I gave a homeless man two dollars for lunch today and he.....

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by tryinghard, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

    cried and cried and thanked me.....

    So I am in Mc Donalds buying lunch and a homeless man was asking people for money so he could buy lunch and everyone either ignored him or told him no. I felt so bad because he looked so down and sad. I took out my last two dollars and gave it to him. He just looked at me and started bawling crying. It was so sad to see a grown man in his fifties or sixties cry like that. I told him that was all I had but I hoped it helped him. He said it would more than I would ever know.

    All I could think of was that he was some mother and father's difficult child.
  2. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    That was very nice. If everyone had that much heart the world would be a different place.
  3. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    OMG. That made me cry.

    I had the same experience about a year ago. The man just started crying, and then I started crying too. Sometimes, it is just the right thing to do.
  4. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

    I just got the chance to tell my husband and I cried telling him.

    It was such a small thing that obviously meant so much to him. I will never forget his face and the absolute look of gratitude and humilitation combined.

    On two previous occassion in the last year I have been approached by women asking for money in parking lots. Both times I said I couldn't help them. Both times I regretted it after. Once I did not believe the young women really need money, the other was an older homeless women who jumped out of the bushes while I was with my difficult child. My first instinct was to say No and keep walking. My son asked me why I told her no when I had money. That kind of caught me off guard and made me think.

    I guess this was my chance to redeem myself. I wish I had more than two dollars...
  5. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    The smallest acts make the biggest impact.
  6. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    If you aren't sure if they are being honest, you can tell them you will go buy them lunch and give it to them, instead of giving them money to go buy drugs. I've done that.
  7. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member

    What a heart-warming story - Thanks for sharing. When you said he was probably someone's difficult child, it hit home in a big way... It really made me think... WFEN
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Wow. Amazing.

    The last 3 people who begged me for $ for food refused the food and just wanted the $. Proof of the pudding that they didn't want the food (excuse the expression).

    You chose correctly. Lucky guy, and good for you!
  9. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Terry, I've found the same thing. Too often the people begging are just after cash, usually for the drug of their choice. But if you offer them what they say they want the money for... a genuine person will be happy to accept.

    A story I saw in a craft magazine that is put out by one of my favourite hobby supply stores was very heartwarming - they gave patterns for scarves and beanies in the magazine and told how a group of women were buying their cheap yarns and meeting for coffee and knitting, at a Melbourne inner city cafe. But they were knitting far more than they needed for themselves, so one day after they'd finished their coffee they walked around the streets of Melbourne and gave their scarves & beanies away to homeless people. They showed photos - those scarves looked so colourful and pretty, it would have lifted the spirits of both giver and receiver. They hadn't just knitted practical scarves, they'd knitted ones that were fashionable as well.

    Of course, giving it all away gives them an excuse to meet for more coffee and do more knitting!

  10. dreamer

    dreamer New Member

    a couple years ago I was at the VA medical center in parking lot, and a man came up to me, wanted to know if I had a couple $$. Well, I truly did not have any cash, I hardly ever carry cash. He said he was hungry. I DID have a lunch I had packed for myself for this trip to the medical center, and I had not yet eaten it, so I offered it to him. OMG, he had no idea what was in my lunch- but he refused it, and got very angry. He looked at my car, began pounding on it with his fists. He said anyone who could afford the car HAD to have money. Um, yeah, I did afford the car, becuz that car was my durango, which I needed to carry my mobility scooter and dhs wheelchair and our 3 kids. He then stood behind my car and would not let me back out of the parking space to leave.
    He was quite livid at me. I got very scared. Ironically the week before, me and husband had stopped at our fav place for coffee and a young man and woman were sitting there, the woman crying. The man left. The woman asked us for a cig. we gave her a full pack.....she kept crying, sitting alone, and the place we were at told her she had to leave. She had not ordered anything. She could not stay. Turns out the man had told her to meet him there, but then left her there. She said he had been going to take her to the homeless shelter for that nite, but that nite the shelter was 2 towns away (they move it nitely thruout our county, I amnot sure why, how they think people can get so far away with no public transportation here) husband had been to bank for something before he came for coffee (he met me there) so he gave her $20 and then he gave her a ride. (I followed in my car)

    It can be so hard to KNOW when to offer what......hard to know if you are being scammed....BUT when someone tells me they are hungry and they refuse to accept food I might offer, I can not believe they are as hungry as they are trying to say they are. I am glad the person you helped was grateful and glad. It sure can make one feel good inside to know they helped someone.
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Marg, what a wonderful story!

    Dreamer, that guy was scary. So sorry. He had issues with-anyone who had something he didn't have and you were his target of the day.

    I've turned down more people than I've given to. One guy walked up to me in my car, because I had foolishly left the window rolled down, and told me a sob story about how he wouldn't waste the $ (hmm, makes me wonder why he had to defend that, ya know?), he had 3 kids (which changed to 5 when he started to talk in circles) and that his wife had breast cancer. That's when I lost it. I actually yelled at him and told him I was just about to give him something but he blew it--I had just had breast cancer and I hadn't finished paying MY bills yet!
    difficult child got an earful. LOL.
  12. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    I truly believe if you follow your heart. You will know when to give.
    A friend I know offered a homeless lady in our neighborhood a 5.00 bill, and she refused it "because she only took tens and twenties". Hmmmm.....She really does live in the allies behind our houses, and she obviously is mentally ill-ish, however she was not in need.

    However, I have had certain people I literally feel compelled to give the shirt off my back - and when I did their gratitude floored me for days. It is those episodes that make giving worth it.
  13. Marg's Man

    Marg's Man Member

    In the same general vein is something a local radio station here in Sydney does every year is to have a 'knit-in'. I had never heard of the charity involved before but the wraps go all around the world to needy people. Last year they produced 148,000 ten inch squares to make into blankets which were then distributed all over the world.

    Here's the link:
  14. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Something I keep hearing people say (and not just Dr Phil!) is that you can't fix problems by throwing money at them. We sure know THAT one here in Australia - past governments have tried to fix various welfare problems by money handouts, and it only causes bigger problems. Other people go in, roll up their sleeves and get busy, with much more effective result.

  15. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    What a nice experience!

    I never give money. I've bought lunches for a few, but they refuse and just want cash. Nope.

    The one fun time was husband and I were at the 'party pit' at Harrahs. It's an outdoor area where there is a live band, food, etc. This poor guy was resting in the party pit propped up against a pole on the concrete. He was VERY ragged looking. I first got him up to dance with me. (I love to dance.) He danced a few songs then I asked him if he'd like some lunch. YES!! So, husband and I sat down at a table with a guy who hasn't bathed in eons and had a very nice lunch. People were looking at us like we were nuts. Actually, we are, but that's ok. At the end of lunch, I gave him $20 and told him to use it wisely. He promised he would.

    It's hard to sift through those who really need food, and those who need money for drugs/booze. I guess you just have to go with you gut feeling.