that is going on in their life hoping that you help them out more.

It is your responsibility to say no or enough is enough. Bringing them a few items from your food pantry or a meal you cooked is okay.  It is just all of the extra stuff you are trying to do that you should not be doing.  As long as you take care of someone you make it difficult for them to get up and do for themselves. Why do they need to work when you are willing to bring the money you worked for to them for doing nothing other than complaining about what they won’t do?

Pull it together; get yourself back on track and keep your money in your pocket. Whatever is going on in that person’s life, I am sure they will find another to rest their burdens on, if not get a job, but for now you are done being a foot stool!

Cut your losses and move on. If your relationship with them is able to recover, wonderful but keep your bank account out of it. If it’s not able to recover, take it as a learning lesson and know that a true relationship is all about give and take. You were caught up in the giving and they in the taking. There is no positive balance in that!

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