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  • How do you ask for assistance?

    Posted by deann-r on May 24, 2024 at 3:56 pm

    Last week I survived the dreaded dentist for my annual cleaning.  My hygienist is great and works with me so I’m as comfortable as possible.  Although I wish they would’ve made their new space more accessible, I must do a lot of maneuvering to get into position because their chairs are stationary, I’m grateful my chair has tilt and elevation eliminating the need to transfer.

    My headrest is positioned where I can usually pick my head up from it when my chair is at a certain angle.  Or I can drive ahead and stop to get the oomph I need.  At the dentist’s office I had been tilted back so long I couldn’t lift my head up.  Of course, there wasn’t enough space to do the drive ahead and stop trick, so I had to ask the hygienist.

    Thankfully she was more than happy to help, but she didn’t know what I meant when I asked if she’d set my head up.  What would you have said?  I proceeded to instruct her to put her hand behind my head and push my head forward.  We got it, but it was awkward.

    Do you ask strangers for assistance?  How do you tell them what you need?

    susana-m replied 1 month ago 3 Members · 3 Replies
  • 3 Replies
  • alyssa-silva

    May 27, 2024 at 8:54 pm

    I make everything awkward somehow, so not sure if you really want my input. 😂

    But I’m almost never without someone I know, which means I don’t usually have to ask a stranger for help. If I’m with a new caregiver (kind of like a stranger at first), I try to be as descriptive as possible. It sounds like you did a great job with your hygienist.

    What made you feel awkward? I can’t pinpoint why I sometimes feel that way. If someone is willing to help, then that shouldn’t make me feel uncomfortable!

    • deann-r

      June 2, 2024 at 9:23 am

      Like you said, people are usually more than willing to help. I think maybe we get comfortable with how our people do things so maybe that’s where the reluctance comes from. It’s that unknown factor.

  • susana-m

    June 18, 2024 at 5:25 pm

    For me the awkwardness holds a certain amount of shame. These are simple things that people do for themselves without thinking. We have to ask them to take time out of their day, to step away from what they’re doing to help us with something that seems inconsequential but makes a huge difference for us. And that doesn’t end, we will always need more help to do the most simple tasks.

    One time I was at a park and I wanted to take a picture from this old building. Tilted my chair for the right angle and lost my grip on the joystick *facepalm* Had to wait for someone to pass by for help.

    Generally, I go with, “pardon me, would you mind XYZ?” Try to be direct without going into all the reasons I want whatever it is. Defending why I want it can come across as defensive.

    What works for you?

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