Seniors step up. They are usually the “first responders” when family, friends and even complete strangers need help, but the idea of accepting help themselves is a different picture altogether. Why is accepting help such a bad thing? Seniors cherish their independence but tend to forget that accepting help is okay. There is a fine line between being independent and in being stubborn. It is the stubborn streak that makes the idea of joining a support group, hiring outside help, or asking a family member for a ride feel like an admission of weakness. It is time to put things in perspective; forget this nonsense. People help each other; it is what they do. Think about it. Do you remember how good it made you feel when you were able to help someone else? Why in the world would you deprive the people who care about you from feeling that way? Stop thinking of yourself as a burden; remember the times when you said “yes” when family and friends needed advice, financial help, a ride, or a place to stay. Rejecting help makes you look foolish, and it makes your loved ones want to tear out their hair. Refusing help is not a measurement of courage or determination but rather a statement that you don’t care. In essence you are telling your daughter, the members of your church and other friends that you don’t care that they worry about you. If you enjoy helping others, and most everyone does, it stands to reason that others do too. Give your loves ones the opportunity to feel good about themselves. People want to help, they like to help, but you have to let them in. Things you can do: • Work around their schedule; no last minute requests unless there is an emergency. • Pay for help or figure out ways you can barter or trade services. • Be generous with your time and return the favors whenever you can. • Take care of yourself so that you can be as independent as possible. Feel good about yourself and let other people feel good too. A smile, a thank you and a loaf of homemade bread will go a long way.