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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: firemoney on October 29, 2020, 07:17:32 PM

Title: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 29, 2020, 07:17:32 PM
Hi everyone. First post and it’s a doozy. It involves the severe enabling of my brother in law “Jeff”. It’s now spilled over in my personal life (some of it my fault)

A few facts about “Jeff”:
38 years old
Lives for free in moms basement
Zero friends
No attendance at family/holiday functions
Sometimes works, mostly not working
Drinks lots of beer, smokes lots of pot, cigarettes.
Has borrowed money or financed small purchases through my daughter (unknowns to me) grandpa had to pay her back.
Is at the family cabin all the time but contributes nothing
Is lazy, entitled, arrogant, throws hissy fits when things don’t go his way.
Nothing is ever his fault. Ever. Always someone else to blame.
Dad has since passed on and he is verbally abuse to mom. She has told us this. She doesn’t like going to the cabin with him. She has told me she is tired of him and no longer wants to support an adult child.

His enabling bothered me for years as I attended the family cabin, as I worked and chipped in financially to help out mom and dad. My choice. I can’t sit on a dock all day and drink beer while an 80 year old man works. Call me old fashioned. This went on for 8 years until he made a comment that made me realize I was not a brother, but just another employee at “hotel Jeff”.

No more cabin. Done. Not my cabin, not my business. See ya.

Dad gets sick, and passes. All the while no support from Jeff. In fact he is holed up in the basement the whole time offering no support to the family. To his defense he did attend the service.

Mom approaches us to “buy half the cabin” as she cannot afford the whole thing, nor can she do the work. This is where I take responsibility. I should have told no thanks , we cannot afford the cabin either. You should sell, and let us know how we can help. We (me,wife and daughter) come up with a plan.

Nope. I get a crazy idea to purchase 3/4 of the cottage. Let’s say 150k total compensation. 50k of that via interest free loan forgivable upon death. We pay cash and finance through mom. If she dies we are not burdened paying back an estate. Mom agrees to gift or “preinherit” my wife the other 25% in exchange for a life interest in the property.

Cabin collapses and will be 38k to fix. All we can do is 150k total so we revise the agreement to.... we will cover repair, and pay mom the balance up to 150k. Everything the same.

Her only concern is the other siblings be allowed when she dies to attend the cabin. Especially Jeff. We tell her that as new owners we are instituting new rules but so long as rules are abided by we will,allow siblings and their children to attend subject to availability.

I,write the cheque for 38k and the cabin is repaired. Wife and I get to work cleaning, etc. throughout the summer,I learn that Jeff has not made any friends at the cabin. He has been blasting music, flying,drones, discharging firearms, getting into arguement with neighbors, and feeding the wildlife. Nothing was ever done but they’d like it to stop.

I,confront Jeff about this and of course nothing is his fault. Rules,are meant to be broken, and he will continue to shoot guns because “nobody will control me”.

We institute new rules, including no firearms. Jeff is mad and tells me he will store them elsewhere and shoot them. “Nobody tells me what to do!”

As we close up for the season,Jeff tells me I cannot take the generator home (to service) as he will need it when he comes out in the winter. We don’t want him in the winter because he may burn the place down, and/or use up all the firewood as he won’t cut wood.

I tell him I will talk to his sister about it. “WHAT!! WHAT TO TALK ABOUT ? IVE BEEN COMING OUT HERE IN THE WINTER FOR 38 YEARs!”
I explain to him that he is a guest he loses it. “I’ll run this by mom and see what she says!” (We don’t legally own the cabin at this point. Cabin repair was paid for before paperwork to get things rolling). It’s called trust. It’s family right?

I have the lawyer draw up paperwork and we have a talk with mom. I explain my concerns and there will be newer rules. I call her son an ass@#$%.

Mom comes over Saturday to discuss some concerns and go over the paperwork. Awesome. Go through it and book lawyer appointment.

Mom opens up with a lecture about trust and how she doesn’t trust that Jeff will be allowed at the cabin. It’s not sitting well with her because he has a right to be there. He’s been coming out for 38 years don’t you know?

She then assasinates my character with trivial examples to justify her sons behavior.

She then waves “our deal” at us stating a smaller cabin has sold for more money than we are paying. We should be thankful. She mentions the interest free loan, and if she dies we are “getting something for nothing”. She’s asks me why I think I deserve such a deal and not the other,children/ in-laws.

She’s all over the map so I ask her outright what does she want? “I want to keep,10% and will it to,Jeff. I can always change it if he doesn’t smarten up. She gives several examples of how Jeff isnt a bad guy, and how he was starting to pay rent when he was working.

I tell her absolutely not. That wasn’t our agreement and I will collect my tools in the spring. She gets mad that me and says “see, when you don’t get your way you stomp your,feet. “

She calls me bossy, controlling, and a bully. My god “I can’t even buy a car without you bossing me around!” (She asked me,to,reasearch cars, and to come up with a,recommendation. )

She then said I was manipulating her and took advantage of a grieving widow.

She didn’t want us to buy a,cabin. She wanted us to give her money, and Jeff continue as normal.

Yes, never mix family and business. I should have walked away. Now she supposedly is paying me back the,38k.

So my question is how,so,I deal with mom? She attacked me because I was “attacking” her son by instituting rules at the cabin.

Now she’s insulted me. I’m mad, and hurt.

I realize she is being abused so I believe she wasn’t speaking from her heart. I don’t want to punish her but I also want to hold her accountable for her,actions.

If she wants to enable her son fine, but it can’t spill into my life. I need to,set boundaries. No more errands for her if her son is at home not working. Of course I’m not going to the cabin. Jeff can do the work. If he’s entitled to be there then he can do the work.

I reached out to her to let her know I believe she is being,treated,poorly and if she needs help she can reach out. She even used that against me as manipulation.

What would you do?
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: iluvzbeach on October 29, 2020, 07:35:03 PM
Oh, I am so sorry you are in this situation. It sounds impossible.

Let her pay you back the 38K and walk away from the cabin. Minimize contact, but try to have an amicable relationship.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 29, 2020, 08:04:45 PM
Cabin is history. I need to go next year and pick up some stuff, sell an outboard, and heater I bought for “our” cabin.

I’m done. Hey I get it, Jeff is “entitled” to go because he deserves that. Fine. He can be responsible for the costs, and associated work.

I don’t know if I can have an amicable relationship. She’s being abused, but she did swing a pretty big hammer out of desperation.

Jeff actually told her he’d rather her sell the cabin outright if he didn’t “get his slice”. If,he,can’t have a slice than NO ONE should get to enjoy it.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: nalor511 on October 29, 2020, 08:11:45 PM
At this point it may be healthier for you to only exchange pleasantries with mom, and not have a deeper relationship, grating though that may seem. Similar situation of my own, and over long, agonizing years, that's what's worked best for me so far
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: SunnyDays on October 29, 2020, 08:22:58 PM
Your mom isn’t being abused.  She’s a willing participant in this dysfunctional relationship.  In fact, I would say that she’s a lot like her son and perhaps he has learned his behaviours from her.  The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Best approach is to get out of this deal, let your mom do what she wants with the cabin and stop giving your opinion about her relationship with your brother because she will only resent you for it.  There are other cabins you can buy if that’s what you want to do that come without stress and drama.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 29, 2020, 08:26:42 PM
Ok, but how do I deal with mom? Write her off then?

Stop.doing things for her? (Errands, etc)

Like I said I don’t,want to seem like I’m being all sour,grapes, but I want to stop doing things for her. Is that petty ?

Do I confront her? Jeff also,has to stop using my daughter as a bank. Mom has to stop complaining to,us about her son
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: former player on October 29, 2020, 08:53:12 PM
Where is your spouse in all of this?  As I understand it, it's her mom, her brother and her family cabin.

OK, first things first.  You need to talk to your daughter about establishing boundaries with her Uncle Jeff.  If you don't understand enough about establishing boundaries to explain the need for them and how to establish them in a way that will get through to your daughter you need to read up on the subject (lots of books out there)  - it will help you too.  But your daughter needs to stop enabling Uncle Jeff because it will ruin her life if she doesn't stop it now.

Secondly, you need to establish your own boundaries with mom in law.  This will need to be a joint enterprise with your spouse, and will no doubt take a lot of working through the issues.  The ongoing issues you need to agree with your spouse how you will deal with are 1) getting back the $38k you spent on cabin repairs, 2) deciding what help you are going to continue to give her, and 3) how you are going to deal with what she says to you that upsets you.

On the money, what are the chances of your getting the money back?  Do you need a written agreement?  I would tell you not to rely on anything coming to you as an inheritance, either by way of repayment or otherwise: it's highly likely that your mother in law will lie to you about what's in her will, change it without you knowing, and/or leave everything to Jeff.

On doing errands, etc., the first thing to do is to stop volunteering.  Make her ask.   If she does ask, have some answers ready.  Your immediate answer is always going to be "We'll need to think about that, we'll get back to you if we can help, in the meantime is that something Jeff could do for you."

On being angry and hurt at what she's been saying, I'm not surprised, and I'm sorry.  Again, something to talk to your spouse about, to say how angry and hurt you are and that your priority is to not let your mother in law affect your spouse and your daughter and can your spouse be aware that she and your daughter are your priority and can she help with protecting the relationship between the two of you.

Best of luck.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 29, 2020, 09:28:41 PM
Where is your spouse in all of this?  As I understand it, it's her mom, her brother and her family cabin.

OK, first things first.  You need to talk to your daughter about establishing boundaries with her Uncle Jeff.  If you don't understand enough about establishing boundaries to explain the need for them and how to establish them in a way that will get through to your daughter you need to read up on the subject (lots of books out there)  - it will help you too.  But your daughter needs to stop enabling Uncle Jeff because it will ruin her life if she doesn't stop it now.

Secondly, you need to establish your own boundaries with mom in law.  This will need to be a joint enterprise with your spouse, and will no doubt take a lot of working through the issues.  The ongoing issues you need to agree with your spouse how you will deal with are 1) getting back the $38k you spent on cabin repairs, 2) deciding what help you are going to continue to give her, and 3) how you are going to deal with what she says to you that upsets you.

On the money, what are the chances of your getting the money back?  Do you need a written agreement?  I would tell you not to rely on anything coming to you as an inheritance, either by way of repayment or otherwise: it's highly likely that your mother in law will lie to you about what's in her will, change it without you knowing, and/or leave everything to Jeff.

On doing errands, etc., the first thing to do is to stop volunteering.  Make her ask.   If she does ask, have some answers ready.  Your immediate answer is always going to be "We'll need to think about that, we'll get back to you if we can help, in the meantime is that something Jeff could do for you."

On being angry and hurt at what she's been saying, I'm not surprised, and I'm sorry.  Again, something to talk to your spouse about, to say how angry and hurt you are and that your priority is to not let your mother in law affect your spouse and your daughter and can your spouse be aware that she and your daughter are your priority and can she help with protecting the relationship between the two of you.

Best of luck.

Ok, daughter has been instructed to no longer lend him money, or finance anything he buys used from her (computer parts for example). She has also been told to notify us if he asks for money.

I believe she will pay me back. She has 20k in savings, and was going to get a loan for the balance. I have never, nor will I ever expect an inheritance from anyone. If she doesn’t pay me back I will contact a lawyer to explore options.

Definitely I will not volunteer anything. I like the “I will think about it, and get back to you if I can help out”. I will not “get back to her”

Spouse and daughter are pretty pissed at her. We were all buying the cabin together so she didn’t just place Jeff above me (understandable I’m not blood) but above her daughter and granddaughter.

She said if her mom ever sold the cabin she would disown her. If she sells because Jeff didn’t get her slice mom is done. We our offer was fair, and wasn’t an issue until Jeff became worried he may not be invited out.

My daughter believes this was a last minute attempt to,StrongArm us. I never felt good about this decision. It never felt like we were buying a cabin, but rather pumping money into Jeff’s clubhouse.

My wife defended Jeff early on but her narrative has changed. His recent “if I can’t have the cabin, no one will” has,revealed his true self. He doesn’t care about the cabin. She always had this “pipe dream” of her brother and I developing some kind of bond.

To date I’m the only person who has managed to get him to briefly come out of the basement and engage. I,have no use for the guy. None. I’ve given him benefit of doubt. I tried to get him involved at the cabin.

It’s sad because wife grew up at the cabin. She was a single parent and our daughter had a place to go as wife didn’t have any money after bills.

I really tried to make this work, but here brother is just too much. And trying to work with an enabled person if taxing.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: norajean on October 29, 2020, 09:42:09 PM
 Cherish The Cabin!
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: plog on October 30, 2020, 12:15:24 AM
Quote
What would you do?

I would shut up and disengage.  To play hindsight quarterback, I would have done this from the get go. 

I'm glad you use terms like 'mom' and 'dad' for your in-laws, but now your seeing where true family loyalty lies.  This was and is your wife's battle to be the leader of.  Your job is to be quiet and be supportive of your wife when she discusses this issue with her biological family.  Bitch all you want in private to your wife about the matter, but you cant tell a woman whose not your mother that her worthless son is worthless.

That was as big a mistake as buying into the deal to begin with.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: BikeFanatic on October 30, 2020, 04:33:48 AM
The best you could do is set healthy boundaries for yourself, and it seems like your spouse has had rose colored glasses when dealing with her own family. And realistically who would not want to maintain ties with their siblings and mother regardless of how flawed they are. But your mother in law did you a favor by exposing who she really is and how her and her son are primary and you are other or very secondary. You are at least no longer being manipulated and strung along. Now you and your family can be a united front. No more favors, no more money, no expectations.

I do feel for you and your family, your daughter has likely lost her grandma, and you are hurt as well.
Space will help you heal, it is not a matter of right and wrong really. They are who they are, you see them as such and now your family can also. Even though it cost you a healthy sum, you are now saving years of drama and heart ache by separating now. They exposed themselves to your wife and daughter
Almost doing you a favor. With time and space and very strong boundaries maybe you can have a relationship in the future but on your terms and never as deep as you had before.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: researcher1 on October 30, 2020, 05:49:04 AM
Where is your spouse in all of this?  As I understand it, it's her mom, her brother and her family cabin.
.
.
.
I really tried to make this work, but here brother is just too much. And trying to work with an enabled person if taxing.
It is interesting that you never really answered the primary question being asked...
Where is your spouse in all of this?

It is her family.  She should be taking the lead on this.
You have injected yourself way too much into the situation.
You seem to have a very unhealthy fixation with "Jeff".
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: ctuser1 on October 30, 2020, 06:11:18 AM
I'd second (third? fourth?) the opinion that you need to let your spouse take the lead on this issue.

Given it is family, if I was ever in the same position then I would just write off any existing investments you have made ($38k? $150k? $38k+$150k?). Stringing this whole thing along will only cause further damages to the relationship. Given you are also at fault, at least partially, I would probably not demand money back from the situation - unless that money is tied to something critical like paying for your daughter's college etc.

In future, you may want make sure it is your spouse who deals with any contentious family issues on her side, and that you stay away from doing any kind of financial "transaction" or "business" with family.

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on October 30, 2020, 06:35:35 AM
I agree with everyone else here that you need to step back and let go quite a bit.

This is not your mother, it's your spouse's mother and your kid's grandmother. It's not up to you how involved they choose to be with her, you don't actually get to make that decision. You can decide how involved *you* want to be.

What I mean is, back off and let your spouse be the main person to deal with their own mother, to decide what to push on and what to back off on. To decide how much to help and when to say no. To decide their own boundaries with their own parent.

Have a very frank discussion as a couple about your expectations of being paid back, and let your spouse decide if they're willing to resort to involving a lawyer.

The mistake of dumping money into the cabin is already done. It was clearly a mistake from the beginning, especially giving money without any kind of financial papers drawn up, so you may need to brace yourself for losing that money if your spouse isn't willing to go after her mother for it.

Your brother in law is a mess, but his mom is entitled to enable him, moms have that divine right, and you really have no place challenging that.

You *are* absolutely entitled to remove yourself from any relationship with him though. You are also absolutely entitled to request of your spouse that she play interference to help minimize your interaction with him. But really, Jeff's just an asshole brother in law who shouldn't matter to you this much. He's only an issue for you because you let him be an issue for you, because you didn't have appropriate boundaries to begin with.

Don't get me wrong, you have rights here, and it is your spouse's responsibility to help manage her family. However, it is not your responsibility or right to insert yourself into her family drama.

Let your spouse take the lead from here on out.
Why haven't they up to this point??
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: DeniseNJ on October 30, 2020, 07:17:39 AM
I know you are sad. I would encourage you to consider Jeff mentally ill suffering from depression, and his mother as abused and trapped by having been his caregiver his entire life.  Forgive them, forget this incident. Get your money back. Be pleasant and gracious, even loving moving forward. Say happily, "We'll just take the money back and you should do what you want with your cabin, no hard feelings." Let them live their lives and you can still be happy for them.

BUT, don't do anything to offer any help financial or otherwise.  If anyone asks for anything you say, "sorry I wish I could help but I just can't now." Smile.  No confrontation, no hostility. Wish them the very bast and mean it.  And when she complains about anything, including Jeff, change the subject.

Move past this and pity them.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Laura33 on October 30, 2020, 07:49:43 AM
First, I'm sorry that your good intentions were met with disrespect and even vitriol.

Second, everything that @Malcat said.  The reality is this is not your problem to fix -- it's not even your wife's!  I hope this recent incident with your MIL has demonstrated that the "story" isn't this poor, helpless old lady being taken advantage of by a good-for-nothing abusive son.  She played a huge role in creating the dynamic, she continues to play a huge role in perpetuating it, and she does so because she gets something out of it.  Who knows what that is -- martyr?  Victim?  All the attention of people rushing in to save her?  You can't know, and in fact you don't have to know.  All you need to understand is that she created this dynamic and she will continue to choose it, every day, unless and until she decides she wants something different.  And all you can do for yourself is choose not to play your assigned role -- and expect your "reward" to be more distance and vitriol. 

You need to disengage mentally.  That means both stop trying to fix AND stop letting them get under your skin.  Because I guarantee they are going to act like toddlers:  if they can't get your attention in the nice way, they'll do it by throwing a tantrum, and they'll keep upping the stakes until they get the response they want.  Let your wife take the lead on all discussions.  Be polite in general social interactions.  If they call you directly to ask you for something, either say (nicely!) sorry, I can't manage that, or tell them that you need to discuss it with DW and will get back to them. 

As to the money?  Honestly, I'd consider it gone.  Your MIL can't afford to pay you back, and even if she could, it would just be another excuse to suck you in to the continued drama.  The most I'd suggest would be to talk to a lawyer to see if you can place a lien on the cabin for the value of the repairs you made.  That wouldn't interfere with their ongoing use, but it would prevent them from selling it (or giving it to BIL free and clear) before you get your $38K back. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on October 30, 2020, 08:37:57 AM
First, I'm sorry that your good intentions were met with disrespect and even vitriol.

Second, everything that @Malcat said.  The reality is this is not your problem to fix -- it's not even your wife's!  I hope this recent incident with your MIL has demonstrated that the "story" isn't this poor, helpless old lady being taken advantage of by a good-for-nothing abusive son.  She played a huge role in creating the dynamic, she continues to play a huge role in perpetuating it, and she does so because she gets something out of it.  Who knows what that is -- martyr?  Victim?  All the attention of people rushing in to save her?  You can't know, and in fact you don't have to know.  All you need to understand is that she created this dynamic and she will continue to choose it, every day, unless and until she decides she wants something different.  And all you can do for yourself is choose not to play your assigned role -- and expect your "reward" to be more distance and vitriol. 

You need to disengage mentally.  That means both stop trying to fix AND stop letting them get under your skin.  Because I guarantee they are going to act like toddlers:  if they can't get your attention in the nice way, they'll do it by throwing a tantrum, and they'll keep upping the stakes until they get the response they want.  Let your wife take the lead on all discussions.  Be polite in general social interactions.  If they call you directly to ask you for something, either say (nicely!) sorry, I can't manage that, or tell them that you need to discuss it with DW and will get back to them. 

As to the money?  Honestly, I'd consider it gone.  Your MIL can't afford to pay you back, and even if she could, it would just be another excuse to suck you in to the continued drama.  The most I'd suggest would be to talk to a lawyer to see if you can place a lien on the cabin for the value of the repairs you made.  That wouldn't interfere with their ongoing use, but it would prevent them from selling it (or giving it to BIL free and clear) before you get your $38K back.

This is a great idea, but I would still leave it up to your spouse to determine what/if she's willing to do to try and recoup the money.

Unless you have totally separate finances, and this is *your* money you've lost and are determined to get back, then I would state your preference to your spouse if you strongly want it back, but still leave it with them to decide how to handle their mother.

You have a right to be heard, and right for your needs to be cared about by your spouse, but it's really not your place to go after your spouse's parent for money.

DH and I were in a similar position with my family, and lost a fair amount of money. However, a huge difference was that I protected my DH. I cleared every ounce of help I gave them with him, but advised that any money we loan could be permanently lost. He went into it with eyes open.

I handled all communication, I handled all of the ensuing disastrous conflict, and DH's job was to support me through it, and speak up when he needed emotional space and not to go to a family event.

It was very, very much my responsibility to deal with my parents, and to protect my DH. It was his responsibility to respect my relationship with my parents, and to give me the emotional support I needed to handle it.

At no point would it have EVER been appropriate for my mother to attack my DH, and believe me, I would have verbally eviscerated her had she ever done so. It would have also at no point ever been appropriate for DH to sue my mother.

The good news is, a year later and we're all getting along famously again.

You and your spouse need to really sit down and hash out your roles and boundaries. Do not misinterpret what I'm saying to mean that your needs don't matter. Quite the contrary. I'm trying to say that you need a strict code of conduct in order for your needs to be met appropriately, and you being overly involved with her family conflict is not the way for that to happen.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Sibley on October 30, 2020, 09:57:03 AM
May I recommend the book Boundaries?

Otherwise, everything I could say has been covered, and said better than I would say it.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: ericrugiero on October 30, 2020, 10:35:02 AM
As others have pointed out, your wife should be taking the lead on this.  Sit down with her and talk through your shared goals and what the new dynamic will be with her hopefully taking the lead. 

You made a mistake of getting overly involved in this without clear boundaries and expectations.  The $38K might be gone.  You and your wife need to decide what that money is worth to you.  Filing a lawsuit or a lien might work but would damage your relationship much further.  Is that worth it or should you just consider it lost and move forward with better boundaries?  You and your wife need to decide that together. 

Your MIL and BIL are both clearly messed up and at fault here.  But, you should realize you can't control them.  You can only control yourself.  Being mad at them and holding a grudge will only hurt you and your wife.  You need to accept that you overstepped your role and not hold that against them.  Moving forward, you can set whatever boundaries you want to protect yourself.  Best case scenario, your MIL gives the $38K back to you and you can have a cordial relationship with her while staying out of the family drama.  The cabin belongs to your MIL and she can do whatever she wants with it.  If it was me, I would try to have a cordial relationship with her and do what you think is right in cabin maintenance and helping out.  Don't do so much that you are enabling your BIL but also don't follow his lead in taking advantage of your MIL.  If she wants to enable her son, that's not your business, but you also don't have to participate. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Retire-Canada on October 30, 2020, 10:52:18 AM
Consider the $38K gone and the cost of learning an important lesson. If it was me I would be polite with everyone when I had to at essential family functions, but I'd skip anything beyond that. I would not be going to the cabin in the summer. Let them enjoy it and maintain it. You can rent a vacation property somewhere else if you want that experience without the family drama.

I have a defective brother. He shat the bed so many times and is just a poor human being so I stopped being involved in the drama. I haven't spoken to him in over a decade other than polite small talk the few times when we were both at a family function. My stress levels and general hassles dropped by 90%, which made it pretty clear to me how damaging having a relationship with him was for me. It's sad, but I am not going to change an adult's behaviour to the extent necessary to get to a good place so I did the next best thing and disengaged. When my parents, who are in their 90's die, I won't have anything to do with him again.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 30, 2020, 01:55:59 PM
We have seperate finances. This was my money. It was not a gift, or a loan it was part of the deal.

My wife and daughter expect her to pay the money back. And they did defend me.

Hey I get it, she gave birth to him (I’m now pro choice ) and not me. I get it. I’m second fiddle. Wife and daughter are upset because she’s placed Jeff above them. The three of us were buying the cabin. Not just me. All,three,of us shared the same concerns about Jeff.

Some one brought up mental illness. We suspect that, (I actually suspect FAS ) but until he’s diagnosed, he’s just an entitled prick.

Yes I know some think it isn’t (or wasn't ) my place, but I was putting up most of the money. If I’m paying for dinner I absolutely have a say on what’s on the menu.

Moral of the story is never mix business with family.

I’ll leave it up to,her as to how to,treat her mom. As for the money, a,deal is,a,deal. Mom isn’t worth 38k. I’d rather have the money
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Sibley on October 30, 2020, 03:15:30 PM
OK, then given it was your money, discuss with your wife and then file a lean on the property. Hopefully you have documentation. A lawyer would be helpful. If it's repaid prior to sale of the property, great. But a lean will protect you.

Otherwise, drop the rope.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Letj on October 30, 2020, 08:50:55 PM
I am afraid that what you see as enabling is likely mom helping out a disabled child. I could have written the exact description you gave of Jeff’s behavior about a close family member who has autistic spectrum disorder (high functioning formerly known as Aspergers). They often can only view the world from their perspective and can’t often see how their behavior affects others because they don’t have theory of mind.  A high percentage as high as 80% also have various comorbidities like anxiety, social phobia and crippling depression. They also do not know how to handle emotionally charged situations like death and may withdraw. I am speaking from my experience with individuals I know with Aspergers. I am willing to bet that mom knows something is wrong with him but do not know what it is. Ask your wife to do some research on ASD or Aspergers and she’ll likely see her brother.  Unfortunately, if he has what I strongly suspect, he is a lifelong problem for his mother. Most people with Aspergers go through life never knowing why they are so different and people dismiss them as weird, rude, quirky, etc.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: former player on October 31, 2020, 02:00:13 AM
I am afraid that what you see as enabling is likely mom helping out a disabled child. I could have written the exact description you gave of Jeff’s behavior about a close family member who has autistic spectrum disorder (high functioning formerly known as Aspergers). They often can only view the world from their perspective and can’t often see how their behavior affects others because they don’t have theory of mind.  A high percentage as high as 80% also have various comorbidities like anxiety, social phobia and crippling depression. They also do not know how to handle emotionally charged situations like death and may withdraw. I am speaking from my experience with individuals I know with Aspergers. I am willing to bet that mom knows something is wrong with him but do not know what it is. Ask your wife to do some research on ASD or Aspergers and she’ll likely see her brother.  Unfortunately, if he has what I strongly suspect, he is a lifelong problem for his mother. Most people with Aspergers go through life never knowing why they are so different and people dismiss them as weird, rude, quirky, etc.
A child who is on the autism spectrum but has intelligence in the normal range will be quirky or even worse but also has the capacity to be taught, over the 18 years in which they are a child, not to be an entitled asshole
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: six-car-habit on October 31, 2020, 02:37:45 AM
Quote *** " Nope. I get a crazy idea to purchase 3/4 of the cottage. Let’s say 150k total compensation. 50k of that via interest free loan forgivable upon death. We pay cash and finance through mom. If she dies we are not burdened paying back an estate. Mom agrees to gift or “preinherit” my wife the other 25% in exchange for a life interest in the property.

Cabin collapses and will be 38k to fix. All we can do is 150k total so we revise the agreement to.... we will cover repair, and pay mom the balance up to 150k. Everything the same.

Her only concern is the other siblings be allowed when she dies to attend the cabin. Especially Jeff. We tell her that as new owners we are instituting new rules but so long as rules are abided by we will,allow siblings and their children to attend subject to availability.

She then waves “our deal” at us stating a smaller cabin has sold for more money than we are paying. We should be thankful. She mentions the interest free loan, and if she dies we are “getting something for nothing”. She’s asks me why I think I deserve such a deal and not the other,children/ in-laws." **** Quote


  When i read this yesterday , i was thinking the MIL was being unreasonable about the cabin purchase, but now that i read it a second time,  not as unreasonable as i previously thought.....
     
   A]. If she dies the day after the contract was signed, you may have paid only $100K for the property in total. Since her estate would not collect on the $50,000 she 'financed' . Nor would you have paid anything for the remaining 25% [another 50K] which was swapped for the 'life interest" and seems like an early inheritance.
  B]   She hasn't gotten any percentage of the property figured in for any other siblings, so essentially she has " written them off " in regards to them recieving any portion of the cabin property as part of their inheritance - maybe she is second guessing agreeing to this ?  Cold feet # 1.
  C] .   Its hard to say from your description if the $200K value for the property is below market value for the area or not . is it ?
  D]  How are the other siblings, besides Jeff,  guaranteed the right to visit and use the cabin after her death, as she stated was important to her? Was it spelled out in the contract ?    Cold feet # 2
  E ]   Mistake to say you were implementing new rules before - having a signed contract.
   F]  Also what were to be the rules for her "life estate - life interest " - if she wanted to have her Old Friend Wanda visit and stay the weekend, would she need your permission for Wanda to stay ?  If Wanda was ok, why not Jeff, or another child of hers.
       I can rent out a house to a tenant, and i can stipulate the maximum # of people who can  live at the house, and I can say that guests can only stay X number of nights, but as the landlord i can't really say my tennant cant have any guests, ever.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 03:44:53 AM
Quote *** " Nope. I get a crazy idea to purchase 3/4 of the cottage. Let’s say 150k total compensation. 50k of that via interest free loan forgivable upon death. We pay cash and finance through mom. If she dies we are not burdened paying back an estate. Mom agrees to gift or “preinherit” my wife the other 25% in exchange for a life interest in the property.

Cabin collapses and will be 38k to fix. All we can do is 150k total so we revise the agreement to.... we will cover repair, and pay mom the balance up to 150k. Everything the same.

Her only concern is the other siblings be allowed when she dies to attend the cabin. Especially Jeff. We tell her that as new owners we are instituting new rules but so long as rules are abided by we will,allow siblings and their children to attend subject to availability.

She then waves “our deal” at us stating a smaller cabin has sold for more money than we are paying. We should be thankful. She mentions the interest free loan, and if she dies we are “getting something for nothing”. She’s asks me why I think I deserve such a deal and not the other,children/ in-laws." **** Quote


  When i read this yesterday , i was thinking the MIL was being unreasonable about the cabin purchase, but now that i read it a second time,  not as unreasonable as i previously thought.....
     
   A]. If she dies the day after the contract was signed, you may have paid only $100K for the property in total. Since her estate would not collect on the $50,000 she 'financed' . Nor would you have paid anything for the remaining 25% [another 50K] which was swapped for the 'life interest" and seems like an early inheritance.
  B]   She hasn't gotten any percentage of the property figured in for any other siblings, so essentially she has " written them off " in regards to them recieving any portion of the cabin property as part of their inheritance - maybe she is second guessing agreeing to this ?  Cold feet # 1.
  C] .   Its hard to say from your description if the $200K value for the property is below market value for the area or not . is it ?
  D]  How are the other siblings, besides Jeff,  guaranteed the right to visit and use the cabin after her death, as she stated was important to her? Was it spelled out in the contract ?    Cold feet # 2
  E ]   Mistake to say you were implementing new rules before - having a signed contract.
   F]  Also what were to be the rules for her "life estate - life interest " - if she wanted to have her Old Friend Wanda visit and stay the weekend, would she need your permission for Wanda to stay ?  If Wanda was ok, why not Jeff, or another child of hers.
       I can rent out a house to a tenant, and i can stipulate the maximum # of people who can  live at the house, and I can say that guests can only stay X number of nights, but as the landlord i can't really say my tennant cant have any guests, ever.

A; this was to protect us,from a financial surprise. The,cabin,requires upkeep and upgrade. We weren’t hoping we sign the deal and mom dies the next day.

 B: none of the other,children,are in a position to buy. One child has her own cabin. We were approached

 C;: we are getting a good price. Mom was told “this is all we can afford”. We had cash, the. The “loan” from mom.

D: siblings,would be allowed if they followed rules. We would not put it in writing. We’re buying a cabin.

E: I disagree. The 38k was a down payment. Yes legally it’s not binding but I did everything at the cabin, made the phone calls, lots of work. Everything moved fast. I thought I was “doing the right thing”. If I waited for the paperwork, meetings, etc (everything is slower cause covid) the cabin would possibly still be on the ground.

F: life estate was for her only. It couldn’t be sold or transferred and expired on death. Her guests would have to be approved by us ( we didn’t even get to the point of spelling this out for her it all went south. ) we’d never deny guests. This was to protect us from Jeff back door if himself through “mommy”

Yes we were getting some benefits but so was mom. It was a win win and I thought pretty good considering I never wanted to own a cabin.

Bottom line was it was a deal that we all agreed on. When we first started talking I was carefull not to mention Jeff specifically. I refered to any potential problems down the road in a generic term. Mom even chuckled and said “ for Christ sakes let’s address the elephant. We are all talking about Jeff”

Bott0m line is,I should have just walked away. She wants her son to,get something (or she’s just afraid of him)

It wasn’t an issue until Saturday. It’s funny because he loves the place so much that he’s entitled to a slice, and defends his entitlement,because he was close to,dad and they spent so much time. It’s sacred, except if,he,can’t own it  then mom,should,sell it and no one in the family will enjoy the special sacred place. It makes,absolutely no,sense.

Anyways the issue at  hand is wife says I will get my money back. But she doesn’t want to talk about it. She,wants to,wait until mom talks first.

But if no one talks then that’s not good either. I’m trying to keep out of it. It’s my money so,downer told that give me a,responsibility to ask the mom? She’s said,she needs a few days. This was one week today. She’s had 5 business days.

Is she waiting for us to accept her hers terms?
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on October 31, 2020, 06:04:54 AM
I'm sorry, because of all of the commas, I couldn't quite understand your last few paragraphs and who is asking who to talk and who is waiting for what?
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 09:29:42 AM
I am afraid that what you see as enabling is likely mom helping out a disabled child. I could have written the exact description you gave of Jeff’s behavior about a close family member who has autistic spectrum disorder (high functioning formerly known as Aspergers). They often can only view the world from their perspective and can’t often see how their behavior affects others because they don’t have theory of mind.  A high percentage as high as 80% also have various comorbidities like anxiety, social phobia and crippling depression. They also do not know how to handle emotionally charged situations like death and may withdraw. I am speaking from my experience with individuals I know with Aspergers. I am willing to bet that mom knows something is wrong with him but do not know what it is. Ask your wife to do some research on ASD or Aspergers and she’ll likely see her brother.  Unfortunately, if he has what I strongly suspect, he is a lifelong problem for his mother. Most people with Aspergers go through life never knowing why they are so different and people dismiss them as weird, rude, quirky, etc.
A child who is on the autism spectrum but has intelligence in the normal range will be quirky or even worse but also has the capacity to be taught, over the 18 years in which they are a child, not to be an entitled asshole

I actually suspected some kind of spectrum at first. Then I actually thought FAS. Then again maybe he is just an asshole. People can sometimes be asshole. He’s obsessed about guns, and if your job involves carrying a gun your his best friend. He kills squirrels, and chipmunks to feed the fox. He’s obsessed about feeding the birds at the cabin.

But he’s dumb, but not dumb. Dumb as in he didn’t understand cremation at dads funeral and thought there was supposed to be a body and casket, yet he’s obsessed about emergency worker radio. He has a scanner and knows everything and anything about radio frequencies, how the radios operate, how to fix them, etc.

I’d even put money on the fact he could sneak into some radio geek convention and he’d be able to hold his own.

And then the next week he tries to fix the generator pull cord (take handle off and cut where frayed....retie double knot) and he had to ask cottage neighbors how to tie the knot. Smart but dumb. I always thought it was just all the pot he smokes. Maybe there is some spectrum stuff.

There is a history of mental illness in the family. Mom is concerned he has it, and may harm himself but she’s ok with him sleeping with a loaded handgun.

I asked my wife if something bad happened to him as a child ( molestation etc) and she said no.

Wife’s grandmother had dementia and I know that’s genetic so it’s possible mom has it, which May explain why she acted how she did last week. Who knows.

Not my concern. Just coming up with thoughts
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Villanelle on October 31, 2020, 09:56:02 AM
This isn't your mom.  It'a not your family, which means that communication is always going to be a bit less clear. 

Going forward, have your spouse deal with her mother, not you.  I would work with spouse to come up with details, have her go to her mom and say that clearly you all weren't on the same page (and perhaps apologize for that, because yes, you guys do own some of the blame on this), and then say that she thinks the best path forward is that you have no involvement in the cabin going forward and to make that happen, you'd like to come to an agreement with her about repaying the $38k so you can be completely divested from the cabin.  Agree on terms (payment schedule, interest, whatever) and have it written up (perhaps include something about late payment penalties, just in case), and include terms that is is payable in full immediately if she passes, if the lawyer thinks that's appropriate. 

You say your wife doesn't want to talk about it.  That's something the two of you need to sort out, and is in many ways a separate issue.  That's a disagreement in your marriage and you two need to talk it out and compromise.  Wife wants to wait.  How long?  Perhaps you could agree to give it until the Jan 15.  If MIL hasn't done anything, then your wife agrees to talk it out until terms are agreed upon. 

Then be done.  If MIL wants to speak to you, just don't.  It's pretty easy to screen calls.  If you are comfortable still attending family events, do, but make it clear that there are things you won't discuss, if they are brought up. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 10:30:39 AM
This isn't your mom.  It'a not your family, which means that communication is always going to be a bit less clear. 

Going forward, have your spouse deal with her mother, not you.  I would work with spouse to come up with details, have her go to her mom and say that clearly you all weren't on the same page (and perhaps apologize for that, because yes, you guys do own some of the blame on this), and then say that she thinks the best path forward is that you have no involvement in the cabin going forward and to make that happen, you'd like to come to an agreement with her about repaying the $38k so you can be completely divested from the cabin.  Agree on terms (payment schedule, interest, whatever) and have it written up (perhaps include something about late payment penalties, just in case), and include terms that is is payable in full immediately if she passes, if the lawyer thinks that's appropriate. 

You say your wife doesn't want to talk about it.  That's something the two of you need to sort out, and is in many ways a separate issue.  That's a disagreement in your marriage and you two need to talk it out and compromise.  Wife wants to wait.  How long?  Perhaps you could agree to give it until the Jan 15.  If MIL hasn't done anything, then your wife agrees to talk it out until terms are agreed upon. 

Then be done.  If MIL wants to speak to you, just don't.  It's pretty easy to screen calls.  If you are comfortable still attending family events, do, but make it clear that there are things you won't discuss, if they are brought up.

We WERE all on the same page. That’s what’s so messed up. It’s only when I tried to set boundaries with Jeff (which we were on the same page) that mom became aggressive. I suspect he ramped up the abuse or played the dead dad cabin means so much to me card (except it doesn’t matter if he doesn’t get a slice) mom said she was tired of him, scared of him, and wanted an intervention with the three of us (mom me and wife) to deal with him.

There is nothing I need to apologize for. I did nothing wrong and developed a plan that was agreeable to all parties.

I did everything that was asked, and did so  in a way that everyone’s needs were met. All except Jeff’s needs. Lol

I suppose I was also too honest and open. It’s no secret I don’t like him so I’ve never hidden that from mom. If your a lazy free loader you will be called out. I cannot tell a lie.

I hope I don’t sound a hostile to you. I’m not. I appreciate your response. The only blame I accept is not walking away from the cabin in the first place (like 10 years ago) when I realized something was “wrong” with Jeff.

I knew he was “off” I just didn’t realize how off he is.

Anyways, the wife is and always was a “just everybody get along and things will all work out” kinda person. Non confrontational, and doesn’t like conflict. I guess most people are like that.

It’s not just this predicatment that she’s being this way.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: SunnyDays on October 31, 2020, 10:30:57 AM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 11:17:22 AM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.

Believe me I’ve considered what happened when mom dies. His other sister is a teacher, and has dealt with spectrums. She says no, but sometimes when your close you don’t see things. This is my issue. I’m not close, I,see things, and I call them out.

The double knot I think might be lack of confidence?? Dunno. Dad did everything at the cabin and I think dad knew he was dying and showed Jeff how to “do things” I.e winterize pumps, water lines, but he doesn’t grasp “concepts”. Dad said to turn this knob, and shut it off this way. If you do it differently he panics.

As frustrating as he is I do feel for the guy. Pretty lonely life, mom and dad did him no favors.

It’s almost like I’m watching myself on a bad TV movie, and Jeff was stolen from the crib at birth, chained in the basement and given the basics of life and then 28 years later (his age when we met) unleashed into the world.

I,honestly thought the family was setting me up when I met him (wife said he was lazy) and he was to portray a lazy, obnoxious, doofus (think stepbrothers with Will Ferrel) to see what kind of reaction they could get from “the new boyfriend). At first I thought “crap.....this guy is GOOD”.

Then came the hissy fits, door slamming, yelling, drinking, pot, etc. you can’t make this,shit up
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 11:45:30 AM
And further more mom was only concerned at first about Jeff “getting his slice”, not that she was being bullied and manipulated. Her narrative switched only when we refused to “give him his slice”.

If he “got his slice” she’d be ok with me being a bully?

It’s him. He’s ramped it up on her.

“Hey we need to trust each other”
“I’m scared Jeff will be banned”
“He’s entitled to his slice ya know”
“Look at all the things you criticize him for ....you do them too ya know?”
“I’ve done you this huge favor, and all I’m asking for is Jeff’s slice”
“Oh?? You don’t agree with me? Guess I’ll have to sell then cause Jeff’ d rather me sell and screw you all”
“Btw you manipulated me into this deal”

Thanks mom, lol.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on October 31, 2020, 12:06:18 PM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.

I'm 38 and no one in my cohort where I grew up was ever diagnosed with autism. My step brother in retrospect clearly, clearly was autistic, and never once was he tested for anything because his school performance was pretty reasonable. We had one kid who was diagnosed with ADHD, which was the first I had ever heard of it, and he had been diagnosed in England. I myself am dyslexic and they just tossed me into the "slow class" where we spent a lot of time playing with guinea pigs.
So yeah, he could easily have slipped through the cracks at his age.

OP, I don't think that given what you knew that you really did anything necessarily wrong.
People don't really get why people say not to mix money and family until they go through it themselves. It's almost something you have to go through to really understand.

Your bigger issue here, which is very clear, is communication with your spouse. Being on the same page is not the same as having good communication. You may have both been in agreement about a lot of things, but absolutely did not communicate sufficiently about this before going ahead, especially if you put your separate money towards this without really wanting too.

I would focus your energy on the communication with your partner above anything else in this situation, because if you try to recoup your money, things are going to get uglier, and you are going to need more capacity to talk about it than the two of you have right now.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 01:01:20 PM
Holy Cats! You've got some family issues there! And I say that because I've dealt my own fair share of family issues.

The best advice I can give you is that you join www.boundaries.me
It costs $81 a year and contains over 80 courses by Dr. Henry Cloud, well known author of the NYT best seller Boundaries. You can start with a free 14 day trial. I did that first and could tell right away that this is good stuff!

If I would have known then what I've learned since April, I know I could have dealt with my family issues better. I can now counsel my children when they call me about their own dilemmas because of his courses. He also has a podcast that airs every weekday, where he counsels people with all sorts of dilemmas.

Yes, he is a Christian, but does not beat you over the head with religion. In fact, he’s kinda ground breaking in his interpretation of the Bible. Your jaw will be dropped.

Here’s a quick list of the courses I’ve taken so far: (I'm a massive note taker and this is from my notes)

Toxic People
• 10 Laws of Boundaries
   • How to Say No
   • Safe and Unsafe People
   • Safe and Unsafe People Part 2
   • How to Handle a Narcissist
   • Facing Controlling Relationships
   • Entitlement
   • Emotional Abuse
   • Codependency
   • Codependency Part 2
   • Drama
   • Hope
   • Necessary Endings
   • Revenge
   • Forgiveness


Relationships
       • 10 Laws of Boundaries
   • Vision
   • Boundaries in Relationships
   • Boundaries and Trust
   • Listening
   • Forgiveness
   • Difficult Conversations
   • Marriage Maintenance

About someone on the spectrum. Boundaries are the best things you can have when dealing with someone that might be autistic. He might be a narcissist, an addict, have a personality disorder, or is just a self-centered jerk. Bottom line, you don’t have to deal with bad behavior! His behavior is his alone!

Take the courses, or start with the podcast. You will feel better about the proper boundaries you create! I know I’m in a much better place!

Thanks for that! I’ll have a lookie.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 01:27:05 PM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.

I'm 38 and no one in my cohort where I grew up was ever diagnosed with autism. My step brother in retrospect clearly, clearly was autistic, and never once was he tested for anything because his school performance was pretty reasonable. We had one kid who was diagnosed with ADHD, which was the first I had ever heard of it, and he had been diagnosed in England. I myself am dyslexic and they just tossed me into the "slow class" where we spent a lot of time playing with guinea pigs.
So yeah, he could easily have slipped through the cracks at his age.

OP, I don't think that given what you knew that you really did anything necessarily wrong.
People don't really get why people say not to mix money and family until they go through it themselves. It's almost something you have to go through to really understand.

Your bigger issue here, which is very clear, is communication with your spouse. Being on the same page is not the same as having good communication. You may have both been in agreement about a lot of things, but absolutely did not communicate sufficiently about this before going ahead, especially if you put your separate money towards this without really wanting too.

I would focus your energy on the communication with your partner above anything else in this situation, because if you try to recoup your money, things are going to get uglier, and you are going to need more capacity to talk about it than the two of you have right now.

We were all,on the same page. Me wife daughter and gramma. Someone at some point has to take control of a cabin. We made it clear that it wasn’t a Jeff issue exclusively, and that we’d never own a cabin with anyone.

Mom wanted to sell, and not put up with Jeff. We stepped up but with concessions I.e not pay full price, and special loan. We said we would institute rules and if they weren’t followed that there would be consequences. Not just Jeff but everyone.

All people at the table got some, and gave some.

Everybody won except Jeff. He would have to help out, not smoke pot in the buildings, respect the neighbors, and no guns. And he couldn’t expect to come out whenever he wanted. It was not his cabin.

Mom backed out last minute.

The only issue with my wife is she’s waiting for mom to make the first move. She’s disgusted with how I was treated, and more so given what I’ve done for her family in the past.

As far as I’m concerned mom left it at I’ll get your money, give me a couple of days. So I’m expecting my refund, daughter thinks gramma will accept our original offer, and wife just wants to wait it out.

In effect we are all on a different page on how to deal with the money.

As far as mom personally, I’ll let my wife makes the call. If she wants to keep the peace I will. I will happen to be busy when mom needs help of course. If she wants nothing to do with her mom, I’m ok with that too.

If mom asks for something from me.... “I’ll have to think about it. I’ll get back to you if it’s something I can help with” and I just won’t answer her back.

I’m glad I’m done with the verification to post
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Jon Bon on October 31, 2020, 02:49:03 PM
Being an asshole and being on the spectrum are not mutually exclusive, just sayin....

If it was me? At this point, I'd likely just try to buy the entire cabin. I likely would have pushed for this at the start, but I understand why mom pushed to keep "A slice" Write a formal offer do it above board. This handshake deals are how you got into trouble in the first place. I've borrowed money from family, there is paperwork and documentation. Do you have any of that? MIL can have a lawyer or at least a family friend examine the contract. A few professionals paid per hour (not a commission!) to perhaps advise you and or MIL.

Is it still possible for you to buy the entire thing? That really cleans up most of the drama IMO. If you dont want Jeff there you simply do not allow him and call the cops if he is there.

I get you are pissed (I would be furious) your getting fucked over by your own family, which sucks.  Yeah I get your the in-law as others have said but you have been around for a while, its as much as your family now as it is anyone's IMO.

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 03:03:11 PM
Being an asshole and being on the spectrum are not mutually exclusive, just sayin....

If it was me? At this point, I'd likely just try to buy the entire cabin. I likely would have pushed for this at the start, but I understand why mom pushed to keep "A slice" Write a formal offer do it above board. This handshake deals are how you got into trouble in the first place. I've borrowed money from family, there is paperwork and documentation. Do you have any of that? MIL can have a lawyer or at least a family friend examine the contract. A few professionals paid per hour (not a commission!) to perhaps advise you and or MIL.

Is it still possible for you to buy the entire thing? That really cleans up most of the drama IMO. If you dont want Jeff there you simply do not allow him and call the cops if he is there.

I get you are pissed (I would be furious) your getting fucked over by your own family, which sucks.  Yeah I get your the in-law as others have said but you have been around for a while, its as much as your family now as it is anyone's IMO.

Yes asshole and spectrum are not the same.

I think you miss understand. Our agreement was to take 100% legal ownership of the cabin. Always was. Mom would get a life interest, and we’d have to power to,rein Jeff in. Mom didn’t want to,do that. We were “bad guys”. Rule enforcers if you will. We can’t afford to outright buy the cabin. Thus the loan and life interest. Win win. Mom gets money, cabin stays in family Jeff has rules.

Nothing was written as we were under pressure to get cabin repaired. All on good,faith. This is the delema. How to collect money?

Mom at the last minute got scared (or threatened by Jeff) that Jeff would arbitrarily be banned when she dies. He,got drunk at the cabin this year and got into a fight on the beach that “he deserved to own part of the cabin”
Neighbors had to check in on her to,see,ifshe was ok

It was going to be “our cabin” with the intent of allowing the rest of the family to use it subject to,rule availability.

At this point even if Jeff got struck by lightning and became a decent hard working gosh darn it nice guy, I’d still not buy at this point. Mom has, said I manipulated her. I can’t make another deal  with those accusations.

And at this point she hasn’t said she’s not going to pay me back. She said she needs a couple days. It’s been a week.

Pushing for Jeff’s “slice” only happened last week after we started laying down the law (we wanted to close up the cabin and he lost his shit). We hadn’t signed any paperwork to this point other than the cheque. We were acting like owners. Mom was onboard the whole time.

That’s the delema is she being abused, or is she truly the enabler? Or both?

Had I,waited,for legal papers the cabin would be on the ground. I was “being the nice guy”< and “doing the right things”. I trusted mom. The very thing she is accusing me OFnot doing.

At this point I believe she will pay me back and try to “make a go” of,the cabin for dear Jeff. . This will fail
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: mozar on October 31, 2020, 03:40:59 PM
A verbal agreement and a cashed check is enough of a contract according to contract law. That means that you could take this to small claims court and potentially get a judgement. I doubt that's worth your time though.
Personally I would assume the money was gone forever and walk away from the cabin. With the paperwork still officially in your mother-in-laws name this makes it easier to walk away.

You would be better off if you let go emotionally of the cabin. If Jeff burns it down, it's not your problem. You should not be worried about protecting a cabin.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Cassie on October 31, 2020, 04:06:25 PM
If he has FAS then it’s his mom’s fault and maybe that’s why she babies him. It would explain his stunted emotional growth.  I would either get my money back or put a lien on the cabin. I wouldn’t want to go there anymore.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: ctuser1 on October 31, 2020, 04:30:27 PM
I’ll leave it up to,her as to how to,treat her mom. As for the money, a,deal is,a,deal. Mom isn’t worth 38k. I’d rather have the money

Are you sure your wife and daughter agrees with this bolded portion without being forced by you and on their own?

Dude, pardon my French, but you are now sounding like the a*sehole. You appear to claim that you place money over family, AND seem to be even forcing that decision on your wife and daughter (clue: wife is non-confrontational).

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Letj on October 31, 2020, 04:51:17 PM
I am afraid that what you see as enabling is likely mom helping out a disabled child. I could have written the exact description you gave of Jeff’s behavior about a close family member who has autistic spectrum disorder (high functioning formerly known as Aspergers). They often can only view the world from their perspective and can’t often see how their behavior affects others because they don’t have theory of mind.  A high percentage as high as 80% also have various comorbidities like anxiety, social phobia and crippling depression. They also do not know how to handle emotionally charged situations like death and may withdraw. I am speaking from my experience with individuals I know with Aspergers. I am willing to bet that mom knows something is wrong with him but do not know what it is. Ask your wife to do some research on ASD or Aspergers and she’ll likely see her brother.  Unfortunately, if he has what I strongly suspect, he is a lifelong problem for his mother. Most people with Aspergers go through life never knowing why they are so different and people dismiss them as weird, rude, quirky, etc.
A child who is on the autism spectrum but has intelligence in the normal range will be quirky or even worse but also has the capacity to be taught, over the 18 years in which they are a child, not to be an entitled asshole

I actually suspected some kind of spectrum at first. Then I actually thought FAS. Then again maybe he is just an asshole. People can sometimes be asshole. He’s obsessed about guns, and if your job involves carrying a gun your his best friend. He kills squirrels, and chipmunks to feed the fox. He’s obsessed about feeding the birds at the cabin.

But he’s dumb, but not dumb. Dumb as in he didn’t understand cremation at dads funeral and thought there was supposed to be a body and casket, yet he’s obsessed about emergency worker radio. He has a scanner and knows everything and anything about radio frequencies, how the radios operate, how to fix them, etc.

I’d even put money on the fact he could sneak into some radio geek convention and he’d be able to hold his own.

And then the next week he tries to fix the generator pull cord (take handle off and cut where frayed....retie double knot) and he had to ask cottage neighbors how to tie the knot. Smart but dumb. I always thought it was just all the pot he smokes. Maybe there is some spectrum stuff.

There is a history of mental illness in the family. Mom is concerned he has it, and may harm himself but she’s ok with him sleeping with a loaded handgun.

I asked my wife if something bad happened to him as a child ( molestation etc) and she said no.

Wife’s grandmother had dementia and I know that’s genetic so it’s possible mom has it, which May explain why she acted how she did last week. Who knows.

Not my concern. Just coming up with thoughts

All the obsessions you described are more evidence that he is likely on the spectrum. Trust me. He is suffering and doesn’t know how to articulate it. And yes his mom should be concerned about suicide. Not going to the cabin can indeed push him over the edge. ASD individuals have extremely high rates of suicide. Shockingly high. It’s the greatest health risk for them.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 04:54:53 PM
A verbal agreement and a cashed check is enough of a contract according to contract law. That means that you could take this to small claims court and potentially get a judgement. I doubt that's worth your time though.
Personally I would assume the money was gone forever and walk away from the cabin. With the paperwork still officially in your mother-in-laws name this makes it easier to walk away.

You would be better off if you let go emotionally of the cabin. If Jeff burns it down, it's not your problem. You should not be worried about protecting a cabin.

I never wanted to buy the cabin. They are poor investments. There is no emotional attachment to the cabin. I can and will walk away. My wife was the one with the emotional attachment.

Jeff too is emotionally attached so long as he owns a slice. If not mom can sell it, lol.

I’m hoping to not have to go through court.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 04:56:38 PM
I’ll leave it up to,her as to how to,treat her mom. As for the money, a,deal is,a,deal. Mom isn’t worth 38k. I’d rather have the money

Are you sure your wife and daughter agrees with this bolded portion without being forced by you and on their own?

Dude, pardon my French, but you are now sounding like the a*sehole. You appear to claim that you place money over family, AND seem to be even forcing that decision on your wife and daughter (clue: wife is non-confrontational).

Dude, business is business. A deal is a deal. A relationship with her will be done if I lose the money. You can’t make a deal and then screw anyone. Especially not family. You don’t do that to family.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 04:59:52 PM
I am afraid that what you see as enabling is likely mom helping out a disabled child. I could have written the exact description you gave of Jeff’s behavior about a close family member who has autistic spectrum disorder (high functioning formerly known as Aspergers). They often can only view the world from their perspective and can’t often see how their behavior affects others because they don’t have theory of mind.  A high percentage as high as 80% also have various comorbidities like anxiety, social phobia and crippling depression. They also do not know how to handle emotionally charged situations like death and may withdraw. I am speaking from my experience with individuals I know with Aspergers. I am willing to bet that mom knows something is wrong with him but do not know what it is. Ask your wife to do some research on ASD or Aspergers and she’ll likely see her brother.  Unfortunately, if he has what I strongly suspect, he is a lifelong problem for his mother. Most people with Aspergers go through life never knowing why they are so different and people dismiss them as weird, rude, quirky, etc.
A child who is on the autism spectrum but has intelligence in the normal range will be quirky or even worse but also has the capacity to be taught, over the 18 years in which they are a child, not to be an entitled asshole

I actually suspected some kind of spectrum at first. Then I actually thought FAS. Then again maybe he is just an asshole. People can sometimes be asshole. He’s obsessed about guns, and if your job involves carrying a gun your his best friend. He kills squirrels, and chipmunks to feed the fox. He’s obsessed about feeding the birds at the cabin.

But he’s dumb, but not dumb. Dumb as in he didn’t understand cremation at dads funeral and thought there was supposed to be a body and casket, yet he’s obsessed about emergency worker radio. He has a scanner and knows everything and anything about radio frequencies, how the radios operate, how to fix them, etc.

I’d even put money on the fact he could sneak into some radio geek convention and he’d be able to hold his own.

And then the next week he tries to fix the generator pull cord (take handle off and cut where frayed....retie double knot) and he had to ask cottage neighbors how to tie the knot. Smart but dumb. I always thought it was just all the pot he smokes. Maybe there is some spectrum stuff.

There is a history of mental illness in the family. Mom is concerned he has it, and may harm himself but she’s ok with him sleeping with a loaded handgun.

I asked my wife if something bad happened to him as a child ( molestation etc) and she said no.

Wife’s grandmother had dementia and I know that’s genetic so it’s possible mom has it, which May explain why she acted how she did last week. Who knows.

Not my concern. Just coming up with thoughts

All the obsessions you described are more evidence that he is likely on the spectrum. Trust me. He is suffering and doesn’t know how to articulate it. And yes his mom should be concerned about suicide. Not going to the cabin can indeed push him over the edge. ASD individuals have extremely high rates of suicide. Shockingly high. It’s the greatest health risk for them.

Ok so let’s assume this is the case. What can we do? She’s said she wants “help”. He won’t go to a doctor.

I’m surprised,he would slip through the crack. Most people have an issue, story, or confrontation with him. My nephew even came out to the cabin and immediately picked up that something was “off” about him.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Letj on October 31, 2020, 05:01:24 PM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.
You would be surprised how easily kids can go through school and never get diagnosed. My close relative went through school and diagnosed herself at 20 after seeing a movie with an Aspergers person and realized she had all the traits including the OCD, obsessions, interest in food limited to very few foods, Crohn’s disease and other digestive system problems (70% of people on the spectrum have stomach problems), etc. Some people can easily be dismissed as shy/introverted and can easily mask.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on October 31, 2020, 05:09:52 PM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.
You would be surprised how easily kids can go through school and never get diagnosed. My close relative went through school and diagnosed herself at 20 after seeing a movie with an Aspergers person and realized she had all the traits including the OCD, obsessions, interest in food limited to very few foods, Crohn’s disease and other digestive system problems (70% of people on the spectrum have stomach problems), etc. Some people can easily be dismissed as shy/introverted and can easily mask.

He’s well beyond shy and introverted. One cottage neighbor pegged him for an 8 year old. Neighbors daughter said,12-13.  And all along I thought I was just bad parenting and tons of pot/beer.

Any advice ? Not my problem? I mean if he’s just an asshole there’s really nothing to,be done, but if he is on some spectrum or something how would you go about it?

Does he know there’s something wrong? He’s told me he hates people and wished they’d all Fuck off. Again I though it’s,the booze/pot talkin....
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Villanelle on October 31, 2020, 06:34:36 PM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.
You would be surprised how easily kids can go through school and never get diagnosed. My close relative went through school and diagnosed herself at 20 after seeing a movie with an Aspergers person and realized she had all the traits including the OCD, obsessions, interest in food limited to very few foods, Crohn’s disease and other digestive system problems (70% of people on the spectrum have stomach problems), etc. Some people can easily be dismissed as shy/introverted and can easily mask.

He’s well beyond shy and introverted. One cottage neighbor pegged him for an 8 year old. Neighbors daughter said,12-13.  And all along I thought I was just bad parenting and tons of pot/beer.

Any advice ? Not my problem? I mean if he’s just an asshole there’s really nothing to,be done, but if he is on some spectrum or something how would you go about it?

Does he know there’s something wrong? He’s told me he hates people and wished they’d all Fuck off. Again I though it’s,the booze/pot talkin....

I think *YOU* are the wrong person to do anything.  Your relationship with BIL and MIL is extremely strained. You've burned any bridge that might have led to them accepting advice from you, and even without that, it mostly likely wouldn't have been well-received from an outsider, which you are.  But on top of that, under the guise of "honesty", you've said hurtful and insulting things.  There is almost no way they are going to hear anything they will consider or accept if it comes from you.  Talk to your wife, express your concern and suggest that *SHE* bring it up to her mother.  Then let her make the decision about her family.  This requires someone with tact, sensitivity, and a good relationship with the people who will be hearing a difficult message.  That's not you. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: SunnyDays on October 31, 2020, 06:40:05 PM
If anyone wants to try for a diagnosis, the best bet is through his physician.  Even without the BIL's cooperation, you, your wife or MIL can call the doctor and voice your concerns.  No one can force him to do anything though, unless he is a danger to himself or others.  Although, getting into fights, verbally abusing his mother and sleeping with a loaded gun (in combination) may get someone's attention, if not the doctor's, then maybe the police?  Maybe your wife can have a private talk with her mom, as MIL has voiced fear of her son previously and raise the topic of getting him assessed in some way.  If you are all in agreement on this, it may carry some weight with whomever you decide to approach.

His alcohol and drug use is another possibly dangerous factor, but not uncommon with psychiatric disorders, where people try to self-medicate, usually against the associated anxiety.  Hating people and always feeling like things are everyone else's fault are common with autism diagnoses too.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: former player on October 31, 2020, 06:43:12 PM
If anyone wants to try for a diagnosis, the best bet is through his physician.  Even without the BIL's cooperation, you, your wife or MIL can call the doctor and voice your concerns.  No one can force him to do anything though, unless he is a danger to himself or others.  Although, getting into fights, verbally abusing his mother and sleeping with a loaded gun (in combination) may get someone's attention, if not the doctor's, then maybe the police?  Maybe your wife can have a private talk with her mom, as MIL has voiced fear of her son previously and raise the topic of getting him assessed in some way.  If you are all in agreement on this, it may carry some weight with whomever you decide to approach.

His alcohol and drug use is another possibly dangerous factor, but not uncommon with psychiatric disorders, where people try to self-medicate, usually against the associated anxiety.  Hating people and always feeling like things are everyone else's fault are common with autism diagnoses too.
Calling the police on someone with a potential mental health diagnosis who self-medicates with illegal drugs and is known to keep a loaded weapon on hand sounds like a good way to get him shot.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on October 31, 2020, 07:47:41 PM
What to do about Jeff?

There's nothing to do about Jeff. Whether he has FAS or Autism, or any other medical basis for his behaviour isn't actually anyone's responsibility (or business) but his. He's had 38 years of living the way he is, if he wanted to do something about it, he would have. He's not mentally incompetent, he just might not be neurotypical or may have a mental illness. That's his business to manage as he sees fit.

And yes, it is EXTREMELY common for folks to be walking around their entire lives undiagnosed with all sorts of things. I'm not sure I've known many families without one.

Now, as the people who are connected to him, it's their business to decide how they want to interact with him. If they want to try and maintain a connection with him, or if they don't want to stay connected with a volatile person who shows no interest in improving his volatility. They have no say over what he does, only on how they interact with him.

If the people who love him, ie not OP, decide that the most loving thing would be to talk to him about a possible diagnosis and medical support, then that's up to them.

As for OP, the ONLY impact this should have is to possibly improve your sense of compassion towards both Jeff and his family. If an undiagnosed neuro-atypical condition or mental health illness is at play, and it certainly sounds that way, then just try to always remember that the people involved are hurting. So try to make the priority to not add to the existing hurt. That's it. Nothing more than that.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Sibley on October 31, 2020, 10:12:00 PM
I still say you need boundaries. Seriously, all the way around here.

https://www.boundariesbooks.com/  <---- that's the website that will give you the names of the books. And looks like some links. The library may well have the book.

And OP, you are sounding like a bad guy here. My guess is you're frustrated and it's showing, but watch it. Money isn't everything. You could even blow up your marriage if you really say the wrong things - these people are not your family. They're your wife's family.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 05:58:34 AM
I still say you need boundaries. Seriously, all the way around here.

https://www.boundariesbooks.com/  <---- that's the website that will give you the names of the books. And looks like some links. The library may well have the book.

And OP, you are sounding like a bad guy here. My guess is you're frustrated and it's showing, but watch it. Money isn't everything. You could even blow up your marriage if you really say the wrong things - these people are not your family. They're your wife's family.

Look this is how I think....... you treat me good I treat you good. I treat you good you treat me good.

I treated mom and her entire family like gold. Mom treated me with disrespect. I see that as someone biting the hand that feeds her.

If that’s the thanks I get for being nice than I’m not obligated to be nice anymore.

It doesn’t matter who’s family it is. It was an attack on me.

Just because it’s her family doesn’t give them the right to disrespect me, or physically hurt me.

Are you suggesting if Jeff picked a physical fight with me I should just roll over and die because he’s not my family?

Disrespect is disrespect.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 07:09:58 AM
So wife and I had a good talk. I asked a bit about her brothers life, etc.

In my wife’s opinion:

Jeff has depression
Jeff is the baby, and only son
Jeff was always spoiled, and coddled, and thus he is arrogant, lazy, and entitled, and “better” than everyone else
Jeff was always told that he and his sister (my wife)
Jeff sees me as a guy telling what to do in HIS cabin, and also the guy trying to steal HIS cabin.
Jeff thinks life at the cabin will carry on as it has in the past.

Also my wife’s opinion:

Mom spoiled, enabled Jeff, and has some dependency on him as well (need to be needed/loved?)
Mom will not screw me over financially.
Even though mom said bad things about me, she doesn’t believe she actually meant them.
Mom is both worried about Jeff either getting banned arbitrarily, or by his own fault (break rules)
Mom feels bad because Jeff was promised the cabin by dad, and she is breaking his promise if she sells outright to us.

My opinion:
I have always been there for my wife, and her entire family. Day or night, thick or thin, no questions asked.
We all negotiated a deal that was fair to all, and reasonable to all.
We were buying a cabin that would be our to do as we please, but with consideration to family usage. I mean if the cabins not being used, why wouldn’t we allow others to enjoy? An empty cabin is sad.
We expected people using the cabin wall respect our rules, and our neighbors.
Jeff and I did talk back in the spring. I told him there would be changes at the cabin. There would be rules and expectations.
I did tell him that he could reach out to me if he felt he needed help, or if he just wanted to talk
**when we broke the news to Jeff that we were buying the entire cabin mom was very upset for him (he looked like he was gonna lose his shit) she actually told him “it’s just a legal thing, nothing will change and you can come out whenever you want”. Boom.  ***
I wanted to address that but wife said “now that dads gone Jeff will not want to come out as much and will eventually stay away”

My concerns with Jeff (not him as a person)
He has impulse control, made poor decisions in the past, has substance abuse issues, and thus I’m worried he will destroy a physical asset that we are responsible for. If mom and dad we’re ok with accepting that risk that is their choice.

It all boils down to blood being thicker than water.  Mom said I will never understand her view because I don’t have biological children and didn’t give birth. I agreed with her but told her that BECAUSE he was her biological son, and gave birth to him she cannot see the problem.

The fact that Jeff is not my son and there is no emotionally connected mother child bond that I can see he has issues.

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: BikeFanatic on November 01, 2020, 07:31:43 AM
I think you inadvertently stepped into a field of land mines. In my humble opinion you would be so much better off not having this guy involved in your affairs. You should hopefully get your money back, and you can co own another cabin with some friend or a time share arangement. This would have worked out if it were not for the son but Jeff is a huge wild card. You need more Jeff in your life like you need a hole in your head. Step away if you can.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: former player on November 01, 2020, 07:40:06 AM
So.  Jeff was promised the cabin by his father.  His father then left the cabin to his widow, not to Jeff.  She can't afford to keep it so she proposes to sell it to you and Jeff's sister.  She knows about the promise to Jeff, knows that it will cause problems to break it and tries in some measure to keep it by keeping a lifetime interest that Jeff can use and when it is clear that won't work out (because she knows Jeff won't/can't keep to your rules) tries to change the arrangement in his favour by keeping ownership of 10% for his benefit.

Just about everyone got something seriously wrong here.  Dad and Mom were wrong to let the cabin get into a state where it collapsed and needed $38k in repairs.  Dad was wrong to promise Jeff the cabin and then not leave it to him.  Mom was wrong to try sell it out from under Jeff knowing about that promise and then try to change the terms of the sale in order to try to keep that promise.  Jeff was wrong to expect to be given, or given use of, a cabin he had no means of keeping and no interest or ability to work on.

Your fault was that you voluntarily walked into this mess, tried to help out while not understanding or ignoring all its ramifications and when they became clear (because Jeff's behaviour at the cabin was unacceptable to you as owner, meaning you put a stop to Mom's cockeyed solution to the problem) stomping right through the middle of the mess and exposing the heart of the problem.

The answer that holds the family together now is that Mom sells the cabin, pays you back from the proceeds and gives or leaves all or some of the rest to Jeff.  But she's going to have to get there on her own, if you want peace in the family (or at least as much of it as you can with Jeff around) neither you nor your wife should have anything to do with the cabin ever again.

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Psychstache on November 01, 2020, 08:18:30 AM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.

I'm 38 and no one in my cohort where I grew up was ever diagnosed with autism. My step brother in retrospect clearly, clearly was autistic, and never once was he tested for anything because his school performance was pretty reasonable. We had one kid who was diagnosed with ADHD, which was the first I had ever heard of it, and he had been diagnosed in England. I myself am dyslexic and they just tossed me into the "slow class" where we spent a lot of time playing with guinea pigs.
So yeah, he could easily have slipped through the cracks at his age.

OP, I don't think that given what you knew that you really did anything necessarily wrong.
People don't really get why people say not to mix money and family until they go through it themselves. It's almost something you have to go through to really understand.

Your bigger issue here, which is very clear, is communication with your spouse. Being on the same page is not the same as having good communication. You may have both been in agreement about a lot of things, but absolutely did not communicate sufficiently about this before going ahead, especially if you put your separate money towards this without really wanting too.

I would focus your energy on the communication with your partner above anything else in this situation, because if you try to recoup your money, things are going to get uglier, and you are going to need more capacity to talk about it than the two of you have right now.

Sorry to be OT, but if you are in the US, here is as relevant facts re ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorders).

1. Modern Autism was first really recognized in the 30s-40s, but only in it's most sever forms (people who were non-verbal and previously classified as Intellectually Disabled).
2. In the 70s, the 'Asperger's' identification as a related condition to Autism came into existence, identifying children with higher IQs and expressive language skills, but still showed deficits in theory of mind, pragmatics, and social skills.
3. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, IDEA, was reauthorized in 1997 and added Autism as an area of eligibility for special education.
4. mid-200s-now, significant advocacy, training, and research done around AU, bringing more information to educators.

Given this timeline, Jeff's age, and the terrible job that secondary teachers due at identifying disabilities, it is very reasonable that a 38 year old today would not have been identified today even if our internet diagnosing is accurate.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: fuzzy math on November 01, 2020, 09:52:14 AM
Lots of comments here about "where is your wife in all this?" It sounds like she grew up in a highly dysfunctional environment, and if she's a low conflict person she may not have had an easy way to speak up either in defense of OP or her family. A lot of people absolutely cannot handle conflict. Trying to force her to "step it up" is likely not going to work, especially if she's had to become a peace maker just to survive.

OP, even if you walk away and lose the $38k, I think the biggest issue here is that Jeff has preyed upon your daughter for money.  How old is she? I would (in no uncertain terms) let him know what will happen to him if he ever approaches her again and that would be the last thing I ever say to him. Please understand that your daughter has been exposed to this dysfunction indirectly by just being in her mom's family, and possibly directly by being exposed to any difficulties your wife might have as a result of her family of origin. Your daughter will need extra support not to become a codependent wallet both for her family and any other creep she might meet out in the world.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 10:25:13 AM
So.  Jeff was promised the cabin by his father.  His father then left the cabin to his widow, not to Jeff.  She can't afford to keep it so she proposes to sell it to you and Jeff's sister.  She knows about the promise to Jeff, knows that it will cause problems to break it and tries in some measure to keep it by keeping a lifetime interest that Jeff can use and when it is clear that won't work out (because she knows Jeff won't/can't keep to your rules) tries to change the arrangement in his favour by keeping ownership of 10% for his benefit.

Just about everyone got something seriously wrong here.  Dad and Mom were wrong to let the cabin get into a state where it collapsed and needed $38k in repairs.  Dad was wrong to promise Jeff the cabin and then not leave it to him.  Mom was wrong to try sell it out from under Jeff knowing about that promise and then try to change the terms of the sale in order to try to keep that promise.  Jeff was wrong to expect to be given, or given use of, a cabin he had no means of keeping and no interest or ability to work on.

Your fault was that you voluntarily walked into this mess, tried to help out while not understanding or ignoring all its ramifications and when they became clear (because Jeff's behaviour at the cabin was unacceptable to you as owner, meaning you put a stop to Mom's cockeyed solution to the problem) stomping right through the middle of the mess and exposing the heart of the problem.

The answer that holds the family together now is that Mom sells the cabin, pays you back from the proceeds and gives or leaves all or some of the rest to Jeff.  But she's going to have to get there on her own, if you want peace in the family (or at least as much of it as you can with Jeff around) neither you nor your wife should have anything to do with the cabin ever again.

The disrepair was a combination of financial, and the fact dad was aging and unable to keep up. This was clear as a bell the first day I attended the cabin. Of course being the new boyfriend, I needed some brownie points to impress the new “in laws “. Not to mention a real man doesn’t pound back beers while an Elderly man works his ass off.

Jeff somewhat attached to or took a bit of an interest due to my profession so my wif encouraged maybe I could get him motivated. The cottage lease was up for renewal and conservation required a lot of work. I tried to encourage Jeff by coming at him from a team effort, get him involved “hey man without YOUR help I can’t get this work done”

He’d bring a tool or generator then leave. Work for him to do on,a list was not completed. Hey, it’s,not,my cabin and not my place to,say anything.

The foundation was on the verge of collapse ing and I never got around to it because after 8 years I simply gave up on the cabin, never to attend again. Then dad died and all this happened.

That’s the plan. Get my money back, and walk away.

My daughter figures nana will try hanging on, realize she,can’t afford to keep it,and approach us next year to,sell.

I would like to try and convince her to sell. If,I look,objectively at this, it’s,really in her financial interest to sell. She’d get top dollar, and realistically as she ages she’s going to go to the cabin less and less. Might as well use the money to fix up her house, travel, enabler,her son, lol. Whatever she wants.

So while I’d like her to sell I need her to know I’m going to,have no part of the cabin whatsoever. Not even to visit.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 10:34:51 AM
Lots of comments here about "where is your wife in all this?" It sounds like she grew up in a highly dysfunctional environment, and if she's a low conflict person she may not have had an easy way to speak up either in defense of OP or her family. A lot of people absolutely cannot handle conflict. Trying to force her to "step it up" is likely not going to work, especially if she's had to become a peace maker just to survive.

OP, even if you walk away and lose the $38k, I think the biggest issue here is that Jeff has preyed upon your daughter for money.  How old is she? I would (in no uncertain terms) let him know what will happen to him if he ever approaches her again and that would be the last thing I ever say to him. Please understand that your daughter has been exposed to this dysfunction indirectly by just being in her mom's family, and possibly directly by being exposed to any difficulties your wife might have as a result of her family of origin. Your daughter will need extra support not to become a codependent wallet both for her family and any other creep she might meet out in the world.

Daughter is 25. First she went “halfers” on a cell booster for the cabin. She spent the 600 and “Jeff” had to pay her 50 biweekly cause he had no money (he still drank beer, smoked pot, etc).
Then was the 1k loan because he couldn’t pay his truck loan. He paid her 400 over the next few months, and by,cabin season he stopped paying her because no money (he still drank beer, smoked pot). Grampa had to pay her back.

Then he pestered her to give him computer parts that she was going to sell on kijiji. Had a buyer lined up 500 bucks. Learning her lesson twice she finally stood up to him and said no. Then came the guilt trip, “poor me I’m your,uncle aren’t you gonna help your own uncle”

She told him no. She said she’d give a friends and family discount and he could buy the parts for 300 bucks. A noble gesture on her part. He agreed, but,would you believe he didn’t have 300 bucks?? 50 bi,weekly, and yes he still drank beer and smoked pot.

I don’t have to tell him not to ask for money anymore. She’s done.

I,did,tell,her I was disappointed that she kept the truck loan from me. Mom told her not to because I’d hate Jeff even more.

I’ve instructed my daughter to NEVER, not once, not EVER to feel she needs to keep any kind of Secret from me, family related or not, and that she can come to me no matter what the issue, no matter how big or small.

So while I accept he may have slipped through the cracks and really is a spectrum of sorts, I’m leaning towards he’s just a sociopath and a manipulator.


As to,where,is my wife at??

She’s pissed at mom. She doesn’t think,the,cabin is worth my mental health and certainly not abuse from her mom.

And to be sure, I’m not mad because we’re not buying the cabin. I’m not mad that mom may feel pushed around, or pressured into our agreement. I’m pissed that she accused me of actually bullying her and manipulating her.

I even promised her husband I’d “take care of his girls”. Referring to his,wife, daughter, and grand daughter. Her dad was not,a,guy of many words, and it was a brief special moment I had with him. I wrote the encounter on a paper to be placed in the box prior to cremation when my wife and I identified the body for cremation.

My wife brought it up at a family function. On our,Saturday blow out mom said that when I made the promise she said I changed the narrative to included mom after the fact to manipulate her.

That one,rare moment I,shared with a dying man is now ruined.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: debbie does duncan on November 01, 2020, 11:22:49 AM
This dysfunction is a Karpman drama triangle. You have people here....MIL who are emotionally immature and pass it on to their kids....BIL. When you go out of the script they want....you are the bad one. Set hard boundaries . Never let them have a pass again. Keep clear of the toxic behaviour. This link is to my fav tool box. Good luck with the drama.  https://outofthefog.website/what-to-do-1
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Letj on November 01, 2020, 02:50:15 PM
From your description, he could be on the autism spectrum, but you would think that he would have been diagnosed at school.  He's only 38, so the capacity would have been there 20 odd years ago.  I mean, if he can't tie a double knot, what other simple things can't he do and why were they overlooked?  Even now, it sounds like he should be assessed, but probably it's not going to happen, unless the mom pushes for it, then maybe.  It's really not your concern right now, but I would be thinking into the future - what happens to him when mom passes?  Is he now your problem?  Something for you and your wife to consider.
You would be surprised how easily kids can go through school and never get diagnosed. My close relative went through school and diagnosed herself at 20 after seeing a movie with an Aspergers person and realized she had all the traits including the OCD, obsessions, interest in food limited to very few foods, Crohn’s disease and other digestive system problems (70% of people on the spectrum have stomach problems), etc. Some people can easily be dismissed as shy/introverted and can easily mask.

He’s well beyond shy and introverted. One cottage neighbor pegged him for an 8 year old. Neighbors daughter said,12-13.  And all along I thought I was just bad parenting and tons of pot/beer.

Any advice ? Not my problem? I mean if he’s just an asshole there’s really nothing to,be done, but if he is on some spectrum or something how would you go about it?

Does he know there’s something wrong? He’s told me he hates people and wished they’d all Fuck off. Again I though it’s,the booze/pot talkin....

If he is really on the spectrum his emotional maturity would definitely be stunted probably similar to a 12 year old. As for diagnosis, at his age, he has to recognize something is wrong and seek diagnosis. He doesn’t sound like the type of person you can easily convince to seek help. Good luck.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Letj on November 01, 2020, 02:59:47 PM
What to do about Jeff?

There's nothing to do about Jeff. Whether he has FAS or Autism, or any other medical basis for his behaviour isn't actually anyone's responsibility (or business) but his. He's had 38 years of living the way he is, if he wanted to do something about it, he would have. He's not mentally incompetent, he just might not be neurotypical or may have a mental illness. That's his business to manage as he sees fit.

And yes, it is EXTREMELY common for folks to be walking around their entire lives undiagnosed with all sorts of things. I'm not sure I've known many families without one.

Now, as the people who are connected to him, it's their business to decide how they want to interact with him. If they want to try and maintain a connection with him, or if they don't want to stay connected with a volatile person who shows no interest in improving his volatility. They have no say over what he does, only on how they interact with him.

If the people who love him, ie not OP, decide that the most loving thing would be to talk to him about a possible diagnosis and medical support, then that's up to them.

As for OP, the ONLY impact this should have is to possibly improve your sense of compassion towards both Jeff and his family. If an undiagnosed neuro-atypical condition or mental health illness is at play, and it certainly sounds that way, then just try to always remember that the people involved are hurting. So try to make the priority to not add to the existing hurt. That's it. Nothing more than that.

This! This awesome advice pretty much sums it up.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: SunnyDays on November 01, 2020, 05:27:56 PM
If
If anyone wants to try for a diagnosis, the best bet is through his physician.  Even without the BIL's cooperation, you, your wife or MIL can call the doctor and voice your concerns.  No one can force him to do anything though, unless he is a danger to himself or others.  Although, getting into fights, verbally abusing his mother and sleeping with a loaded gun (in combination) may get someone's attention, if not the doctor's, then maybe the police?  Maybe your wife can have a private talk with her mom, as MIL has voiced fear of her son previously and raise the topic of getting him assessed in some way.  If you are all in agreement on this, it may carry some weight with whomever you decide to approach.

His alcohol and drug use is another possibly dangerous factor, but not uncommon with psychiatric disorders, where people try to self-medicate, usually against the associated anxiety.  Hating people and always feeling like things are everyone else's fault are common with autism diagnoses too.
Calling the police on someone with a potential mental health diagnosis who self-medicates with illegal drugs and is known to keep a loaded weapon on hand sounds like a good way to get him shot.

I see your point, but on the other hand, knowing this is the situation and no one doing anything about it is also a risk.  How many times have violent incidents occurred where in hindsight people wonder why it was allowed to get that far?  That nobody stepped in soon enough to stop something from occurring.  It’s problematic either way.  I’m not saying to call a swat team, but a non emergency call to police to discuss options might be in order.  It’s a dilemma for sure.  At some time, someone will have to address the issue, so better proactively than reactively.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 06:07:57 PM
Hey guys all good responses. Much appreciated even if I reply and seem assholeish.

I know it’s not my problem and I can get my money back and wash my hands of it. But let’s say mom ends up.selling the cabin and even though he said it only means the world,to him if he “gets a slice” and he beats the shit out of her and kills her, then,himself or worse, us.....

“Why didn’t anybody say anything?”
“I’m not surprised, he,was,a,ticking time bomb”

And,according to the whole new “it’s ok to,not be ok”, and “if you see,something, say something” I should be saying something (which I have )

Because honestly if he’s just an asshole that’s one thing but if he,is mentally ill, and doesn’t know he’s mentally ill I can’t really hate the guy if there’s something wrong with him and he just doesn’t know it??

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: FINate on November 01, 2020, 06:26:50 PM
That’s the plan. Get my money back, and walk away.

You're not getting your 38k back. At least, not without a horrible fight that'll spill over into your marriage. How much would a bitter divorce cost you?

So consider the 38k gone and forgive your in-laws. You shouldn't have to, it sucks and you very understandably feel taken advantage of. But your mistake was inserting your finances into a dysfunctional family dynamic. Don't let this costly mistake go to waste, learn from it and learn how to set healthy boundaries.

But also forgive because holding onto this is going to eat you up inside and harm your relationship with your wife. It's not worth it, why hold on to it?
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Sun Hat on November 01, 2020, 06:49:52 PM
Don't give another thought to whether or not he's mentally ill. It's not your problem. Regardless of why he behaves the way that he does, it's best that you don't have anything to do with him. You don't ever need to see Jeff or your MIL again.

However, your wife may still want a relationship of some sort with her mother. That'll be really hard to do if you insist on getting the $38k from her mother, since it sounds as though it's more than she has. Could you consider the $38K a gift to your wife to allow her to brush the whole debacle under a rug to continue to see her mother? Try to put a lien on the property, but otherwise consider it gone.

Be the husband who shelled out a small fortune to try to save the place where her fond family memories were made, and loved her so much that he shrugged off the insults and lost money when it failed... rather than the husband who sued her mother.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 07:36:06 PM
That’s the plan. Get my money back, and walk away.

You're not getting your 38k back. At least, not without a horrible fight that'll spill over into your marriage. How much would a bitter divorce cost you?

So consider the 38k gone and forgive your in-laws. You shouldn't have to, it sucks and you very understandably feel taken advantage of. But your mistake was inserting your finances into a dysfunctional family dynamic. Don't let this costly mistake go to waste, learn from it and learn how to set healthy boundaries.

But also forgive because holding onto this is going to eat you up inside and harm your relationship with your wife. It's not worth it, why hold on to it?

I’m expecting the,38k back. If not, it’s theft. Plain and simple and,I,will treat it as,theft.

Wife says I will get money back, or god forbid an exchange of cabin equity
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 01, 2020, 07:39:48 PM
Don't give another thought to whether or not he's mentally ill. It's not your problem. Regardless of why he behaves the way that he does, it's best that you don't have anything to do with him. You don't ever need to see Jeff or your MIL again.

However, your wife may still want a relationship of some sort with her mother. That'll be really hard to do if you insist on getting the $38k from her mother, since it sounds as though it's more than she has. Could you consider the $38K a gift to your wife to allow her to brush the whole debacle under a rug to continue to see her mother? Try to put a lien on the property, but otherwise consider it gone.

Be the husband who shelled out a small fortune to try to save the place where her fond family memories were made, and loved her so much that he shrugged off the insults and lost money when it failed... rather than the husband who sued her mother.

I’d accept a lien. As long as it’s not gone forever. If it’s gone, it is theft. Theft is wrong and punishment  will be administered. If she honestly can’t pay back, and doesn’t want to sell the cabin fine. I,was going to,be,without the money anyways had,we gone through with the purchase.

I have a few tricks up the old sleeve if she,just refuses to pay.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Psychstache on November 01, 2020, 07:41:04 PM
Don't give another thought to whether or not he's mentally ill. It's not your problem. Regardless of why he behaves the way that he does, it's best that you don't have anything to do with him. You don't ever need to see Jeff or your MIL again.

However, your wife may still want a relationship of some sort with her mother. That'll be really hard to do if you insist on getting the $38k from her mother, since it sounds as though it's more than she has. Could you consider the $38K a gift to your wife to allow her to brush the whole debacle under a rug to continue to see her mother? Try to put a lien on the property, but otherwise consider it gone.

Be the husband who shelled out a small fortune to try to save the place where her fond family memories were made, and loved her so much that he shrugged off the insults and lost money when it failed... rather than the husband who sued her mother.

I’d accept a lien. As long as it’s not gone forever. If it’s gone, it is theft. Theft is wrong and punishment  will be administered. If she honestly can’t pay back, and doesn’t want to sell the cabin fine. I,was going to,be,without the money anyways had,we gone through with the purchase.

I have a few tricks up the old sleeve if she,just refuses to pay.

Your wife would also have tricks. Namely, divorcing you for filling charges against her family.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: FINate on November 01, 2020, 08:02:42 PM
I’m expecting the,38k back. If not, it’s theft. Plain and simple and,I,will treat it as,theft.

Wife says I will get money back, or god forbid an exchange of cabin equity

Indeed, you were wronged and it's within your rights to pursue all options. But oftentimes love means forgoing one's rights for the sake of others. It's entirely your call to decide how much relational damage 38k is worth. I sincerely wish you all the best. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: former player on November 02, 2020, 02:21:19 AM
Your mother in law doesn't have the money without selling the cabin, right?   Can't get blood out of a stone, right?  Put a lien on the cabin so that you get your money back if she sells or dies and then do your best to move on emotionally.  (Easier said than done, that last bit, I know.  But holding a grudge will hurt you, your wife and your marriage much more than it does your mother in law or Jeff.)
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on November 02, 2020, 05:08:30 AM
You keep saying that you and your wife expect to get the money back, but how??? You said MIL only has 20K???
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: researcher1 on November 02, 2020, 05:51:35 AM
I actually suspected some kind of spectrum at first. Then I actually thought FAS.
There is a history of mental illness in the family.
He’s well beyond shy and introverted. One cottage neighbor pegged him for an 8 year old. Neighbors daughter said,12-13. 
 
until he’s diagnosed, he’s just an entitled prick
Then again maybe he is just an asshole.
I’m leaning towards he’s just a sociopath
 
Is lazy, entitled, arrogant, throws hissy fits when things don’t go his way.
His enabling bothered me for years.
This went on for 8 years until he made a comment that made me realize I was not a brother.
You seem to have an unhealthy, deep-seated fixation with Jeff.
He CLEARLY has a moderate to severe mental illness.  Any rational thinking adult could see this.
Yet you want to pretend he isn’t suffering from a disability and just call him names.
 
Why has the enabling “bothered you for years”?
He’s not your brother.  It doesn’t directly impact you.  He’s an introvert who locks himself in the basement and should have almost zero impact on your life.
He has a mental illness.  Get over yourself and stop obsessing over how you’ve been wronged by him.

Quote
Her only concern is the other siblings be allowed when she dies to attend the cabin. Especially Jeff.
 
We institute new rules, We don’t want him in the winter
I explain my concerns and there will be newer rules. I call her son an ass@#$%.
We don’t legally own the cabin at this point.
You must be incredibly self-absorbed if you can’t see the problem you created. 

The mother-in-law’s singular concern with selling is that her son Jeff be allowed to attend the cabin.
So what do you do?
- Unilaterally institute your own new rules for the cabin
- Explain to mother-in-law that YOUR new rules will prohibit Jeff from going to the cabin
- Tell her that her youngest child, who suffers from a serious mental illness, is an asshole.

You do all of this when you don’t even own the cabin!
You are making up rules and banning family members from a cabin that’s not even yours.
How do you not understand that your actions are completely inappropriate, offensive and go against the singular wish that mother-in-law had for the cabin?

Quote
we are getting a good price.
50k of that via interest free loan forgivable upon death.
Mom agrees to gift or “preinherit” my wife the other 25% in exchange for a life interest in the property.
How can you not see that this sweetheart deal you’ve negotiate might not go over well with the family?
You’re effectively getting the family cabin for pennies on the dollar.

Other family members, and the mother-in-law, should rightfully question the terms of this deal.
It certainly seems like mom and the other siblings are getting the short end of this deal.

Quote
She calls me bossy, controlling, and a bully.
Now she’s insulted me. I’m mad, and hurt.
Mom treated me with disrespect. I see that as someone biting the hand that feeds her.
It doesn’t matter who’s family it is. It was an attack on me.

There is nothing I need to apologize for. I did nothing wrong
I did everything that was asked, and did so  in a way that everyone’s needs were met. All except Jeff’s needs. Lol
I treated mom and her entire family like gold.
You DO sound like a bossy, controlling bully!
How did you think the mother-in-law would respond?

You just called her disabled son an “asshole” and banned him from the family cabin that you don’t even own!
You create your own set of rules, which goes against the one condition she had for the property.
You did NOT do everything that was asked and in a way that met everyone’s needs.  Far from it.  Then to just dismiss the key issue as…”All except (disabled) Jeff’s needs, LOL”.
 
Then you claim you “did nothing wrong”?  That you have “nothing I need to apologize for”?
As much as you complain about “Jeff”, you also sound like an “entitled, arrogant prick who throws hissy fits when things don’t go your way”.
This is illustrated by your desire to disown your mother-in-law, stating that “business is business”.  Shouldn’t family be more important than business?

Quote
Ok, daughter has been instructed to no longer lend him money, or finance anything he buys used from her. She has also been told to notify us if he asks for money.
I’ve instructed my daughter to NEVER, not once, not EVER to feel she needs to keep any kind of Secret from me,
Daughter is 25.
You also seem like a controlling egomaniac.

Your daughter is 25 YEARS OLD!
She is a grown independent woman who can make her own decisions.

She can decide how/when to spend her own money or what personal conversations she shares with you.
She doesn’t need someone to “instruct” her on what to do with her money or “told” what she needs to notify you about.

Also, is this your daughter by birth or a step-daughter?
If the latter, it is even more egregious that you're bossing her around like this.


Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: mozar on November 02, 2020, 08:45:29 AM
Quote
he beats the shit out of her and kills her, then,himself or worse, us.....
If he threatens you, make a police report. Unless he actually does something dangerous you can't do anything. Constantly thinking about "what ifs" doesn't help you.

I recommend that you stop going to family functions for awhile.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Villanelle on November 02, 2020, 09:07:31 AM
I feel sad for Jeff and for your mother in law.

You seem to have a deep lack of self-awareness.  "If you see something, say something," doesn't mean "say someone is an asshole and that he's been coddled and favored", or worse.

And at the beginning of this thread, you didn't mention mental illness at all.  Now, suddenly you are trying to frame yourself as a hero who cares about Jeff's well being?  You don't like him.  You don't like MIL.  You use "honesty" as an excuse to tell them mean things in tactless ways.

You sound like a controlling person who can't stand it when people around him make different choices than he would--your MIL, your daughter, your BIL, and even your wife.

I suspect your MIL's version of events would be quite different, and based on the pattern in your post, I suspect I'd find hers more credible.

Walk away from these people.  You can't see the mess you are making, you refuse to accept that you have any blame at all (other than "should have known better"), so your behavior will never change, which means there is zero reason to believe than any interaction you have with MIL or BIL will ever turn out differently.  You need to disengage, entirely.  Work with your wife to have her handle the cabin.  (And "work with her" means actually listening to what she has to say and compromising, not dictating terms to her and expecting her to abide by them and handle it exactly the way you think is right.)  Disengage entirely with the ILs.  If you can't keep your mouth shut and prevent yourself from spewing insulting "honesty", then don't even visit them (but don't even attempt to dissuade your wife from doing so, because whether you can see it or not, this is a you problem, not a her problem).  You can't interact with these people in a way that is healthy for any of you.  So stop interacting.  You want to know what you can do?  It's that; it's not putting any of you in situations where things will get heated, and that seems to mean any situation where you are together.

If you are concerned about Jeff--which I don't believe for a second because that didn't crop up until people responded questioning is mental health or cognitive status--that's what you can do.  Stop adding fuel to everyone's fire.

And maybe worth with a counselor to determine why you are so focused on other people's relationships not being what you consider fair or healthy. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Jon Bon on November 02, 2020, 10:11:18 AM
So Jeff is blameless because he is 100% not responsible for his actions and the OP is a jerk because he dared to be upset about someone stealing $38,000 from him?

Got it...

OP just log off, your situation sucks, and venting here is not going to get you anywhere. Buy the cabin outright, or get your money back (if you can) are your only options IMO.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: researcher1 on November 02, 2020, 10:22:56 AM
You seem to have a deep lack of self-awareness. 
You don't like him.  You don't like MIL.  You use "honesty" as an excuse to tell them mean things in tactless ways.
You sound like a controlling person who can't stand it when people around him make different choices than he would
I suspect your MIL's version of events would be quite different, and based on the pattern in your post, I suspect I'd find hers more credible.
Walk away from these people.  You can't see the mess you are making, you refuse to accept that you have any blame at all
Disengage entirely with the ILs. 

And maybe worth with a counselor to determine why you are so focused on other people's relationships not being what you consider fair or healthy.
+100!
This more succinctly summarizes the thoughts I shared in my post.

firemoney, what is your relationship like with your own family? Do you see your mother, father, siblings often? 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: researcher1 on November 02, 2020, 10:26:40 AM
So Jeff is blameless because he is 100% not responsible for his actions and the OP is a jerk because he dared to be upset about someone stealing $38,000 from him?
Could you point out the posts in which anyone said any of these things?

I haven't read a single post that suggested...
- Jeff is blameless
- Jeff is not responsible for his actions
- OP is a jerk for paying for cabin repairs.

However, the OP is most certainly a jerk for several other things you didn't mention.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on November 02, 2020, 10:33:07 AM
I think you're being treated a little unfairly.

I agree that your posts are coming off harsh and uncaring, but I'm willing to give you the benefit of the doubt that it's because you are angry and feeling betrayed by someone you care enough about to call "mom" not MIL.

You've gotten a lot of good advice here to back away from drama you don't belong in, to find some compassion in the fact that Jeff is likely not operating from the same kind of mental space that you are, that his mother has had a lifetime of loving and worrying about him, that these people just lost their father/husband, and that what you see as trying to help is perhaps not the most appropriate for the situation.

Take the good from the advice that you've seen, and instead of getting offended by those who have heavily criticized you, try to take a dispassionate look at it and see how someone *could* interpret your behaviour that way. It might give you some insight into why your mother in law reacted the way she did? Maybe, maybe not. I'm not saying that justifies it, but even when someone is unfair to you, the wiser response is to try and understand why. Unfortunately, the human response is to focus on why they're wrong.

It's probably because I just went through something similar that I'm particularly understanding about where you're coming from, how you are feeling, and why it's coming out the way it is.

Again, try to take from these replies what you can, and try to focus on what really matters, which is establishing more appropriate boundaries and being the best support you can to your wife and child as *they* deal with *their* challenging family dynamics.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Villanelle on November 02, 2020, 10:53:55 AM
So Jeff is blameless because he is 100% not responsible for his actions and the OP is a jerk because he dared to be upset about someone stealing $38,000 from him?

Got it...

OP just log off, your situation sucks, and venting here is not going to get you anywhere. Buy the cabin outright, or get your money back (if you can) are your only options IMO.

I'm sorry, I must have missed some posts.  Can you please qoute the places where anyone has said Jeff is blameless? 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: nalor511 on November 02, 2020, 12:02:57 PM
I said it once, and I'll say it again - OP is investing too much in this situation. Take a breath. Back up. Start untangling yourself from this mess.

You can't control anyone else, and emotionally (or financially) investing yourself in other peoples' bad decisions is only going to lead to frustration, aggravation, and heartache. I get it, this is your family. Know what the #1 cause of stress is? Family. Back off. It hurts at first, I know. Try treating them as acquaintances. Would you get this upset at acquaintances? Probably not.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Letj on November 02, 2020, 03:48:59 PM
I feel sad for Jeff and for your mother in law.

You seem to have a deep lack of self-awareness.  "If you see something, say something," doesn't mean "say someone is an asshole and that he's been coddled and favored", or worse.

And at the beginning of this thread, you didn't mention mental illness at all.  Now, suddenly you are trying to frame yourself as a hero who cares about Jeff's well being?  You don't like him.  You don't like MIL.  You use "honesty" as an excuse to tell them mean things in tactless ways.

You sound like a controlling person who can't stand it when people around him make different choices than he would--your MIL, your daughter, your BIL, and even your wife.

I suspect your MIL's version of events would be quite different, and based on the pattern in your post, I suspect I'd find hers more credible.

Walk away from these people.  You can't see the mess you are making, you refuse to accept that you have any blame at all (other than "should have known better"), so your behavior will never change, which means there is zero reason to believe than any interaction you have with MIL or BIL will ever turn out differently.  You need to disengage, entirely.  Work with your wife to have her handle the cabin.  (And "work with her" means actually listening to what she has to say and compromising, not dictating terms to her and expecting her to abide by them and handle it exactly the way you think is right.)  Disengage entirely with the ILs.  If you can't keep your mouth shut and prevent yourself from spewing insulting "honesty", then don't even visit them (but don't even attempt to dissuade your wife from doing so, because whether you can see it or not, this is a you problem, not a her problem).  You can't interact with these people in a way that is healthy for any of you.  So stop interacting.  You want to know what you can do?  It's that; it's not putting any of you in situations where things will get heated, and that seems to mean any situation where you are together.

If you are concerned about Jeff--which I don't believe for a second because that didn't crop up until people responded questioning is mental health or cognitive status--that's what you can do.  Stop adding fuel to everyone's fire.

And maybe worth with a counselor to determine why you are so focused on other people's relationships not being what you consider fair or healthy.

You nailed it. Both you and Reserche. My sentiments exactly.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: historienne on November 02, 2020, 08:40:31 PM
I just want to say how discouraging it is to read the characterizations of autistic folks on this thread.  As someone who knows and loves several autistic people, it's fucking heartbreaking to think that this is what the world thinks about my loved ones. 

Autism doesn't make people selfish or unempathetic.  There are definitely autistic people who are those things, but it's not because they are autistic. 

In addition to all the general reasons for not diagnosing people over the internet, I'd really like to ask people to stop perpetuating harmful stereotypes about autistic people.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on November 02, 2020, 09:37:44 PM
I just want to say how discouraging it is to read the characterizations of autistic folks on this thread.  As someone who knows and loves several autistic people, it's fucking heartbreaking to think that this is what the world thinks about my loved ones. 

Autism doesn't make people selfish or unempathetic.  There are definitely autistic people who are those things, but it's not because they are autistic. 

In addition to all the general reasons for not diagnosing people over the internet, I'd really like to ask people to stop perpetuating harmful stereotypes about autistic people.

Agreed. I was also very careful to distinguish autism from mental illness because autism is not a mental illness.

Undiagnosed autism can lead to horrible comorbid mental illnesses and really destructive patterns of behaviour, but that's a failure of caregivers and society to provide the person with autism the supports they need to thrive, not a primary affect of autism.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: albireo13 on November 03, 2020, 07:43:47 AM
How about ....

  Sneek out there one night and torch the cabin!
Then everyone is on the same page.  Divy up any insurance on it as you see fit.

Start all over with your own cabin if you wish.   No Jeff.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 04, 2020, 08:53:38 AM
You keep saying that you and your wife expect to get the money back, but how??? You said MIL only has 20K???

Not my problem. She,can take out a loan, or her son can get a job and start paying rent. Simple, lol.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 04, 2020, 08:55:26 AM
I just want to say how discouraging it is to read the characterizations of autistic folks on this thread.  As someone who knows and loves several autistic people, it's fucking heartbreaking to think that this is what the world thinks about my loved ones. 

Autism doesn't make people selfish or unempathetic.  There are definitely autistic people who are those things, but it's not because they are autistic. 

In addition to all the general reasons for not diagnosing people over the internet, I'd really like to ask people to stop perpetuating harmful stereotypes about autistic people.

I’m not personally saying autistic people are selfish. All I’m saying is Jeff is not normal and I don’t know why. I’m willing to accept it’s something mental (autistic or other).
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 04, 2020, 08:56:46 AM
Your mother in law doesn't have the money without selling the cabin, right?   Can't get blood out of a stone, right?  Put a lien on the cabin so that you get your money back if she sells or dies and then do your best to move on emotionally.  (Easier said than done, that last bit, I know.  But holding a grudge will hurt you, your wife and your marriage much more than it does your mother in law or Jeff.)

I’d be ok,with a lien. I,don’t need,the actual money. I just don’t want it to disappear. It was not a gift it was part of the “deal”.

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 04, 2020, 09:00:36 AM
I actually suspected some kind of spectrum at first. Then I actually thought FAS.
There is a history of mental illness in the family.
He’s well beyond shy and introverted. One cottage neighbor pegged him for an 8 year old. Neighbors daughter said,12-13. 
 
until he’s diagnosed, he’s just an entitled prick
Then again maybe he is just an asshole.
I’m leaning towards he’s just a sociopath
 
Is lazy, entitled, arrogant, throws hissy fits when things don’t go his way.
His enabling bothered me for years.
This went on for 8 years until he made a comment that made me realize I was not a brother.
You seem to have an unhealthy, deep-seated fixation with Jeff.
He CLEARLY has a moderate to severe mental illness.  Any rational thinking adult could see this.
Yet you want to pretend he isn’t suffering from a disability and just call him names.
 
Why has the enabling “bothered you for years”?
He’s not your brother.  It doesn’t directly impact you.  He’s an introvert who locks himself in the basement and should have almost zero impact on your life.
He has a mental illness.  Get over yourself and stop obsessing over how you’ve been wronged by him.

Quote
Her only concern is the other siblings be allowed when she dies to attend the cabin. Especially Jeff.
 
We institute new rules, We don’t want him in the winter
I explain my concerns and there will be newer rules. I call her son an ass@#$%.
We don’t legally own the cabin at this point.
You must be incredibly self-absorbed if you can’t see the problem you created. 

The mother-in-law’s singular concern with selling is that her son Jeff be allowed to attend the cabin.
So what do you do?
- Unilaterally institute your own new rules for the cabin
- Explain to mother-in-law that YOUR new rules will prohibit Jeff from going to the cabin
- Tell her that her youngest child, who suffers from a serious mental illness, is an asshole.

You do all of this when you don’t even own the cabin!
You are making up rules and banning family members from a cabin that’s not even yours.
How do you not understand that your actions are completely inappropriate, offensive and go against the singular wish that mother-in-law had for the cabin?

Quote
we are getting a good price.
50k of that via interest free loan forgivable upon death.
Mom agrees to gift or “preinherit” my wife the other 25% in exchange for a life interest in the property.
How can you not see that this sweetheart deal you’ve negotiate might not go over well with the family?
You’re effectively getting the family cabin for pennies on the dollar.

Other family members, and the mother-in-law, should rightfully question the terms of this deal.
It certainly seems like mom and the other siblings are getting the short end of this deal.

Quote
She calls me bossy, controlling, and a bully.
Now she’s insulted me. I’m mad, and hurt.
Mom treated me with disrespect. I see that as someone biting the hand that feeds her.
It doesn’t matter who’s family it is. It was an attack on me.

There is nothing I need to apologize for. I did nothing wrong
I did everything that was asked, and did so  in a way that everyone’s needs were met. All except Jeff’s needs. Lol
I treated mom and her entire family like gold.
You DO sound like a bossy, controlling bully!
How did you think the mother-in-law would respond?

You just called her disabled son an “asshole” and banned him from the family cabin that you don’t even own!
You create your own set of rules, which goes against the one condition she had for the property.
You did NOT do everything that was asked and in a way that met everyone’s needs.  Far from it.  Then to just dismiss the key issue as…”All except (disabled) Jeff’s needs, LOL”.
 
Then you claim you “did nothing wrong”?  That you have “nothing I need to apologize for”?
As much as you complain about “Jeff”, you also sound like an “entitled, arrogant prick who throws hissy fits when things don’t go your way”.
This is illustrated by your desire to disown your mother-in-law, stating that “business is business”.  Shouldn’t family be more important than business?

Quote
Ok, daughter has been instructed to no longer lend him money, or finance anything he buys used from her. She has also been told to notify us if he asks for money.
I’ve instructed my daughter to NEVER, not once, not EVER to feel she needs to keep any kind of Secret from me,
Daughter is 25.
You also seem like a controlling egomaniac.

Your daughter is 25 YEARS OLD!
She is a grown independent woman who can make her own decisions.

She can decide how/when to spend her own money or what personal conversations she shares with you.
She doesn’t need someone to “instruct” her on what to do with her money or “told” what she needs to notify you about.

Also, is this your daughter by birth or a step-daughter?
If the latter, it is even more egregious that you're bossing her around like this.

Because you,clearly,didn’t read what I wrote....

He’s bugged me for years because he sat and did nothing.

We were instituting rules for our cabin. Not yours, not Jeff’s.

The deal was a win win for everyone. We gave, and we,got. Mom gave and she got.

Remember I don’t want the,fuxking  cabin.

So take your shitty,attitude elsewhere. You are a fucking goof.

MOD EDIT: Not okay. Please read forum rule number one. Please interact politely with people, even those criticizing you.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on November 04, 2020, 09:01:44 AM
I actually suspected some kind of spectrum at first. Then I actually thought FAS.
There is a history of mental illness in the family.
He’s well beyond shy and introverted. One cottage neighbor pegged him for an 8 year old. Neighbors daughter said,12-13. 
 
until he’s diagnosed, he’s just an entitled prick
Then again maybe he is just an asshole.
I’m leaning towards he’s just a sociopath
 
Is lazy, entitled, arrogant, throws hissy fits when things don’t go his way.
His enabling bothered me for years.
This went on for 8 years until he made a comment that made me realize I was not a brother.
You seem to have an unhealthy, deep-seated fixation with Jeff.
He CLEARLY has a moderate to severe mental illness.  Any rational thinking adult could see this.
Yet you want to pretend he isn’t suffering from a disability and just call him names.
 
Why has the enabling “bothered you for years”?
He’s not your brother.  It doesn’t directly impact you.  He’s an introvert who locks himself in the basement and should have almost zero impact on your life.
He has a mental illness.  Get over yourself and stop obsessing over how you’ve been wronged by him.

Quote
Her only concern is the other siblings be allowed when she dies to attend the cabin. Especially Jeff.
 
We institute new rules, We don’t want him in the winter
I explain my concerns and there will be newer rules. I call her son an ass@#$%.
We don’t legally own the cabin at this point.
You must be incredibly self-absorbed if you can’t see the problem you created. 

The mother-in-law’s singular concern with selling is that her son Jeff be allowed to attend the cabin.
So what do you do?
- Unilaterally institute your own new rules for the cabin
- Explain to mother-in-law that YOUR new rules will prohibit Jeff from going to the cabin
- Tell her that her youngest child, who suffers from a serious mental illness, is an asshole.

You do all of this when you don’t even own the cabin!
You are making up rules and banning family members from a cabin that’s not even yours.
How do you not understand that your actions are completely inappropriate, offensive and go against the singular wish that mother-in-law had for the cabin?

Quote
we are getting a good price.
50k of that via interest free loan forgivable upon death.
Mom agrees to gift or “preinherit” my wife the other 25% in exchange for a life interest in the property.
How can you not see that this sweetheart deal you’ve negotiate might not go over well with the family?
You’re effectively getting the family cabin for pennies on the dollar.

Other family members, and the mother-in-law, should rightfully question the terms of this deal.
It certainly seems like mom and the other siblings are getting the short end of this deal.

Quote
She calls me bossy, controlling, and a bully.
Now she’s insulted me. I’m mad, and hurt.
Mom treated me with disrespect. I see that as someone biting the hand that feeds her.
It doesn’t matter who’s family it is. It was an attack on me.

There is nothing I need to apologize for. I did nothing wrong
I did everything that was asked, and did so  in a way that everyone’s needs were met. All except Jeff’s needs. Lol
I treated mom and her entire family like gold.
You DO sound like a bossy, controlling bully!
How did you think the mother-in-law would respond?

You just called her disabled son an “asshole” and banned him from the family cabin that you don’t even own!
You create your own set of rules, which goes against the one condition she had for the property.
You did NOT do everything that was asked and in a way that met everyone’s needs.  Far from it.  Then to just dismiss the key issue as…”All except (disabled) Jeff’s needs, LOL”.
 
Then you claim you “did nothing wrong”?  That you have “nothing I need to apologize for”?
As much as you complain about “Jeff”, you also sound like an “entitled, arrogant prick who throws hissy fits when things don’t go your way”.
This is illustrated by your desire to disown your mother-in-law, stating that “business is business”.  Shouldn’t family be more important than business?

Quote
Ok, daughter has been instructed to no longer lend him money, or finance anything he buys used from her. She has also been told to notify us if he asks for money.
I’ve instructed my daughter to NEVER, not once, not EVER to feel she needs to keep any kind of Secret from me,
Daughter is 25.
You also seem like a controlling egomaniac.

Your daughter is 25 YEARS OLD!
She is a grown independent woman who can make her own decisions.

She can decide how/when to spend her own money or what personal conversations she shares with you.
She doesn’t need someone to “instruct” her on what to do with her money or “told” what she needs to notify you about.

Also, is this your daughter by birth or a step-daughter?
If the latter, it is even more egregious that you're bossing her around like this.

But nice,trolling though. I,do.give credit where it’s deserved. You can still go.fuck yourself, lol

MOD EDIT: Not okay. Please read forum rule number one. Please interact politely with people, even those criticizing you.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: researcher1 on November 04, 2020, 09:26:02 AM
So take your shitty,attitude elsewhere. You are a fucking goof.
But nice,trolling though. I,do.give credit where it’s deserved. You can still go.fuck yourself, lol
It appears I've uncovered some hard truths that you've been keen to avoid/ignore until now.

This is evident when you immediately jump to cussing and name calling, which was your same reaction towards the mother-in-law and Jeff, instead of addressing the valid points made.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Laura33 on November 04, 2020, 09:31:35 AM
So take your shitty,attitude elsewhere. You are a fucking goof.
But nice,trolling though. I,do.give credit where it’s deserved. You can still go.fuck yourself, lol

This is not helping to prove your claim to be the reasonable one in the relationship.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: researcher1 on November 25, 2020, 08:08:56 AM
firemoney -

Care to provide an update on this situation?
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: skp on November 25, 2020, 02:52:49 PM
I'm late to this thread. When I read it I could really relate.  I can understand where the mother in law is coming from in this story.  I understand wanting to pass a camp we love on to the ones we love, especially when they love whatever it is we are passing on as much as we do.  My sister and I inherited our family cabin from our late father.  We grew up there, all our vacations were there.  My dad loved it and so do we.  So, emotionally, I understand wanting to keep it the camp in the family.  But then there comes practicalities.  Between my sister and I, there are 3 grandchildren and only one of them who loves it as much as we do (and it is my sisters child and not my children.)  This child doesn't have the time or the ability to keep the camp up.  I get sad when I think of it. But what good is letting a camp I love fall apart. Unless this nephew steps up and shows me he can take care of the camp, when my husband dies, I think we should sell it. My 2 won't miss it (much) and he can't take care of it.  I can only hope that whoever gets it after us will love it as much as my dad did. 
I think this MIL is acting emotionally right now, and in a few weeks the practicality of the situation will set in.  I think you should give her time.  I bet she will apologize.  I think she should sell the camp, repay you.
I do have a thought though.  Would it be possible to reserve the brother in laws "cut" as a piece of property he can camp on?  That would honor your father in laws wishes and be a win win for everyone.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on November 25, 2020, 03:10:07 PM
tl;dr......

You don't need this negativity in your life, take ownership and cut it out.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 14, 2021, 06:14:15 PM
So take your shitty,attitude elsewhere. You are a fucking goof.
But nice,trolling though. I,do.give credit where it’s deserved. You can still go.fuck yourself, lol

This is not helping to prove your claim to be the reasonable one in the relationship.

Just calling on stupidity. Attack, be prepared for a rebuttal.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 14, 2021, 06:18:01 PM
firemoney -

Care to provide an update on this situation?

Got all my money back. Wife and I have still not spoken to MIL. BIL is happy that we didn’t “get” the cabin. Life carry’s on for him as if nothing has happen. (He left mom all alone and attended the cabin by himself for,xmas.... first xmas since dad died, lol classy boy). He has no clue that mommie is suffering financially, and that it’s the reason mom need to sell. 

Daughter had a brief,visit to pick up nanas dying dog for a sleep over. Mom completely ignored my,birthday. Wife got a simple “happy birthday” email.

Mom is pissed at me because baby boy wasn’t an issue until I made him an issue. Oh well. Her loss. Don’t bite the hand that feeds ya (our branch of the family did everything).

Not my problem anymore. We’re gonna spend out time and money traveling instead of dumping it into. Cabin. Cabins are a huge money pit.

I’m actually thankful she renamed on our deal, but I’m still upset on how she did it.

Still no apology and my wife will not speak to her until she does. I’m trying to encourage my wife and daughter to try and salvage a relationship.

Someone has to make the first move. I’m hoping she’s just embarrassed and doesn’t know what to say, and that she didn’t actually mean what she said and did so under extreme duress due to her abuse.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: six-car-habit on March 15, 2021, 01:52:08 AM
 Well congratulations on getting the money back, that's great .

 Did the MIL sell the cabin to come up with the $$ money ??

 It's been about 3.5 months since the last posts in this thread, and all things considered, [whether she sold the cabin or came up with the repayment money in some other fashion], waiting an additional 14 weeks since the original postings, to get the full 38K repair money paid back , from a person who possibly only had $20K liquid in November, seems to be a relatively quick resolution.

 Unsure how she would have paid you back without talking with you or your wife - [ unless she sent a check ? ] -  but it's probably a good time for your wife to call her and thank her for repaying the $$.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: AMandM on March 15, 2021, 08:22:59 AM
Well, I'm happy for you that you got your money back.

On the other hand, you are, by your own admission, still upset; your MIL is pissed; your wife and her mother are not on speaking terms.

Not exactly a happy ending. I'm sorry.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 15, 2021, 05:12:52 PM
Well congratulations on getting the money back, that's great .

 Did the MIL sell the cabin to come up with the $$ money ??

 It's been about 3.5 months since the last posts in this thread, and all things considered, [whether she sold the cabin or came up with the repayment money in some other fashion], waiting an additional 14 weeks since the original postings, to get the full 38K repair money paid back , from a person who possibly only had $20K liquid in November, seems to be a relatively quick resolution.

 Unsure how she would have paid you back without talking with you or your wife - [ unless she sent a check ? ] -  but it's probably a good time for your wife to call her and thank her for repaying the $$.


I,have no idea how she came up with the money, nor do I care. Not my responsibility. I was paid in two installments, and I cashed the first cheque early. It was post dated and I cashed it Friday after close so it didn’t “cash” until Monday. No biggie but her bank called her anyway. No NSF but the second cheque came with a sanity letter explaining how post dating cheques work, etc.

At my wife’s direction I didn’t acknowledge the second cheque.

Her normally neutral sister has snubbed us. She’s too upset to call and find out why (mom has talked shit about us??). At the end of the day I don’t like them any ways so now we have a reason to not see them.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 15, 2021, 05:20:57 PM
Well, I'm happy for you that you got your money back.

On the other hand, you are, by your own admission, still upset; your MIL is pissed; your wife and her mother are not on speaking terms.

Not exactly a happy ending. I'm sorry.

I’m upset because I’ve done lots for mom and her family over the past years. Not just at the cabin, but day to day stuff, dealing with the death of dad, etc.

To be called a bossy controlling manipulative person who took advantage of a grieving widow to “get what I want” (I never wanted to buy the cabin ) is over the top.

I feel for my wife, but personally if I never speak to mom,again it’s her loss, not mine. There will come a day when she starts “getting older”, falling, etc and she’s on her own.

BIL I’m just done with. I’d like to talk to him and tell him what a piece of,garbage he is, but he won’t care. He got what he wanted which was us not owning the whole cabin.

So,happy ending because we don’t own a cabin that comes with its own “not right in the head” fixture, but family wise yes pretty sad. Oh,well we didn’t do anything wrong, and her poor parenting has now bit her in the ass and basically she has him only.

Wife’s eyes are finally opened that nobody gives two,fucks about her. Look after yourself, then your immediate family, and fuck everyone else.

I suspect mom will tire of attending a cabin that will be used exclusively by her son to drink, smoke pot, and snort coke.

As ye sow, so shall she reap
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Villanelle on March 15, 2021, 05:50:33 PM
Well, I'm happy for you that you got your money back.

On the other hand, you are, by your own admission, still upset; your MIL is pissed; your wife and her mother are not on speaking terms.

Not exactly a happy ending. I'm sorry.

I’m upset because I’ve done lots for mom and her family over the past years. Not just at the cabin, but day to day stuff, dealing with the death of dad, etc.

To be called a bossy controlling manipulative person who took advantage of a grieving widow to “get what I want” (I never wanted to buy the cabin ) is over the top.

I feel for my wife, but personally if I never speak to mom,again it’s her loss, not mine. There will come a day when she starts “getting older”, falling, etc and she’s on her own.

BIL I’m just done with. I’d like to talk to him and tell him what a piece of,garbage he is, but he won’t care. He got what he wanted which was us not owning the whole cabin.

So,happy ending because we don’t own a cabin that comes with its own “not right in the head” fixture, but family wise yes pretty sad. Oh,well we didn’t do anything wrong, and her poor parenting has now bit her in the ass and basically she has him only.

Wife’s eyes are finally opened that nobody gives two,fucks about her. Look after yourself, then your immediate family, and fuck everyone else.

I suspect mom will tire of attending a cabin that will be used exclusively by her son to drink, smoke pot, and snort coke.

As ye sow, so shall she reap

Indeed.

I hope you are able to find peace with the situation and the people in it. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on March 16, 2021, 10:27:05 AM
I really feel for your wife in this.

Be cautious, her open eyes may only be temporary. You could be heading for conflict of she's much quicker to forgive than you are.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 16, 2021, 03:31:48 PM
I really feel for your wife in this.

Be cautious, her open eyes may only be temporary. You could be heading for conflict of she's much quicker to forgive than you are.


She always defended,her brother. “He’s sad, he’s,depressed, he’s,grieving, he’s,whatever......”. Anytime I pointed out that he was a sociopath, selfish and only cares,for himself she became defensive. Even ok’d daughter “lending” him money.

He knows how special the,cabin is to,her. When he told mommy he’d rather her sell to an outsider instead of selling 100% to,us was the turning point.

He threw her under the bus, and “if I can’t own part of the cabin (for free) then NO ONE will,eve use it”. Just a horrible person.

At this point I’m not expecting an apology, and I’ll,basically cut her out for,good.

Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Malcat on March 16, 2021, 05:18:00 PM
I really feel for your wife in this.

Be cautious, her open eyes may only be temporary. You could be heading for conflict of she's much quicker to forgive than you are.


She always defended,her brother. “He’s sad, he’s,depressed, he’s,grieving, he’s,whatever......”. Anytime I pointed out that he was a sociopath, selfish and only cares,for himself she became defensive. Even ok’d daughter “lending” him money.

He knows how special the,cabin is to,her. When he told mommy he’d rather her sell to an outsider instead of selling 100% to,us was the turning point.

He threw her under the bus, and “if I can’t own part of the cabin (for free) then NO ONE will,eve use it”. Just a horrible person.

At this point I’m not expecting an apology, and I’ll,basically cut her out for,good.

Then I repeat myself. Be careful, because your wife might eventually decide that family is worth forgiving, no matter how angry she is right now.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 16, 2021, 05:20:52 PM
I really feel for your wife in this.

Be cautious, her open eyes may only be temporary. You could be heading for conflict of she's much quicker to forgive than you are.


She always defended,her brother. “He’s sad, he’s,depressed, he’s,grieving, he’s,whatever......”. Anytime I pointed out that he was a sociopath, selfish and only cares,for himself she became defensive. Even ok’d daughter “lending” him money.

He knows how special the,cabin is to,her. When he told mommy he’d rather her sell to an outsider instead of selling 100% to,us was the turning point.

He threw her under the bus, and “if I can’t own part of the cabin (for free) then NO ONE will,eve use it”. Just a horrible person.

At this point I’m not expecting an apology, and I’ll,basically cut her out for,good.

Then I repeat myself. Be careful, because your wife might eventually decide that family is worth forgiving, no matter how angry she is right now.

She can forgive all she wants. Mom can apologize too. But things will never be the same even if she does. Somethings you can’t take back. Words are like bullets sometimes.

I’m fine with whatever relationship she decides to have with her,family. Her brother and I are done. Mom and I can mend fences. The important thing is no more cabin.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: frugledoc on March 17, 2021, 07:30:52 AM
Jeff has narcissistic personality disorder enabled by his mum.  There is NOTHING you can do but stay out of it completely and enforce strict boundaries
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 17, 2021, 08:29:13 AM
Jeff has narcissistic personality disorder enabled by his mum.  There is NOTHING you can do but stay out of it completely and enforce strict boundaries

That’s the plan. I have a few personal items to remove from the cabin. That will be the last time I go there.

BIL is dead to me. My relationship with MIL depends on wife. If she’s dead to wife I’m ok with that. If wife wants to mend fences I’ll play along, but absolutely no business transactions. I’ll be polite, but no more help.

Boundaries will be set. No more phone calls or complaints about Jeff. None of my business so don’t make it my business.

If he won’t help you, yells at you, starts beating you black and blue, none of my business. Enjoy the mess you created.

She’s painted herself into a corner. She can’t afford the cabin, but if she sells to an “outsider”, even though Jeff has told her that’s what he wants all bets are off.

He will lose his mind and possibly shoot himself and possibly others.

At the very least he will break into the cabin after it’s sold and take a shit in it. Burning it down or shooting the new owners is on the table too.

This guy IS that crazy.  He may just end up shooting himself in the cabin rendering it not a fun place.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: mozar on March 17, 2021, 01:01:43 PM
If Jeff has threatened you or any one else please report this to the police.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 17, 2021, 02:10:25 PM
Official charges were never laid, but the appropriate law enforcement agencies were notified and its “on record”.

Not that it stop him from shooting anyone but it’s a start should there be any other incidents.

I suspect the cabin neighbors will “officially” start complaining on him.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: skp on March 19, 2021, 08:43:21 AM
You do know how post dated checks work don't you?  Might be a no biggy to you, but I've done it several times for my children when I see them to save a stamp and I'd be pissed if they cashed it early.  I like to allow extra time for funds to clear.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 19, 2021, 01:48:09 PM
#1. Check what site you posted on. Realize that virtual "facepunches" are often given when you're doing something stupid. If you come asking for help with something, and you have a problem realizing that part of the problem is you...expect to get called out on it.

#2. Regardless of what you WANT to believe, you are part of the problem here. But there is power in understanding this. It gives you more control over the situation. How can you fix a problem if you don't even understand the problem itself, what caused it, etc.? Remember, knowing is half the battle!

#3. Lists with only two items are stupid, so I always make sure to have at least a third.

Ok, so exactly WHAT went wrong? Well, we're only getting half of the story (actually less, there are more than two players here). I'll make assumptions and insert my own life experiences in some places, so maybe I'm not 100% spot-on. I bet I'm pretty close on some of the major stuff though.

The patriarch of the family wants you to look after "his girls", and you promise to do so. Being a man, you take that VERY seriously. Ok, nothing wrong with that so far. But...what exactly does that entail? Did he give specific instructions, such as "I expect you to buy a house for my wife to live in rent free."? I'm guessing no. So...it's open for interpretation. You can't FORCE your help on anyone; even if you do, they'll likely resist and make it harder to actually help...which isn't helping them now is it?

Did he tell you he wanted the cabin to go to his son? Or is that something everyone else is saying? Because if the will said it went solely to his wife...that was him literally saying "I want my wife to have this cabin to do with as she pleases." It's very possible he said different things to different people, but to the people who actually decide who gets what, he said that his wife gets it. So it's hers. She can give it to the son if she wants. There's a mortgage? Have him get a mortgage in his name. He can't? Sell it, give him whatever's left over. If she wants to do something else...it's hers to do whatever she wants. You can help or not.

Stepping in and trying to force rules on the son/brother is NOT helping any of "his girls". So do NOT try to do so. That means you need to actively avoid any situation that would see you "needing" to enforce any rule on him. I understand the "my house, my rules" mentality and for the most part agree with it. So...don't allow him at YOUR house. You want a cabin where he's not allowed? Buy a cabin, and don't let him visit. Too easy! Do NOT buy the family cabin that they see as partially his just so you can tell him what he can and can't do. Anyone can tell from a mile away that this will create some kind of issue.

Is the mother coming to you begging for money? Well, you don't have any because you: have to pay for repairs on your own house/are broke (because you dumped all the extra money into retirement accounts)/don't want to mix money with family/just bought a cabin, would she like to visit? You can offer advice. Perhaps she can get a second mortgage to make repairs; if she can't afford the mortgage, explain that she should ask a realtor their advice...if she can spend $40k in repairs to get an extra $45k...well that extra $5k will go to the realtor anyway, so just sell as-is. But if we're talking $40k to even be able to sell it in the first place...ok, you can advise her to get the mortgage only to make repairs to sell it...if she tries to keep it they'll end up taking the house and she'll be left with nothing. Don't co-sign anything, this way you're not on the hook for WHEN things go south.

The problem (or should I say, one of the problems) of how you handled it is that you don't know how she got the funds to pay you back. If all goes well...no harm done. But if her debt ends up spiraling out of control and she ends up on the street...well it's YOUR fault because she had to get a loan to pay YOU back. Yes, I understand; I'm saying this is how it'll be twisted, how others will view it, etc. If this happened because she defaulted on a loan to fix the cabin...not your fault (or at least, not entirely). But if it happened because she defaulted on a loan to pay YOU back...suddenly it's 100% your fault. Just one of MANY reasons to not mix family with finances. Do everything you can to not get in this situation again. If she wants to borrow money, tell her you absolutely hate what happened the last time and don't want a repeat. If it's an actual dire emergency, "loan" her an amount you're comfortable with gifting. No interest, no payment schedules, just the knowledge that this is it, and she can expect no further "loans" until this one has been repaid. You have an easy out for any further loan requests.

It is still possible to honor the promise you made. You just need to acknowledge that you can't fix everything, and sometimes the best way to help someone is to offer to help figure out a solution to a problem. Realize that trying to force someone to help themselves will almost always backfire, so you may not be able to keep them from getting into a bad place. But you can try to help. Realize that the person you made this promise to did not do everything in his power to make it possible to honor the promise, and that you're simply going to do the best you are able given the circumstances.

Seriously, stepping away will likely be the most helpful for the mother. Pointing out that selling and giving the money to the son may be the best advice you can give, even if it's not followed. Helping ensure that your wife does not HAVE to interact with her brother if she doesn't want to will fulfill the promise to take care of her. And if she does choose to have a relationship with him, then informing her of what to expect and letting her make her own decision on how to proceed is allowing her to be her own person...which again, helps to fulfill the promise to take care of her.

Good luck.

You have either not,read what I wrote, or you do not understand , or I didn’t explain properly. Maybe a combination

I’m not the problem. The brother in law is.

All of my assets went to the mother in law, regardless of what was promised to who when both parents died.

Life happens, and life isn’t,fair.

At the end of the day moms life unfolded and she needed financial help in the form of selling “half the cabin”

We had concerns of owning half of a cabin with an unemployed, alcoholic, drug,addict, lazy , entitled selfish (and soon to discover a complete sociopath)

We had a deal that everyone,was happy with (except brother in law)

End of the day MIL caved in once,again,to son. This is the whole problem. He’s never had to deal with consequences of bad decisions.

If I have any fault it’s that I believed mommy that dad was the enabler, and that Jeff would fall in line and become a better person so that he keeps getting invited to the,cabin. He chose to dig in and be mad he wasn’t “getting the cabin”.

I didn’t work my whole life and save money so that others can benifit at my expense.

People here should understand that.

I can sum the whole thing up:

1.I thought I was buying a cabin

2. Wife thought we were buying the “family cabin”

3. Jeff thought we were buying him a cabin.

4. Mom thought we were giv9ng her money but it was still the family cabin and Jeff could come out as often as he wanted.  And didn’t have to contribute, and it’s ok to tell the people who were now paying for everything to “go,fuck yourself, you can’t tell me what to do! Nobody fucking controls me!”

Dad didn’t make me promise,anything. I promised him I’d look out for the girls.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: firemoney on March 19, 2021, 01:51:24 PM
You do know how post dated checks work don't you?  Might be a no biggy to you, but I've done it several times for my children when I see them to save a stamp and I'd be pissed if they cashed it early.  I like to allow extra time for funds to clear.

Please read carefully what I wrote.

The,cheque was cashed Friday AFTER CLOSE. It never is, never has been, nor will it ever be a problem.

The cheque cleared on Monday (the post date) and all was good.

For some reason her bank called her. No NSF no nothing. Basically a non issue. Mommy simply used this as an opportunity to take a shot at me because I’m the enemy who has attacked baby Jeff.

I get it he’s her baby boy, but I’d seriously be ashamed of he were my kid. 
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Kris on June 05, 2021, 03:04:35 PM
Welp, I think another piece of this puzzle might be that Firemoney has some pretty significant anger issues.

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/lets-talk-new-bike-for-wife/msg2851440/#msg2851440
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: mistymoney on June 05, 2021, 06:10:57 PM
what a looney toon!

I was kind of suspecting that Jeff wasn't the real problem, but that about cinches it.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: Cassie on June 05, 2021, 06:50:12 PM
Jeff is definitely not the problem:)). His poor wife.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: gooki on June 05, 2021, 10:18:19 PM
I disagree.

PS get a front suspension mountain bike with hydraulic disc brakes for your wife.  Most hybrid bikes have cheap components, so you're better of with a mid range mountain bike with road/gravel tires.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: FINate on June 06, 2021, 10:22:20 PM
I disagree.

PS get a front suspension mountain bike with hydraulic disc brakes for your wife.  Most hybrid bikes have cheap components, so you're better of with a mid range mountain bike with road/gravel tires.

A mid range hard-tail mountain bike runs around $1000-$1500 USD. They're great... for mountain biking. About 5 years ago my wife bought a $400 hybrid bike that she rides around town. No problems whatsoever. We don't even maintain it except putting air in the tires. Casual riders are unlikely wear out components on any halfway decent bike (not a Walmart bike), even if the quality isn't the best. And we worry less about it getting stolen. But you do you.
Title: Re: Enabling mother in law causes issues, how to deal?
Post by: yachi on June 07, 2021, 09:06:57 AM
Jeff is definitely not the problem:)). His poor wife.

Plot twist: What if Jeff is actually firemoney's alternate ego, and comes out when pointing out Covid landmines in threads he started, and drinking beer in person...