feel guilty not contributing

  1. We had this nurse retire last year, this year she came on hard times and our floor took up a collection for Christmas. No specifics on what was wrong which I appriciated the confidentiality of the situation. When I started and until she retired she always went out of her way to be mean and hateful to about 75% of the staff, especially newbies. I dreaded when I had to work with her and to make matters worse see was always in charge. The day she retired was a blessing for me. I am not a spiteful person and would give the shirt off my back if someone really needed it. I did not give any money to this fund and it is over now but I feel really guilty because it is Christmas and one is supose to forgive. Has anyone else ever been in this situation and what did you do.....
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  2. 18 Comments

  3. by   bargainhound
    Give to your own choice of charitable needs..........make yourself let
    go of this guilt.
  4. by   zudy
    I am with you, bargainhound. I was in a similar situation several years ago. I felt I could not donate without feeling like a total hypocrite. I would give to my place of worship or to a favorite charity,jo272, and try and think positive thoughts while I did.

    Then just let it go.
  5. by   smurfy
    There is no reason to feel guilty for not giving anything to a person who treated you badly.
  6. by   Jules A
    Hi,
    I think the other members idea of donating to a charity of your choice is an excellent idea. Cut yourself a break. Jules
  7. by   BabyRN2Be
    I REALLY hate to say this, but maybe this nurse is reaping her own bad karma. Not that I necessarily believe in that, but if I did, this might be a good example. However, I don't know details of what happened. Just a thought.

    Listen, don't spend too much time beating yourself up over this. While I understand that maybe you want to give to someone, give because you want to, not out of guilt.
  8. by   Antikigirl
    I look at it this way...during this time of year, we all have either lean or full plates. Personally I am having a really lean one! LOL! Well...when my plate is lean, I have nothing really to give...you need a full plate for giving! Therefore I feel no guilt when I can't give because I have nothing to give without taking away from me and my family and leaving me with an plate with nothing!

    So if this person isn't someone you would give of yourself in leaner times...do not feel guilt! I know that I wouldn't want someone to give if they had a lean plate..that is selfish! Best they keep what they have and have a brighter future vs always having an empty plate!

    I had to say no for the first time in years to charity...I always give something...but I have nothing this year (not even time). It hurts, but I say...'My plate will fill up if I focus on important things..then I will have tons to give...maybe next year!".

    Don't empty your plate right now...there will be something to give to when your plate is full..and one day darlin..it will be !
  9. by   llg
    I'll play a little Devil's Advocate here just to give everyone something to think about....

    Ask yourself the following questions:
    1. Do you have enough to give? (even if it is just a little)
    2. Would you have contributed if the person had been someone you liked?
    3. What does "being charitable" mean to you? In other areas of your life, do you only help those people you like? ... Do you believe in helping only those other people of whom you approve? ... Or do you believe in helping others regardless of whether or not you approve or disapprove of how they lead their lives?
    4. Why do we have a conscience? Does your conscience usually bother you when you have done nothing wrong? Or, does your conscience usually only bother you when there is a legitimate reason for you to feel guilty?

    Your conscience is probably bothering you because this is not a clear-cut situation. Choosing not to give to someone in need goes against some of your values. Regardless of what you decide you would have done, this situation is a learning situation in that is causing you to think about your values. That's a good thing.

    Personally ... I would have given a little something if I could ... because I don't believe I should limit my charitable giving to only those people who are/were nice to me in return. For me, if I only help the "nice people" or the "deserving poor," then it's not as much of a charitable act -- it becomes a lesser act of giving.

    Certainly I do pick and choose where I donate my money. But when it is a personal appeal from an acquaintance, I usually find a little something to contribute. My conscience would bother me if I didn't.
  10. by   Ruby Vee
    [font="comic sans ms"]i wouldn't feel too guilty about not contributing -- easy for me to say, i know. years ago, i was in a similar situation. one of the nurses in a close-knit unit was fired for "falsifying patient records". (essentially charting that she had given narcotics she was really using herself.) most of the other nurses were up in arms -- denying vigorously that kim would have done such a thing. there was a collection taken up to make her car payments for her -- she had a brand new and very fancy sports car. i'm sure those payments were pretty hefty.

    i didn't want to contribute -- and i didn't. in the first place, i knew she was guilty. all the staff threw their purses on the sofa in the break room, and kim and i had identical coach bags. i picked hers up by accident and right on top was a stash of pills wrapped in a paper towel. i suspected -- but couldn't prove -- that they were taken from our narcotics supply. (they weren't in a prescription bottle with her name, nor were they in our unit dose blister packs, which would have been even more suspicious!) so whether i liked it or not, i was involved in the investigation.

    and in the second place, i was driving a 10 year old toyota tercel (not a top of the line car by any stretch of the imagination, even when new!) with 200,000 miles on it and saving every cent i could for graduate school. i figured if kim didn't have a job, she could sell that fancy car and eat for a long time, plus drive a older and less fancy car.

    kim landed on her feet -- within two weeks she had landed a job as director of nursing at a nursing home -- higher salary, better hours.

    if you don't want to contribute, for any reason -- and yours seems perfectly valid to me -- don't. and don't feel bad about it, either.
  11. by   KIAN
    I wouldn't give anything. I would have tried to get along when we first worked together and when that failed I would move on. Then when she left I would feel my contribution was trying to work with at the beginning. No guilt.
    Last edit by KIAN on Dec 20, '06 : Reason: spelling
  12. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I like the idea of picking a charity of your choosing. You can even make a donation in her name, if you choose.
  13. by   UM Review RN
    Some people can be forgiven--from a distance.

    If you gave to this person, would you be giving to salve your conscience or solve her problem?

    I would advise you not to contribute unless you truly were able to forgive this person.

    Believe me, being able to forgive her would be the better gift.
  14. by   GingerSue
    this is what I have considered in these kinds of situations

    it's usually a good idea to give something, even if it's small amount
    because your co-workers will notice if you don't give anything, and that might set you apart
    your employer might notice, and this will reflect on how they perceive you

    even when it's someone who you don't particularly like, when it is a group thing - you have to decide if you want to be part of the group or not

    (thoughtful incident - a person who was nasty to me, for no reason, other than - general nastiness, donated when I approached him for a cause, and even offered to help me when I had trouble with my car - so you see - even these nasty ones will shine - sometimes)

    sometimes, though, a person really can't afford to donate, and when that is your experience, then you can say to yourself the reality of your own situation is such that you simply cannot

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