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People who offer you help then snatch it away when you accept? (long)

(16 Posts)
BibiBlocksbergv2 Tue 23-Dec-14 13:51:57

Genuinly very puzzled and (in some cases upset & humiliated)

Why do some people offer me their help with great enthusiasm and all manner of unrequested embellishments only to change their mind at the last minute?

Recent examples:

I am currently looking for a new place to live as my housemate is driving me up the wall.

As part of my search I though I'd ask a friend of mine if he had anything suitable on his books at the moment (owns a handful of rental properties) or if he could let me know if he got to hear of anything.

With two cats and me to home i need to explore every avenue iyswim.

Next thing I know, he is offering me a house belonging to him which is standing empty, says the cats are no problem, after lots of 'are you sure's' from me and 'don't be silly's glad to help out a friend' from him we agree a weekly rental amount and set off to view the place. Very nice etc so while there I tell friend I would love to live there and when he thinks I might be able to move in?

As soon as the words were out of my mouth friend started acting strange, really uncomfortable and acting as if i had a cheek actually wanting to move in! When pressed on it, he cites worries about the cats scratching the skirting boards and oh, the house is up for sale and he needs to speak to the estate agent & vendor first yadda yadda blah blah. I felt so humiliated I can't even begin to describe it.

Thought I'd found a gorgeous place last week, landlord falling over himself to assure me cats not a problem at all, he is cat lover himself etc, great, agreed to let me have the place then when I tried to arrange paying deposit etc suddenly he no longer wants to rent to someone with cats but would allow a small dog.

Fair enough, people change their minds but why all the bullcrap of utter enthusiasm and reassurances (both of the above)

Couple of friends who have spent months pressing me to call them if there's anything they can do to help then when I finally asked them I got point blank no's again delivered in the same sort of exasperated 'you've got a cheek' tone with facial expressions to match.

I don't ask for help easily, am normally fiercely independent and rely only on myself but the time had come where I needed a hand with one or two things.

What the heck is going on? Is it me? The cats? Are the people with the properties simply wanting someone to go round and ooh and aah at their (empty) palaces?

Clues very gratefully received as this is starting to really do my head in.

Thanks in advance, sorry for essay.

AlpacaYourThings Tue 23-Dec-14 13:55:37

Some people want to be seen to be the 'good guy' offering to help out, but they don't actuslly want to follow through.

Glory hunters, essentially.

Shitty behaviour but I have seen it a lot.

BibiBlocksbergv2 Tue 23-Dec-14 14:09:27

Thanks Alpaca, just wondering where the glory comes in for them - do you reckon they pat themselves on the back for simply having made the offer?
ie same level of satisfaction as if they'd actually carried out the offered help?

AlpacaYourThings Tue 23-Dec-14 14:23:46

Yes, IMO they want to look good at the time and pat themselves on the back about how lovely they are but panic about following through on what they have offered as they aren't actually willing to do it.

DH has a friend like this and she is a nightmare to be around. Constantly offering to help etc but then cancels at the last minute of you actually take her up on an offer.

Joysmum Tue 23-Dec-14 14:29:06

rgere are like add of people who offer to score brownie points and be seen as the good guy, but only when they believe their offers won't be accepted.

I used to get really annoyed at people always asking 'are you sure?' When I'd offer something. Then I realised it was because people are used to being let down and aren't used to genuine people who actually mean what they say!

So you're not alone.

BibiBlocksbergv2 Tue 23-Dec-14 14:54:53

Horrible! Not so bad when it involves something like offering to take something to the tip for you but when it comes to stuff like offering a home to someone who is desperado to get out of a bad situation, it's like offering a sausage to a starving dog then taking it away while sneering 'neh neh neh neh'

Not the best analogy I know but its what it feels like.

SugarOnTop Tue 23-Dec-14 15:01:47

they're arseholes to put it bluntly!

what you could try in future, do not let on that you have any pets but that you are looking for a home where pets would be allowed if you decided to have any in the future. that's the trick i used when looking for a new flat - the difference in attitude from landlords who knew i already had pets to the ones who didn't know was amazing....

BibiBlocksbergv2 Tue 23-Dec-14 15:08:58

Thank you for that SugaronTop - very helpful.

I did briefly entertain the idea of just not mentioning the cats and moving them in anyway. Well, after so many rejections its only natural I suppose smile

Wouldn't do it though, not fair on landlord/lady or the cats, living a life of residing illegally.

Anyway, I will try that change in tack immediately & see what happens. After all, neither side is defining how soon 'the future' will be are they smile

mydoorisalwaysopen Tue 23-Dec-14 22:05:28

Maybe some people have a different kind of help in mind. I offered to occasionally babysit for a friend if she needs it, she said thanks but what I really need is for you to do my tax return. I said no and probably looked a bit shocked by the request.

OFSTEDwanker Wed 24-Dec-14 02:56:20

I was sexually assaulted on a public street, opposite the NPG in London actually. Two female friends separately offered to be with me for the court case. They had other things to do when I rang up to call them on the offer.

I testified on my own (no OH at the time or family near) and was gratified when the public prosecutor?? sounds US, but you know what I mean, came over at the end to congratulate me on my testimony. I had never been in court before.

A tiny bit shit.

Sorry, OP, not to upstage the cat situation. Some people are tossers.

FolkGirl Wed 24-Dec-14 07:39:16

People say, "let me know if there's anything I can do", but they don't mean it. It's a valediction; it's just something people say when closing a conversation. They don't actually want to know when they say, "how are you?"

Your friend didn't intend you to take up the offer of the house (although if he's a LL and you'd have been paying rent, I can't really see the issue!) and probably thought you'd change your mind before he had to.

My brother is a bit like that - always there for you, unless you actually need him...

People are just a bit strange at times. I don't often make these offers of support but, when I do, I absolutely mean it and expect to be taken up on it. So not everyone is like that.

FolkGirl Wed 24-Dec-14 07:41:25

Like they don't actually want to know

Spiritualknot Wed 24-Dec-14 11:32:05

Crazy people. A friend's colleague offered to drive her to the church on her wedding day and then backed out, said she needed to use the car for something else on that day. I took her instead (had a posh car at the time!)

Setting up my own business at the moment, lady with similar business said I could rent a room from her and use her website. It was all arranged, we were chatting about it, she showed me the room and then she remembered someone else was taking the room full-time from January, so I couldn't have it after all.

I rented out a house for a while with a no pets policy. Last 2 tenants had dogs they didn't mention.... so I think some people don't actually mention their pets.

Egghead68 Wed 24-Dec-14 17:57:49

I' ve had this happen to me. I think people just offer to help to be polite.

On the flip side sometimes I offer to help people and in my head I have in mind a little bit of help (e.g. a few hours). However the other person then requests what I consider to be a lot of help e.g. requiring more than 2 full days of my time). I do try to get out of this then if I can.

rootypigsinblankets Wed 24-Dec-14 18:09:11

Baby DD and I had a really tough year last year (homeless, among other things) and I got very little help. It's always said, isn't it, that you just need to ask, everybody said that! 'anything you need rooty, just say'. But when I did, very few wanted to. (The ones who did - and they were the ones who offered without being asked, and came through - saved me, and I am forever grateful.) But honestly, I was on my knees and screaming and many people close to me either didn't notice or didn't care.

I don't mind, actually, everyone has their lives. But I wish people wouldn't say that you only need to ask for help. Because it's just not the case.

springydaffs Wed 24-Dec-14 23:07:18

It's shocking isn't it. I cant count how many times this has happened in my life - they like the sound of themselves being wonderful, that's all. You may feel humiliated but it isn't you who should feel humiliated, so don't. They are the wankers, not you.

One word though: if somebody offers something, don't gush, thanking them profusely. Be matter-of-fact. That's another thing I've learned: the more distant you are, the more people fall over themselves.

It's funny old world. In the meantime, start collecting friends you know are trustworthy. They'll be on one hand but worth collecting.

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