I Screwed Up by Asking for Help

I screwed up by asking for help.

I hate saying that.

After all, I’ve been teaching my Pre-TSD program to vets and public safety folks for years, and the first piece of advice I give them and their families is to ask for help early and often.

My family hit a weird rough patch recently, and I was determined I wouldn’t be too proud to ask for help. I even set up a Go Fund Me page.

Boy was it a mistake to seek help.

I don’t want to repeat the whole issue. You can read about it by scanning back the past few blog posts. Basically, without warning, we were refused housing and a lease renewal by a number of places because we have 5 kids. All this was happening as our current lease was expiring. Basically, we were headed straight toward homelessness.

Friends and family are weird in a situation like this.

You’ll have a few friends and family members who really care about you and will try to help, even if encouragement is all they can offer. Several of my friends even opened up to me about their own struggles so that we could pray and talk together. I appreciated this. But you’ll often have a larger number of friends and family who will smell blood in the water and see this as an opportunity to tear you apart. And they did.

Here’s a few things I learned during this struggle and my plea for help…

  • Many people’s reactions will go against standard teaching regarding stress and pre-suicide.
  • Don’t ask for help or at least be very careful who you ask for help from.
  • Everybody hurts, but not like the REM song where they eventually come together.
  • Luke 11:11 became very real to me- “If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?”
  • Your closest friends and family will question every decision you ever made before offering any help.
  • Christians aren’t the only ones to step up and offer assistance (although we’d like to think so sometimes).
  • Only post regular updates and happy posts on the blogs and e-mails if you want people to read them.
  • People like you as long as you don’t need anything from them.

During this struggle, I started watching the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why. In retrospect I shouldn’t have. It made me consider things I shouldn’t be pondering. I guess what I’m saying is that this struggle and what happened because I asked for help are, in my 42 years of life, the lowest points of my entire existence. The things some of my friends said to me made me want to escape in any way possible from being hurt anymore.

Also during this time, a good friend of my dad’s, a guy that I’d known since I was in elementary school killed himself. The thing that I kept kicking around in my head was that there was just so much going wrong that he couldn’t take it anymore. I kept asking myself if I was near that point as well. Imagine someone you thought was a good friend saying things worse than this to you.

To be completely open and honest, it was thoughts of my kids that brought me back to a safe place. “Life insurance doesn’t pay out in a suicide” was my mantra. I knew doing something extreme and terminal would just put them in an even worse position.

I’m over it now, because the situation has been resolved and things are better. But this issue took me to a bad place that I know I’ll never forget. I’ve purged some people from my life that were toxic. I restructured some routines and tasks in my daily life. I’m getting closer to God. To quote from a Clive Cussler book I read recently, “Mistakes were made. They’re being addressed.”

With all that said, I’ll leave you with a quote from Brian Dixon-

“Your failure is not something to be embarrassed by. It’s a springboard to launch off from.”

This message was written by a team of geeks, nerds, gamers, and Dr. David Powers. You can always find us at www.callsignredbeard.com. Thanks for reading!

In the words of Starship Troopers, “Would you like to know more?”





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