Struggling Parents Turn to Surprising Place for Help This Christmas
byEricka SouterDec 22, 2016
It's certainly not news to hear that American families are
struggling. Most are living paycheck to paycheck and nearly half
wouldn't be able to come up with $400 to pay for an emergency. It's a
sad reality that is especially heartbreaking during the holiday season. While
many parents are loading up on gifts to put under their tree, there are
just as many trying to figure out how to explain why Santa Claus won't
be visiting their house this year.
Tyshika Britten, a mom of five, is one
such parent. Devastated by the idea that her kids would wake up
Christmas morning without a single gift, the hairstylist turned to
Criagslist to plea for help.
"I'm so hurt," she wrote. "I'm
trying my best. I pray every day and now I'm begging for help. I know
it's not about the gifts, but they are kids! I'm such a failure right
now ... please help me."
It's hard not to feel for this
struggling mom and others like her. Nonprofits and food pantries say
they can't keep up with the demand for aid this season.
So far Britten has received two responses: a women who asked for more information but never wrote back and a man that seemed to be more interested in her body type than her children. She quickly turned down his help. It's further evidence that seeking aid online isn't without potential problems.
Respondents don't know if a plea is for real, or some kind of scam. And those who post the ads have no way of discerning who legitimately wants to help or who may have sinister intentions. Still, it's worth the risk for moms like Britten. Turned away by other service agencies and charities, she feels she has no choice but to ask the public.
“I wouldn’t sit here and do this if I didn’t have to,” she told the Washington Post. “I’m
willing to do anything I have to do for my children. I’m tired of
struggling. I’m tired of them struggling. I just want them to be happy.”