Post # 1
I almost wrote an extremely long post about my situation, but I realized noone could fully understand unless I wrote a novel.
Basically, my in-laws are extremely cheap and they judge me for what I choose to spend my money on. It’s an especially difficult situation because I support my disabled husband (their son/brother). I get help from MY mother, not from them. I live in a 1 bedroom apartment and most of money goes to rent and DH.
I recently told my sister-in-law that I needed more help financially to pay for DH’s medical bills. Rather than just admit that she could not (or didn’t want to) help, she criticized my financial decisions. Here’s a list of things she thinks I should give up: cell phone, cable, fitness classes, eating vegetarian (huh?), having future children, buying a house (already doing that, too late!), going out to eat ever.
All this is coming from a woman who has all those things and more. She has a husband (who also works), 2 kids, a nanny, private day care, and lives in an affluent area. I know she not rich, but she could have just said no!
I told her I was very offended by what she said. I haven’t heard from her since. I’m devastated because I actually thought we were friends. I’m worried that DH will lose touch with his family, but I refuse to call her and remind her that he’s still alive. I’ve been looking after their relationship for too long.
Am I right to be extremely hurt by this?
Post # 2
Are you asking your sister-in-law and brother for monetary help? That is always a really touchy subject, and I can understand their confusion about you having enough money to buy a house but needing extra for medical bills. Why is that their responsibility? Is your husband close to his siblings? Maybe they don’t have the extra income to spend. You can’t choose what other people spend their money on. If you start asking people for money you are opening yourself up to judgment on how you spend yours. It’s great that your mom helps out, but why are you asking for money from his family? Shouldn’t he be doing that?
Post # 3
I completely understand your hurt. Unfortunately, money issues with family are such delicate ones. And quite frankly it’s not uncommon for money to bring out the ugly in people. It’s very unfortunate. I had a huge blowout with my family a little bit ago about money. Some of my family members really showed their true colors. The best advice I have for you is to continue on without their assistance. I know it’s tough. But if they aid you, you will only be under their scrutiny. I know it’s easier said than done. I cannot fathom what you are going through with a disabled husband and I completely commend you for it. You are a saint! I’ve read your previous stories about TTC with him. My heart goes out to you.
Post # 4
sarals24: It’s a really hard situation to understand so I’ll try not to take offense. I was asking the sister-in-law to also communicate to his parents because they barely communicate with me. I actually don’t have enough money to buy a house. We are using the small amount of the insurance settlement (which has to be approved by a judge) to buy a very small house. The mortgage will be lower than my current rent. If they don’t have extra money to spend, they could just say NO instead of personally attacking me.
Why is it their responsibility? I don’t know – why is it mine? I made it mine, because I love him. I could have left him in his family’s care. If I did that he’d be living in a nursing home. He’s not asking because he has a severe brain injury. He’s cognitively impaired, physically disabled, and more like a child than the man I married. But I love him, so I sacrifice.
CocoLoco523: Oh, you are so right! My mom loves us a ton but we still fight about the money problems all the time. But if it wasn’t for my Mom, I wouldn’t be able to keep DH living with me and for that I feel lucky. I honestly didn’t expect them to offer much, but I didn’t expect to be insulted like that.
Thank you for your support. I’m no saint, but I will do anything I can to help DH get better 🙂
Post # 5
To be honest I’m always a little surprised when people come on here and tell you what is and isn’t your business, or that your problem with your husband is yours and not his family’s. I don’t really know his/your story but I know that my family would never abandon my brother even if he had a wife to take care of him. My brother’s health will always be my family’s business and responsibility. I don’t think you are wrong at all to reach out for help…I do think you need to be prepared to be turned down though. It was rude of SIL to criticize your spending instead of offering to relieve the burden even in the smallest way (like offering to take him to appointments or something if she didn’t have the money to spare).
Post # 6
I’m sorry that happened. I understand why you’re hurt, and I don’t blame you at all.
Her opinion on your spending habits just wasn’t necessary. A simple “no” would have been fine.
Post # 7
Macintosh: Wow, I am so sorry about your husband. You are a wonderful person to be taking all this on. Maybe the family are so uncomfortable because they hasn’t come to terms with the extent of his disability, and it is easier to snark at you than deal with the fact that you are the one stepping up for his fulltime care.
Post # 8
Macintosh: OMG, so sorry you’re dealing with that. I can’t imagine. My husband just broke his leg not even a week ago and I’ve already been frustrated with caretaking. Def puts things in perspective.
As for your SIL she is a bitch and stupid. I don’t know what advice to give. I’m assuming you’ve looked into different health insurance policies.
What about his parents? I think you should try to get along with them, they would prob be more willing to help even with caretaking than his sister.
Post # 9
Macintosh: I am so sorry to hear that they chose not to be more supportive. This must be tough. <br />Can you try talk to his parents again?
Like pp said, money is a touchy subject in plenty of families. Maybe SIL was not trying to be mean but supportive in her own way by making suggestions for you on how to save money? (of course you’re the one dealing with her… so i am just making assumptions from the outside, trying to see the good in people…so excuse me if i am wrong)<br />How does it work in your country? is he entitled to some sort of pension / to some sort of (disability) benefits that could help? has the insurance of the vehicle that hit your Husband contributed?
And not sure if you’re comfortable with this idea, but have you thought about starting a GoFundMe-Campaigne? Do you think maybe some of his friends / co-workers would be willing to help? Do you still use that FB group you started for him? Maybe you could post it there as well?<br />Sending hugs your way!
Post # 10
It sucks, but I don’t think they are responsible for his care or funding care. On the flip side, she for sure does not get to dictate how you spend your money.
Sorry you are in this position. It can’t be pleasant.
Post # 11
I am very sorry that this is happening to you. You deserve kudos for staying with your husband as many women would have left already.
I am going to say this with all the consideration in the world: If you don’t want people to give you their opinions on your financial affairs, do not involve them in your financial issues or ask them for money.
Your SIL could not make such comments if you never told her your business. I wouldn’t give money to someone who complained about not having enough if I saw her buying a house.
Post # 12
PositiveThinking: You made the point so much better than I did. Thanks for your eloquence.
Post # 13
I think it’s important that everyone lives within their means. I personally wouldn’t be going out to eat or having a cell phone if I couldn’t afford day to day living expenses. Asking for help opens you up to scrutiny in the same way that you scrutinized her and her house, nanny and lifestyle choices.
Does anyone have a “right” to judge anyone else? Of course not. But it’s human nature and involving others, especially family, in sensitive issues like money opens you up to hear their opinions. If I asked my or my partner’s family for money, I can bet that they’d want to know why and would try and determine if I was being wasteful.
It sounds like you have a lot of pressure and a lot of women would not be able (or willing) to do what you are doing. You made a hard choice and I have seen members of my family take on caregiver roles before. It’s not easy and a lot of people don’t understand the sacrifices involved.
Having said that, perhaps your SIL was legitimately concerned about you TTC while her brother sounds quite incapable of helping you with decisions and care. It sounds like you’d be taking care of him and a baby in the midst of financial trouble. I can understand why she’d be worried about you and perhaps her comments came from a place of love (however misguided).
I agree with you – she could have just said no. But rather she tried to explain herself and maybe in her own way help and advise you. You’re not in an easy position and I think everyone respects and admires how you’ve chosen to conduct yourself. I’m just trying to explain where she may be coming from. It sounds like you need support and isolating her wouldn’t help. I hope you two can work it out.
Post # 14