Author Topic: Family Member Fails  (Read 32706 times)

DadJokes

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #50 on: July 15, 2019, 06:10:10 AM »
NS - you might want to monitor your credit as your parents could take on debt in your name without your knowledge.  This would be illegal but best to catch it early.  Is shit this is even a thought but this forum has many bad stories.

I agree - it completely sucks that anyone would have to think about these kinds of things. DH and I have a credit freeze with everyone under the sun and definitely keep an eye on our reports. Unfortunately, my parents aren't the only ones in our families that we have to worry about - sadly, I could go on posting stories on this thread for days...

Yep, we set up credit monitoring on DH's credit report to keep tabs on his Dad who took out a credit card that appeared on DH's report.  Dad only did it once and went into some convoluted explanation when he got caught but it does suck to know your own parent will do this.   

Damn.   That really does suck.

One part of me says, "I would be a good son and remember to visit him in prison.   If he's scamming me he's bound to be scamming others so he's got to be stopped."

One part of me says, "Mom would miss him, I'll let it slide and never trust him again."

I can't honestly say which attitude would have won.   Thankfully I didn't have to find out.

My father used to be a contractor for a bread company. He had one employee (that wasn't family). Employee's wife happened to steal a checkbook from my father and wrote several checks. It was discovered pretty quickly (not the smartest of crimes), and my father had the option to be paid back by his employee or press charges against the wife. He chose to fire the employee and press charges.

Good decision if you ask me.

If it were family, it would certainly depend on how you feel about that family member. And it is also important to know that you would probably be burning down a bridge with the entire family, unless they all feel the same way about that person.

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #51 on: July 15, 2019, 11:00:35 AM »
NS - you might want to monitor your credit as your parents could take on debt in your name without your knowledge.  This would be illegal but best to catch it early.  Is shit this is even a thought but this forum has many bad stories.

I agree - it completely sucks that anyone would have to think about these kinds of things. DH and I have a credit freeze with everyone under the sun and definitely keep an eye on our reports. Unfortunately, my parents aren't the only ones in our families that we have to worry about - sadly, I could go on posting stories on this thread for days...

Yep, we set up credit monitoring on DH's credit report to keep tabs on his Dad who took out a credit card that appeared on DH's report.  Dad only did it once and went into some convoluted explanation when he got caught but it does suck to know your own parent will do this.   

Damn.   That really does suck.

One part of me says, "I would be a good son and remember to visit him in prison.   If he's scamming me he's bound to be scamming others so he's got to be stopped."

One part of me says, "Mom would miss him, I'll let it slide and never trust him again."

I can't honestly say which attitude would have won.   Thankfully I didn't have to find out.

My father used to be a contractor for a bread company. He had one employee (that wasn't family). Employee's wife happened to steal a checkbook from my father and wrote several checks. It was discovered pretty quickly (not the smartest of crimes), and my father had the option to be paid back by his employee or press charges against the wife. He chose to fire the employee and press charges.

Good decision if you ask me.

If it were family, it would certainly depend on how you feel about that family member. And it is also important to know that you would probably be burning down a bridge with the entire family, unless they all feel the same way about that person.

True. Sadly, by the time a sticky-fingered kid becomes an adult, or by the time an adult spirals into a situation that ends with them stealing from a family member who is also an employer, there have been years or even decades of dysfunction. Excuse-making and victim-blaming relatives are always ready to defend the person who's actually doing harm and to protect him or her from the consequences of bad behavior. A fair part of that involves dumping on, attacking, shunning, or punishing the person who is actually responding appropriately by asserting and defending reasonable boundaries or by requiring the problem person to act like a law-abiding adult. In those families, it's OK for a problem person to steal, but it's not appropriate for the victim to react appropriately to being stolen from.

saguaro

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #52 on: July 15, 2019, 03:06:10 PM »
Yep, we set up credit monitoring on DH's credit report to keep tabs on his Dad who took out a credit card that appeared on DH's report.  Dad only did it once and went into some convoluted explanation when he got caught but it does suck to know your own parent will do this.   

Damn.   That really does suck.

One part of me says, "I would be a good son and remember to visit him in prison.   If he's scamming me he's bound to be scamming others so he's got to be stopped."

One part of me says, "Mom would miss him, I'll let it slide and never trust him again."

I can't honestly say which attitude would have won.   Thankfully I didn't have to find out.

My father used to be a contractor for a bread company. He had one employee (that wasn't family). Employee's wife happened to steal a checkbook from my father and wrote several checks. It was discovered pretty quickly (not the smartest of crimes), and my father had the option to be paid back by his employee or press charges against the wife. He chose to fire the employee and press charges.

Good decision if you ask me.

If it were family, it would certainly depend on how you feel about that family member. And it is also important to know that you would probably be burning down a bridge with the entire family, unless they all feel the same way about that person.

True. Sadly, by the time a sticky-fingered kid becomes an adult, or by the time an adult spirals into a situation that ends with them stealing from a family member who is also an employer, there have been years or even decades of dysfunction. Excuse-making and victim-blaming relatives are always ready to defend the person who's actually doing harm and to protect him or her from the consequences of bad behavior. A fair part of that involves dumping on, attacking, shunning, or punishing the person who is actually responding appropriately by asserting and defending reasonable boundaries or by requiring the problem person to act like a law-abiding adult. In those families, it's OK for a problem person to steal, but it's not appropriate for the victim to react appropriately to being stolen from. 

To the bolded: and that is why DH opted not to take dear old Dad to account for it.   He knew it would be turned around on him for being "mean" to Dad because he just made a "mistake".   DH found out some time after the fact and by the time he knew about it the account had been closed.  Dad used the card for some home improvements and paid it off.   To hear Dad explain it, a credit card offer in DH's name showed up as DH was still getting some mail at his parents' home, and Dad could not resist because "it was a good deal".   He swears on a stack of bibles that he applied in his name, not his son's, it was the bank's mistake.   Because the account was paid off, there was no ding to DH's credit so we let it go.  However, we got the monitoring in case Dad tried this again and if he did, we would follow the dispute process and see if it nailed him then.   It never happened again but probably DH's parents failed attempt at insurance fraud around that same time scared them onto the (sort of) straight and narrow.

This was some years ago when credit monitoring was a fairly new thing and getting your free reports was still a thing of the future.  We occasionally pulled reports but it added up to do all of them on both of us. 
« Last Edit: July 15, 2019, 03:13:14 PM by saguaro »

stashja

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #53 on: July 16, 2019, 12:50:30 AM »
Parents are visiting, thankfully without a-hole 35yo brother. He lives with them rent free now, because he can't afford rent in their HCOL area. He has a job for now. (He usually gets fired for goofing off or obnoxious political inyerfaceness.) He will have some out of town loser longtime friends as guests in the house while they are here. He thinks I'm a loser because I teach "future Walmart workers" (his word for students less entitled than him who are not hipsters or trustafarians like the visiting buddies he emulates and because I live in a LCOL that's not cool and don't ski. (In a recently paid off house , also not cool. The suburbs are so bourgeois.) He has publicly tweeted about what a sellout I am because I was a consultant for an article in an "evil" newspaper. He hasn't spoken to my partner at the forced Christmases in years. Parents will be talking up his great job and how great it is to have him around. They are already saying they need to travel so he can have privacy with his friends. Of course alcohol isn't part of the equation and he will get his distance degree soon. Help me get through this.

Just Joe

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #54 on: July 16, 2019, 08:38:49 AM »
You get this morning's blue ribbon for patience... So sorry you are living in that reality TV show.

EngagedToFIRE

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #55 on: July 18, 2019, 07:59:34 AM »
If it's 65 degrees outside, then the AC shouldn't be working hard, if at all.  It actually doesn't make a lot of sense why their utility bills would be so high based on that alone.

LiveLean

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #56 on: July 18, 2019, 09:15:51 AM »
My in-laws provided sort of the opposite story. Despite large income for many years, they saved nothing and ultimately lost their home to foreclosure. We stayed with them for a family funeral in late December one year about a month before the home was taken and the thermostat read 58 degrees.This was a 5,000 square foot home and they couldn't afford to turn on the heat despite sub-freezing temps.


iris lily

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #57 on: July 20, 2019, 09:48:42 AM »
  ***When I comment on this, my boyfriend says, "They're old and should be able to spend their money however they want. If they want to eat out, they should be able to eat out." ****

Klaxon sounds, Warning lights, Alarm bells.......boyfriend future spending alert !
This is hilariously true. My laugh for the day!

RocketSurgeon

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #58 on: July 23, 2019, 08:58:34 AM »
I've got one; Parents bought a vacation home ~five years ago, then just recently sold both the first and second home to pay for construction of a new home in a retirement community way out in the suburbs (11 miles from the nearest hospital). A week before close I get a surprise call from my mother who needs a $6,500 loan to pay off money she borrowed from her CU. She needs to pay that off because she took out a personal loan to cover the difference between the actual mortgage and what my dad was giving her to make the payments and he'll get mad if he sees the open loan when they close on the new house. (My dad works full time w/ whatever OT he can get, my mom works...sparingly.) Why wasn't my dad giving her enough to cover the mortgage? Dunno, but I'm guessing she lied about how much it would cost to get him to buy the (second, now sold) house, which I believe she wanted a lot more than he did.

Yeah, I gave her the money. That's my family story.

AlanStache

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #59 on: July 23, 2019, 11:20:19 AM »
I've got one; Parents bought a vacation home ~five years ago, then just recently sold both the first and second home to pay for construction of a new home in a retirement community way out in the suburbs (11 miles from the nearest hospital). A week before close I get a surprise call from my mother who needs a $6,500 loan to pay off money she borrowed from her CU. She needs to pay that off because she took out a personal loan to cover the difference between the actual mortgage and what my dad was giving her to make the payments and he'll get mad if he sees the open loan when they close on the new house. (My dad works full time w/ whatever OT he can get, my mom works...sparingly.) Why wasn't my dad giving her enough to cover the mortgage? Dunno, but I'm guessing she lied about how much it would cost to get him to buy the (second, now sold) house, which I believe she wanted a lot more than he did.

Yeah, I gave her the money. That's my family story.

Aaaaannnd precedent is set.

Sibley

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #60 on: July 23, 2019, 07:21:49 PM »
I've got one; Parents bought a vacation home ~five years ago, then just recently sold both the first and second home to pay for construction of a new home in a retirement community way out in the suburbs (11 miles from the nearest hospital). A week before close I get a surprise call from my mother who needs a $6,500 loan to pay off money she borrowed from her CU. She needs to pay that off because she took out a personal loan to cover the difference between the actual mortgage and what my dad was giving her to make the payments and he'll get mad if he sees the open loan when they close on the new house. (My dad works full time w/ whatever OT he can get, my mom works...sparingly.) Why wasn't my dad giving her enough to cover the mortgage? Dunno, but I'm guessing she lied about how much it would cost to get him to buy the (second, now sold) house, which I believe she wanted a lot more than he did.

Yeah, I gave her the money. That's my family story.

A sucker is born every minute.

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #61 on: July 24, 2019, 10:57:19 PM »
Y'know, it's pretty easy to be a back-seat driver in another person's life and to say "just do this" or "just do that". It's easy to rip someone for setting a precedent or for giving in to extremely strong family manipulation, especially if you've never walked a mile in their shoes or tried to function in a family where someone's bad financial decisions are affecting you or someone you love. It's a lot easier to verbally kick someone when they're down than it is to help them build themselves back up.

Family ties are strong, especially when they involve someone who is helpless due to old age or disability. Asking an adult child to lend a large sum of money to help mislead the other parent is pretty manipulative. But there's so much other failure here because of the ongoing financial deception within the marriage. Once an adult child has been put on the spot this way there's no easy or clean way out. This probably isn't the first time RocketSurgeon has been played off by one parent against the other; stuff like this seldom just happens out of the blue.

The notion that the father is unaware how much the mortgage payments are doesn't sound reasonable to me because both halves of a married couple have to read and sign the mortgage as proof they're aware of it. More likely she borrowed the money to cover up other spending.

AlanStache

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #62 on: July 25, 2019, 05:57:58 AM »
TGS: I have been heavily subsidizing my parent for about 5 years now, even without any real physiological manipulation drawing down the support is hard.  Hell if they did play some games or borrowed money in my name it would be easier cut strings in one swoop. 
« Last Edit: July 25, 2019, 06:00:09 AM by AlanStache »

Sibley

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #63 on: July 25, 2019, 08:28:26 AM »
Y'know, it's pretty easy to be a back-seat driver in another person's life and to say "just do this" or "just do that". It's easy to rip someone for setting a precedent or for giving in to extremely strong family manipulation, especially if you've never walked a mile in their shoes or tried to function in a family where someone's bad financial decisions are affecting you or someone you love. It's a lot easier to verbally kick someone when they're down than it is to help them build themselves back up.

Family ties are strong, especially when they involve someone who is helpless due to old age or disability. Asking an adult child to lend a large sum of money to help mislead the other parent is pretty manipulative. But there's so much other failure here because of the ongoing financial deception within the marriage. Once an adult child has been put on the spot this way there's no easy or clean way out. This probably isn't the first time RocketSurgeon has been played off by one parent against the other; stuff like this seldom just happens out of the blue.

The notion that the father is unaware how much the mortgage payments are doesn't sound reasonable to me because both halves of a married couple have to read and sign the mortgage as proof they're aware of it. More likely she borrowed the money to cover up other spending.

You are 100% right. But at the same time, I DO expect adults to at least try to think critically. Because if you don't expect it, it'll never happen.

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #64 on: July 25, 2019, 09:33:39 AM »
TGS: I have been heavily subsidizing my parent for about 5 years now, even without any real physiological manipulation drawing down the support is hard.  Hell if they did play some games or borrowed money in my name it would be easier cut strings in one swoop.

Hmm. It sounds as though they know exactly where the line is and how to not cross it, but also how to go right up to the edge of that line. Because of long-term family dynamics it appears you don't recognize that behavior as manipulative. (It is.)

I've got a saying: never wipe butt unless you want to be treated like toilet paper.

For reasons that are probably a lot older than the 5-year subsidy, you have allowed your parent to draw the line in terms of setting your financial boundaries. It sounds to me like that isn't working for you. There are parents who *don't* expect ongoing bailouts from their children without having to be explicitly told not to expect them. In fact for most healthy parents it's a no-brainer. But as luck would have it, you were dealt a hand that includes a parent for whom that particular no-brainer isn't obvious. Your parent got to draw up your financial boundaries, and they did it in a way that was advantageous to them but kind of harmful for you. Unless you want that to continue forever, you're going to have to create what we call a healthy boundary. That's a limit on behavior you will tolerate from others. You will have to communicate this boundary and perhaps politely defend it, and you will have to alter your behavior so that whatever bad decisions your parent may continue to make (and you don't control these decisions) will not affect you.

Based on what you said, you're basically wiping butt financially. You're heavily subsidizing your parent's standard of living to compensate for some decision(s) that parent is making and to protect them from the highly predictable consequences. Because of the assistance you provide, the person you're helping is able to get by just a little bit longer without changing their behavior. There's a technical term for this behavior. It's called "enabling".

At the moment, your parent is taking advantage of you. You know it, but after five years you haven't been able to dial it down to zero. Surely by now you recognize that the pattern is going to continue the rest of your life unless you find a way to fix it. Change isn't going to come from your parent's side, unless of course the subsidy gets bigger. Your parent knows exactly how far they can go without gouging you in a way that provokes you to halt the gravy train, but they're perfectly willing to continue the smaller-scale chiseling and gouging right up to that point (without regard to the financial or emotional effect on you).

The solution, which I believe you already know, is a two-part one. First, you limit the extent to which your parent's budget imbalance affects you. You get your name off any leases, loans, or other financial commitments involving them. Second, you set an end date for the support that is reasonable. It should be one that allows your parent time to adjust his or her standard of living to something sustainable. Scaling down a standard of living isn't usually an overnight process. It takes time to sell a house or to finish a lease. Depending on what cutbacks have to be made you can set a time limit.

Part of you may believe that unless you give in again or continue to subsidize you will lose that parent or suffer irreparable harm to the relationship. Your belief probably has a basis in fact, however it isn't completely true. There may be a tantrum, there may be a meltdown, and there may be a change in how your parent treats you, but the parent/child connection will not actually be broken simply because your parent learns to wipe their own butt. The relationship will change and your parent will (necessarily) become more independent. If the reasons behind that parent's dependency have to do with illness or disability, it's reasonable for you to put forth the effort to line your parent up with social and charitable services that are set up to help. If your parent balks at requesting or receiving charity, you should probably point out that they have had no problem requesting and accepting it from you, but you can't carry the load alone anymore and it's time to spread the burden across a bigger group of people. Your parent will probably have a big emotional reaction to the fact that they ARE a burden to others financially because of their refusal to either pull their own weight or do what they can to make the load lighter... especially if you or others have been telling them for years that it's "no problem". It is a problem and it's time to say so.

TL;DR version: There needs to be another line drawn. By you, this time.

RocketSurgeon

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #65 on: July 25, 2019, 10:54:02 AM »
Astute observation TGS; It wasn't the first time, although previously it just took the form of hiding the occasional mail from my father when I still lived at home. I'm not saying that's a good situation, but I've also had four outpatient surgeries in the past three years (6 if we go back 10) and every time my Mom has been available to taxi me to the hospital and help me recuperate at her home. I don't have a g/f or wife to help me that stuff, so it's hard to refuse help when she asks. And she has been paying the $ back so far.

As for the other responses, well, I know what forum I'm on. I wasn't expecting any medals.

AlanStache

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #66 on: July 25, 2019, 11:47:09 AM »
TGS: You are spot on in places but 100 miles off in others.  Over all was a good message to hear.  At the start of it all I looked at my options and choose the least bad path - my expectations of the outcome were not that far off.  I have been gradually dialing up the pressure and getting results but there have been some significant externally caused setbacks that have prevented a full resolution.  My support has not meaningfully changed over time.  The situation with my parent has been discussed in detail with a therapist and they have drawn different conclusions from you or at least seen more grey area (or maybe they just tactically choose to focus on my other problems... :-)  )

JetBlast

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #67 on: July 26, 2019, 05:45:04 PM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail? 

marty998

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #68 on: July 26, 2019, 07:38:29 PM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

He's not long for this world. Skin Cancer can be a quick and deadly killer.

GreenToTheCore

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #69 on: July 27, 2019, 12:02:17 AM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

On so many levels. Oof.

TomTX

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #70 on: July 27, 2019, 07:40:01 AM »
Hahaha! I will drive my Accord until it dies (I figure I have at least ten more years left on it.) I like to date the "millionaire next door." My current boyfriend drives a 20-year-old Lexus, is retired, and has no mortgage payment.

Old cars is one thing that I changed on. I still buy used, but newer cars are much safer.

In early 2016 I replaced my 1995 Saturn for a surplus 2009 Ford Crown Vic, net cost was $1,550 after selling the Saturn.

It doesn't get that many miles, but I do need it to get to work when I can't bike. And occasionally haul stuff like mulch from Home Depot. With the (full size) spare left at home, the trunk is cavernous. The loaders look at me funny when I pull up and tell them I bought 15 full size bags...

OtherJen

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #71 on: July 27, 2019, 08:05:26 AM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

If he has severe psoriasis, maybe not. Otherwise, yikes.

JetBlast

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #72 on: July 27, 2019, 10:18:02 AM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

If he has severe psoriasis, maybe not. Otherwise, yikes.

No psoriasis, but he does have a new 26 year old girlfriend that moved in after one month of dating. Iím guessing that influenced his decision making.

OtherJen

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #73 on: July 27, 2019, 10:34:25 AM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

If he has severe psoriasis, maybe not. Otherwise, yikes.

No psoriasis, but he does have a new 26 year old girlfriend that moved in after one month of dating. Iím guessing that influenced his decision making.

That's a lot of yikes. Hopefully he doesn't get a tattoo with her name.

six-car-habit

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #74 on: July 27, 2019, 02:46:08 PM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

If he has severe psoriasis, maybe not. Otherwise, yikes.

No psoriasis, but he does have a new 26 year old girlfriend that moved in after one month of dating. Iím guessing that influenced his decision making.

 There is a guy at my work who waxes on poetically about how is wife is so "hot" .  They have a personal tanning bed and have for years.  I'm all for thinking your significant other is physically attractive, that's great.   So he brought her to a work function [ I was not there ] .  I heard from several people the next week that she looked " like an old dried up, wrinkly, leather purse" or some variation , key points being -- old looking compared to her actual age, wrinkly, and overly tan.

JetBlast

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #75 on: July 29, 2019, 03:31:44 PM »
Does my 48 year old brother in law buying a tanning bed for his home count as a fail?

If he has severe psoriasis, maybe not. Otherwise, yikes.

No psoriasis, but he does have a new 26 year old girlfriend that moved in after one month of dating. Iím guessing that influenced his decision making.

 There is a guy at my work who waxes on poetically about how is wife is so "hot" .  They have a personal tanning bed and have for years.  I'm all for thinking your significant other is physically attractive, that's great.   So he brought her to a work function [ I was not there ] .  I heard from several people the next week that she looked " like an old dried up, wrinkly, leather purse" or some variation , key points being -- old looking compared to her actual age, wrinkly, and overly tan.
Saw many women like this when I lived in Florida. In their 50s but looked 75+ because of all the sun bathing theyíd done over the years.

Steeze

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #76 on: July 30, 2019, 04:49:03 AM »
So Iím talking with my parents on the phone last night. My parents take care of a mentally handicapped person for which they are compensated. This has allowed them to pay the bills and stay in their home. This individual has extreme outbursts of anger and threatens to leave occasionally. My parents of course tell him that he is welcome to stay or leave as he pleases. However, this puts my parents in the situation that if he left they wouldnít be able to cover their overhead each month. As Iíve said before they have no emergency fund or retirement savings and are in debt with two older cars.

So what do they tell me? They went to the RV dealership and are considering buying a $20,000 RV so that if he leaves they can move into the RV, park at my uncles house, and sell their house (in that order). They also live in a place where houses sit on the market for years before selling.

I begged them not to buy one. Please, frugality god, please help my parents not suck at money so much.


Cassie

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #77 on: July 30, 2019, 02:11:17 PM »
Unless they live in a mild climate they will freeze in the winter. Sad that they are making such poor decisions at their age.

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #78 on: August 02, 2019, 11:12:17 AM »
So Iím talking with my parents on the phone last night. My parents take care of a mentally handicapped person for which they are compensated. This has allowed them to pay the bills and stay in their home. This individual has extreme outbursts of anger and threatens to leave occasionally. My parents of course tell him that he is welcome to stay or leave as he pleases. However, this puts my parents in the situation that if he left they wouldnít be able to cover their overhead each month. As Iíve said before they have no emergency fund or retirement savings and are in debt with two older cars.

So what do they tell me? They went to the RV dealership and are considering buying a $20,000 RV so that if he leaves they can move into the RV, park at my uncles house, and sell their house (in that order). They also live in a place where houses sit on the market for years before selling.

I begged them not to buy one. Please, frugality god, please help my parents not suck at money so much.

Ouch.

If they can't really afford their home, is there some reason they are not selling it and moving into lower cost housing? I can see staying if there is nothing else that would be less expensive, but they are paying a high price for staying put.

Also, if they ever do decide to sell, paying attention to proper staging and time of year for listing can help a lot.  I sold my house fast in an area that is normally slow (my next door neighbour took 2 years to sell).  Hopefully this is something you can help them with when the time comes.

Steeze

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #79 on: August 02, 2019, 12:14:14 PM »
So Iím talking with my parents on the phone last night. My parents take care of a mentally handicapped person for which they are compensated. This has allowed them to pay the bills and stay in their home. This individual has extreme outbursts of anger and threatens to leave occasionally. My parents of course tell him that he is welcome to stay or leave as he pleases. However, this puts my parents in the situation that if he left they wouldnít be able to cover their overhead each month. As Iíve said before they have no emergency fund or retirement savings and are in debt with two older cars.

So what do they tell me? They went to the RV dealership and are considering buying a $20,000 RV so that if he leaves they can move into the RV, park at my uncles house, and sell their house (in that order). They also live in a place where houses sit on the market for years before selling.

I begged them not to buy one. Please, frugality god, please help my parents not suck at money so much.

Ouch.

If they can't really afford their home, is there some reason they are not selling it and moving into lower cost housing? I can see staying if there is nothing else that would be less expensive, but they are paying a high price for staying put.

Also, if they ever do decide to sell, paying attention to proper staging and time of year for listing can help a lot.  I sold my house fast in an area that is normally slow (my next door neighbour took 2 years to sell).  Hopefully this is something you can help them with when the time comes.

They live in a rural VLCOL area - they work for themselves, and live close to family. When they are ready I will definitely help them however I can. Hoping just a couple years when they can collect SS they will make the jump and move in with my grandparents permanently. Grandparents need help, and parents can provide that in home care in exchange for room/board. Plus why take care of some one elseís family when your own family needs help? Convinced mom to go to FL to be with her parents for 6 months this winter to try it out.

Steeze

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #80 on: August 08, 2019, 04:00:49 PM »
Momís car has been needing replacement - has bad rings and has been consuming a quart of oil every 600 miles. She recently spent upwards of 3-4K on repairing everything except the engine problem because they wanted another 5k for that. Tried to get her to trade it for a used Honda Fit before spending the money, but she didnít want to spend 10k on a new used car since she just paid her car off.

Fast forward 6 months and car has a major electrical problem needing additional repair. Again I suggest looking at used a Honda Fit since she is spending nearly 1k a month on repairs at this point. Today my parents went to test drive the Fit and hated it. Said it felt cheap and small and too low to the ground for snow. They traded the Subaru for $2k and put 10k down on a $22k CRV and now have a 310/mo car payment for 3 years.

Canít help these people. Sigh.

Wrenchturner

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #81 on: August 08, 2019, 05:28:57 PM »
Momís car has been needing replacement - has bad rings and has been consuming a quart of oil every 600 miles. She recently spent upwards of 3-4K on repairing everything except the engine problem because they wanted another 5k for that. Tried to get her to trade it for a used Honda Fit before spending the money, but she didnít want to spend 10k on a new used car since she just paid her car off.

Fast forward 6 months and car has a major electrical problem needing additional repair. Again I suggest looking at used a Honda Fit since she is spending nearly 1k a month on repairs at this point. Today my parents went to test drive the Fit and hated it. Said it felt cheap and small and too low to the ground for snow. They traded the Subaru for $2k and put 10k down on a $22k CRV and now have a 310/mo car payment for 3 years.

Canít help these people. Sigh.
If someone offered to give you several grand plus $310 a month for three years to drive a used Fit instead of a new CRV, would you do it?  I would.

But such thoughts are not considered, unfortunately.  People don't price their own decisions.

Cassie

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #82 on: August 08, 2019, 06:05:53 PM »
Your parents make my head hurt.

Steeze

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #83 on: August 08, 2019, 07:12:56 PM »
Your parents make my head hurt.

At least they had a 10k emergency fund! Maybe Iím getting through to them! I was under the impression that they got out of consumer debt and stopped saving the excess. Seems they must have been saving a few hundred a month.dad says he still has a couple grand left to pay taxes, cover insurance for the year and fill the propane tank for the winter. Trying to look on the bright side. I was pretty bummed out earlier when they told me.

Cassie

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #84 on: August 08, 2019, 07:22:55 PM »
Thatís a good point! I would have paid cash for a used car as most here would. We are older and recognize that we cannot recover from financial mistakes.

El_Mariachi

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #85 on: August 19, 2019, 09:52:13 AM »
ouch, I have a family member who both he and his wife are pretty high earners, yet they have little to nothing saved

they go out to eat nearly every dinner and they take these crazy vacations every 6 months

he was telling me that he has a 401k sitting with an old company and they are charging him a maintenance fee, but he hasnt done anything about it (2 years ago!) Im curious how much he has lost

its sad because he wasnt always like this, but when he got married its like he is carrying around a backpack full of lead

Steeze

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #86 on: August 20, 2019, 04:06:18 PM »
ouch, I have a family member who both he and his wife are pretty high earners, yet they have little to nothing saved

they go out to eat nearly every dinner and they take these crazy vacations every 6 months

he was telling me that he has a 401k sitting with an old company and they are charging him a maintenance fee, but he hasnt done anything about it (2 years ago!) Im curious how much he has lost

its sad because he wasnt always like this, but when he got married its like he is carrying around a backpack full of lead

I am fortunate to have a wife who is generally very frugal and is working towards FIRE. However, I have a vacation budget that is triple what I need and own things like throw pillows, bath mats, and other decorations because Iíd rather have my wife smiling than a few extra dollars. Itís easy to justify her spending if itís something she thinks she needs even if I think it is a waste. I could see how this mindset could lead to a bad situation if your spouse is a big spender.

magnet18

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #87 on: August 23, 2019, 11:15:56 AM »
Unless they live in a mild climate they will freeze in the winter. Sad that they are making such poor decisions at their age.
Not necessarily, but probably

I live in an rv in a very not mild climate (-20F is the coldest it got last year)

I do it for fun and had no problems.

But unless they know exactly what they're getting into and they're somewhat handy, they're not gonna have a good time, that's for sure


Dicey

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #88 on: August 25, 2019, 11:12:37 PM »
I'm a little late to this party, but I'm going to plunge right in.

Re "stealing" money given as gifts from family members to minor children:  take other factors into consideration when you hear stuff like that.  Yes, I'm totally guilty of that.

The money people gave for the baptism of my kids went to pay for the baptism lunch everyone came to after church.  My SIL had to do the same, she was even in the bathroom opening cards for the cash after the check came in order to pay it.  We were broke.  If somone gave my kid a savings bond, I would have cashed it the next day to pay the gas bill.  Over the years when my mom has given me or my kids 100 bucks for "presents for the kids," I would give them the gift of heat and hot water and a roof over thier heads.  Years later when we had more money and were buying the kids more stuff than they ever needed, the grandparent money went right into the pile with our other money.  What could I buy my kid with grandma's 100 bucks when I just bought her a hundred dollar doll with clothes and shoes that cost more than my own?  Grandma would send them a card with 50 bucks, and I'd put it towards the hundreds I'd already spent on presents for them.

It's only now that my kids are older (late teens), DH and I are both working, we are making a decent living, and we've found MMM that we are actually putting away grandma's gifts into their own accounts.  With our new MMM ways we are saving and maxing out retirement accounts and have a new outlook.  I told them last December, you know what g'ma is getting you?  Stocks! and I opened VG accounts for them.  But until then all of our money was family money that we used to support our family with and everyone got what they needed and then some. 

Off topic but still.

DeniseNJ, I loved every word of this response. It's like you and my parents lived a parallel life. (My mom was from Paterson, btw. Much later, worked (remotely) for a company based in Saddle Brook.)

When we were young and poor the money kids got for gifts went into a savings account for them.  When our kids got baptized we invited grandparents and aunts/uncles only  and had a lunch at our house afterwards.   We gave them the money when they were adults.   Itís called living within your means.
And Cassie, I find this response unnecessarily harsh. My parents made tons of sacrifices to have my mom be at home and to send all six of us to private schools, which were hands-down better than the local public schools. They didn't blow the money on themselves, they used it to make all of our lives better. I'll gladly facepunch ANYone who has the nerve to call that stealing.

Cassie

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #89 on: August 26, 2019, 12:42:24 AM »
I stayed home until the youngest was in school and ours went to private school also. Itís fine that the money went to school.  Thatís not stealing. I think what I said was misunderstood.   Stealing is spending the money on non kid related stuff. I would be fine with any of the money going to help the kids in anyway.

Zamboni

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #90 on: August 26, 2019, 01:52:00 AM »
Kids, cars:

Infants aside, I think most people who make a gift of a small bit of cash for a child have the idea that the child will actually be allowed to make some decision about how to use it. Perhaps the child wants to save it to buy a gift for their parent or a teacher? I remember using some birthday money once to buy a very small gift for my 3rd grade teacher. Another time I saved up some gift money and bought a Christmas present for each of my parents. Perhaps they want to blow it on candy? Or matchbox cars?

Regardless, the purchase decision is the child's decision for small amounts of money. That's the entire point! It's really a gift of a tiny bit of healthy autonomy for the child more than anything. Barring starvation level poverty, if a parent handles it another way, then to me that indicates that either the gift amount was too large (like giving a 2-year-old $100, which is silly and not age appropriate) or that the parent has serious control issues. If I found out that their parent was confiscating a $5 or $10 cash gift, then I would be pretty irritated with the parent, because the gift was to the child, not the parent, and I happen to think taking money from your children is shitty. Your mileage may vary.

Finally, I do recognize that some relatives have an unhealthy lack of boundary issues about what is a reasonable thing to do for someone's children. If Grandma has no common sense and goes way overboard with hundreds of dollars at a time for small children, for example, then I don't blame parents for intervening.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2019, 07:28:24 PM by Zamboni »

economista

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #91 on: August 26, 2019, 07:40:33 AM »
There was a recent episode of the ďThis is UncomfortableĒ podcast that talked about this on a larger scale. The woman in the interview had been given $20,000 for college by her grandfather when she was a child and she knew about it. It was always in the back of her head that she had a $20k head start on paying for college. When she got to her senior year and got accepted to college her father asked her how she was going to pay for it and she asked him how much the $20k in college money had grown to with interest. He stared at her blankly and told her there wasnít anything left - he had been using it to keep their standard of living the same for the past however many years since he lost his job. She was deeply hurt and it pretty much ruined their relationship for a long time. In her mind, he ďstoleĒ her college fund from her. In his mind (they interviewed him as well) that money was justifiably used to support her. Itís interesting because I can see both of their points of view.

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #92 on: August 26, 2019, 08:37:12 AM »
There was a recent episode of the ďThis is UncomfortableĒ podcast that talked about this on a larger scale. The woman in the interview had been given $20,000 for college by her grandfather when she was a child and she knew about it. It was always in the back of her head that she had a $20k head start on paying for college. When she got to her senior year and got accepted to college her father asked her how she was going to pay for it and she asked him how much the $20k in college money had grown to with interest. He stared at her blankly and told her there wasnít anything left - he had been using it to keep their standard of living the same for the past however many years since he lost his job. She was deeply hurt and it pretty much ruined their relationship for a long time. In her mind, he ďstoleĒ her college fund from her. In his mind (they interviewed him as well) that money was justifiably used to support her. Itís interesting because I can see both of their points of view.

I'll have to give that one a listen. In my mind, if the grandfather gave the money with the instruction that it was for college, then the father had no right to use it for anything else without permission from the daughter.

AlanStache

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #93 on: August 26, 2019, 09:23:25 AM »
There was a recent episode of the ďThis is UncomfortableĒ podcast that talked about this on a larger scale. The woman in the interview had been given $20,000 for college by her grandfather when she was a child and she knew about it. It was always in the back of her head that she had a $20k head start on paying for college. When she got to her senior year and got accepted to college her father asked her how she was going to pay for it and she asked him how much the $20k in college money had grown to with interest. He stared at her blankly and told her there wasnít anything left - he had been using it to keep their standard of living the same for the past however many years since he lost his job. She was deeply hurt and it pretty much ruined their relationship for a long time. In her mind, he ďstoleĒ her college fund from her. In his mind (they interviewed him as well) that money was justifiably used to support her. Itís interesting because I can see both of their points of view.

I think it depends on the level of "keep their standard of living the same"; but at least the spending should have been communicated prior to college applications being sent out. 

DadJokes

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #94 on: August 26, 2019, 09:36:56 AM »
There was a recent episode of the ďThis is UncomfortableĒ podcast that talked about this on a larger scale. The woman in the interview had been given $20,000 for college by her grandfather when she was a child and she knew about it. It was always in the back of her head that she had a $20k head start on paying for college. When she got to her senior year and got accepted to college her father asked her how she was going to pay for it and she asked him how much the $20k in college money had grown to with interest. He stared at her blankly and told her there wasnít anything left - he had been using it to keep their standard of living the same for the past however many years since he lost his job. She was deeply hurt and it pretty much ruined their relationship for a long time. In her mind, he ďstoleĒ her college fund from her. In his mind (they interviewed him as well) that money was justifiably used to support her. Itís interesting because I can see both of their points of view.

I think it depends on the level of "keep their standard of living the same"; but at least the spending should have been communicated prior to college applications being sent out.

Recap of the episode:

Parents got divorced, and dad got custody of both kids. Both kids received $20k from grandfather for college. Older sibling is 10 years older and was able to use the money. Father lost his job when tech bubble burst and never got another job. He even said in the interview that he didn't want to take a lower paying job and instead decided to "borrow" from his child's college fund. There aren't a lot of details about their lifestyle, but I'm guessing middle class based on his prior profession.

She found out the money was gone when filling out her FAFSA.

Father has been paying it back to the tune of a few hundred per month over the last decade. Daughter has some pretty extreme money anxiety issues, likely because of what her father did.

Cassie

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #95 on: August 26, 2019, 09:59:12 AM »
My kids are long grown but would get 25 for baptism, etc and they were not shopping at that age. One grandfather gave them 100 in savings bonds twice a year with the understanding that it would be saved not spent.  If they were old enough to shop and got a small amount sure they could spend it. We gave our kids a weekly allowance to spend or save as they saw fit.  Each kid was happy to have 4K upon turning 18 which was not a insignificant amount back then.

Zamboni

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #96 on: August 26, 2019, 08:06:52 PM »

Father lost his job when tech bubble burst and never got another job. He even said in the interview that he didn't want to take a lower paying job and instead decided to "borrow" from his child's college fund.


He's an asshole. I'm sorry, but I just don't see his point of view at all. I've had some shitty jobs in my time and I would take absolutely any job I could get to keep food on the table instead of stealing money earmarked for my kid. How long would he have had to work to earn that $20K? One year, tops, in pretty much any kind of job? Probably more like a few months . . . . and he never really did make an effort to pay it back. Him claiming that is just a joke. JFC, that just really burns my shorts.

All of this reminds me that I need to take time tomorrow to get to the credit union to make them the trustee for my kids. My own Mom is losing her marbles and, while I have never trusted her for a number of good reasons, letting her have access to my estate at this point would be a catastrophe.

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #97 on: September 01, 2019, 09:32:17 PM »
We are struggling about what to do with dollars given to our girls from their grandparents.

Recently, they've gotten "responsiblities" (chores) and receive "privileges" (allowance), which they can spend on screen time, buy the things they want, but we wouldn't necesarily get for them, soda at a restaurant, stuff like that. One purpose was to help them save up over the weeks toward a larger goal. For our older, she was building up toward an ipad when Grandma found out and swooped in with a Kindle for her birthday. The same thing happened with the other grandparents when our youngest started saving for a mermaid tail. 

I appreciate that the grand folks love them and want to shower them with their hearts desires, but damn...I'm trying to instill some work ethic and patience and satisfaction in something self earned, and I'm being thwarted at every step.

DH feels uncomfortable putting their birthday money into their savings accounts, as that was not the expectation with which it was given. But without saving goals, our kids buy the first items they encounter until the dollars are gone. This runs contrary to the values we're trying to teach them.

I wish all the Grands would throw a buck or two into the 529s instead of funding the kids' crap collection.

Dicey

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #98 on: September 01, 2019, 10:07:14 PM »
I wish all the Grands would throw a buck or two into the 529s instead of funding the kids' crap collection.
I thought we had this figured out. We started a 529 and we throw money into it for birthdays, Christmas, etc. No shopping hassles, no gifts enjoyed ephemerally, no faded or broken plastic crap ending up in a landfill. Recently, I needed to access DH's Amazon account to handle a return on the last eligible day. With DH's knowledge, I did so. Hmmm, what's this? Someone ordered a Big Wheel three days before a certain someone's third birthday and never mentioned it? Lol, big talker, my DH. And apparently a doting grandpa too. We're going to have a fat payday soon, so we will dump a big slug into grandbaby's 529 anyway. Better to do it while she's young so it has time to grow.

AlanStache

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Re: Family Member Fails
« Reply #99 on: September 02, 2019, 12:34:18 PM »
We are struggling about what to do with dollars given to our girls from their grandparents.

Recently, they've gotten "responsiblities" (chores) and receive "privileges" (allowance), which they can spend on screen time, buy the things they want, but we wouldn't necesarily get for them, soda at a restaurant, stuff like that. One purpose was to help them save up over the weeks toward a larger goal. For our older, she was building up toward an ipad when Grandma found out and swooped in with a Kindle for her birthday. The same thing happened with the other grandparents when our youngest started saving for a mermaid tail. 

I appreciate that the grand folks love them and want to shower them with their hearts desires, but damn...I'm trying to instill some work ethic and patience and satisfaction in something self earned, and I'm being thwarted at every step.

DH feels uncomfortable putting their birthday money into their savings accounts, as that was not the expectation with which it was given. But without saving goals, our kids buy the first items they encounter until the dollars are gone. This runs contrary to the values we're trying to teach them.

I wish all the Grands would throw a buck or two into the 529s instead of funding the kids' crap collection.

Could you double the the standard allowance (for the same chores) with the grandparents gift money until it is gone?  This might even make a good lesson in life style inflation.