Why You Have a Hard Time Accepting Help

This article will help you to understand yourself and your blocks from receiving, so that you can get your needs met without always having to do all the work and so that you can have your partner feel successful, competent, and excited about providing and taking care of you.

I was going through a particularly busy period in my business. My partner saw I was working harder and longer hours than usual and he expressed the desire to give me a massage later on in the day. Life got busy and it was only the next evening when we finally had some down time. 

As we were spending time together I was anticipating receiving a massage from him. 

In an attempt to remind him of his offer, I asked if he wanted a massage with the hopes that this non-vulnerable, indirect approach would get me the TLC I was craving. (Not the best approach – I know).  Things didn’t go as I had hoped, instead he replied “Yes, thank you” and lied down ready to receive. 

As I massaged him, I kept thinking “What happened here? I was supposed to be getting a massage tonight!” I knew the fault was mine as I offered a massage, instead of asking to receive one. I was also in awe of how easily he accepted my offer. I knew this was a big learning moment and looked deeper into my patterns that were playing out. 

In the past, I probably would have blamed and criticized my man, but instead I have learned to see how I contributed to a frustrating and disappointing situation. This way, instead of judging my man, I learn from him. So a couple of days later, I approached him with curiosity.


accepting and receiving help


“Love, I want to explore something with you that happened recently. I am intrigued by how both of us acted and I think I have something to learn from you here. A couple of days ago you offered to give me a massage, and then the following day I offered you a massage and you happily received it. It’s on me for offering something that I wanted to receive and so I want you to know you have done nothing wrong here. I can see that I was avoiding the vulnerability of asking for what I wanted, and had hoped you would pick up on the hint. I was surprised when you received the massage and was wondering about how it was so easy for you to receive?

To which he replied: “I love your massages and so for sure I will say yes when you offer one. But as you say this, I am realizing that you’ve never asked for a massage in all the years we have been together. I love massaging you and all you have to do is ask. This is something we need to work on.” It then unfolded into a beautiful exploration of our tendencies and asking for what we wanted. 

In this example, I was playing out my pattern of “doing” first in hopes of receiving. The truth is, I didn’t need to give first to my partner, he had already offered me the massage without any conditions. All I needed to do was sit back, open myself to receive, and remind him of the massage he wanted to give me and allow him to do it. 

Has this been you? Have you ever offered something when really you wanted to be receiving it?

Or do you have a tendency to ask for help with something and then before the person can say yes or no, you just do it yourself?

Or have you ever complained about what you have to do in hopes someone will offer to help without you having to ask for it?

If you have taken any of these approaches, know that you’re not alone. 

I have lost track over the years of how many women I have seen playing out this same pattern. 

accepting and receiving help

1. How We Block Receiving

If you’re new to the world of receiving, like many of the women that come to my work, you might not even know all the ways you’re preventing yourself from being fully open to your partner and his desire to give to you.

When I say receiving, I’m talking about your ability to accept help and also to take in the adoration and affection your partner shows you. Your ability to open and graciously receive his  thoughtfulness and generosity has an effect on him. There is an important feedback loop that happens in both giving and receiving. 

An inability to receive will diminish a man’s natural provider instincts (aka emasculate him) and that’s why uncovering your blocks to receive is crucial to being able to sustain long-term intimacy. 

One of the biggest ways I see my clients block their ability to receive is by dropping subtle hints instead of being clear and direct with what they’re wanting and needing. When they’re trying to be nonchalant about their desires it sets their partner up to have to figure it all out and piece everything together which reduces the likelihood of getting the request right. 

As a result, disappointment is likely, resulting in no one feeling happy or fulfilled! 

Don’t drop subtle hints! No one wins in this situation and any story you’re making up of being “too much” for your partner most likely isn’t true. Women don’t realize how much their happiness makes a man happy. Many men fail to make their woman happy due to lack of clear information. I get that it can feel scary, vulnerable and even selfish to state what you want clearly. And I am telling you that men are begging for this kind of direct communication from their women.

2. How Over-Giving Blocks Receiving

Another mistake I see women make that blocks their ability to receive fully is going right into give mode or do-mode after someone does something for them. While that might be your natural inclination to want to repay the favor, challenge yourself to just relax and take in whatever has been given to you. 

A massage in bed with your partner, dinner made for you, or help around the house. What if you didn’t give a massage back, didn’t jump in to clean up and do the dishes, or didn’t ask or offer to repay the favor. Your full reception transmits your feminine energy. Being happy and content is the repayment to your partner. That is what he is after and it’s what closes the important feedback loop in the giving and receiving cycle. If what he does for you is received fully in return, he will want to continue to show up for you to keep receiving from your feminine reception.

If you have a lot going on and are stretched thin at work or at home, or feel overwhelmed doing all the planning for a trip don’t pretend like you have it all figured out. Ask for your partner to help you with some of the pieces or to do something you might normally try to effort and force yourself to handle. 

A big mistake I see women make is doing doing doing and then throwing blame that no one is helping out instead of slowing down to ask for help first. 

Let him know that you’re overwhelmed and see in what ways he could make your life easier. I guarantee he would love the opportunity to be of service and provide his help. When stressed, us women tend to go into super overdrive when what we really need to be doing is less and allowing ourselves more rest and grace.

3. Why We Block Receiving

Many of my clients struggle with receiving because they can feel immensely vulnerable in the process of it.

The two biggest reasons women have a hard time receiving is:

  1. Feeling unworthy and undeserving
  2. The fear of obligation of what they have to give back

Receiving and accepting help requires you to open, it challenges your innate sense of self worth, and it’s the essence of femininity. If you’re not used to allowing someone else to provide for you, it can feel foreign, uncomfortable, even wrong and create a lot of sensations in your body.

If doing, doing, doing all the time is in your nature, then this will require a shift and a re-wiring. 

Some of the most common blocks I see in my clients is that they internalize the message that receiving is “selfish” or “indulgent”.

There’s a real fear of being or appearing selfish and seeming “too much” which makes it difficult to accept gestures, gifts, or even just basic help. 

There are also many women who come to me who have been taught that in order to receive, they have to give first, like myself in my opening story. I’ve found this to be a really strong tendency in a lot of women. Maybe they saw a maternal figure over-giving growing up. Or they’ve spent a lot of time in their masculine energy, identifying as independent and caring for themselves vs. letting someone else provide. Or they simply are used to prioritizing everyone else’s needs above their own.

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Awareness of Our Blocks are Pathways to Healing

Whatever your specific blocks to receiving are, and there could be many, you’ll want to start noticing them. Once you become more aware of them, you can start to heal them. Not only will this take you on a journey of cultivating a deeper sense of self love, it will also open up a beautiful play between you and your partner. When you drop into your feminine and open yourself to receive, it awakens and inspires your man’s masculine presence.  

If you want to explore the topic of receiving more, check out my Masterclass ‘Stop Blocking, Start Receiving.’ During this class you will learn:

  • Ways you are unknowingly emasculating your man
  • What you do that causes your partner to shut down
  • How to get your partner to do more of what you want
  • How you are blocking yourself from receiving the very things you want
  • Why women struggle to receive
  • How to open yourself to receive more


And for those who want to go even deeper, I have an entire module on receiving in Adored, my online group program for women. Where you learn the why’s and how’s behind our behavior and uncovering our blocks to receiving fully will have a huge impact on the quality of our relationships and dating experiences with men. 

Adored is full of life changing content, coaching, and tools to help you stop pushing away your partner so that you can build a foundation of deep intimacy, trust, and communication. Join the waitlist to join my upcoming group cohort here.

Justine Baruch

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