Offers of help

People keep saying, "let me know if there's anything I can do to help". 
What help have you needed and what " help" has helped the most?
Single Mum, 5yr old with developmental delays and ASD, no family available, new to the area, limited amount I can ask of friends. Don't want to feel like I'm using people or taking advantage. I have no idea what I will need, what I can ask for.
I've done up a card with my contact phone and email that says, "What can you do, What one thing", as I figure if someone loves cooking, asking for a meal I can freeze is ideal. If they can sew, making cotton caps for during chemo is fantastic.
Any suggestions?


  • SoldierCrab
    SoldierCrab Member Posts: 3,446
    hi @rosehaven
    here is a calendar that BCNA put together with our input about what helps us. when we are going through treatment. 

    Here is a little list I thought might be good 
    • someone to come and give you some respite 
    • someone to take your son for a playdate if he is up to that, or visiting so he is getting some outside stimulation 
    • Someone to weed the garden or mow
    • Maybe some ladies who are willing to be on a roster to take you to appointments. 
    • Do you have a breast care nurse she could point you in the direction of some services.... I know our local cancer council helped to pay for some massages and regular cleaning for me.  it depends on their funding I think 
    • Do you have any family support even via phone or internet connection? 
    • community transport if you need help getting to appointments. 
    • These are just a few. 
  • iserbrown
    iserbrown Member Posts: 5,566
    Hi Rose - check out home help with your local Council. 

    Little things like if you strip your bed on the morning they are due and get the sheets in the wash and fresh ones on the edge of the bed - they can remake the bed and hang out the wet washing.  Depending on where you are at with recovery hanging wet washing can be a no no!
    Do you have a community Health in your area - they will soon find drivers for appointments et cetera and give you contacts for other domestic duties that you can't manage in the early days
    Take care
  • primek
    primek Member Posts: 5,392
    Grreat suggestions already. Sometimes just someone to visit and have a chat or take you out for a cuppa. It really helped me to get out the house. Thank goodness Maccas has pretty good coffee as often ideal with younger ones with the play equip. You'll most likely need some wooly hats coming into cooler weather as you won't have a lot of hair then either. I eventually got into cotton if people can keep an eye out for oblong ones...anything  $10 or under. I found sone at Kmart last year for $4. Too hot for really hot weather but great for spring. If you swim...I got a uv cap...cancer council have those...made of bather like fabric. You can go in with it on and a floppy hat over it...and go in the pool.. .without the hat.  Might be good if you want to take your son to the pool. Unlike a rubber swim cap it gets wet which cools off your head.

    Found the link for the fabric swim caps
  • melclarity
    melclarity Member Posts: 3,524
    @rosehaven i totally hear you and these wonderful ladies have pretty much covered it. Im a single parent also and had very little support. What i needed the most and didnt get was meals ever. The other thing i would have appreciated was help with getting my kids to and from school. Keeping in touch with your childs Teacher/school  and anyone who can help out with that. X Melinda 
  • rosehaven
    rosehaven Member Posts: 11
    @melclarity, meals I will definitely put on my list of asks. Thanks.
  • socoda
    socoda Member Posts: 1,767
    Hi Rosehaven, I reckon if your friends are asking it's because they do want to help. Don't feel like your taking advantage of them, you are actually helping them feel they are able to assist you in a time when you need it!! Wouldn't you like to help them in the same circumstances?? It's a great feeling to be able to help someone and it doesn't mean that your going to be expecting them to be on call 24/7. Why not write a list of things you do such as household chores, shopping, cooking cleaning, ironing, mowing lawns etc etc... If you have someone wanting to help ask them what they'd like to do or how much time they'd like to spend assisting and then allocate them something to do!! Win win!!! And I don't know if it's financially viable but if you have some friends making you meals throughout the week but still have a shortfall try and see if you can supplement with something like lite and easy to make things easier on yourself. Xx Cath
  • Zoffiel
    Zoffiel Member Posts: 3,373
    edited March 2017
    Laundry. I've just finished chemo and live on my own and don't need much help now, but ten years ago when I first went through this a lady that I didn't really know that well used to call around once a week, pick up a load of washing, take it home and then bring it back washed, ironed and folded.
    My son was 13 at the time; at least his school uniforms looked presentable--he was old enough to put a load of washing on but ironing was a step too far. By that stage I couldn't have cared if he went to school in his PJs so that simple act of kindness really meant a lot.
  • nikkid
    nikkid Member Posts: 1,766
    My girlfriends banded together (and they're doing it again for my upcoming reconstruction) and created a food bank: it just needed two very organised people to oversee it and then 'allocate' a date. We left an esky with cold packs in it out the front just next to the porch and they would drop off their meal on their day. My boys loved it - felt like they were at some fancy restaurant! But what it did do was give my friends something very concrete and oh so appreciated to do to help me.

    I felt awkward accepting this help - but decided I would accept anything that was offered to me.

    The other thing was my cleaner and another friend offered to do the ironing. That was a hard one, but well worth accepting...and of course, a few friends offered to drive me to appointments or take me out for coffee.

    In the end, I felt very very blessed to have this support and certainly much more comfortable accepting it next time.

    About 6 months afterwards, I asked the Otis Foundation if we could have one of their places for a few days and they gave me their beautiful Daylesford spot: and I asked any of the girls who were on the food bank to come. It was my way of saying 'thank you'. I'll do the same thing this time round  :)