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Hi. On September 14, 2023, a lady from a social media app told me that she could help me with clothes sewing. We meet online on September 16, and we meet in person at her house on September 23. I had two bags that contained a box of chocolate for her family and clothes for her daughter. (I wanted to show my gratitude before she even sewed anything for me.) A Cozy Earth Bamboo Creamy Color with Caramel Handles Canvas Bag (I got from a thrift store). My canvas bag contained different colors of fabric and clothes for her to adjust or use as a pattern with my small perfume jar inside. She kept my bag so that next time I wouldn't have to carry everything with me in my wheelchair. I cut a pattern for my dress that she purchased online in her sewing room. She was invited to a neighbor's house; therefore, she couldn't sew the dress that day. She told me she is busy with school, but later on we will get together to sew clothes together.  The sewing project was not my main happiness. She was studying to become a social worker, and she said she would be my friend. We kept in touch through email, phone calls, and text messages every once in a while, but I never knew when she was ready for us to start sewing.  Recently, I sent her an email asking when she would be available for us to meet and sew the dress. In the spring or summer.  Her reply shocked me. She apologized that she had been out of touch. A lot has happened since we last saw each other. Unfortunately, she's moving to the Denver/Boulder area on May 1st. She's working on packing up the house to get it ready for the movers and to sell it, so she does not have time to sew. She's packing her sewing room today, so she also doesn’t have access to all of her sewing tools. Again, she was sorry that she didn’t get to the projects we discussed, and she wishes me the best. Just like that. You think that when people know about the negative experience you went through with others, they will not do the same to you, but they will hit you harder than the previous person. I expressed my surprise and sadness in a polite manner. I prayed for the best for her. I kindly asked her to drop off my belongings in the lobby of my apartment building at any time that was convenient for her. And I sent another email politely giving a description of my belongings. She replied back hours later, saying she's sorry, but she has no idea where the fabric is; she cannot find where she put it. She would be happy to reimburse me for the fabric. Could I share my Venmo information and what she owes me? Firstly, I mentioned fabrics and other belongings. She probably searched the canves bag's price online and realized how expensive it was. She's also avoiding my other belongings.  She knows that I only receive SSI income, and I have been in a position to lose a lot of money to different scammers many times. No, she didn't do it to intentionally hurt me, but she definitely betrayed my trust. I won't ask her for money. Not because I don't have a Venmo account. But I don't know what to say to her for her to know how deeply she hurt me and how her behavior wasn't good for someone who's studying to become a social worker therapist. Please share your sample response if this has happened to you. Thanks!

Your advice

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Hello Beatrice! This is a tricky spot to be in. Knowing only what I do from your first post, I feel comfortable giving her the benefit of the doubt here. Moving is difficult, especially with kids and school, so it is likely that she really didn’t mean to hurt you on purpose, but again, without knowing more I can’t really speak to what you’re going through. Is there another reason outside your benefits that you don’t want to ask her for money? Going by your post, it sounds like she's acknowledged that this has caused you trouble and is trying her best to make it right by you. If you don’t want the money, maybe you could ask her to ship your things to you or arrange some kind of pickup once she’s able to unpack them? And if your benefits might stall if you receive the money, is there some way she could purchase the cloth and patterns online and have them shipped to you? Or maybe you could try to work out a deal with her; she sews the dress you wanted and you send her money for labor? Please feel free to share a little more about the situation!! I think maintaining open and honest communication with her would help both of you!!

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