Money is single sided sword.
We nurture, save, grow and double it with lots of care- all on the blunt side. What if we lend our money to a friend, a housemaid or a relative? The moment we loan it out, we do it with the sharp side, and it kills that relationship forever. We all know what is definitely bound to happen but we still loan out money. Because we cannot say NO.
Sometimes it is okay to say NO. Like you know your maid servant has a husband and son who earns enough, and she is also going to few other houses, which means she is earning enough. She is definitely not starving. So when she comes to you asking for a ten thousand rupees for some reason that sounds lame, do not give it. It is easy to write this but it is very very difficult to say that on her face. Like me. I gave a pretty decent amount to my maid eight months ago when I sent her away because my son started preschool, and now she does not answer my calls. Well she answered once and talked like I stole something from her house. Well let’s not discuss that.
This is how shit happens. And when it does, it breaks out loose and is all over the place. My better half had warned me against this loan, many times before I did it, and now has washed his hands clean of it. He reminds me of getting the money back, like a pending assignment due from my side, but has put his foot down when I asked his help to do it. Well I cannot blame him, it is completely on me, and I am pretty sure I am not getting it back. However it is not easy for me to get in terms with the truth, but I continue to message and call this woman, who claims that she is out of work to pay me back.
Before judging me, it is only fair for me to have the benefit of doubt. This maid was basically a good person. She was not the evil, cunning types, and looked after my son for a year at home. My son was also okay with her, and never cried when I went to office, which suggested that she did take good care of him. I had checked in on him hundreds of times without informing prior, and have never found him crying or ignored. I had informed my neighbors to check in on him and they never complained. I did not install a camera at home because I would not have a cctcv behind my workstation with my boss looking at it all the time. I still bathed and fed my son at all times during the day, my work being a stone’s throw from home. This is the reason why I gave her that money. She did take care of my son, and did not harm on him even once even though it was for a few hours. After a year when she asked me for that money, of course she was taking advantage of my weakest point, but I believed that despite the regular pay we gave her, she could have mishandled her job in frightening ways. That is not logic, it is sentiments which played the lead and I am paying for it now.
There is no room for sentiments in this world. Like if you sit and self-pity nobody consoles you because the world is competitive. If you pity yourself, others pity you more than you do. When was the last time someone gave you a push and said ‘I know you can do it’?
I had once given off the sari I wore at my wedding reception to the daughter of my mother’s maid. That maid also took a massive loan from my mother for the same purpose which still remains a loan. My mother called to remind her about the loan but she was yelled at and even cursed. I do not regret giving off my saree because I came to know it was worn by her on her wedding day. This saree was not something I dint want. I would never have worn it for any occasion after that, but it had a sentimental value attached to it. There is no selfless good deed, but I cannot think of myself as selfish for any reason by giving away that saree to a bunch of thankless people.
I now think of that loan I gave my maid, as an act of charity. I gave it to her succumbing to my weakness, completely aware on a sub conscious level that I am not going to get it back. And it was a pretty decent amount which I could use. Talking of charity, most of us give away what we don’t need and call it charity. Is that really it? If we wanted to help the less privileged we should give them what they need, and not what we don’t need. Right?
Take for example this woman, who paid for a cheap tee shirt online, which did not satisfy her expectations. Look at how she has commented on it. Is it arrogance or do we have some other word for the last line of her comment?
There is no hard and fast rule that can tell you who is reliable and who will return your loan. Why do people pay their EMI’s to the bank promptly and not to the person they took money from which has no written record? If we have an answer to that may be it will help us decide in future.
I do not have an answer to that yet. Do you?