5 Ideas to Help Family Members Who Ask for Money

by Thursday Bram · 106 comments

When a family member asks for money, most of us want to help. The reasons why can be complex: not only is helping family something that most people just do, but most of us don’t want to be the sort of person who doesn’t help family, either.

But the simple fact is that offering a handout isn’t always the best solution. There are plenty of people out there who have gotten burned by family members asking for money — there are situations that turns into a painful conflict, and there are situations that doesn’t actually lead to a family member working to get to a stable financial standing and plenty of other frustrating situations.

It’s worth considering alternatives before simply pulling out your wallet. Here are five opportunities to help family members:

1. Teach your relative to fish.

You don’t actually need to head out to the nearest river, but if your relative is in a position where a little more information could help more than money, then provide it. Talk through the situation and see if there’s something that you know — especially since you may have read more about personal finance — that could help. Some financial situations grow out of a lack of knowledge more than a lack of cash. Simply knowing that you can request changes to your credit card can be a big leap for some people. Provide some of that financial education if it’s needed.

2. Offer a connection instead of cash.

The situation may mean that your family member has a short-term need for cash, but a long-term need for something bigger (like a job). Ask around your network to see if you’ve got a connection that can help with that long-term fix. Introductions can be just as valuable a currency as stacks of dollar bills.

help family members3. Provide an opportunity to earn the money.

For many families, problems come out of short-term loans that don’t get paid back or gifts with strings attached. If, instead, your family member has a way to earn that money from you, offer that instead. Exactly what project you can offer depends — maybe you need some help with a home repair project or you have something a little more professional that your family member can work on — but the fact that the money is earned, rather than given can be surprisingly important.

4. Invest in your family member.

The cost of taking a class or starting a side business can be beyond what your relative is asking for, but will likely have a much bigger impact on their own abilities to handle money troubles in the future. By investing in that relative’s future, you can be doing a much bigger favor and ensuring that you don’t get asked for money again.

5. Say ‘no’.

You may face a request for money where the best thing you can do is to say ‘no’. If you find yourself faced with a relative who routinely needs money and hasn’t taken the initiative to fix underlying issues, telling that person you won’t help (at least financially) can be a wake up call. Just be sure that a wake up call is the best thing you can offer, first. It’s also helpful to be able to offer an alternative to that cash. For instance, if a family member consistently needs rent money, refusing to offer cash, but offering your spare room might be a reasonable alternative. Of course, you’ll want to carefully consider the impact of any alternatives that you offer.

Don’t be afraid to sit down and talk to a family member who is asking for help. While money always seems to be the easiest way to solve a problem, you may be able to find a long-term solution that guarantees that family member won’t need future handouts if you actually know what the problem is in the first place. Be clear what your goals are with offering some other opportunity: you don’t want to wind up the relative that everyone goes to for help of every kind, of course.

You shouldn’t be surprised if a lot of these opportunities still require some financial help from you. If you’re helping a family member find a new job, they will still want to keep the bill collectors away from their door in the short run.

David’s Note: Thursday’s advice is sound, but I won’t lie to you – trying to help them rather than just giving out money may be even harder. It will take a commitment on both the giver and the receiver, and you might even get into an argument with the person who needs help. However, giving them the ability to help themselves is the ultimate (and the only viable) gift you can ever give them, and as a relative, you can help!

Have you ever tried helping a relative get out of financial troubles? Any tips or stories you want to share?

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{ read the comments below or add one }

  • Mylifehasbeencrazy says:

    No one needs help. No one wants help . We are all kick ass people who make a lot of money and care for ourselves first. I’ve never had to ask for money so why is someone else asking me ? I’m great at life. It’s my selfishness that’s got me isolated from what important. OTHERPEOPLE.
    But I’ll continue on with the idea-illogical thoughts that mental illness is in all of us and when someone hits the end of the rope they need not be helped . It will only make them stronger . I’ve been there and trust me it’s not what family is supposed to do. But no one ever comes to me. Untill they realize that the world spins on family they will continue to loth in self awesomeness because it gives hope to someone who cannot see the truth. The same truth that will leave you smiling even after all this insanity. Love one another. It’s what’s important. Never abandon family . Never let someone else tell you family’s can’t make it threw anything. But if you can’t see it . You can’t see it .
    Never will be worried about myself first. It’s not responsible. It’s what makes people do foolish things they would never do . It’s what got you into this mess. The love of your family is the only thing that’s there to pull your dumb ass out of it . Smile it’s all you can do . Shake your head and laugh.
    Welcome back to reality.
    Build them up. Make them feel love
    Let them know how much they mean.
    When it’s gone , it’s gone .

    • Ann Dhn says:

      I left My country 32 years ago I never here from my brothers, cousins, uncles for 45 years but as soon I went back to my country to visit in less than two weeks that I visited them they all stared asking for money some every other day and every week from $150.00 Dll per week to $200.00, some ask 300.00 others $500.00 others 11000.00 Dll to buy land , others 20000.00 Dll to buy a new car others $50000.00 to buy from them a taxi permit, other $1500.00 Dll selling me expensive cows each, others $5000.00 to buy a car others $$4500.00 Dll to pay the damages of a car accident they caused. Others $20000.00 for hospital bills, others $2000.00 to buy use car, my brother $150000.00 to buy a land to build a fancy house, for the past 3 years all of them find ways to ask me for big amounts of money in the past 45 years they never look for me or talk to me even we live close, I’m overwhelmed with family members because everyone I talked with their conversation are only about money problems that’s all they talk about I told of them NO I don’t have money ams they responded to me that because we live in usa we are millionaire

  • Emma says:

    Great tips! I am still single with a stable job and I also help my family financially, but I also say “no”.

  • Marco says:

    With some cultures,such as Indian,Latino,Asian many families work together and support each other,to make sure every member of the family stays on a successful financial level or better. And when a child is supported through school and graduates and lands that great paying job,he gives back immediately to make the family better and stable and teach the same to their children,so no one ever suffers.

    I was a man in between jobs one year and needed a mere $500 to survive. All three of my brothers turned their backs on me out of selfishness because they were working and I was not at the time. Even though they knew I had potential and was applying to jobs and actually had a possible job lined up in a month to start. I stayed to myself, and also entered college and received my Bachelor’s and became a Scientist fast. I went from a GED to a Scientist literally overnight and one month later after Graduation started my own Research company earning near $500,000 in my first year. Now every family member and friend have their hand out to me,I could have stayed lost from them all in my lab avoiding them. But my grandparents taught me two evils don’t make a saint. One of my brothers recently accrued a $3,000 Child support arrears because he became laid off from his big trucking job he bragged to me about,especially when I was in need. He had a warrant on him,got arrested and was sitting in prison and nobody offered to help him. I went to the offices paid his bill and court fees and had him released. He was shocked I came and did it because we both live far in different states from each other. I only told him “Mind how you treat me,because you may need me some day” Never turn your back on family. Always,investigate the root cause or circumstances before you choose to say no. Sometimes it’s a problem that needs to be solved that’s creating the need for financial assistance. If you fix that the request to borrow or grant a person money will stop.

  • NB says:

    Wow, so many people on here refuse to help family without stipulations. Shouldn’t family help because it is the right thing to do. I am dealing with the same with my mother. Since I was a child she was always in financial need, when I was a teenager I realised she was terrible at managing money; I promised myself I would learn how to manage money. At that point I knew I was going to have to provide for her and take care of her. Since, I started working she was asking for money to help pay bills. Even now, she needs money, and I give it to her because it’s the right thing to do. I am having financial difficulty because of the economy but I still give to my mother and I go without. My family cut her off and said I should do the same, I think that is selfish.

    How soon do we forget that we all are dependent on someone. If you have a job or career and don’t own the company; you are being supported by your employer. If your employer decides they don’t want to support you any more (like some of you don’t want to support your family and friends) how will your bills get paid? It won’t get paid until you go to someone else for a handout ( simply put, find another job).
    As someone else mention, the creator isn’t going to look at me and ask me” why you didn’t help your family member in need? ” Those who can do, are suppose to help those that can’t do. Selfishness and greed is the reason why the economy collapsed.

    • Angela119 says:


      I have helped my family since I was a young girl. However, continuously being dependent for financial assistance has been a stressful and not getting paid at all for all the money I dished out has caused problems for me.
      The last of my mother’s and half-brother is now on disability and still request money from me or now wants to move in with me and that is going to cripple me emotionally and financially.
      I cannot allow further dependency from this relative because he never tried to help himself despite our discussion to put forth effort into a career instead of doing a semi-labor job since he was in his teen.
      I am older than he is and still trying to keep my job and as stressful as my life is I certainly don’t need more complications from a deadbeat half brother that want to easy route out of life!

      • Nope says:

        I’ve got the same kind of family. My mom, brother, and sister are horrible with money and I’m good with it. They also play the lottery, smoke and gamble. Which all cost money that could go to bills. I don’t stress anymore because if I were not in the picture, they’d still find someone to borrow from. So I told them politely not to think of me when they need money and I mean ever. If I didn’t,it would be a 3-5 times A DAY! experience. My brother has three kids. I’ll get the laptops for school, clothes, shoes and such ONCE A YEAR, because it puts me back so much. I have to save all year to do it, but they need the stuff I get them. If I don’t they mooch off my grandmother and sadly they mooch hard anyway. She is retired and pays ALL of their bills. Yup, her daughter, grandson and three grandkids. My sister is not her grandchild, but trust me my sister mooches off others. I’ve showed them all how to start and run successful small businesses, but they want me to fund it and run it. So I visit for limited times, keep my distance and have boundaries that I try not to cross. Sadly, I know I need to start saving up for my mom’s old age. She just doesn’t have much. It’s a hot mess, so I’d rather keep my distance than get eaten alive in a daily basis by their very polite passive aggressive blaming personalities. Hot Mess!

  • CutEmOff says:

    Cut ’em off!

    I have a useless 43 year old brother. Every decision he has made in his life has been horrible. Drug and alcohol abuse from age 10, stealing cash and possessions to hock for drugs, dropped out of high school at age 16 – followed by three children with three different women, never paid child support, can’t and/or won’t hold down a job and on and on.

    Nothing my parents tried worked. Counseling, rehab, helping to look for work, etc.

    It isn’t a loan, it is a burden! Gimme, gimme, gimme. I made the foolish mistake of letting him stay with me several years ago upon the promise that he would look for a job. Instead, he got blackout drunk for a week while I was out of town (he was 40 years old at the time, not a teenager-at least not chronologically) and trashed! my apartment.

    My advice – cut ’em off and don’t tell them your phone number or where you live – ever! If they find out and show up on your door step, call the cops.

    Never again!


    Cut ’em OFF!!

  • Rae says:

    I only wish I have had cut these types of individuals off earlier in life. Its hard to cut off parents, siblings or even children but you must do it. CUT THEM OFF. They don’t have your best interest at heart if you have no emergency savings because you are giving them all of you money! They will not be able to help you if you need help so what is the point of not saving for a rainy day? CUT THEM OFF. Tell them you love them but you have to break contact, or if you prefer to avoid confrontation, don’t tell them anything else other than you love them. They can’t bother you unless you allow it.

  • Rae says:

    You have to tell them you are going on a business trip for several weeks, you will not be returning personal email or phone calls and that you will get ahold of them when you return.
    Block their phone number and emails. Next, block Facebook emails or notification from other apps that they may attempt to catch on. You can keep your facebook account open in case their is a family emergency and other (non-troublesome) family members have an emergency, but just do not check messages from the people you are avoiding during this time. The reason you leave facebook on is because when you get multiple messages from family & friends that you normally don’t hear from, there is a good chance of a real emergency. So you don’t want to be completely cut off. Just check facebook every 1 or 2 days to see if anything pops up out of the ordinary. An alternative to checking facbook is to have a trusted close friend keep you in the loop ONLY for true emergencies and not BS or people needing money, in jail, etc.
    The key is to make sure you tell them you love them and that you are fine — but you will be away for a few weeks *or months (don’t need to give too many details or lies) and you will not be answering personal emails or phone calls and YOU WILL GET AHOLD OF THEM WHEN YOU GET BACK.
    Who cares if they read between the lines or not. The key is that they will have to grow up for once and deal with their own sh*t and they will know that they can’t bombard you with it any more because if they do you will “go off the grid” to avoid them.
    By blocking them and telling them you are going away for a while, you will avoid the temptation to give them money as an expression of love when they call claiming to be sick again or start lying about needing money for the kids and so on. When you give in, it only makes them worse.
    Lastly, if you have any friends that will run back and tell them that they just talked or saw you, then you have to cut & and block those friends as well. Be prepared because they will try every trick in the book so if you can stomach the fact they claim to be homeless or ill, you need to realize that is not your fault and you can’t fix them with money. If they ever stop trying to take advantage, you can unblock them but it will probably take a while so don’t think you can change them by avoiding them a few days. You have to remember that their situation is not you fault. Be strong and good luck.

  • Tina says:

    I have same issues with family members. I am not sure what to do about it just yet, but I am really not happy they keep asking for money all the time.

  • AK says:

    My husband and I just moved to a different state, and we are trying to buy a house. We both have decent jobs, about $37,000 in liquid assets, 800+ credit scores, and we are buying well within our price range (and planned to rent out rooms for super cheap to family members so ALL could be helped). However, my husband’s job is on contract (3 years), and for whatever reason, this is posing to be a HUGE issue in this new state.

    We are still working it out with the lender, so it is entirely possible it could still close in a timely manner for us. If not, we could easily just rent a house for awhile while he looked for a different job (I can’t think of another way around the contract issue with his current job). No biggie. We are not in any terrible condition.

    However, without asking me first, he asked his mom if she would consider buying the small house and we pay her back the same amount our mortgage was going to be for per month, which would result in us paying off the house in 13 years or less. Now, this is definitely something she could easily afford to do, but she understandably said no. My issue is not that I found out that she said no, but that I’m embarrassed he asked. I don’t know how the conversation went exactly (and I had to light fire up my husband’s butt to just get this much out of him), but I have this feeling this is going to reflect very poorly on us.

    I’m embarrassed to just see his mom or our in-laws. My husband is not close with his seven siblings (he was a mistake baby born many years after the rest of the family) and only really has a relationship with his mom. They always seem to forget what we say we do each time we see them, which isn’t often (we lived thousands of miles away for years), and talk to us in a way that suggests they think we don’t do anything with our lives. Even though I had two jobs lined up BEFORE we moved, I overheard her – after JUST telling her about my opportunities – telling one of my husband’s siblings on the phone, while she was in the car with us, that we had no jobs lined up at all, and we were just winging our move back. I was fuming that she had made us look so irresponsible. Does she even listen when we speak??

    I’m not going to lie, we’re not anywhere close to making the $100k+ his brothers make, even combined (very traditional family – all women are stay-at-home mom’s), but we are on a strict budget – barely every buy new things – except for certain, occasional experiences that bring us joy (but, again, are budgeted in).

    In any event, I’m extremely embarrassed – and we truly did not NEED the help. I found this site looking for ways to deal with backlash when help was asked for but not needed. My husband even started the conversation by saying he didn’t think I was going to like the fact he went to his mom for help on this… I guess maybe he feels bad it is his job complicating the process.

    In any event, thanks for reading my rant. If anyone has any suggestions for how to make this less awkward, I would be most grateful.

  • Cashless says:

    I have borrowed money from my in-laws when my husband and I working our way through university. We repaid them with the first pay cheques we received when the semester ended and we bought them a gift to thank them. I loaned money to my younger sister when she was in school, she repaid me as soon as she could.

    However, growing up I ‘loaned’ my parents money and they never repaid me. Whenever I saved up a little money my mother would scream at me that we were all going to homeless because the bank would repossess the house. Some of the money I ‘loaned’ them was given to my sister. When I asked for it back so that I could pay my tuition I was told that I should have worked harder and planned ahead. When I told her that I had planned ahead but that she took it, she physically beat me. Eventually I had to ask my friends to hold onto my bank books for me to hide how much money I had. I was working three jobs and paying my own way through University when my mother announced that I would have to start paying rent and that I wasn’t going to get any of the ‘loaned’ money back as that was for past rent. This rule only applied to me and none of my siblings. Even the sister who was working, not going to school didn’t pay rent. I moved out and never asked for the money to be paid back.

    My mother continued demanding money, I stopped returning her calls. She phoned me at work (no idea how she found me as I was working in a temp job for the federal gov’t). Screaming begging and crying. Everyone heard the phone call. My boss called me into her office and told me that what my mother was doing was wrong. That it was outrageous that I was living on my own, paying my way through University and expected to support my parents who were both working. I said ‘no’ to my parents’ demands for money. The bank never repossessed the house. No one went bankrupt.

    I’m now 50 years old. My sister and her son live rent free with my parents who are also giving them money. My parents send emails demanding money from my siblings and saying it isn’t fair that they are the only ones supporting my sister and her son. Once my father phoned up to insist that I take him, my mother, my sister and my nephew with my family out to a fancy restaurant. When I explained I couldn’t afford it because I was only working part time in order to spend more time with my young children (one with special needs) he yelled at me that I had no right and that was no excuse for not living up to my responsibilities. When I pointed out the many times I had the entire family over for dinner he said that was nice but it wasn’t enough and it was about time I grew up. My parents also demand excessively expensive gifts (such as a cruise and video game systems), far beyond anything my kids ask for or expect.

    My message is that family, even parents, will ask for money as a way to manipulate and use family members. I now recognize that my situation is abusive and is not the norm Judging from the comments above, I am not alone. I’m wondering why there isn’t more written about this type of situation as it doesn’t seem all that uncommon.

  • Ability says:

    I just completed my bachelors in September 2014. Then I got a low paying job at some private secondary school. I was still staying with my parents. But expectations were high both from my parents (who are peasant- farmers) and my brothers and sisters (by the way I am the youngest).
    Every month, there seemed to be aa lot more problems from each family member to be solved jux because I am the only one working.

    I prioritised mum and dad, because they are aging, but then my brothers and sisters started yelling at me for neglecting them.

    Unfortunately, mum messed up when she took a loan she failed to repay later forcing my meaagre earning to vanish some time.

    I got furious because this was the second time (she did the same when I was in college). So I moved to my own house and left them in the village.

    Now, they are demanding me to give each family member capital or hand-out of some sort. Am like where do I get the money? Can’t they learn to help themselves?

  • Bryan says:

    My mom doesn’t ask for money from me, but I give her money when I can, because shortly after moving out, my biological dad passed away and my stepdad and mom helped to get me across the country and bury him. I have no problems when it comes to money with them, especially since we never ask each other and merely give.

    The rest of the family? Forget it. I’ve never gotten a dime from them, and they didn’t even like me for various reasons. One of them even assumed I was homosexual because I didn’t date for years. Suddenly with me finishing school and getting real paychecks, all of them “have me on their mind.”

    I have not given them a single dime, because I’ve seen how they treat my parents. If you ever heard them talk about me, you’d think I was a terrorist. It’s easier said than done to say no to someone in your face begging like a spoiled pet, but the thing is, the ones begging will come back to you and beg for more without making any real attempts to not rely on you. I have no problem helping anyone who is trying, even if they’re not a friend or family member. I will never help a leech.

  • David says:

    Always say no. It always ends badly with family and money.

  • theresag says:

    As long as you pay for everything this situation is extremely unlikely to change.You need to get them out of the appartment that you pay for.You need to get on with your life and future.You owe them nothing at all.Yes they are your family but they are able to fend for themselves.They have a bad attitude and no wonder your mother died.

  • am says:

    This is great advice…

    I had a free ride to college due to scholarships. My first year, my parents wanted me to take out a student loan for them because of financial difficulty. I love my parents and wanted to help them, so I did it. I ended up graduating college with $35,000 in student loan debt, all of which went to my parents because they couldn’t pay for their bills, mortgage, etc. I didn’t think to much of it because hey, they’re my parents… I owe them for giving me life right?

    That same year of my college graduation my mom unexpectedly died. She was the main source of income for my family (my dad never worked, although he is physically able). I had plans to get a post-Bach degree, but because my mother was gone, I felt like I had to step up and take on everything financially because I knew my dad wouldn’t. They had no savings, using up whatever money they had to travel, buy cars, and unnecessary things. At 22 I got a full time job, supported my 18 yr old brother and 49 yr old dad. I paid for rent, utilities, food, etc etc. I put my career goals on hold in hopes that my brother and dad would be able to get on their feet after the passing of my mom.

    I moved out of the apartment we shared 2 years ago because arguments arised all the time about money, them wanting a weekly “allowance” on top of me paying for everything else. Since those 2 years I’ve been gone, I have still paid their rent (the apartment is under my name because none of them bring income, although I don’t live there) and have given them money when they ask for it. They only call me during the 1st of the month and 15th of the month because they know that’s when I get paid. Ive only recently learned to tell them “NO” and they guilt me about my moms death and how she would want me to help them into giving them money. When I stand firm, they come to my WORKPLACE and station their car outside waiting for me, sometimes even going into the building to have someone get me so they can talk to me. It’s embarassing to say the least.

    My dad goes to my Fiance’s parents house and posts open letters about how I owe them rent money, he posts letters on my car window while I’m at work, he tells my grandparents that I’m not helping him or my brother (I’ve found out that my grandparents are giving him a monthly allowance as well), and he bad mouths me to my family, giving me no credit of the financial help I’ve given for the last 5 years. They all think he’s working, when his “work” really consists of him guilting and badgering me for money. He’s putting so much effort into getting money from me instead of looking for a job. He uses my 23 yr old brother to get to me, to the point where even my brother is asking me for money also. They both don’t have jobs and my dad has told me flat out that he doesn’t want to work and that the purpose of kids are to help their parents…

    Again, he and my brother are physically able to work but CHOOSE not to work. He and my brother can easily move in with my grandparents, but they’ve turned that down because my dad wants independence to do whatever it is he does on a daily basis. I’ve given them resources, done their resumes, etc. What else can I do besides give them money?? I barely make enough to pay for my own things and have something left over to save after each paycheck.

    I’m still standing firm on saying NO to them, regardless of the constant calls, texts, and letters. It’s been 5 years and were still back at square 1, with them having no jobs. Why help when they don’t even want to help themselves?

  • brin says:

    Wow Jaded ppl?
    If your family member is spending money like crazy, playing rich, taking loans they can’t afford then no you shouldn’t help.
    However far tooooo many people try to ignore their heart. If you have a family member and they are doing all they can and you are doing nothing but sharing your opinion or saying awww I’ll pray for you. Then its you who will suffer for it. Its a proven fact that those with little give far more then those with more. Proven Fact. You know what else ONLY in material driven societies do you find families who turn their back on family. Your more concerned about getting a new Ipad then helping your brother fine, but the universe will return that. For Faith Based people… If you do not care for your family NO EXCUSES… Your worse then an unbeliever. Because you know better and ignore it. My husband and I have struggled allot but no matter what we face if family needs something we are the first ones there. You need $10 gas then I’m giving you $20 because “I was naked you clothed me I was hungry you feed me.” I’m not going to face my creator and say well they should have this… Or its their fault. Or you told me to care for my family and I need a. phone. Not loving your family and putting your selfishness before your humanity is going to cost you your own soul

    • Hanil says:

      You really don’t know what you are talking about. Your judgement is based on faith but not reality. You give more because you can but note that some people can’t. We also need to save in case we come across that rainy day where things turn south. I know a friend who helped his parents out since he started working. He helped them build rooms so they can rent people in. He helped them buy a car and pay registration money for his sister as she was going to college. Then he took a loan for them. They are both working and they still ask him for money saying they want to paint the house and they need gas and so on. The guy couldn’t save for months, he doesn’t have a car and he can’t even marry the love of his life. They can’t even have children because his lady told him about how she suffered growing up because her relatives treated her bad since her mother didn’t have a lot of money as she was starting to work and so she doesn’t want her children to go through the same s@#!.

      You need to understand that when people help those who don’t want to help themselves then they are putting their on lives on hold. Then on their death bed someday they will feel like them being here on earth was just useless as they did not get to do the things they always wanted to do. Now this is reality. I am a believer to and one day we had a bible study and some guy pointing on main issue about most believers, ‘We don’t want to face reality’. We live on earth, this is not heaven my dear. Hope you and your husband will face that reality one day. Not because of whatever, but just to understand.

  • Jackie says:

    Always when I try to save money something comes up with my family and they ask me to let them borrow money, and I end up letting my money go, then I never get paid and I don’t like to charge them because I don’t want them to see me like I am so selfish… Honestly, I am tired of that in every of my paychecks I always try to save 20% but till now I have nothing saved… and the money I gave away will never come to my pocket again, I am so sad that I have to be hard on them now and they see me as a mean family member I wish they would start working and see if they let their money go that fast if I ask for it… I love them so much but I have a family support and I can’t let my family keep on dragging me down. It’s time to say NO! I really wouldn’t mind at all helping them if I see that they are working and they need the money for something they are working hard for but just sitting there putting excuses that they can’t find a job then asking you for money its a lil frustrated!

  • j.c says:

    Every day I get calls from my mother and brother who live in a rundown house.
    Always for money. The water is shut off,the electric, etc.They get free food and the brother doesn’t work. He is 56.Never left home.Now he found a job but wants me to give money for gas and work clothes. 125.00. Where does it stop? I pay off the bills when they’re shut off but I own my own home.My mother is elderly and lives on ss.and a small pention.I have another brother who doesn’t help either.How do I stop this nightmare.

  • moroni says:

    Looks like all these stories are similar. My brother in law and sister, in the 27 years they’ve been together, have been stable perhaps 5 or fewer of those years. Now they have no income, and for whatever reason to this point have refused to apply for government help. There’s always a job around the corner, etc. My sister even went back to work after decades out of the work force to raise a large family. But as soon as he got a job she quit. His job didn’t last long. And he’s only a few years from retirement age. They’re willing to accept help from family, friends, and charitable organizations – so what’s the difference accepting it from the State or Federal government? I really think that my brother in law would rather they go homeless than choose a home within their means. I’m bereft…I just sent cash and I don’t want to send anymore…

  • sandford says:

    When it’s family it can become an emotional issue. If you look at a person’s history objectively (get an outside opinion if needed) and they have difficult circumstances but are trying hard and willing to work in whatever capacity (take jobs they don’t like, babysit, or paint your house, sell some items etc. then help them out.
    But if they continually make poor decions spending more than they take in–and continually ask for money but aren’t willing to work & don’t find ways to pay you back then they have no incentive to learn a better way of life and can drain you dry. And you both end up unhappy. So explain that you care about them but they need to find other solutions -and that you can ONLY bail them out one more time–and ask them to choose–is this that time. And then stick to it.

  • Feeling Used II and Guilty says:

    I have a 60 year old male cousin, who has worked sporadically over the years and blown through inheritances from his mother and aunt. All older relatives are now deceased, so he is looking to me for financial support because I am a professional with a good income. I helped him out the first time when he lost his part-time job and needed money for rent at the long-stay motel. That money dried up at Christmas time so I gave him additional money(double the time before) to last over the holidays and the winter. He told me this would get him to April and he was sure he would have a job by then. I also told him that was the extent of my helping him out financially because I wasn’t doing him any favors and with this time frame, he would know there was no more money coming from me and he would have to find some sort of job. He wasn’t pleased when I told him that. Well, it is mid-march and, right on schedule, he left a message on my phone telling me he needed to get together over the weekend so he could tell me how much help he needed. I am stressed out over this. I can afford to help him out, but he never helps himself. I was horrified how he continually took money from his mother and an aunt, with sob stories about how there were no jobs or he needed new tires or a new computer. He has never helped out any family members with his time and caring. He just expects handouts. I have tried to suggest jobs to him, but he has an answer why such jobs aren’t right for him – too much standing on his feet, hates the graveyard shift, not the right credentials, etc. I don’t know what to do. I have to say no to him or I will be the family support to replace his mother. But I feel tremendous guilt that he will have to live in his car and I would feel responsible if something happened to him. Anybody with any thoughts?

  • Alphy says:

    I just cant take this anymore. My fiance has lost both his parents and since his mother’s passing he’s been taking care of his 2 sisters, he even left varsity to work. Now their father passed as well, the sisters live in the mother’s house and we live in the house his father left him. His sisters are 22 and 19 yrs old, he sends money every month for rent, cable, gas etc. and now they want more. I feel like they are taking advantage that he always says “yes” cause they are not even looking for jobs. The 22 yr old has a child and I think they are big enough to now look for jobs. My fiance doesn’t even earn much as he left his studies, I earn more than him.

    Me and my fiance are expecting our 1st child and I think it’s time we focus on saving for our child….. am I a bad person for thinking that?

  • Daddyola says:

    My wife and I used to have little, and we lived within our means. Due to fortunate career developments we are now well off, but live at the same standard of living and saving.
    Many friends and family now expect us to fund their lifestyles as they have never lived responsibly and have squandered their own considerable earnings over the years. They say we can afford it, and resent that we have money while they only have useless crap they bought.
    I can’t pay to maintain relationships. Being asked for money is a no win proposition. When you are asked for money, remember that you didn’t create the situation. You are either a sucker or an a-hole because they refuse to be adults with their money.
    We choose to be a-holes. If they only hang out for the money, they can get gone. Now I know why many rich folks become guarded and assertive to the point they resemble mean people.

  • Kathy says:

    My husband and I are the cash registers for 4 brothers and 2 sisters. My husband says it’s far better to be in our situation than if we were the ones asking for money. I am so resentful that it’s beginning to be an obsession. I wish I knew how to get rid of the resentment.

    • Sam says:

      I know what you mean. This Christmas my own children are going without because my brother-in-law got fired from his job (he’s always had employment troubles). He kept the severance cash his boss gave him (a couple thousand $) for his own children’s birthday/Christmas gifts and then asked my husband for money for his rent and bills. With my grudging blessing, my husband gave him money intended for my birthday gift and gifts for our children’s Christmas gifts. We have bailed them out several times. I am so tired of his family’s money problems. Long ago, his parents took out credit cards in my husband’s name/SSN and racked up debt, made late payments and blemished our credit. When he discovered the dishonesty, he asked his mother to pay it off. A couple of years later, it still wasn’t dealt with so WE paid it off. My husband is really good with money – his family is horrible with it. I want to get over my anger and resentment which has been building for years, but I am having a hard time doing so.

  • Feeling Used says:

    Two and a half years ago my mom’s boyfriend committed suicide with an AK-47 in a condo that I owned. Ever since then I have been helping her out financially. Let her move in with me, helped her get into an apartment (paid the deposit, rent, signed the lease). Once that lease was up I told her there was no way I was going to sign another one so she got the apt to let her just sign but she continues to ask for my help with rent and I’ve been helping. She is really close to getting social security disability but has not received any money yet. To complicate things further, she has my brother living with her who is over 40, is an alcoholic with cirrhosis of the liver and they both refuse to hold down a job. At the beginning of the month, she said she needed $300 to help cover rent and to pay for some living expenses so I said I would help and asked her to meet me at a restaurant that I like and she said no because she doesn’t like their food so I said fine come by my work and I’ll give you the money. So she comes by my work and then asks me if she can get a little more. I told her no, all I have for you is $300. Less than a week later she sends me a text “I hope you’re doing well, can I borrow some money :-)” I am at my breaking point with her and told her no. She texted me later that night and asked if I’m still mad at her. No, I’m not so much mad as I am tired of being taken advantage of by her and my brother who refuse to work and want me to bail them out of everything! It really is true that if you let people treat you like a cash register then you can’t blame them for treating you like one and for me that stops now! I don’t want to see them homeless and I will pray for them, but I cannot give anymore. I’m through with being an enabler.

    • Dhel says:

      As the song goes,
      Let it go, let it go
      Can’t help them anymore
      Let it go, let it go
      Turn away and slam the door!

      I don’t care
      What they’re going to say
      Let them rage on
      The bums never bothered me anyway!

  • Mrs Dewhurst says:

    My brother asked me if I would help his son, Keith, who I was told was rich with money but it was tide up. I was supposed to get it back the following week – that was 3 years ago. Then we were told a year after he could not pay back. Money to me and his business. Then, he told me he would pay me this Christmas. Not a penny back out of £3000. And he was told by my brother not to give me back the money. Is there any thing I can do to get my money back?

    • Dhel says:

      Small claims court. I am sorry for you to resort to this, but this is no longer about the money but the principle. It is better to for your nephew to learn it from his uncle, if the father is unwilling to teach the son the necessary lesson of keeping his end of the bargain. Let this be a good lesson for him to realize as he mature.

  • Tracey says:

    To My Stubborn Helpless Mom,
    You have done enough.Sometimes there are people who are ‘Bludgers’.They may have no conscience at all.
    You have to look after yourself and your immediate family who may be dependent on you.
    Some people will just take and take and make effort themselves.
    Marcus :You could be one of these people I feel?

  • My Stubborn mom/ helpless mom says:

    My mom doesnt work always made us as her reason that she cant go out to find work whatnot. Supported her financially even let her stay home with us. I dont get respect from her. Now that im here abroad tried supporting her financially but always seem insufficient… Even gave in to her idea of having a small business since she’s only living now alone and from what she was always complaining before thought maybe she can handle it, and for me to stop sending her money so she’ll learn how to fish… turns out her plan didnt pushed through… Spent all of it, Now i am angry i feel that my kindness is abused and all the freaking relatives is trying to make u feel guilty. WTH! No more… Cant deal with the crap and her craziness!

  • Tracey says:

    To TR
    Look after yourself. Sounds like your brother who has two jobs should be doing the same. You are not your brother’s keeper, nor are your parents.
    “Love many, trust a few, and always paddle your own canoe.”

    All the best!

  • meysismith says:

    I’m the youngest in the family, I’m only 19 yrs old but with a big responsibility with my family. We own a small restaurant in our hometown for almost 15 years and the business is not in a good standing. So what I have to do is to find a job and leave my school. It was hard to deal with my family who keeps on asking for money every week. If they have nothing to eat or pay for their debts they will ask me immediately and I can’t say NO for that. I truly love my family, but is it really necessary to give always what they want?

  • TR says:

    My brother has been through two bankrupties over the past couple of decades. He has had two cars Repo’d. Now he’s forced my Mom and Dad into Chapter 7 bankruptcy. His current car owned under my Dads name. The bankruptcy lawyer told him to get the car transferred under his name. Otherwise it will be repo’d very soon. What does my brother do? Goes out to a Ford dealership and looks at new cars. The salesperson told my brother that Ford Credit will give him the ‘credit’ he needs to get the car. However, he needs a co-signer or $2000.00 in cash. I have the money, but don’t trust he will pay me back. (My other brother borrowed $5000.00 and only paid back $2000.00. ) I”m set to say NO if asked. I think my brother needs to look at getting a loan for the car he has. It may not be brand new, however it gets him to his two jobs. Is that a bad way to think about the situation?

  • Hoot says:

    Marcus, $7500 but NO FRIENDS!! Oh my. How is that working relative to your quality of life? Just askin pardner not judging but I can imagine there are people who would give more to avoid going through like ALONE!

  • Eric says:

    I put myself through school and am in debt up to my ears. I have a brother whose latest trick is calling our mother and saying he is hungry and hasn’t eaten in three days. Before, it was “i need money so I can pick up my prescriptions”. For the longest time, I was considerate and sending western unions to him. This continues to this day. I finally had enough, my brother is 35 years old and healthy. His prescription needs are for a drug he can only get when cycling through the physicians in the yellow pages. In other words, he goes from doctor to doctor to get prescribed this medication he is addicted to. The fools on this thread saying ‘help family at all costs’ do not realize it can be to their detriment. As of now, i’m telling my mother that if he needs food again he should get food stamps and if he needs money, he should a job. She is upset with me (because, how could I make my poor brother starve to death) but, you know what? I’m doing him a favor. He needs to learn to take care of himself and i’m sick and tired of the silly excuses.

  • Kate says:

    No cash, just pay the bills and offer support for education. It sucks, but better than him spending the cash on drugs and alcohol. I also put in a caveat that he has to get therapy before bills will be paid. I am not planning on doing this long-term, once today and that’s it.

    • Unwilling Provider says:

      We offered a brother-in-law therapy for his alcoholism which he refused. Two alcohol-related felonies later, he still asks for money. He got himself into this, it’s not our problem to get him out. Help was offered when it would have done the most good.

  • crazy lady says:

    Here’s my story
    I have a mother and brother that I’m supposed to split child support with.
    I moved out of the house when my mother planned on moving in with yet another guy. I moved in with family friends. My mother ended up splitting with the guy. She agreed to split the child support down the middle. I did not recieve any money for 8 months. Every time I called to ask for money to get my medicine there ‘was no money’.They owed me more than $3000 I was supposed to recieve. I had a job while neither of them did. I have come to find out that they were spending my half on pot/spice. I know have control over the money. I take $500 while my brother gets $200. He agreed. Plus it wouldn’t come near what they owe me. Plus i’ve used my part to buy them groceries and try and fix their car so my mother could get a job. my brother complained and my mother gave him the money she was gonna use to fix the car. Now they don’t have a working car. And now asking me for $125 to fix it. I’ve already given them 310 this month. What do I do? theysay they have no food and are miserable but are bumming off my uncle at his house. And I feel entitled to the money. So idk how to deny them.

    • Din says:

      Where is Marcus?

      • Din says:

        If I gave to all my family members who need money and don’t work and don’t look for work, I’d be flat broke myself. I work very had for my money and if I don’t look out for me, I’ll be in line for a hand out next.

        You have to say no, if they hit bottom; maybe they’ll get jobs. It’s like giving the alcohoic sleeping on the street a bottle to hold him over.

      • Richard says:

        Marcus, Your are classic here! Where are you to handle this professionally?

  • Tanya says:

    Dear Ihs
    Thanks for the comment and support.

  • Tanya says:

    I spent a year helping a family member that I thought was in need.When I stopped after seeing the way they were spending their money:Expensive boots,food,entertainment,electronic gadgets etc…I stopped.Since then they have been on a mission to assasinate my character at every opportunity.They have not mentioned the help they were given by me and my husband.Like ‘Dont let the truth get in the way of a good story’.I should not have been surprised as this has happened to other family members that helped this person in the past.Soon they will run out of people to tell tales to.One that will believe them at least.I have more touble than ever trusting people.I am pleased to say that next time I feel like being kind I will look at supporting some child in a third world country.I am sure they wont bad mouth me.

    • lhs says:

      I feel for you. Tough situation! I went from poor to rich. I lived in someone’s basement until I was 45. It was the best I could do and I was proud that I paid ALL of my bills. I did not think of asking other people for money. Now that the situation has changed, I have gently and with humor explained who I am to the young ‘uns, etc. You can like me – or not – but it won’t be about money. Nothing f****s up a relationship more than money. You can say, “Yes,” “Yes,” “Yes,” fork over your money and the instant you say, “No!” the formerly grateful recipient now hates you. So, they all know it’s a “No,” and don’t ask. I can then especially enjoy doing for them and giving to them when I feel it’s right to do so. I strongly feel that if you teach people you are a cash register you can’t blame them for treating you like one. Give your time, unconditional love, etc and bask in the warm glow of family appreciation!

    • Lewis says:

      Tanya, I too have been in that same position, except it was my son doing the badmouthing. I too now have difficulty trusting even my own family members, including extended family (friends). They have basically used me up. I used to help out financially freely, but it’s come to the point that they have to work for it now and none of them like that idea. Never hear from them unless it’s to do them a favor. My son has now (actually for about 5 yrs now) refused to look for work- he has two kids he should help support, but when they go to visit him, he sits there playing his video games that he bought with someone elses money. It’s sad. His “roomies” are really getting tired of it.

    • Dhel says:

      Don’t worry karma never stops, especially for individuals like them. So just live your life in peace, at the end the truth will come out anyways.

    • Dhel says:

      After all the shit they put you through forgive them for your own sake(let go of the hatred every time you see them, because you don’t want to relinquish the control of your happiness to people like them. So hold your head high every time you encounter them and be happy you have moved on) but never ever forget the lesson.

  • Ann says:

    I have helped family and probably will always try to do so if possible; however I will not let myself or my immediate family be taken advantage of. I recently tried to help a young nephew and his family however they did not want to help theselves rather just wanted a place to stay and someone to cook and clean up after them. I tried to talk to them and find out what direction they wanted to go in ie..hud home etc… but I just received an I don’t know answer. Well if they didn’t know then I couldn’t help. I asked them several times to go to the housing authority office but they never did. I worked everyday and took care of my own family along with him, his wife and 9 month old child. They are now angry with me for asking them to leave and go back to his mother’s house. They did not ask to come to my house to begin with, they just came to visit and it turned into a mess when they stayed longer than expected. I really wish I knew what I could have done but at this point believe praying is the best answer.

  • MrBlatez says:

    There comes a point when you need to say no. Some family just keep asking and asking and then they get themselves into financial trouble and they know that someone will help them out. If you continually say yes and this leads to resentment then this will not be healthy. I am the youngest in my family and need to help out my older brother, he has had just as many opportunities as me but has blown all of them, now he has a wife and had two children knowing that he would have not money and that it would be difficult for him….. but he knows that family will help him because of the children. Is this right, to continually pull the victim card? If somebody complains about money all the time but does nothing to change there situation, does this mean that the responsibility falls back on the family? I have a difficult time saying no to family but I agree with the first comment, at some point you need to put yourself first. I have now realised that unless i put myself first now then I will be continually handing out money and never get ahead myself, if I do not get ahead then I cannot help my family in the future. With family its a hard one and if you say no then yes they will probably think you are a bastard but I think sometimes it is the only way to change the pattern. Say no today 🙂

    • Jam Jay says:

      Yes!!! My parents are able bodied. I believe you are to take care of them at some point. That’s part of the point of preparing yourself during those middle years…somehow my mom wants to skip the middle part (of me preparing financially) and get right to the “take care of me”. I don’t understand how I can do both at the same tine. There’s so much more to the story and of course every story has three sides… I’m just saying.. nobody is exempt from personal responsibility.. including parents.

  • Jay says:

    I’ve been taken advantage of by friends and family for money, time, and resources. With family I try to help out but I do have limits. It’s funny though because it’s always the same people who are asking for money or time.

    • Jam Jay says:

      Exactly!! The same people!! And wats bad is I’m noticing my mom encourages my brothers to ask me for money when they need help…she doesn’t have any to loan herself..and she’s the most giving person…to a fault!! I don’t even live in that house and I contribute more than two of my brothers who do..COMBINED! And yet it’s never enough… I get called selfish?! Unbelievable. I wrestle with the guilt of saying no…but I am starting to say no. It’s not right.

      • Dhel says:

        Ahahaha I know what you mean. I have experienced it, and it seemed to be the same freaking situations that got them in the same mess.

  • Sherrie says:

    It’s all well and good that some of you have family members who appreciate your generosity and actually pay you back; however, that is not the case with many of us. I used to just hand out money, but I smartened up after I never got it back. It even got so bad to the point where certain family members knew my payday was bi-weekly on Thursday and would call me specifically on that day to ask for a handout. I know this sounds cliche, but I worked my butt off at 2 jobs to put myself through college and grad school to earn a decent living while my siblings and some others preferred to waste all their time and limited income on partying and girls/guys. What actually happens is that they get so used to getting a handout that they stop being proactive because they know they can just get it from you. When I finally started saying no, I actually got into some pretty heated arguments over MY money. Imagine that! At this point I have absolutely no sympathy and definitely no more money to give…

    • shable says:

      Choices. Your siblings have made their choices and so have you. They should learn to live with it and not blame you for their wrong choices. You have the right to say no without guilt, if you do not feel comfortable doling out hard earned cash to them.

    • Mike says:

      When you have money and family has none you open your wallet and hook a team member up because it’s not about paying back it’s not about teaching it’s not about feeling sorry. It’s about letting a person warm up when they are cold! It’s not your mental state they are asking for . But we all seem to forget what’s really important. It’s not your opinion on money and how your never going to live because you handed over a 100$ bill when you had more the enuff to get by and the other person had very little . It’s about the feeling of family and the strength to overcome your in ungreatfull attitudes

  • Angie Moore says:

    I find that family and some friends ask me for money. But it is the same people who come to me for money. In the beginning I helped out as much as I could. But now I am realizing that they do not manage their money properly and that is why they are in the same situation again and again. If I can learn from my finacial mistakes they can also, if I live on a budget to pay my bills they can also. When I help them I am enabling them to continue their bad habits. If I can learn to live on a budget and pay my bills on time they can also. So when family member or friends ask for money, I tell them no, because I can not afford to pay my bills and theirs as well. It is not being selfish it is being smart and teaching them how to manage their money so that they do not have to get money from others.

    • Jam Jay says:

      Here, here Angie!! Amen to that. Its called maturity. Growing up. Being responsible. Prioritizing. That’s what’s SUPPOSED to happen as one ages. Where is the science? Why don’t some ever come to that realization?

    • Jay says:

      Well if your hard up and I’m around, I got you . Cuz that’s just the way it is and the ways gotta be, cuz In the end all we got is family mother pleeepers. So quit judging people going threw hard times because you yourself may need to call on someone to help you. Treat your family well they are the only ones who will be there when you need them most ( hopefully ) .

  • Jeff Vervalin says:

    There is the “2011 Definition of Poverty.” What it means to be “poor” has changed so much since my 83-year-old father was a kid in the Depression. Today “poor” means owning a color TV, microwave and a cellphone, which is unimaginable science fiction luxuries when my father was a kid without a father, selling bread door-to-door for a few cents in the 1930s. Any comments?

    • Amanda says:

      You can’t compare generations so easily. Having a cell phone is obnoxiously necessary in most places because of communication changes and the sprawl of houses and businesses, therefore a monthly mobile device plan, then you have vehicles with insurance etc etc. The cost of living is completely different than in those times and the opportunities for things are different, and of course depending on what economy and culture in the world. In American cities at least, isn’t it illegal to sell food on the side of the street without having to buy a business license, have food handlers permits, pay taxes, rent a spot…you wouldn’t exactly see bread peddlers in a wagon, even in the most condensed easily accessible streets. Anyways…owning big electronic devices like a tv or computer with long life spans are single purchases that don’t compare to money needed for continued expenses like food, bills, and medical etc. You really have to look at the entire picture.

  • Theresa says:

    You have to draw the line somewhere.Giving give you a nice feeling to a point.Some people just take and take and make no effort themselves.You have to look after yourself and your future too.

    • Dhel says:

      I completely Agree.

    • Steve says:

      It’s this attitude of self that’s got everyone so far away and worried about the 1. The one should always come after the family. If everyone put the family first there wouldn’t be so much selfishness. Look at where it gets people when they have only them self’s to think or worrie about. Without our family we are lost , confused , ungrateful and unhappy individuals who want more satisfaction for “ the one “. When the one really doesn’t have any strength when stripped down naked and left 100km up a dirt road.

  • Mrs A Jones says:

    I believe in helping my family all I can, especially in these troubles times when the poor kids can’t get a proper full time job and are desperate to get on the housing ladder. I’m in my 70’s as is my husband. It’s true nobody helped us when we were young because our parents had no money b ut we were lucky to get jobs, saved hard and eventually able to buy our own house. We had jobs with pensions as well. We are comfortable but not rich. If I can help my children and grand-children all well and good. I can’t get out and about these days and my greatest happiness is being able to help them. But I do advise them not to waste what I give them because if they do there won’t be any more handouts for them. If they can’t pay me back or are struggling to I write the debt off. After all it’s only money and I’m not having them contemplating suicide (which one of them) did because they can’t pay it back. If I’ve got it they can have it. Better them have it then the Government when I kick the bucket.

  • KM says:

    I find the American way of family life really strange. I come from a place where family takes care of each other, and this family doesn’t just include spouse and kids. Sure, it’s better to teach someone who doesn’t work and just leaches off others how to earn their own, but for those others who are just in a rough time at the moment, there is nothing wrong with some monetary support. The way I was raised is to be generous to the point of giving everything you have – it’s why our guests slept on the bed while we made ourselves comfortable on the floor instead of offering them the couch. This country taught me to be a bit more “selfish” (in the way of putting yourself, your spouse, and kids first), but just how “selfish” some people are is still mind boggling to me. For the family members that I know are good people in general, I have no problem helping out financially with no strings attached…and I know they are the kind of people who will not make that a habit.

    • Marcus says:

      You’re the only one talking sense here KM. Good for you.

      • Sam says:

        I promise that it does not help anyone to throw money at someone who consistently has financial problems. It just makes them feel greedy and entitled. It does, however, help them when you teach them how to budget, how to learn employable skills, how to save for a rainy day and how to live within their means. It’s called self-reliance and it brings people peace, confidence, and contentment more than any amount of money does. We have given generously to a family member for years and his money behaviors have never improved. If anything, it has worsened. I’m sure however, that our family member who consistently wants money, feels exactly as you do.

    • JS says:

      I tried to take care of family (my 35 year old son). He was having a difficult time with life and just wasn’t doing anything that was going to help himself. After my husband died I told him I’d help with his rent for 10 months – making sure he understood that it ended after 10 months. The entire time he didn’t go out to get a job and when the 10 months was up he went out and got a job – then couldn’t pay the first month and asked for 1 more month – said he’d pay me back. Not only did I not get paid back (and I don’t care about the money – I want to see him handle his responsibilities), he is now asking for more money and again saying he will pay me back. I offer advice and he gets angry with me and says he know’s what’s best for him – he doesn’t show it! I guess I’m being selfish by not asking him to live in my house – but I’m just not willing to put myself through that at this time in my life. I’m done with the hand outs – I don’t hear from him unless he wants something….it’s time for him to stand on his own 2 feet. Some people really do appreciate the help and show it – not in this case. Giving anyone money is not always the best answer. I finally see that he’s the selfish one – and it sounds like he’s someone Marcus would relate to!

      • angela mcdonald says:

        nah you are not selfish. You gave him money and and let him chill at your house for 10 months… Their is a fine line between helping people in need and being taken advantage of…… trust me I know aaaallllll about that.

        • Chris jones says:

          I had a friend do the same thing never paid a single bill, are all my food and yet never saved a dime to get a car which they needed. She was literally the first to complain that everyone of her problems were because of someone else and it was never her fault. Now that she’s been kicked out, she still finds the nerve to ask for money even though she works a full time job.

    • RebeccaR says:

      I don’t think anyone has a problem with lending a hand to people who are “just in a rough time at the moment.” There’s a big difference between that and family members/friends who are perpetually looking for a handout because they make bad choices and/or are too lazy to help themselves.

      My husband and I have sent checks for four figures to people we’ve read about in the newspaper who are in an unexpectedly difficult situation despite doing their best to help themselves. And we’ve given money to a close friend a few times because she was a single mom and she needed it more than we did. (She never asked for it – she was doing her best to make ends meet, and we just saw a need and helped out.) We were happy to help in all of those cases.

      However, I also have a relative who moved to our town a few months ago. He is in his early 20s, has a 5-year-old daughter (who is living with her mom), is living with a girlfriend and her 2-year-old son, and they are expecting a child together in a few months. They have no furniture in their apartment, they moved to town without jobs, and they’ve already hit us up for money a few times. The first time, we gave them the money as a gift, and we gave them 10 times what they asked for. A month later, they asked again. This time, we gave it to them as a loan, and only the amount they asked for. They have not paid back the loan (no surprise there), and they are still in need of money.

      Again, I don’t have a problem helping someone who unexpectedly finds themselves in a tough place. And I don’t have a problem with people having as many children as they’d like – as long as they can support them. But when you can’t even support the children you already have, perhaps it’s not the wisest idea to move to a new town without a job already in place, and perhaps it’s not the time to expand that family you can’t afford in the first place. Continuing to enable people like that by financially supporting them only encourages them to keep making those same poor decisions, because they’re not having to face the consequences of their actions.

    • Jam Jay says:

      But that’s the difference! You’re family is full of likeminded individuals who share your beliefs and values. This is not the American style of relating…and it doesn’t work if one of several in the unit is your way, and the rest are “Americanish”. Then there’s no reciprocity…just you giving and others taking. You’re depleted and everyone stays broke. It’s ridiculous. There’s helping and giving and enabling and taking. And parents can be just as bad.. it’s not always kids and siblings.

    • Dhel says:

      You seem to overgeneralize honey, not everybody has a perfect family as you do.

  • Colin says:

    Another thing I have done was to buy something from the person. In one case I bought a dirt bike from my sister, one that she wanted back at some point. That gave her some cash, but it cost her something. It wasn’t a handout or a loan. Not sure if she learned from the situation, but it kept the relationship on solid ground.

  • Randy Addison says:

    With me, I always tend to give our relatives not money but ways to earn some money. Well, it depends on the urgency of the need. But as much as possible I don’t spoon feed them. I offer sometimes work, business opportunities or even suggestions on how to earn some extra cash.

    • Marcus says:

      Yeah, when people ask me for money I just tell them to “fuck off and die”. As a result I am estranged from my family and have no friends. But, at least I still have my $7500 in the bank.

      • Richard says:

        Hahaha. So long as you are happy, that is fine, Marcus. My own family asks me for money all the time. I used to take a cash advance on my credit card so that I can give them the money but I found out it put me on a bad spot when one of my bills went on collection. From that point, I started saying NO more often. Since then, they don’t call me at all even to say hi. Making me think they only used to call me to ask me to give them money.

    • Caroline Schukraft says:

      Don’t be a Scrooge. Give if you can, in anyway you can, and don’t give anything you are going to expect back. You cannot and will not take it with you when You are gone from the earth.

      • Mom of 2 says:

        My Mother and brother ask me all the time for money, “I need $ for Gas, I need $ for light bill, I need $ for Rent etc, etc, etc……….. ) I have helped them so much over the years its just crazy, they even get mad at me and hang up the phone on me when i say I don’t have it to loan. They never call or visit just to see how my kids are or anything, every single phone call is “can I get $20 or $50 from you. and yes, I never get paid back. All of this sounds good but for some it never works. This is not being a scrooge either, I know you can’t take it with you, but my kids will need it and will have it before I ever give anymore away.

        • angela mcdonald says:

          ditto with my brother. He can’t pay his child support. I quit giving it to him, cuz he’d get a tattoo with it and the next be asking for the support money. If I don’t give it to him, he calls my dad and I get screamed and emotionally harrassed because my dad ends up bailing him out. I hate what my relationship has become with them but hey I gotta take care of me.

          • Dhel says:

            I was in the same predicament before, 3 of my older siblings maxed out a credit card on all of their names. I was the youngest and was already working from junior high to senior high in low paying jobs such as Mc Donalds, Forever21, etc.. to pay for my schooling, allowances, monthly bills, etc. After 1 and half years of saving I was able to save a big amount of money from juggling my work and school simultaneously everyday with no day off(even when I was sick, and even if my friends invited me to hang out with them). When the time came for the credit card interest to be paid my elder siblings argued with each other, and no one could pay the maxed out card. My father in all his wisdom asked me to help the 3 of them out, and told me I was going to get paid by them in small increments, I was a bit hesitant because they were getting more aggressive in the way they would asked me to helped them out(One sunday, I came from work tired while taking off my shoes my eldest brother yelled at me from the sofa while watching TV, he asked me “are you gonna lend me money or not”. I was just stunned, and just went directly to my room. I finally agreed to solve the problem but I had to talk to all 3 of them that they would all be responsible to paying me back because I would be going off to university very soon, and the all promised me they would keep their word. Months passed and no increment of payment had been payed, I was starting to worry because I was not working that much and I was already in Uni. I needed it for my school expenses, even just a small amount would have greatly helped me out. I have never felt so humiliated and defeated for asking for something I have worked my ass off for. Everytime I would asked for a little bit of my own money, I would get hanged up, insulted, belittled, humiliated, this is the first time I cried for something I knew I deserved. Insult after insult, I got my money back and I told my self that this is gonna be the last time I will do this. One day, after pleading for a small payment from my siblings I looked my dad with fury in my eyes and said “the next time you intervene with the financial affairs of us siblings, I am not afraid to forget you”. My siblings seems to more predictable to me now, only calling me to inform about their problems in their marriage, and or finances. I do not exist to be the dumping ground of problems and to be the walking ATM of individuals who cannot handle their own business. I deserve my peace, so learn to handle your own business on your own.

        • Mimi says:

          Well said, mom of 2. It’s one thing to help out once, but shame on them for asking again and again. I deal with this on a regular basis with family and I am done with it.

  • 401k says:

    The old adage “give a man a fish and he will live for a day; teach a man how to fish and he will live forever” is very applicable to this entry. You should teach your family members to become independent and help them to earn their own money.

  • Jason says:

    I have been asked by many family members and friends for money, and the truth is, you have to put yourself first. Saying no in a nice way, and offering to help in other ways is sufficient.

    • Marcus says:

      No, actually you don’t HAVE to “put yourself first”. Unless you’re extremely selfish and cowardly then, yes, you probably have no choice.

      • justsayNO says:

        You must be a liberal. I work hard to earn a living and pay bills. If someone needs cash let them get off their lazy ass and work a second job. Why should I have to sweat for someone else, the Gov’t takes enough as it is. Paying your own bills first is NOT being selfish – you have been brainwashed into thinking otherwise

        • Robin Bates says:

          Whoa now…. based on a lot of my views I would be considered a liberal but I totally agree with you just say no. I do believe in helping people but not if they are not helping themselves and not if I cannot provide for myself and my family. I also think a majority of people considered liberals give the rest a bad name. Unfortunately they seem to be the loudest 🙁

      • Robin Bates says:

        I understand what you are saying but I have an aunt that always asks for money and I always say yes. I never get that money back and most of the time I can’t really afford to let the money go. She has now come to expect the money and literally has come into my house yelling “Where is my money? You got paid today?!” She refuses to look for work and expects me to pay her way. I can’t do it but I can’t say no either. Sometimes things are a bit difficult.

        • Unwilling Provider says:

          Yes you CAN say no! ‘Expect’ is just as much a dirty word as ‘Entitlement,’ and I see a lot of that here. The aunt can’t make it? That’s called thinning out the herd.

      • Lucy30 says:

        Actually I think it is a good idea to say NO politely. I have been told NO several times and now I am financially independent. Because I was told NO, I got creative and found other more sustainable ways to solve my issues. I am very happy that I got NO answers if not, I would not be financialy independent now. For this same reason, I think it is best to say NO politely. You are helping the person in a much better way than just giving them money in which case they may come back and ask for more money. One is not a coward or being selfish if they say NO. Rather by saying NO, you are encouraging the person to be more responsible with their finances and well as to save for future emergencies.

      • Diana says:

        putting yourself first isn’t selfish but responsible. If you give (let’s say $) and then you realize you don’t have enough to cover an expense, who will YOU go to?
        Also, paradoxically, $ represents freedom. So if you give some of your $ you get LESS FREEDOM for yourself. Example: give $20000 to son for downpaiment on a home. Now, you have no $20000 to invest or simply save for YOUR retirement. If, later on, you get sick and need live in aide or something else, since you don’t have your $20000 wich you gave to your son for a down payment, now what? Do you move in to live in your son’s home, relinquishing your (and his) privacy?
        Things are always more complext that they appear. Take from someone who did help her family…

    • Dhel says:

      Tell them you are siblings by blood, not by money. I do not exist in these world to become the walking ATM of some fool who cannot handle his/her own business. Don’t test me.

      • Mike says:

        It goes to show where people are at in there hearts. People who love don’t mind . People who are broken mind . Let the heart over power the wound and rise above the cloud of darkness to become the light that shines !

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