I need to make a decision about helping out at a nonprofit event I used to help lead, I was one of like 3 people in charge, then decided to transition out of my role about a year and a half ago. Without going into lots of details about the story, my thought about my role there was “I was important.”
Regardless of if that is true or not, I reached out to the “leader” to buy 4 tickets to the dinner fundraiser event. It’s a big event requiring months of preparation, and a huge set-up and lots of work and lots of volunteers needed to pull it off. This will be the first year I don’t help.
She responded to my text with “Are you not planning to help?”
I replied “No. I can only attend this year.”
She said “I thought you promised me last year that you would still help the night of the dinner.”
I said “I don’t remember promising that 🤔”
She said “Oh I do, because I was super freaked out about you not being a part of the alumni, but that promise was my saving grace.”
I haven’t responded yet, I wanted to clean up my thinking around my decision.
I do not remember if I promised anything either way, regardless of if she says I did.
Where my brain stands today, whether I help or don’t help, I don’t like my reasons both ways.
Reasons for choosing to help at the event:
• I’m only doing this so she won’t get mad at me/be upset/not be disappointed
• My thoughts about me that I’m projecting onto other volunteers at the event: “Where’s (my name)?” I thought she used to run this event, now she’s not even helping? Gosh, what a selfish bitch/jerk.”
• I feel guilty and obligated.
Reasons to choose to not help at the event:
• I don’t want to help out, I resigned out of my officer position, I’m no longer involved in that group, I live an hour away now anyway, I promised my dad that my boyfriend and I would swing by, pick up carryout dinners, take them back to his house (3 mins away from the place they’re having us pick up the dinners from), then we’d all eat dinner together, if I volunteer, it would create logistical complications because where’s my boyfriend gonna sit while I do a shift? In the truck in the parking lot? Go hang out with my dad for the duration of the shift? All other things i’d then have to figure out and I’m not interested in trying to figure out those logistics
• I don’t like doing things for people pleasing reasons, for them to feel or not feel something with me in their C line, and I don’t like doing things especially because I feel obligated and/or guilty because “I’m not doing them, but should.”
Even if I could figure out how to like my reasons for going and helping, I still don’t want to do that.
I need to figure out how to like my reasons for not going and helping, and just buying tickets.
Reasons I COULD decide to think about choosing to not go and volunteer at the event:
• I already made plans to babysit my nephew and bring him up to meet my dad (long story short, I technically did already have this as a plan even though it would be relatively easy to “get out of” – I don’t want to get out of it, I fucking love my nephew so goddamn much and I cherish every second of babysitting time)
• I already made plans to eat dinner with my dad.
• At least I’m coming to buy tickets to the event, we didn’t really have to drive a whole hour up to do that, (actually as I’m typing it I realize we are planning to buy tickets because I feel obligated (I used to run the show there, it’s the least I can do), and I would feel guilty for not buying the tickets (It’s rude of me not to buy tickets.
• She can have her models back, I hadn’t been planning to help at that event this whole year, I technically already made the decision to not help, I’m sorry if there was any confusion or miscommunication or misunderstandings. Period. No explanation needed – I’ve made my clean decision to not go and I’m just going to stick to it instead of continuing to overthink this decision.
Ok here’s one of my UM’s:
C: Text conversation from above, needing to decide if I will volunteer or not volunteer to help at this event
T: I technically already decided not to go, (but she clearly disagrees).
A: Overthink my decision, worry about what she might potentially think about me if I say no, project my negative thoughts about me onto the other volunteers, I second guess my decision that technically was already made, consider going and helping, I spin between going and not going, see what my boyfriend thinks I should do, think about over a year ago if I said I’d help or not help to try to figure out if she’s right or wrong (so then I can out-act my F of unsure, then that way I can be sure)
R: I don’t make a decision.
At the end of the day, this is just a decision. I’m always annoyed when I receive that piece of coaching, but it really is here.
Is it possible that I can decide to not help and be ok with not loving my reasons?