Better Together

Feeling Overwhelmed and Frustrated by things

Updated on June 3, 2020 in Share Challenges
4 on May 9, 2020

I have been very much a recluse for several years and off and on throughout my life.

I have a lot of things that have to be done around my property that I pretty much have to do alone, due to not being able to let people in very well, not having money to hire the work out, and not having a lot of capable people to help anyways.

I am replacing the roof on my shed. As usual, the task turned out to be bigger than expected because of the degree of rot in the wood, even parts of the frame. So I will need to use makeshift roofing jacks and the rolloff container gets picked up Monday, so I am runnign out of time.
I have a couple days of good weather and not having to work, but I got a CSA box and last time I wasted the whole thing because I wasn’t used to cooking and did not get the food prepared or preserved, so it spoiled. I have been cooking all day and still have a bit more to do, and I need to be fixing the shed roof.

I have a 75 foot high ash tree that is dead and starting to lean and needs to be cut down asap, stuff dropping from it has damaged my pickup truck and is part of why there is so much rot in the shed roof. I will have to rent something to do that and that is going to take credit card debt to get brought down, though much less if I do it myself. I cannot afford to have it done, period.

I have to finish fixing the attic window, I need to seal the foundation since the porch has been taken off. I am thankful tot the Lord I am somewhat physically capable of doing such things and am a big enough tomboy to partly enjoy it, but most of it really needs to be done yesterday, there is so much of it, and all of it is a slow process particularly if done by oneself. I have to put siding on the back of the house and install soffits all over the house, it is currently without soffits and no insulation or covering of any kind on part of the back wall. Those are going to be big jobs too, and I have to finish replacing the insulation in the attic. I have to fix a rust hole in the bottom of the car, tune up the truck, and fix some body issues on the truck too, to get it ready for sale so I can get the tree mess resolved without too much interest incurred. I’m not renting anything until the truck is done, that way I can get rid of it as soon as no longer need it, and pay things down or off.


I do not have a lawnmower anymore, and my yard is growing up and weeds are getting through the mulch layer and the roofing underlayment that was keeping them at bay in my backyard. I will have to use the rest of the herbicide I bought, (I hate that stuff, I am an environmentalist but I can’t keep up right now, so there is no other choice 🙁 )My house is an absolute mess inside and has roaches and ants and needs serious deep cleaning and organizing and I JUST CAN’T DO IT ALL MYSELF! But I have to. The stress is exhausting and thus slows me down. Depression and anxiety fed into the development of this situation, as well as whoever put the 2nd addition on the back of the house really made of it, I had to redo a lot of that area to stop the roof from leaking once and for all, but I went into debt dealing with that and the job was too big to afford having done even with the loan I got. So I have bills and a paycut in this new job (but more time, for right now, thankfully) and ALL this crap to do. Alone.
And it’s lonely, and embarrassing because of how bad the property looks and my vehicles look and my truck has to be parked in the backyard right now where the tree is falling apart…. And It causes me to feel ashamed. Makes me feel even less sociable than I normally do.

I made a list of the most important things and set it up like steps, but the stress exhausts me and slows me down. so today I have been cooking and now writing it out, and I’m going to take a break and hope I have energy to deal with the shed after a little while. Time is running out to get that old roof into the rolloff container.

I can’t get the remainders of the porch to come apart so they aren’t going this time, and I have thought of an alternative to how to dispose of the old insulation in the attic, so that took some stuff of fmy immediate Spring workload. Still, it’s a lot. It’s too much, basically, but nevertheless, it IS and so I have to deal with it. I don’t like loss of control feelings either, but that’s how I feel about it. I could probably enjoy it if it didn’t all need to be done yesterday and didn’t look so horrible and make the house look horrible and shameful.

I am glad I have enough physical health that I can get strong enough to do this stuff and am strong enough to very slowly do most of it as it is, but sometimes that doesn’t help enough and it feels like it will never get better, because there is so so so much to do and as it waits to get done, more damage can develop and make even more big chores….. that’s happened already, I have paint peeling all over my interior from that roof disaster last year, that the soffits and siding stuff is leftover projects from…..

I hate this.

So there it is. Does anyone else get overwhelmed? How do you deal with it? I’m done all I can think of to cut down the stress in list-making, order of operations planning, throwing as much off the ASAP list as possible, and taking yesterday afternoon off. I need more ideas if anyone has any.

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1 on May 11, 2020

I think your ideas of prioritizing what needs to be done immediately and letting the rest be put aside is a good one. It also sounds like you could really use some help and I wonder if you have any neighbors who would be willing to trade help with a project (they help you with one, you help them with one). I know at this time when a lot of people are out of work there may be more people looking for something to do that feels productive and gives them a sense of contribution. College-aged young adults might be especially interested to get out of their parents’ house to help. Of course, we have to consider social distancing, so keeping these projects to those that can be out of the house and away from one another is key.

I understand it may be difficult to ask for it, but people really like to be asked to help. It makes them feel good. If this is hard to do, think about how you feel when someone asks you for help. Often we forget how good that feels.

There is a website/app called Next Door that is a great way to connect with neighbors and perhaps set up a trade of sorts. I imagine there are other ways as well, and perhaps someone else can offer some.

I hope that is an idea you can use on some level. 

Best to you!


I have a plan involving hiring someone to do the tree, which is one of the biggest projects and most serious issues. I think I can pay for the help with what I make selling the truck, perhaps. Hopefully.

I figured out the one person I hung out with that I had left in my life the last few years is the person who did much of the damage causing me to have so much trouble asking for help and is possibly, I’m no doctor so IDK a narcissist. He’s unbelievably self centered, is the person who sold me this house, and though I’m sure none of us knew how bad it would be, he did know it was in bad shape and tried to sell it to me when I was still renting it and had barely the money for the rent let alone the trash bill he said he was tired paying and the repairs that were becoming pretty desperate even then…. I was like, I don’t have the money, at the time I was quite poor.
I keep spending time with him out of guilt thinking owed him something, like “He’s done so much for me” but all he did he counteracted with abusive and condescending, emotionally devastating things done to me…. I finally lost my temper the other day and drew some boundaries, I explained he needed to understand once and for all I cannot meet all his emotional and social needs when I have all this happening in my life, and he needs to find another retired person to spend time with because I don’t have the money to have the repairs done (he’s worth a million dollars, literally as far as I know) and have way too much on my plate to spend my time in coffee shops and thrift stores and just walking around wal mart for an hour just for something to do – things he always wants me to drop everything and go do with him and usually gets told a guilty no. No more guilt for it now. After he offered to help a little around the house and when he got there just tried to get me to go out for coffee instead (as usual), or at least just sit in the car for just a minute which of course would turn into “Where do you want to go for coffee?” after a minute… when I told him I don’t have time, biting back how I’m fixing the lemon he sold me, I just had enough. Of course, he left when he didn’t get what he wanted. I totally blew my top, then. He tried bait and switch and acting innocent when he did it one time too many, and I lost it, and let myself feel the damage he did and face who had done it, and let myself want what i really want which is REAL friends who share my interests and equal footing and to have the chance to fix my house and get myself out of this hole the way I need to. It’s gonna be pretty hard, but I think it’s possible if I can just do a little bit every day, not have any more distractions, and not have ppl showing at my house when I’m working and try to drag me off to ride around town with them and listen to them tell the same stories over and over, or doing a few things to pitch in and then guilting me into doing what they want if I hold ground….
Excuse me, I’m just angry. I’m letting anger surface now, I guess. But what kind of person behaves like that? “The things I have to do to go out for coffee with you.” He’s too old to be helping with construction work, we both know it, I said “You don’t have to do that” but he didn’t do it for ME anyway. how can someone see someone they are supposed to care about suffering this way and say, “The things I have to do to get what I want from you” if they help out any. If sold someone this house and saw this, I would be over here every day helping if I could and if I was worth a million and had inadvertently caused this to my supposed best friend, I would be paying someone to help to make up for selling them garbage, he’s just evil. But I would not have been a slum lord when I could done better and let something I was responsible for get this bad without doing something about it anyway, especially taking a friend’s VERY hard-earned money in exchange to live there, in a place with health hazards.

Sorry, I’m ranting. I have no friends to vent to now and my counselor is locked down….

Today is my birthday, and yesterday I told him off, not meaning to end the relationship but wording it in a way that sounded like it. I realized what I had done and at first was horrified, then inexplicably relieved beyond belief, that I had lost my very last and best friend.

I lost the cause of my remaining problems and the reason I still couldn’t face them, I think. I was upset to be at 38th birthday with no friends at all except strangers on the internet, but I gave myself the best present ever yesterday. I think perhaps I threw a narcissist out of my life. Hopefully, I can finally rebuild now.

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I don’t know, around here, everybody is very broke and not too many people are working for nothing and those who agree to are… well, maybe not trustworthy. I’ve had some stuff stolen that way.
We’ll see. I will try that website.

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It’s a lot to accomplish.  Pick one thing and try to work on that.  When so much is going on, simple is better.  Best wishes.

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