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What’s Your Reaction to This Woman’s Sign? [POLL]

I had to go up to a mall in Middlesex County to pick something up on Saturday, and as I was leaving, I saw a woman holding a sign that left me feeling confused, guilty, angry, and sad all at the same time.

woman begging
Had the woman’s sign simply said, ‘Help!’, perhaps it would not have bothered me so much. (iStock)

As her child sat playing in the grass behind her, she faced the cars on the ramp to a highway with a sign reading,

Lost my job. I have 3 kids. Need money for food and rent. God bless.’

A couple of cars in front of me opened their windows and gave her money.

I looked at her, unsure of what to do, and wound up just driving past. I felt guilty for not helping her, but I was also confused and annoyed by her sign.

You need money for food and rent? So do I. You lost your job? Find a new one. I know the economy sucks, and jobs are hard to come by, but it just seemed like the wrong message.

I don’t want to seem insensitive, and I don’t have kids to take care of so that makes it different, but God forbid I ever lost this gig, I would take any and every job I could find instead of panhandling on a highway.

I saw at least three stores inside the mall who were hiring. I don’t know what this woman was doing for work before she lost her job, and maybe a retail position is a huge step down from what she was doing before, but it just made me sort of angry.

And then I felt guilty for being angry.

I’m judging this woman, and I don’t know her circumstances. Instead, I should have helped her. I’m lucky enough to have a job and to be able to pay my bills, and if I should ever be in need, I would hope others would help me.

Then again, there are plenty of single moms who are busting their butts to support their kids, and they don’t do it by begging for money. Instead, they work — sometimes two and three not-so-glamourous jobs — to make sure their kids are provided for. I’m back to annoyed.

But maybe this woman can’t afford to pay a babysitter so she can go to work. Now I feel guilty again.

I don’t know why it tore me up so much, but I was just really bothered by it, and clearly still am. Am I the only one?

What would you have done if you saw this woman and her sign? Tell us in the comment section below!

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