A neighborhood Facebook group I joined keeps me in the loop. There are times, however, when I wonder if this is such a good thing. This group is a lively one when it comes to the sharing of information ("Traffic is bad on the bridge), complaints ("Go away Hipsters!") and neighborly inquiries ("Did someone lose their chickens?" Yes, Portlandia films in my neighborhood often ;-> ). But there was a post recently that had me shaking my head. I'm just not sure what to think of the inquiry and I wasn't sure if it was a put on. Someone in the neighborhood wants things, in great condition, for free and she wants them a.s.a.p. Read the post and tell me what you think:
"I had my baby shower a few days ago and didn't get anything. It's a boy. So if anyone has anything I need that I can have for free that would be amazing. I'm due within a few weeks so I need them asap: infant soothing swing, gliding bassinet with storage underneath and mobile that plays lullabies and stuff, diapers and wipes any size, soft rocking glider and ottoman in great condition, baby bath, and anything else I can't think of right now. Please let me know if u have anything for me."
Maybe my reaction isn't the most polite, but my jaw dropped. Was this a real request? She seriously had a baby shower and didn't get anything so now she turns to Facebook neighbors for her wish list fulfillment? She is asking strangers to provide an infant swing, a mobile that plays lullabies, a glider with ottoman - in great condition - and a bassinet with storage underneath. And get this, with further investigation I found that she doesn't live in town however, her mother lives near by and she visits her mother a lot. So, well, yeah.
Comments from the group were perfect in directing her to facilities that help for just these circumstances. I resisted in commenting. I have so many questions but I don't think I could write them in a way that doesn't sound judgmental.
Breaking it down here's what happened: A stranger didn't get gifts she wanted from a party. Upset, she goes to Facebook and asks for what she wants. Hmmm. There was no "Does anyone know who/what/where I can contact to help me?" Or, "Anyone know if there are organizations I can contact to help me out?" Perhaps I wouldn't be so irritated if she had included the sentiment of appreciation, if the understanding that generosity is a huge factor in this transaction. I didn't get either one of those from this post. Oh, also the fact that these items need to be in "great condition". The last line just gets me:
"Please let me know if u have anything for me."
I fully support helping others. We all have our moments of being in need and I want to help. I give, support, donate often. I just feel this post/request was over the top. What do you think?