My husband and I do a food run early on most Saturdays to gather food from our neighboring city's stores and give it to a mission that then passes it out to those in need.
Whenever mom hears about our Saturday run she always asks, comments, inquire and otherwise informs us that she wants to "help" out too and she wants to come.
We always say no.
She doesn't understand our hardness of heart. She doesn't understand why not.
On some days we try to explain that she tends to take a lot of food for herself that then mold and rots, creating her "designer fragrance". She just denies, justifies or promises these allegations away.
Other days we don't explain ourselves.
We don't explain that in the corse of gathering food, some of it is truly not usable - to spoilt or to crushed, or having been spilled all over the ground, and we do, on occasion have to make the judgment call to throw it away, and we know she can not do that. We don't tell her that all the talking she does and her drive to keep all that is free, her obsession to make sure that not only herself gets all the free she can, but to make sure that we, her friends, or others get free whether or not we want it is taxing, and not a help in a case like a food run. I can't think of a time I've ever told her she is emotionally and mentally exhausting. I'm ever careful not to hurt her like that if possible. Nevertheless, anyway we say "no" to her hurts her.
When we refuse her offer to help on Saturdays, without a reason, that hurts her, too, but there is not much to be done for that.
*Shrug* Oh, well.
It'll aways be "no".
You can take her, if you'd like. If you feel we're being unfair. Bless your heart.