Post # 1
I don’t know if I am looking for advice or I just need to vent/talk it out with someone besides my husband but here it goes.
Background: My father passed away when me and my borther were young. My mother never remarried. Growing up, my mother never had a job and we lived off of my father’s SSI death benefits. My mom finally got a job when I turned 18 in high school because the SSI benefits stopped. She only worked part time though because my brother was still receiving them. I have essentially been on my own financially since freshman year of college (even though in high school I had a job and payed for my car/phone/insurance I was still living at home).
Now, my mother has no money. She is constantly fighting to pay her house payment, and has already been taken to court twice for not paying anything on her credit cards. She has no saving and takes what ever free money she has and play bingo or whatever games are going on in the civic center in town. Currently she is working at another business in town where she is only making minimum wage and is voluntarily working part time. Whenever she talks about how she is getting more hours (which I though was something good), she makes comments about how tired she is and how much she has been working lately. She at one point had a second job, but quit after she found out she qualified fro a program to lower her house payment.
The current situation I guess is that her house payment is going back up. My grandmother sent me and email last night saying that they were talking and how she and my mother were hoping that my husband and I could buy her house for what she still owes on it and then she could just make payments to me. Alternatively, they suggested that I could cosign with my mother and get her house refinanced so she has a lower payment again.
I don’t want to do either of these. I know she is my mother and I feel so incredibly guilty about it, but my husband and I are still paying off student loans and trying to save for our own house, in addition to me only having a contract job (so I will need to find a permanent job within the next year). I do not want to become my mother’s landlord because what happens and she can’t pay? I will end up having to pay for it. If I cosign on a loan with here, I know it will ruin my credit that I have worked so hard to keep high. I already know that since she has absolutly no retirement I will have to take care of her (my brother doesn’t have a job and doesn’t live at home anymore). I am already feeling resentful, and it makes me feel awful. I don’t want my mother to become destitute, but at the same time I don’t want to have to give up all the things that I worked for so I don’t end up like her.
Sorry this is so long and thanks for making it through the end. I just needed to get it off my chest….
Post # 3
Just say very sorry no. Your grandmother should have been counseling your mom to find a job earlier. Why cant mom move in with grandma/
Post # 4
That is a hell of a lot of pressure to spring on you all at once. I would not be at ALL comfortable with the arrangement, and I don’t think that makes me a bad person. YOU ARE NOT A BAD PERSON. It sounds like your mom is able bodied and able to care for herself, but she chooses not to because it’s easier 🙁
I’d like to not work as much as I do as well, but I can’t afford to do that. I do NOT expect my family to step in and save me 🙁
Post # 5
@annon_and_confused: based on what you’ve said, i wouldn’t do it either. I would be worried that your mother wouldn’t make the payments and then you’re on the hook for her mortgage.
Post # 6
Uh no. I would not even contemplate doing this. I think it may be time for your mom to sell her house and move into something she can better afford.
Post # 7
NOOOOPE. Let your grandmother do something about this. I’m sorry but the time for someone to step in with your mother, was when she didn’t get a job when your dad passed away. The SSI benies aren’t that much. She’s been taken care of by your dad, and the system. Is there a reason she can’t work full time? or get a roomate?
Post # 8
DON’T DO IT! And also, importantly – DON’T FELL GUILTY! Honestly, I would run from that light quicksand. You can love you mom and choose not to take care of her financially for the rest of your life, because that is what they are proposing. If she can’t make payments to a bank there’s no way in hell she can make them to you. And it will destroy your relationship with resentment. And might destroy your finances as well.
I would just be honest that, number one, you have your own finances that you need to put your money towards and, number two, you don’t want to risk damaging the relationship with you mother over debt issues. That way it makes it clear that you value the relationship, but that the best thing to do, for the relationship, is not be your mother’s landlord.
Post # 9
- Wedding: July 2014 - Prague
Nope. NO WAY. Momma needs to work.
Post # 10
Don’t do it. This is a HORRIBLE idea. Help her sell the house, and help her find a more affordable place to live. Do not let her destroy your credit. When she doesn’t pay (and with her history, it’s a when, not an if), you’re screwed. She’s a grown woman who has made poor choices repeatedly. You don’t need to be punished for her actions. If your grandmother is so involved, SHE can take on the risk.
Post # 11
I feel for you…I have a bit of a similar situation with a family member. The husband always worked and she stayed home due to raising children. Well the husband left and she had to find her own way. My husband and I felt that we could help her by purchasing a condo and her pay rent to us. It benefitted us both – we have another investment property and she has a secure place to live.
It’s been almost 2 years, and it has worked out great. She has been working full time because she doesn’t want to “disappoint” us by not having the money. I can’t say this would be the same situation based on what information you have provided, but I can say that it is possible it may work out.
Good luck. Make the best decision for you and your DH first.
Post # 12
Just gotta love family telling you what to with YOUR resources to “help” another family member. If they are sooo concerned, why aren’t they doing themselves? No. Just no.
I had a similar issue with family a few years back. I told everyone what MY boundaries were about certain family member they tried to guilt me into helping. Nope. Not gonna do it. Some people didn’t lift a damn figure to do anything, but wanted to judge me. Go F yourself.
This particular family member ended up going to a homeless shelter, sorry my home wasn’t going become hell taking them in because they refused for YEARS to take care of themselves.
They are now as far as I’m concerned living better than anyone else in the family because she worked the system and is not set up in an apartment and doesn’t have to work. Don’t get me wrong its not the best neighborhood no does she have any discretionary income, but those the breaks when you choose to collect SSI disability.
You get he basics an nothing else. I like to having nice “things” going vacation, having the occasionally nice meal at restaurant. So I work and when times have gotten tight, I’ve worked two jobs. Years ago there was point I worked three jobs (FT and two PT gigs) because that’s what grown ups do. Tough times, tough measures.
But some people want to be perpetually irresponsible and have other people clean up their mess. Not my dime nor with my time. Nope. I don’t care what blood tie we share.
Post # 13
Thanks so far to those who have responded. Some additional details: I am pretty sure my mother has undiagnosed depression (or she is diagnosed and hasn’t told me about it), so I think this plan was though of by my grandmother becasue she is worried that my mothers possible depression would get worse if her payments would get higher because she would be scrapping by to pay bills again. Also, my grandmother is not in a financial position to help my mother out at all. She is very old and her other kids (ie. my aunts) have drained her financially. I feel though that my mother should at least work full time before anyone steps in to help her. It is also to the point where I feel guilty that my husband and I take vacations and buy things (not even expensive things!) and talk about them in front of my grandmother and mother. No one prepares you for this type of situation when you are growing up!
Post # 14
- Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast
Nope. Not your problem. And don’t you dare emotionally beat yourself up over this. You are doing what is best for you and your future, so that one day your own children won’t have to face this very same situation. Stand strong on this. Do not let other people try to drag you down with their own folly.
I have a similar problem with my parents. They are completely irresponsible with money, and I refuse to be their fallback plan. I had tremendous guilt over this, but the Bee truly helped set me straight. My parents are not my financial responsibility. Their bad decisions are not my financial responsibility. When they finally lose their home (it’s pretty inevitable), I will pay their security deposit, and first and last month’s rent on an affordable 1 bedroom apartment with their name on the lease. I will also pay for 1 small moving truck. That is it. The rest is on them to figure out. I will not compromise our financial health, our kid’s college tuition, our retirement, etc. to rescue them from the mess they knowingly made.
Post # 15
@annon_and_confused: If you want o PM me, feel free. I understand exactly the pressure they putting on you.
Stay strong. Everyone is in your pockets but when you need help where you going to turn to after you’ve been drained?
No is the most powerful two letter word in the English language, let it become your best tool when it comes to dealing with dysfuctional family members. Once you say it enough, they will get the hint. But if you waiver they will sense the weakness and try to keep manipulating you.
Post # 16
No, just no. If she can’t pay the bank, there’s no way she’s going to be able to pay you (plus she will be able to emotionally manipulate you in order to hold up payments until she can ‘afford them’, which will be never). You will end up on the hook for paying her mortgage on top of everything else. Plus then presumably you will be legally responsible for taxes, maintenance, etc. And the loan will probably ruin your credit and stop you from being able to get a loan for your own house.
Don’t tie yourself to a sinking ship. If she has a house, that means she has extra rooms she can rent out for income. If she has a house, that means she can resell it and move somewhere smaller that she can afford. If she can work, that means she can get a fulltime job. Do not subsidise your mother’s bad choices so she can piss away your life savings on gambling and bingo. And do not feel guilty about looking out for your own finances. You and your husband are a family too, and I can promise you that if you let your mother take all of your money your husband is going to resent you so badly that it WILL eventually ruin your marriage.