Te-Erika’s Diary: When I Meet Women In Need

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I’m a blogger for the Huffington Post and I wrote a piece that introduces the fact that I moved to Los Angeles with less than $200.  After I wrote it, I’ve received emails from people round the world who want advice about moving to Los Angeles. One of the ladies who wrote me said she tried it this past January and only lasted one week. She said my article inspired her to try again.

A couple of weeks ago she wrote me out of the blue saying she had made it here and only had $40 to her name, no job and no place to live. She asked if I had any advice for her. I didn’t. I felt responsible for her making such a big move with nothing. I felt guilty about not being able to assist her. Even though I moved to Los Angeles with less than $200, I haven’t gone homeless or hungry here so I have no clue what to do in this city if you are homeless.

I just met another women, she was older, maybe in her late 40’s. She too was homeless and trying to make it here in LA with no money, car, or support. I felt so powerless as I spoke to her while she was sitting on the bus stop. I asked about her job skills, she said she worked in an office before but couldn’t find work.

I just don’t know what to do.

I’m not so far behind these women. I had a job, but I broke my foot and the disability payment never came. I managed to use my skills as a writer to support myself but these women don’t have that skill set and their emotional turmoil over their loss hinders them from moving forward.

I’m realizing that women don’t have SKILLS to support themselves.

I feel so burdened by the hardships of the women I meet. I want to care for them, to feed them and clothe them. I want to hold them and make sure they know that everything will be alright. I can’t do everything by myself though. I can’t be a savior even though I want to be.

What can I do to help these women? I’m supposed to be a women’s empowerment leader. I don’t know.

And I feel guilty about that.

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