Updates: “Needs Encouragement” Responds

It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today, we hear from “Needs Encouragement” who was feeling overwhelmed caring for her severely disabled husband and only wanted a few words of encouragement to keep her going. Keep reading for a very uplifting update that will give you the warm fuzzies.

Dear Wendy and the Gang:This may be your quickest update ever, but I am so excited and I had to share the news with all of you.

After reading Wendy’s response and all the comments to my original letter, I got the courage to ask for help. I contacted a very large church just down the road. And by large, I mean that when I give directions I say, “Go past the church that looks like a football stadium.” My husband and I met with a director there and found they have a program that picks up disabled and elderly once a week and they spend the day there with activities, interaction, various programs and even some mild physical therapy. They have health aides on staff, and everyone is separated by age, and they eat lunch together and even have down time just to relax.

We discussed with them the fact that we had a hard time accepting charity and when my husband’s musical background came up, we discovered we could trade his very large drum kit, which he will never play again, for a guitar and lessons all from the church. The director then contacted a home cleaning company that discounts to the disabled, which we could afford with just a few sacrifices, and arranged for us to get our home cleaned once a week while my husband is at the program.

So last night I came home after his first day to a clean place and a husband that could not stop smiling and talking! I cannot begin to tell you how incredible it felt for him to have something to talk about besides the four walls around us. He met people, chatted up a storm, learned his first chord and laughed most of the day away.

When I wrote you, I asked for encouragement, and boy did I ever get it. I want you, and all your commenters, to know you really, really do make a difference. My life is better and my wonderful disabled husband’s life is better because you all cared to share your encouragement with me. I have taken other suggestions from your readers like making lists, setting aside time for myself and having heart-to-heart talks with our boys. Life is getting better, and you all are the reason.

Thank you from the very bottom of my heart. Bless you, Wendy, and your family and community.

Thank you for your very kind words! They’ve lifted me as much as you were lifted by the encouragement you got. And as much as I appreciate you crediting us for the changes you’re making in your life, the credit belongs to YOU (and your husband). We may have given you some tips and encouragement, but you were the ones who took the steps. Good for you! Here’s to continued positivity in your life. You deserve it.


If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at wendy@dearwendy.com with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.

You can follow me on Facebook here and sign up for my weekly newsletter here.

If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com.


  1. lets_be_honest says:

    I think this might be the first update that brought tears to my eyes. I am so happy for you, and your husband.

    1. I don’t know what you are talking about… I was just chopping onions 😉

      AWESOME Update LW!!!! Sounds like a great start for both of you!

      1. What a coincidence, the pollen count spiked in my office when I was reading this update. LW, you rock. What a wonderful, positive update, and thank you for the reminder that both your letters have given me about the importance of a positive outlook. I am sending big love your way.

      2. My cat decided to get his fur under my contacts. That’s all. Nevermind that I’m at work and the cat is at home.

      3. My contacts grew spikes briefly. Very odd thing to happen, but I can’t question science…

    2. Same! That was so sweet. I love happy endings 🙂

  2. I’m so glad to read this update. I may have teared up a bit, too.

  3. Best Update Ever.

    LW, you’re a great woman, and I want you to remember that during the tough times, that are hopefully few and far between.

  4. Yep. Tears. Happiness tears, thank goodness. But tears. I’m happy for you LW!

  5. Miss Terri says:

    Definitely brought tears to my eyes….

  6. Aw, I love this. I wasn’t able to comment on the original letter, but LW, you are amazing & I’m so happy you were able to ask for (& receive!) the help you needed.

  7. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

    This is excellent!

  8. Something More says:

    This is awesome.

  9. This is beautiful. Be well and stay strong, LW. And hugs to your husband, too.

  10. kerrycontrary says:

    This is amazing! I’m so glad the church could give you the much needed support you needed. I hope you and your husband both continue to enjoy the new routine. You sound like an amazing woman!

  11. lets_be_honest says:

    Between KKZ’s thread and this update, wow, what a good reminder how powerful your voice can be when you just use it!

  12. This is a wonderful update! I’m so happy for the LW and her husband 🙂

  13. Avatar photo Imsostartled says:

    Best update ever! I’m tearing up at my desk too.

    LW, congrats for asking for help! I am the same as you are and have a very difficult time admiting to anyone when I need help because I should be able to do it on my own right? WRONG! Everyone needs help from time to time. You might want to look for another activity for your husband to do during the week. I have a feeling that he might enjoy the company/fun so much he might want to do it a bit more! 😀

    LW you’re amazing!

  14. findingtheearth says:

    This update made my heart happy. Yay for them!

  15. Avatar photo the_optimist says:

    Maybe it’s just that it’s been a crazy couple of weeks, but I am seriously crying at my desk. A co-worker asked what was wrong and I just let her read this update and your original letter, and she teared up, too. LW, I am so, so, so, SO happy for you and your husband. What a lovely update.

  16. Moneypenny says:

    Omigosh! I’m tearing up! This is so wonderful to hear!

  17. this is so joyful and filled with hope.

  18. So happy to hear this!

  19. Such a great update. Asking for help is so important.

  20. captainswife says:

    Woo hoo! I am so, so happy for both of you! He must feel a million times better as well: he now has something to look forward to every week, he knows that it gives you a break, AND he has a great time while he’s actually there!

    And for you? Wow…a little bit of time for yourself, a clean house, and a happier husband? Fantastic!

    Psst — if and when you need more help, now you know you can get it!

  21. Warm fuzzies! Love it!

    LW – I am so glad that you were able to get some help and that your husband has more people to interact with.

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