You can't fix stupid!

@jillhill (37384)
United States
March 18, 2008 4:21pm CST
A mylot friend reminded me of this saying and it totally pertains to this discussion. My older sister has never been good handling her money. She retired in Oct. of last years..gets her retirement and also works 3 part time jobs as a registered nurse. So yesterday my younger sister calls for our weekly phone conversation to tell me that our older sister (the nurse) couldn't make her mortgage payment this month...now mind you.....she has five incomes! She has rental property besides her other incomes. Well in Jan. she took a five day trip with some friends to Arizona....in Feb. she went with a friend to Cancun for 10 days...and now she can't make her house payment!! And one of her rental units needs a bunch of work. So I get home today and there's this email that she sent out to the whole family that she needs us all up there for a weekend to try to fix the rental unit because she doesn't have any money to do it or to hire someone!!!! Well being her sister of course I emailed her back that I would try to help for a few hours..now I am kinda upset that I said I would do it. I have never asked anyone in our family to pick things up for me or donate to me because I was stupid with money! I might be wrong but I think if we all go help we just enable her to not fess up to her financial problems! What would you do? Would you go and help her again (I helped before when she just bought this house) or would you find an excuse not to go? I am very upset about this. I have been single for 29 years, raised three kids on my own, paid for my house, and have never had anyone help me with anything!
4 people like this
12 responses
@nicholejade (2430)
• Canada
18 Mar 08
I honestly don't blame you for being upset. I would be to. I am in a similar situation with my brother. He keeps asking me for money. He found out that I got a lump sum of cash from my insurance company and wants to borrow $2000 for bills and what not. My brother will be 27 in May and his way of thinking is to live at home with mom and dad and get all my toys and everything that I want. He does make a decent living with what he does but he spends money before he gets it. That is his big downfall. I said to him why should I give you money when in the last 2 years when I have had no income coming in due to a car accident and the insurance company not paying out as they should be he never helped me in anyway. I did it on my own with my fiances help. I will be forever in his debt but I know he is doing it to help me out. My brother goes and gets things that he really doesn't need, spends money in going out to eat all the time 6 + times a week. I don't know how creditors can keep giving him money and more money. I guess it's just a way for them to get more money out of people. I denied my brother the help. He is very upset with me but he has to realize it also works two ways.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
18 Mar 08
Are they related? She has no concept of money...and I personally am very tired of her sense of entitlement. Like we owe it to her since we are family....talking to her doesns't help. She just has her own way of thinking. It's very frustrating.
• Canada
20 Mar 08
LOL. When I read this discussion I was thinking the same thing. They must be related on the thinking they have with money. And yes exactly just because we are family it's like we owe them this. I don't think its right at all. And to be honest I am quite sick of bailing him out all the time. Why doesn't he learn not to spend when he doesn't have the money and goes gets him in these sitations. I would think he would of learned after the first time. Not the second, third and fourth time. I can't even count anymore as I ran out of fingers and toes.
@foxyfire33 (10009)
• United States
18 Mar 08
That's a tough one... I agree that "bailing her out" again would be enabling her. But making an excuse or just not showing up won't teach her anything either. Maybe a better option would be for whatever family members who are going up to help her to hold a bit of an intervention while they are there. Explain to her the things you've said here and about any other stupid money decisions she's made. It probably won't help unless she's willing to listen (which is different from just hearing you all) but at least you'll all know you tried so that the next time she needs help she'll know why no one steps up.
1 person likes this
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
18 Mar 08
She doesn't "get" it...her train of thinking is way different then the rest of us. She haa been bankrupt and filed on it just a few years ago. She bought her house of $85,000.00 about 15 years ago and now owes almost two hundred thousand on it..she just thinks different like taking a trip before paying her bills....she thinks since she works hard she deserves the trips and worries about the bills afterward. We have tried explaining it to her...in her mind it's all different.
1 person likes this
@BigO32 (47)
• United States
19 Mar 08
At some point, she is going to have to go it alone in order for her to truly understand. This is harsh, but im kinda going through the same thing with my brother. Its working, hes getting the hint. Your sister is way grown if she is retired and by now, she should have learned the lesson of responsibility. I think that the help/intervention may work cause at least you can let her know that this is the last time. Good Luck!
@ellie333 (21029)
18 Mar 08
One of my younger brothers is a spendthrift so much so that my father has put a clause in his will for someone else to handle any money he leaves him until he can prove he is responsible enough to have it. It is very frustrating I agree. When everyone else has to struggle to make ends meet and you have to keep bailing out. As one of your other responses said go this time get the family to say enough is enough, no more holiday etc. til she sorts herself out and mean no more help unless emergency, not something that has occured through her overspending on luxury rather than necessity. Also I would like to say well done you for bringing up three children and having a lovely home all without help. I am a single parent myself and know what that is like too. From what I know from you from seeing other responses and discussion from you I realise that your are a very kind and loving person so just reading the discussion above makes me really how upset you are over this. My only advice is do what feels to be right within your heart. Ellie :D
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
18 Mar 08
You truly are a good friend! I appreciate your responses and know you are a very loving and good person too!
@secretbear (19466)
• Philippines
21 Mar 08
hi jill! if i were you i could have told that sister about how stupid she is on spending her money. i would have been annoyed to the fact that she luxuriously spent them on traveling with friends instead of paying first her financial obligations. but i guess, being siblings and all, i still would help her but i would give her a condition. i might give her a deadline on paying me and i would tell her not to go traveling with her friends for a long time until she had paid all of her obligations first. settle her financial troubles first before go on enjoying too much of her money. i can understand how you have said that you have never had anyone help you with anything. i too would settle for my financial responsibilities by myself. its my responsibilities so it follows that i'm the one to settle it. i don't usually ask someone for help or anything. i don't like borrowing money. so i understand how you feel.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
21 Mar 08
The unfortunate part about all of this is that we have all talked to her....she doesn't get it! It's like talking to a brick wall!
1 person likes this
@secretbear (19466)
• Philippines
23 Mar 08
pound the brick wall with a hammer. i'm sure she'll finally notice something like that.
• United States
19 Mar 08
If you have helped before and you feel that she won't learn her lesson about money and you feel angry for saying yes, then don't go. Make a excuse and don't go.It may seem mean but you have to do whatever you can live with. In other words, if you can say no to her and feel better about yourself , then say it. But if you will be racked with guilt if you don't help her,then go and help.You deserve to feel go about your actions. And you shouldn't be forced to do something that you disagree with.So follow your heart.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
I am going to do that....I think I am not going to go. I'll let the others pick up the pieces for her again...I have just hit the limit with her and her financial woes! I don't think I can take listening to it anymore either. My little sister's husband said he doesn't want to hear anything anymore because it just makes him sick. Thanks for posting and I will do what is best for me.....for a change!
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Mar 08
You are a good person. You are a great mother and you should do things that are good for you every once in a while.My mom said good mothers do everything for everyone else except themselves and they need to treat themselves once in a while.
@carolbee (16241)
• United States
19 Mar 08
I agree with you that you would be enabling her financially. She knows that no matter how much she spends the family will help her out. I would call it manipulating to be exact. Maybe you can offer to handle her financial matters and see how she reacts. Ok now here is how I would feel about it if I was in the same situation: I'd go help because I am such a woosie and don't like people being angry with me. It's probably not the right thing to do but I would go. And you know something, you can pat yourself on the back for working your tail off to raise your kids and own your home. You should be so proud of what you've accomplished.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
Thanks Carol..it's like I just hit the limit with her...it's the same old story over and over again! And over and over again!!!!!!
@carolbee (16241)
• United States
20 Mar 08
And she probably knows everyone will bail her out once again. It's a tough call since this involves your sister. Sorry you have to make a decision about helping or not.
• Philippines
19 Mar 08
It's really hard to bail on family, but I guess the best thing you can do is talk to her, or have a family meeting with her. Let her know how her actions affects everyone. Maybe when she hears what you all have to say, she'd make a move to change how she lives her life, especially with her finances.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
Been there...done that...she just doesn't get it. I am sure for the rest of her life it will be this way....I am just sick of the whole situation!
@BigO32 (47)
• United States
19 Mar 08
This situation is really bad. You say that your sister is retired so I assume that she has experienced life for some time now. If at this point she still does not know where her money should go then what will help her? I think that you should help her, but this time, let it be known that it will be the last time. You have your own life to worry about and although you care about your sister, at times you just got to let people really learn their own lessons. My brother and I are best friends. I am financially more stable than he is. I have helped him out as much as I could but now he just has to put the advice and his words into action. It is true when they say that after you hit ROCK BOTTOM is when you open your eyes and see the error of your ways. If your sister hits rock bottom, then shell understand how to not ever get there again. She knows that you and the rest of the family will be there in any event. Good luck with any choic you make. Its a toughie no matter how you think of it.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
It is a tough choice...I've been thinking about it all day and weighting practically everything trying to come up with a fair decision. This time it's like I hit my load limit with her!
@karma118 (294)
• United States
19 Mar 08
First of all, you go girl!! Doing all of that by yourself earns you some serious respect! I don't know what's wrong with some people but no matter what they do, they just don't seem to be able to get their lives together. I'm sorry that you're stuck in the midst of all of it but she's a big girl and she can help herself. That's as simple as it gets. LET HER HELP HERSELF! Haha you go girl!
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
That's what I think.....she made her bed now she can sleep in it.
• United States
19 Mar 08
Wow, 5 incomes and she still can't handle money? On top of that, RNs make a pretty penny. Has anyone actually talked to her about this? Maybe it's one of those "I haven't been told anything, so nothing is wrong" sort of things. Perhaps you should be the older sister that gives her a stern talking to!
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
We all have at one time or another...I even suggested her listening to Suzie Orman....maybe getting some financial advice from a counsler.....she just thinks different...it's almost like she has a sense of entitlement. Like we have to help her because we are family. It's been this way forever and probably will be this way for the rest of her life!
@KarenLO (238)
• United States
18 Mar 08
Hi, I don't know what I would do? Are the rest of your family going? Yes, you are all enabeling her to do what she always does....but it is up to you and your family to let her know (if you go and help her) that she had better buckle down and pay her bills before she "plays". I guess some people get away with it but I , too, have big problems asking for help...especially...if I had been vacationing and possibly "bragging" about how much fun I had while all of you were working or staying in Minnesota...hard decision to make. I know that you are self sufficient and do your own work and also work long hours to pay for it. Good luck in your decision.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
19 Mar 08
I don't know yet what I'll do....I am tired of all of us always picking up the peices for her and she just goes back and does it again...she just doesn't get it!
• United States
18 Mar 08
You should first thank the good lord that you were never in a situation that you needed any help, then I would probably go help her and at the same time let her know that you would love to be taking all those lovely vacations too but you have finalcial responsibilities that make taking that many trips unreasonable and irresponsibile. Let her know you are upset and tired of her playing and you have to work. Your sisters just as she is fine w/ asking you for help you should feel fine w/ telling her how you feel. Maybe she will see the light.
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
18 Mar 08
We all have tried to talk to her....she just thinks of it in different terms. She also has a sense of entitlement..like we owe it to her because she is our sister. I have been in situations where I could have used help...I just didn't put it on my family and took responsibility for my situations myself. Like raising three kids...they were my responsibility and if we were short of food or something while the kids were growing up...I would just work more hours! I don't know how she ever got such a different thought line about money....but she just doesn't get it!