During the Holidays, in the spirit of generosity, I will give money to people who I know need help. I recently did this for someone, but now I regret it, because they have started showing up everywhere wanting more. I don’t want to say I’m being stalked, but this person has now made posts on my FaceBook page and even showed up at my work. I’ve tried to point this person toward the social service agencies in our community but that message is not getting across. What do I do and how do I not let this one person kill my spirit for giving?
Sadly, I’ve heard of this before. You want to help someone out, not create a nuisance for yourself. I’m guessing you know that if this does become a “stalking” issue, or you start to fear for either your personal safety or that of your family, you should contact the police? Where FaceBook is concerned, I’m guessing you know to change your privacy settings, unfriend, block or report this person? The bigger questions may be how to exercise more discernment over who you give money to, and how to not kill your amazing spirit for giving?
I like how you have already tried to point this person in the direction of your community agencies. While it feels less personal to donate to the local soup kitchen or homeless shelter it does allow for that distance that may be necessary for your safety. People in need vary from the hard working family whose child suffered an illness or accident and need money to cover expenses not covered by their medical insurance, to the homeless and chronically mentally ill who roam the city streets. Understandably, you will be more at risk for general creepiness, if not stalking, if you give money to an unstable person.
My advice is this, when giving money directly to an individual try and find out more about them. See if they have had problems being inappropriate with others. If you hear they have, you can expect they will with you. Let your instincts guide you. If you get the sense this person is troubled, but you want to help them personally and not just give money to an agency, see if a nonprofit agency, or church will be your middleman and give this person your “anonymous” gift. Whatever you do, don’t let this one bad experience rob you of the joy of giving! Yes, folks, it is as joyful to give as it is to receive…keep that in mind during the holiday season!
Embrace your Personal Power with Life Coaching~
• What is your heart saying about not letting this negative experience kill your spirit for giving?
• How will you keep your spirit of giving alive?
• What boundaries would this person have to violate to lead you to take protective action?