You know how when you’re doing something and people involved in that something say things like “anything you need, anything I can do to help, just let me know!”
And you know how that is complete and utter bullshit? Because it IS.
I am WeePiglet’s Girl Scout leader. I have a co-leader, who, frankly, seems to be checked out of this whole thing. On the one hand, I don’t blame her - our troop went from 6 girls to 21 girls and has settled at 15 girls. They’re in 3rd and 4th grades, so they’re loud and obnoxious and basically terrible at all times. We are definitely not a troop that sits quietly and does crafts.
But, since she is mentally checked-out of the whole thing, I am doing EVERYTHING. I plan and run the meetings, I mete out discipline (I send people from the room if they just can’t use their inside voices, etc). I run the sales, I disseminate the information about various programs available, I coordinate service projects, etc etc etc. It’s a lot of fucking work, which I do, for free.
So, some of the other parents have said “oh, I’ll help out! Anything you need!” FINE. Run the sale! “Oh, I couldn’t do that.” OF COURSE NOT. Here’s the booklet with all the available programs, maybe send out an email now and then telling people what’s up? “Gosh, I wouldn’t have time for that.” OF COURSE NOT. Maybe look around for service projects we can do or be the person who finds things for us to do, like tour the grocery store or a restaurant or the bank or the animal shelter or the fire station or whatever the hell? “I wouldn’t even know where to start!!” NEITHER DO I, AND I DON’T HAVE TIME TO FIGURE IT OUT.
Why, just this weekend, I spent a great deal of time running around getting everyone’s registration money for camp, because I’d been asking for a month and it was due yesterday. I GUARANTEE there will be at least one mom who says to me “can I still register for camp?” NO YOU CANNOT. This is the shit I need to offload to another responsible adult.
I understand this impulse to make this kind of offer. We all want to be thought of as helpful and nice, but when someone asks you, point-blank, for a very specific help and you can’t/won’t do it? What happened to “anything you need?” hmmmmmmmm????
The kicker? “Gosh, our troop doesn’t seem to do very much.”
BURN IT DOWN. BURN IT ALL DOWN.