Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,430
Registered: ‎03-11-2010

am i overracting to this situation?

  last night i was in a tizzy, but kept my mouth shut for the most part. i knew i needed to take a breath and step back.


we got a new neighbor across the street.  single woman appears to be late 30's to early 40's. 

our street the immediate houses are pretty friendley in general.   we just moved here a few months ago, and at least 3 neighbors came by to introduce themselves and say hi.  wow. that's never happened before.  


anyway, we just roll into the driveway, (myself, dh, and dd) and the new neighbor is blowing leaves into her driveway to clean up the yard.  she said she just got the blower, and it was supposed to also have a bagging feature but she didn't know how to use it.

  dh jumps/leaps from the car to tell her he has a "leaf vaccum" that would do a much better job for her, and proceeds to haul it out.

   i tried to tell dh that perhaps it would be better for him to show her how to use her new blower attachment rather than doing it for her with his equipment. 

   well that fell on deaf ears. oh well.  20 minutes later, he and dd come in, all happy about what he did, and he mentions that she gave him money. 

WHAT?  i'm thinking ok, she offered him money for his help.   then he tells me he accepted the money!!!  $30...they were over there for maybe 20 minutes.  

  I am mortified!!!!  she is going to be afraid to pull out that leaf blower, for fear dh is going to insist on "assisting" her again.  Jeeps! i'm all for helping out the neighbor, (which btw she didn't ask for) but to accept money......!!!! i was beside myself last night. but tried to not get too wound up, I didn't think i was over reacting at all, but ... maybe i was.

   last night i wanted to go over and give that money back.  you don't take money for doing a good deed. sigh. 

please don't be bashing on my dh for this.  he did it with a right heart. i just think that the good deed went a little south at the end. 

  thanks for letting me vent. 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,527
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

@kittyloo yes, overreacting. We have to let people thank us when they want to.   Sometimes their way of saying thanks is giving money.  Would you have viewed a gift card to a local restaurant differently?  Refusing it or attempting to refuse it… It’s useless. If you think you can help her figure out her attachment, do that and you won’t have to worry about this again. 


If I was concerned about anything, it would be the speed with which DH went to her aid. Your post sounded like he didn’t even go into the house first. Is that correct?


Once again, I’m glad I do not live in a neighborhood.

Keepin' it real.
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,175
Registered: ‎03-11-2010

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

How does he feel about it.  Would he return the money?  Perhaps she was the one who just insisted and insisted and he had to accept it.  I have been in that situation.  

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,283
Registered: ‎09-24-2011

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

You are correct - never take money for doing a good deed - kinda ruins the whole thing.Woman Frustrated


I think you could right this wrong by giving a donation to an animal shelter in her name:  everybody likes helping animals!  At least after you explain why you made the donation  she'll realize your DH was embarassed for his faux pas and in the future she'll know no payment required when help is given. 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 18,415
Registered: ‎11-25-2011

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

Your husband was in 20 minutes of Garden Cleaning Nirvana....

AND he got paid for it?  Win-Win.


Boys love their Toys...and a leaf blower is close to Home Depot Heaven.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,244
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

I understand the situation.  I'd probably feel similar (to you).


My advice is to just move on and don't think about it anymore.  


Maybe sometime you could go over with some cookies or a treat.  When you get to know them a little better the two of you will probably be laughing over this.


My next door neighbor (young boy) has done heavy lifting for me since he was in middle school.  He now has a full time job and goes to college at night.  


But he still comes over and brings up my boxes and heavy groceries.


I always pay him.  He used to say, "That's OK".  But as he's gotten older he understands the $25 or so I give him helps with his food.


I've finally gotten through to him the same thing I tell everyone who helps me..."Is your time valuable?"  


Your situation is different and I understand.  But don't worry about it.  Just do what I suggested...if you do I think you'll feel better.


ps You sound like such a lovely person.  If he's married to you he must be special too!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,917
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

I would give her back the money and let her know that your DH felt awkward in the situation as that was totally unexpected.i would introduce myself first though and maybe bring some cookies or flowers to welcome a new neighbor.

Posts: 53
Registered: ‎06-19-2014

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

Could it be that you may be a little wary of the young new female neighbor.  My husband does things like this all of the time with our neighbors.  Quite a few of them are single women.  It does not bother me unless I get bad vibes from the person.  Some of them have given him gift cards or something.  It is just in his nature to help people and I remind myself how lucky I am to have someone like him in my life.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,220
Registered: ‎11-15-2011

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

When you are offered money, just smile and say, "Thank you!"  Being single does not equate to being needy.  Paying your own way is important. 


Kudos to you for not getting upset with your husband for helping her.  Most wives would be upset.  Been there, been through that!

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,584
Registered: ‎06-03-2010

Re: am i overracting to this situation?

[ Edited ]

@kittyloo  For fear of insulting this new neighbor, I would keep the money or donate to an local food bank or animal shelter.  Because she gave it to your husband, I think she would be taken aback if his wife just walks over to her and takes it back.  For me, it's like insulting her and your husband - like being your husband's mommy who says he can't keep the gift.


I would donate it and once she's moved in, take some cookies or pie over, welcome her to the neighborhood and start off on the right foot.

......You look like I need a drink.....