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Old 12-05-2007, 11:33 AM   #1
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Question Recipients ever been "offended" by RAK's?

I know this is a weird question, but I'm really wondering if anyone that you (or anyone you know) has sent out a RAK request for and had the recipients ever feel awkward or offended that total strangers are sending them cards?

Just asking because I went to the Need a Lift forum and had typed up my RAK request for my next-door neighbor who's wife died very suddenly and unexpectedly on Monday. I was just about to post it, then really got thinking about my quiet, very reserved neighbor and how/what he would think about receiving cards from tons of people he doesn't even know (and especially the fact that I published his address on the internet!).

I personally think RAK's are awesome and would never feel strange about getting them, but in this situation I really don't think they would be received in the way/spirit that I intended. Does that make sense?

Let me know your thoughts/experiences with this.
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:37 AM   #2
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I think if you did this, I would publish YOUR address and have the cards sent c/o. Then you can deliver them.

I think your neighbor would be very happy to know you care about him. What a sad situation for your neighbor.
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:38 AM   #3
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I agree, have them sent to you and then you deliver them.
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:41 AM   #4
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Ditto. Everybody loves to be loved.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:05 PM   #5
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I do like the idea of having them sent to me. Great suggestion....

I'm still trying to decide if Jim will feel awkward receiving these...he's just such a "keep to himself" type person.

Any personal experiences out there???
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:06 PM   #6
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Yes, I think if you delivered them he would feel taken care of...a good neighbor looking out for him. With the holiday season in full swing he will need the extra hugs!
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:20 PM   #7
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To be honest, RMS, I'd feel weird about that, in his shoes. I think I'd have a hard time knowing exactly how to receive them or what to say.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:26 PM   #8
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I've actually thought about this in the past as well, and I think it takes a stamper to really understand RAKing. I'm not sure "everyday people" would "get it", you know? Just my opinion though...
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:45 PM   #9
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Quote:

Originally Posted by RockyMountainStamperView Post
I know this is a weird question, but I'm really wondering if anyone that you (or anyone you know) has sent out a RAK request for and had the recipients ever feel awkward or offended that total strangers are sending them cards?

Just asking because I went to the Need a Lift forum and had typed up my RAK request for my next-door neighbor who's wife died very suddenly and unexpectedly on Monday. I was just about to post it, then really got thinking about my quiet, very reserved neighbor and how/what he would think about receiving cards from tons of people he doesn't even know (and especially the fact that I published his address on the internet!).

I personally think RAK's are awesome and would never feel strange about getting them, but in this situation I really don't think they would be received in the way/spirit that I intended. Does that make sense?

Let me know your thoughts/experiences with this.
While, I, as a stamper, understand the intent and spirit, I wouldn't publish anyone's contact info or address on a public message board without their knowledge or consent, for privacy reasons.

Also, a non-stamper would more than likely feel very awkward . . . even though your intentions are honorable and kind, awkwardness for him, I am sure, is really not what you want him to experience at this time of loss . . . ?

I'm sure a personal sympathy card from you/your family, as his neighbor, would be most appreciated, and not overwhelming . . . UKWIM?
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:46 PM   #10
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You have a good point. Some people would be offended and that is ok. Everyone reacts to strangers goodwill differently and in a horrible situation like that, I think you need to use a good deal of caution. They may not want random people sending cards or anything else for that matter. Guess you need to know that person well enough to use that judgement call.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:55 PM   #11
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My mom was real funny about it when my dad was sick and on a vent for a long time. She did not want her address on the interenet. Especially for the obvious reason that if people know he is in the hospital then she will be there with him and the house will be empty.
When we had a really sick gentleman from my church that I posted cards for I asked the church permission to have the cards sent to them and they had no problem delivering them to him. It actually seemed like it blessed more people then b/c the church new that they were handmade cards from my SCS friends and then they got to deliver them and then see all the special cards in his room. I am sure that when he passed away it was a great comfort to his wife to know that so many people around the US/Can cared.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:57 PM   #12
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So, yes I agree, use your own address.
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Old 12-05-2007, 01:13 PM   #13
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Quote:

Originally Posted by JulieHRRView Post
Also, a non-stamper would more than likely feel very awkward . . . even though your intentions are honorable and kind, awkwardness for him, I am sure, is really not what you want him to experience at this time of loss . . . ?
This is exactly what I'm trying to avoid. In this awful situation, I don't want to make things worse by adding in another "bad" feeling.

Knowing the situation, I think I'll just make a card and take it over along with dinner tonight.

Thanks for everyone's insights on this. It's made me really stop and think about the fact that sometimes, while we *mean* well, we need to be thoughtful enough to consider whether that is something the receiver will truly appreciate, or if it will make matters worse/awkward.

Well, I'm off to make a big huge pot of spaghetti and breadsticks. Thanks!
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Old 12-05-2007, 01:16 PM   #14
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I think also it is so good to do something now but, if he is older and now alone make sure you keep in contact with him that will mean a lot more as time goes on. I have talked to some people that said after two weeks they never heard from anyone again and felt so alone.
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Old 12-05-2007, 01:28 PM   #15
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Melissa, i have two friends right now, both different situations, who could really need some RAK's. but the more i thought about it I decided not to do a mass RAK for them. I'm sending something on my own from me and my family personally...letting them know that i care...ykwim? a homemade pot of soup, and a handmade card go a long way!
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Old 12-05-2007, 01:48 PM   #16
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Bet he would love it if you took him some of your spaghetti and bread sticks...he probably will miss her cooking....
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:40 PM   #17
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Bet he would love it if you took him some of your spaghetti and bread sticks...he probably will miss her cooking....
That's who the spaghetti dinner is for (I'll make extra for my fam). In the obituary it mentioned how much she loved to cook, so I'm sure that he doesn't do a whole lot of that.

His grown kids have been at the house every night this week, so I'm making enough for all of them, plus all the yummy spaghetti dinner fixin's--green salad, corn, a veggie tray, jell-o (of course--I live in Utah!), and a pan of hot brownies. I'm also taking over paper plates and silverware--dishes are the last thing they need to worry about right now, ya know?

Thanks again for all your thoughts and suggestions. Off to bake breadsticks and brownies!
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:41 PM   #18
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I have a sort of RAK thing going for Jack- see my siggy, things are slightly different to your neighbour, but what his mum says and his sister (who's and he himself in his 6 year old way is
How overwhelming it is that people care and want to be kind. When Jack is sick and in pain the cards make him smile- to the point where we ration them through the day at the moment.
The cards of support to his parents and siblings have the same effect (they are not rationed you'll be pleased to hear)

It started as an appeal for cards to sell to raise funds for his treatment, and so many were accompanied by notes for his parents and get well cards for him. As these became more important I started asking for these in their own right on a UK forum. The response and the benefit have been awesome.

What I am trying to say in a long winded way is that people have shared, a dash of friendship, a dose of compassion, words of wisdom and experience, or even just an I'm sorry, and it has all given strength. To Yvonne and Richard and their kids. She says there have been days when they have kept her going whilst she has stayed with Jack in isolation.

Allow your neighbour that- loss and suffering hurt, sometimes you feel guilty hurting because at sometime somehow it happens to us all, to know that people acknowledge and have compassion for your pain can really help. Have the cards sent to yourself if you'll feel better, but have them sent so that he knows his pain is ok.

I hope that makes sense.
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Old 12-05-2007, 03:39 PM   #19
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I think the meal and card from your family is perfect. The mass rak is great in certain situations, but thinking about many in my own family, I know they would find it strange or even intrusive.
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Old 12-05-2007, 03:43 PM   #20
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Quote:

Originally Posted by JulieHRRView Post
While, I, as a stamper, understand the intent and spirit, I wouldn't publish anyone's contact info or address on a public message board without their knowledge or consent, for privacy reasons.

Also, a non-stamper would more than likely feel very awkward . . . even though your intentions are honorable and kind, awkwardness for him, I am sure, is really not what you want him to experience at this time of loss . . . ?

I'm sure a personal sympathy card from you/your family, as his neighbor, would be most appreciated, and not overwhelming . . . UKWIM?
I completely agree with this written by JulieHRR.
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Old 12-05-2007, 03:58 PM   #21
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Melissa it sounds like you are doing some wonderful things and have come to the right decission for your current situation.

I know when we went thru something similar with a close friend last year the family really appreciated the little things like not only bringing a meal (especially those that can be eatten cold or easily reheated) but also the need for paper products so dishes wouldn't add up. Some of their favorite items were cold cuts and fresh fruits and veggies. Easy to grab in little bits as appetites come and go.
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Old 12-05-2007, 04:33 PM   #22
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I'm glad you brought this up, as I've been wondering about it ever since I started stamping. I know my family would find it extremely awkward to receive cards from strangers.

I guess I see it as a privacy issue. If a bunch of strangers are sending you cards then someone is discussing your issues, problems, situation, life etc.. with those strangers. That's the part I'd feel awkward about. KWIM?
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:14 PM   #23
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New development in the story!!:

I just went over and took a hot pan of brownies to my neighbor (we took dinner earlier and he was on the phone with someone). Jim answered the door and was so kind and gracious. We had a great, great talk and he opened up quite a bit. All of his girls gathered around him and were so sweet as well.

When I was getting ready to leave he reached over and gave me a big huge hug and thanked me so much for everything--especially the card I made. I then felt comfortable asking him if they would mind receiving cards from some of my "online card-making friends" and he said "Absolutely!" He thought it was just the coolest thing in the world that people would do that for him and his kids. And he didn't mind me sharing his address for you gals to send directly to them. VERY Cool. I'm so glad that he was open to this and welcomed it so readily.

So, ladies.....bring on the RAK's!!! (I'll post in the RAK section as well, but will give you the address here, too.) BTW, his wife's name is Melanie.

Jim Hardin & Family
1791 E. Kay Lane
South Weber, UT 84405


(you could just sign it as "a stampin' friend of your neighbor Melissa)

Thanks so much ladies for everything!!
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:23 PM   #24
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I can say that I belong to a smaller stamper group and I asked them to send cards to my mom because she was going through a hard time. They all jumped right on it and mailed them out and she was a little put out at me over it all. While she appreciated the well wishes, she didn't like that I had mentioned her situation to them (although I had not mentioned the details and told her so). So I'd say don't. Sweet thought thought.
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Old 12-05-2007, 07:47 PM   #25
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A card going postal tomorrow!
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Old 12-06-2007, 07:17 AM   #26
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A card going postal tomorrow!
Thanks so much Laura!!
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