Have you ever noticed that culturally we seem to be conditioned not to ever ask for anything? Even at Diana's PEPS meeting today, they had a guest who mentioned, when it comes to couple cooperation, that "if you don't express it, don't expect it." Seems obvious, right?
In the context of relationships, I've seen enough of this for a lifetime. Fortunately, with me and the D, it's not something that grows into resentment issues, but we do neglect to speak up about things we want. With me it's typically small things, like a little back rub or just some arbitrary contact. What can I say, it chills me out. :) But we're both guilty of more serious things, like not asking for help when Simon overwhelms us. There's that thing in the back of your mind where you feel as though asking for help is some kind of admission of defeat or failure. That's pretty stupid.
We do it even professionally at times. That leads to needless frustration in my line of work. I recently worked on something that one of my coworkers had messed with, and I didn't entirely get it. Had I just asked about it, it would've saved all kinds of annoyance.
I'm not sure where this strange conditioning comes from, but it sure isn't good. Most of the time, people are pretty willing to help you with anything. So why the hesitation to ask?