Demanding Adult Daughter

charroNovember 17, 2007

Hi, everyone,

I came upon this site by a "happy accident". I am at my wits end here.

My daughter is an adult married woman with four small children. She has a good job as does her husband. They do not know the meaning of financial responsibility as whenever a "crisis" occurs, they always come to me to bail them out. I am by no means rich but in the past, have given them help. I finally put my foot down and said "no" as I strongly suspect that they are not being honest with me. First of all, my daughter let slip that her husband gambles. Second of all, they have added income of a rental property. And lastly, her husband has a bank account with his money that she has no access to.

Why I am writing this is they are now trying to get money from me to "buy a house". They want me to foot the downpayment, no loan, a gift. The amount that they need keeps changing, and I don't believe the money is for that. I think it will go to the husband for his gambling or for one of his new "business ventures" that he is starting up. I don't have this money and even if I did, I am sick of being played like this. She told me last week that they have to be out of their rental unit by tomorrow and do not have any place to go. In other words, she is trying to guilt me into giving her this money. Her husband's relatives are not hurting for money, and I asked her if her husband had asked them to contribute. She responded that he would never ask them to give money. I have not heard a word from her for almost a week maybe because she sensed that I was suspicious of her motives. What do you think?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think your instincts are right. And I'll bet his relatives have given money in the past as well. If you decide to help then make it an official loan with their cars as guarantee of repayment. Or "buy" their rental property for the amount of the loan.
And, you could always loan them the money for the next month's rent so they'll have another 4 weeks to make plans about moving elsewhere.
Sometimes, being a parent is H**L!

    Bookmark   November 17, 2007 at 5:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"If you decide to help then make it an official loan with their cars as guarantee of repayment".

Did I forget to mention, according to my daughter, one car is completely unusable and the other is barely functional? She's been hinting about that for weeks using my grandchildren as bait. And as far as loaning them the money for next month's rent, been there; done that only to find out that a) they had the money all along or b) it was spent on something else. And never once, have I ever gotten as much as a thank you.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2007 at 9:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You are not helping your daughter face the problems she needs to face, i.e., her husband's gambling and other financial issues, if you give in to her demands.

"Just say no" and stick to your guns. Will she withhold your grandchildren from you? She might. And that very act would tell me that she cannot deal with those issues that she needs to deal with.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 8:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I know I am not helping my daughter, just enabling her, if I keep funding her. You hit the nail right on the head when it comes to her facing issues. She figures that a new home and new cars are going to fix everything. In actuality, she needs to confront what is going on with her life and marriage. And yes, she will punish me and not let me have any contact with the grandchildren. She's done it before, and this is after my late husband and myself helped her out.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 9:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What a very difficult position to be in. Your daughter really knows how to play you like a fiddle. And she has those grandkids to use as leverage. Its time to sit her and her husband down and talk about their financial responsibility. They are adults now and are incharge of their own lives. You have already raised your kids. You are not responsible for providing a home,cars and food to your adult kids. Make a list of everytime that you gave them money as a gift. Now its time to tell them that the gifts must stop. You dont have the money but even if you did it is YOUR money. Tell them also that what you want most is to be a grandparent. If they choose to not let you see the kids that it really hurt the kids too. Grandparents play an important role in childrens lives. Good Luck!

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 11:03AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here's a good article from the Boston Globe on this very subject.

My parents loaned my ex and I money to buy a car and for a down payment on our first home - but we had to sign a promissory note, and we paid back every cent. It would not have occurred to us not to pay them back.

I will loan money to my grown children, but they always pay me back.

You'll have to have a quiet but stressful discussion with her or both of them, and explain why you won't loan them any more money, or if you do, why you are insisting they sign and promissory note and make monthly payments. Review their past loans and failure to repay you, in excruciating detail. It will probably make her/them angry, and she may threaten to keep you from your grandchildren.

Good luck.

Here is a link that might be useful: Lending to relatives?

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 3:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I wish it were as easy to sit down and talk with both of them. They live on the other side of the country. My daughter will not listen to reason and has tunnel-vision when she wants something. My son-in-law never gets on the phone with me. For example, I am still waiting for him to offer his condolences on the loss of both my husband and mother which happened a few years ago.

He just feels it's his right and entitlement for me to bankroll them as does my daughter. I understand from my daughter that when they were looking for a home, he told the real estate agent and the seller of the homes they were interested in that his "mother-in-law" was going to help with the financing. I was speechless when my daughter told me this.

He certainly would not pull these shenanigans with his family. They have a lot more money than I do. When I asked my daughter if her husband ever thought of asking his family for money, her response was that he would never do that. Obviously, they have no problem asking me.

Never once have they offered to pay me back when I have given them money. As I mentioned before, I do not even get a "thank you". Things have not been easy for me financially but I still helped them. I kept feeling the "mother/grandmother" guilt thing.

I cannot even list how many times I have bailed them out. It seems like one "crisis" after another.

What makes me sad is the loss of contact with my grandchildren. She will punish me by keeping them away. I loved being the doting grandmother. My son-in-law's family are not the warm and cuddly type. They don't even send the children gifts or make a big deal out of all the cute little things they do. I loved doing that. My daughter doesn't realize what she is doing to them.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 4:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

but you don't know that they really have trouble managing their money or that they really are facing a crisis.

In fact, it sounds like they manage pretty well:

You loaned or gave them money in the past & then discovered that they had money in the bank.

People can drive old cars, & they can rent homes or apartments.

& if daughter's husband has separate funds, he can spend that.

Once you start paying for the privelege of doing nice things for your grandchildren, there's no stopping it;
you've handed someone the power to blackmail you, & blackmailers never get completely paid off, they want more & more & more.

& I bet there's more to the story than "he would never ask his family for money";

they won't give it to him, either because he tried it & it didn't work, or because they've "helped" him too many times & now they've cut him off.

I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 9:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I suspect there is far, far more to this story than you've told us--probably more than you know.

Let me tell you a little story.

There was a daughter who grew up very spoiled. She was the only daughter and her parents and 3 brothers doted on her. As a little child, she was caught taking money from her father's dresser--just some coins he'd laid there, nothing much. The older brothers were incensed, but Dad said, "She's only little" and didn't punish her.

As a teen, she wanted to go to the wild high school parties and drink, but she was slick. A couple of times she called her parents to come and pick her up because the kids were drinking, she didn't want to be around that, etc. Well, after that, they totally trusted her--she was one of the biggest lushes in her high school.

She grew up and her parents, while they didn't like to admit it to even themselves, could see that she was heading for trouble, so when she dated a very conservative, nice guy, her mom blackmailed her into marrying him (long story, doesn't really apply here).

After she was married, even though she lived in a small ranch house in the cheapest area of town, and even though her husband made over $100,000/year, there was never enough money. First, the daughter was 'borrowing' a few groceries here and there. Then it was small amounts of money she was 'borrowing' (but never paying back).

Then things progressed. She needed her father to buy her a refrigerator. The roof was leaking and there was no money to fix it. No money for a new heating system when that went out. There was a day when the county was going to turn off her water because the sewer bill was so behind. And everytime her parents had to bail her out--because they couldn't bear to think of the poor grandkids living without heat, water, secure roof, etc--this girl shamelessly used her children to blackmail her parents. Only bill I know of that the girl ALWAYS was current on was her utility bill--why? because her brother was a collector for the gas/electric company.

Her husband also had money in accounts she couldn't touch--because any money within her reach was spent within the hour. If there are accounts in your SIL's name only, how can he have such a gambling problem? If it was all that severe, he wouldn't have money in the bank, he'd have a pile of loans--there's something not right about your daughter's story of why she needs the money, right from the start.

Well, let's fast foward a few decades in my tale. Her father died, her mother was mentally incompetant. And the daughter got herself appointed POA over her mother. In the space of only a little over a year she misappropriated $250,000 of her own mother's money. Now, understand, Mother lived in her own, paid off house, didn't have any hired help (family was taking care of her) didn't have any real expenses of any kind--other than food, property taxes, electric, clothes and incidentals. Yet A QUARTER OF A MILL disappeared because this daughter felt entitled, felt her parents 'owed' her because they had always picked up the slack for her for many years--even when it was a hardship for them. Now, this daughter is in major trouble with the courts, may be looking at jail time.

And why did all this happen? Oh, there was a gambling addiction (someone else) that she was helping cover, but then there was also her own drug addiction. Mom, I know you don't want to hear this, don't want to consider it, but you cannot close your eyes to the fact that there is the possibility that there is something like that at play here.

Oh, as to giving her money for a downpayment on a house? That's complete bull. When you buy a home, you have to provide solid proof that YOU had the money for the downpayment, otherwise, it's virtually impossible to get approved for a mortgage. So if she's asking for a gift for a downpayment to buy a house, you can be pretty sure that she's NOT intending to use the money for that--it won't fly. She's got some other use in mind for the cash. Oh, just so you know--that girl I was telling you about ALWAYS confused the issue by having lots of purchases in her home--as a smoke screen so that it was pretty hard to figure out just where all the money was going.

You sound as if you have a realistic idea of what you should and should not be doing here. I just recounted this sadly true, and unfortunate story just so you can see where this sort of thing can end up.

Oh, and the bottom line? My husband and I are at $20,000 and counting in legal and forensic accountant fees. Money we've spent on behalf of his mother--that we will probably never ever see again. Because as soon as we realized what was happening, what his sister was doing, we got a very high-profile lawyer and the best forensic accountant in the area working on this case. We've stemmed the hemmorage of funds, and had a responsible guardian appointed to oversee MIL's finances, but the money that was stolen will never be recovered--it's been spent long ago. Isn't that a sad way for a parent to end up--when all they did was love their daughter so much that they always wanted to help her? Don't let someone else write a similar story about you in years to come.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 10:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well you know what to do, just say no.

Your daughter is responsible for her life, and that's it.

You are helping them sort out their own problems by handing back control to them.

Your daughter is blaming you for all the things that go wrong in her life.

Be brave !

    Bookmark   November 19, 2007 at 1:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

azzalea, I see a lot of similarities between that girl and my daughter. I hope it all works out for you.

Well,everyone, I woke up to an email from my daughter this morning apologizing for not contacting me. In her words, "the cell phone has been disconnected due to non-payment of the bill and her telephone service has been transferred over to the new home. She, her husband and her children are living out of boxes at the old rental property. It's so hard on the children. Thankfully, they have electric and water which will have to be reimbursed. The new owners have given them until December 1 to stay in the old place". Supposedly, she was writing me from her place of business because her internet service has been disconnected. I guess it took her seven days to come up with this story.

I don't trust this situation one bit and do feel like I am being "blackmailed". I so agree, what bank or lender is going to approve a mortgage without proof of funds? The fact that the downpayment amount keeps changing is a red flag. Nothing makes sense here. There definitely is an agenda which I do not know about. She has told me so many stories in the past that I do not know what to believe anymore.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2007 at 7:14AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

There's a good saying that covers this: "No is a complete sentence."
You don't have to defend yourself or come up with elaborate explanations or get into any arguments. "No" is a complete sentence. Keep it simple. And as popi said in her response, "Be brave!"
And good luck! The best that could happen is that one day your SIL gets into a gambling addiction treatment program and their life and your relationship takes a turn for the better. Or your daughter figures out that he won't change and does something better with her life.
"No!" is a complete sentence!

    Bookmark   November 19, 2007 at 9:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

And "no" it will be. I will "be brave". It's not going to be easy because I am so used to giving her what she wants without an argument. I am having major guilt attacks today; actually making myself a nervous wreck about this. But when I go over everything in my mind that has transpired, I know I am being played, and I refuse to fall into her trap again.

I did respond to her email asking her point blank how she is going to pay for anything in this new house if she cannot even pay her cell phone bill and has to wait for her husband's check in order to do it. I suggested that they should look for other options in light of their finances. I made it perfectly clear that I am worried about my security and am strapped financially.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2007 at 12:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good for you, Charro! Now hold firm!

The fact that you told her that you are worried about your security will likely not get her to take no lying down. She's not worried about your finances. She only wants what she wants.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2007 at 6:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


How about you don't ask your DD anything about her finances. If you do engage in the subject, you will add to your guilt and may well be manipulated back into the saga.

I would go very vague, in the future, about any discussions about theirs or your finances.

Don't get sucked into the drama. Live your life.

Go out for a brisk walk and get rid of the stress and guilt that is rolling around in your tummy!

I wish you well.

I am sure your DD and grand children will be fine.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2007 at 9:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have taken all your advice to heart - thank you. Yes, my daughter is the "drama" queen, and everything is a major tragedy.

After getting myself worked up and feeling sick to my stomach again yesterday, I finally said "enough". I did take doggie for a nice walk in the park yesterday and will do the same today. Feel a whole lot better.

Came home from a meeting last night to find a message from my daughter about her "situation". Something about her tone was not right - I could tell she was not being forthcoming with me. It was late; and I was not dealing with it then.

I decided this morning to write her an email stating that I am concerned about my financial situation and need to hold on to every penny that I have. I really do prefer not to discuss my finances with her or have to hear her financial problems, but she is relentless and up until last week, thought nothing of calling me several times a day to complain and ask. If need be, even though I hate to do it, I will not answer the phone for the time being, and keep everything to email. I refuse to be badgered anymore.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2007 at 9:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

charro, Not answering the phone is a good strategy. Do you have an answering machine. If not, you might consider getting one. Or caller ID.

You don't have to give her any reason for why you aren't lending her money. You don't have to have any "defense". This isn't a decision that is open to debate with her. She is not entitled to your assets. She is an adult and responsible for her own finances and her own decisions.

I thought it was amazingly nervy of them to tell you that he would NEVER ask his family for money. That was like a direct slap at you. It would be pretty neat if some day they said to someone else, "We would never ask her (meaning you) for money. We know she is too smart to fall for our stories and too wise to get us out of our mistakes."

Be brave. Be wise. Keep saying no. Walk the dog. Take yourself out for a nice dinner. Pat yourself on the back for being brave and doing the right thing. Even though it is difficult.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2007 at 10:19AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I do have the answering service from my phone company and also caller id. Never thought I would be monitoring my phone calls (that's not my style) but in my daughter's case, I just don't have the energy to get into it with her. She can get very nasty and vindictive when she doesn't get her way. You wonder where someone gets these traits especially when one is not raised that way.

I will stand my ground. The more that I think of what you all said and the more I go over it in my mind, I know it is the right thing to do. Now, I will go on with my life and think of me. Something that I have never done before.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2007 at 6:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The more you post about your daughter and her attitude, the more concerned I am that there is the possibility of an addiction involved. You know how I feel about lending her money, but keep your eyes and ears open--and be prepared to fight for those precious grandchildren, if you have to. As my husband says, there are some fights we can't afford to take on--and some we can't afford not to. Is there any family in the area that can keep an eye out on them for you? to make sure they're safe and being properly cared for?

    Bookmark   November 21, 2007 at 2:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Something is not right, Charro, when you think about a "normal" relationship between mother and daughter. Chats about simple things, what the children are doing, generally an up-beat banter.

Do you have chats like this with your daughter ? Doesn't seem like the chats leave you happy.

I have read a bit about toxic relationships, perhaps you might like to google that and read about it, it might fit your situation. If that's the case then you can formulate coping strategies.

You have a right to a peaceful, content life,not bullying by your daughter.

Take care.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2007 at 4:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Something is not right here, that I know. Her husband does gamble, and he thinks that is perfectly fine. According to him, it's his money to do with what he wants.

As far as my daughter, she isn't telling me everything, that I know. She does seem in control of herself when everything is going fine but when something is not going her way, then the constant phone calls start. I have, in the past, seen her lose control with me. And it's scary, believe me. I have not heard her on the phone act this way with the children and if I did, I would have been out there so fast, people's heads would have spun. I do worry about my grandchildren; they seem so lost. I encourage my daughter to invite children over for them; it never seems to happen. She uses the excuse that she is ashamed of how her furniture looks. The children have been invited to birthday parties, and I keep telling her to let them go. Nine times out of ten, they don't go because my son-in-law won't let them, or so she says. The children are developing behavorial problems, and that is always a "red flag". They do go to preschool and daycare and seem to be okay there.

We do not live near each other. She's on one coast; I'm on the other. They are out there by themselves - no relatives of any kind. They have been in this area for a very short time. I wanted to visit but was told they had no place for me to sleep and needed me to buy a guestroom set for them along with three meals out every day, shows, etc. There actually was a whole list of things they wanted me to buy. I didn't go.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2007 at 4:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I do not get a warm, fuzzy feeling whenever I speak with my daughter. It's always this problem or that problem. They have no money; this bill or that bill is due. In fact, by the time, I get off the phone with her, I have a splitting headache and feel stressed to the max. Never once does she ask how am I and if I start to talk about something, she never listens. Nothing in my life seems to be of any importance to her.

Funny you should mention about "toxic" relationships. I have used that word so many times when it applies to my daughter.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2007 at 5:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

so you'd have to buy them furniture if you wanted to stay at their house???

Stay strong, & don't "engage" with her *at all*.

I think your friends are right; she's toxic.

& there's no such thing as "just a little bit of poison".

Take care of yourself.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2007 at 8:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I hate to harp on about your predicament.

But, I do wonder whether you had a "normal" relationship with your daughter before she was married ?

Do you think she has changed, over the years ?

Its so difficult to know when to step in and assist with the children, your grandchildren. I know you must be worried about the situation,but there is not much you can do, on the other side of the country.

Do you talk to your SIL's parents ?

Perhaps you have reached a resolution on how you plan to deal with this situation, I am sorry to bring more things up, if thats the case.


    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 2:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


My daughter changed totally after she got married. She had to in order to survive with the man she married. Unfortunately, she has not yet hit bottom in her relationship with him; when she does, I hope she has then is able to find the strength to get out.

This could be a similar situation.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 7:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I don't mind talking about things. Thank you all for listening and helping.

From her teenage years on, my daughter and I never had a "normal" relationship. Her late father believed in no discipline whatsover. He came from a family that was disfunctional, and therefore took no part in the raising of my daughter. When she didn't get her way, she would have outbursts. As I mentioned before, it was scary. When I would ask my husband to please help, he would reply "don't bother me". So you can see what I was up against. She manipulated him all the time, and he let her get away with things. I was concerned about her and put her into counseling. The therapist told me not to "waste my money" because all she would do is tell stories to him and think it was funny. I even tried another counselor and the same thing happened. At least, they were honest and did not take my money.

The guys that she picked to date were ones who would treat her disrespectfully. If a nice guy dated her, she would lose interest. It was like she didn't deserve to be treated kindly. She met her husband on a rebound situation after ending a three year relationship. He is very controlling.

His family makes my family look like the "Waltons". Talk about strange and bizarre. There is no affection whatsoever between them. We got invited once for Thanksgiving and were timed. We had to be there at noon and out by l:00 pm. It was so uncomfortable because no one talked at the table. His mother knew that I was dieting, and my daughter did ask her to please set some vegetables aside with no toppings. She made it a point to pour bacon grease over the green beans with me watching.

When my husband and mother died within five months of each other, to this day, not one of them has expressed condolences or asked how I am. My SIL has even told my daughter to "get over it" when it comes to grieving her father. He said it first one week after his death.

So, do I really want to be involved with these people? No.

I did google "toxic people". Even though I have spoken about her toxicity before, reading about it just verifies everything. What I am going to do is set boundaries and not get swept up in the drama anymore. She has called late at night for the past few days. I refuse to speak when I am tired. Whether she has read my emails or not, I don't know. I tend to think she has and will not accept "no" for an answer. If she calls today at a decent hour, I will answer and stand my ground. If she starts in on me, I will be calm and just end the conversation.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 7:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Charro, Happy Thanksgiving to you and everyone too.

I think your plan, Charro, is a good one.
I was appalled to read the behavior of your SIL's family towards you.
As for people who have gone to therapists and the therapists quickly giving up on them. I have heard of that too. I've even met some of these people and can understand why a therapist would give up!
I am wishing you strength in holding firm and setting your boundaries. You deserve to have people in your life who care about you. You don't deserve to be treated the way that your daughter has treated you.
I find that saying the Serenity Prayer helps me when I am upset or scared or obsessing. Sometimes I say it quite a bit!

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 9:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Received a detailed empassioned email from my daughter today. No "Happy Thanksgiving, Mom" just a "how could you do this to us, you really put us in a bad position" one.

Just as I expected, she did not "read" my emails. Oh she read them, but only saw what she wanted.

At this point, according to her, they have lost thousands of dollars expending for this new home in reliance of me giving them the downpayment. They have no place to go and even if they rented, there is no money for a security deposit and rent.

Her husband is going to have to get a second job. She is not going to get paid until mid January which I find totally ludicrous. Who would work for nothing?

Even though they have health insurance, they are getting billed for doctor expenses and must pay it immediately.

She has been crying straight for two days, and when she looks into her children's eyes, she cannot bear it.

Just as I was about to break down in tears, my friend called me. Her first words were "don't you dare give in" as if she knew that I was reading my daughter's email.

Toxic people lay guilt on their victims, and I know this is what she is doing.

I won't be alone for dinner tonight. Another friend is stopping by. Between her messy divorce and my daughter, this promises to be an interesting evening.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 3:42PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It so clear that she is manipulating you, she probably does not know that she is doing it.

Its the classic blame cycle, that a lot of people get onto.

Things go wrong, she looks for someone to blame. "looking into her children's eyes"....boy....that is really a way to make YOU feel guilty.

I am glad you read about toxic people. They seem to be everywhere, once you know about it, its easy to pinpoint them.

Hopefully, by your gentle guidance, she may one day come the realization that she is in control of her life, and that is the only way she will reach contentment.

Her poor kids, oh dear...seeing mum sitting there sobbing, imagine what that would do to them.

Sounds like you have some supportive friends, thats good.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 4:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

*You* put *her* into a bad position...
because you wouldn't give her money to fulfill an obligation that *she* made that she can't afford?

If you have to tell her anything, tell her that you're glad she told you how badly-off her family is, that it makes you feel sure you made the right decision since you realize that you did her a favor-
you kept her from getting in even more over her head.

only don't tell her verbally, email her.

& be sure you have your documents & accounts secured against her & her husband, & that you save & print all the emails & document every conversation

because their next step will be to try to take control of your "affairs", & you need to be able to defend yourself & prove that they aren't concerned with your welfare, that they want to get their hands on your money.

If you haven't already made a will & named someone to have power-of-attorney in the event that you can't make your own decisions, *do it now*.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 8:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My husband's kids broke their mother, she told me so herself. She could never tell them no. I told my son no a couple of years ago, when he was 45 and and he cussed me out. No matter how much you give them, they won't ever be satisfied. It will go on and on and on and on.

When we moved I got a new unlisted number and I don't get those up setting phone calls anymore.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 9:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I really am sick about the whole thing. I won't give in, I promise. Watched the news this morning and saw all the stories on homeless people during the holidays. Made me feel horrible. Kept picturing my grandchildren like that. She's good using my grandchildren as ammunition; she knows how much I love them.

I did manage to enjoy my Thanksgiving dinner last night. Having a friend over was a good idea.

I am going to email her today. I had the same thoughts as you about them not getting the house as being a good thing. I did say that in my other emails but my daughter has tunnel vision; only sees what she wants.

I don't trust my daughter and son-in-law one bit. I recently made a will and did give someone else my power of attorney.

"No" has to be the operative word from now on. Otherwise, it will never stop.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 6:55AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

charro, there is a VERY strong possibility that nothing is as your daughter is describing it. Not that it matters whether she is lying or telling the truth. No responsible adult goes and buys a house depending on someone else putting up the money for it without that person's knowledge and agreement. So I would be saying, "I never agreed to this. This is YOUR responsibility. No, I will not do it. It is YOUR responsibility. I need to go now. In the future, perhaps you will be more responsible as now you know the consequences of being IRRESPONSIBLE. Welcome to the land of the adults! I love you. Good bye."

However, there are so many holes in her story. The process of buying a house requires a lot of paperwork. In the current climate, getting a mortgage is most likely tougher. It all takes time. There is no scenario that I can think of that fits with what she is claiming is happening. There is much more to this story. It is probably true that she feels desperate to get some money somewhere for some reason that is probably very negative. Perhaps her husband borrowed money from people who want him to repay his loan. Perhaps her husband told her that she HAS TO GET MONEY from you. Perhaps there is some other reason. But I think that she will not tell you the real reason and that the real reason would be one where money will be thrown into a deep dark hole, never to be seen again. And then in a few months or a year she'd call you again with ANOTHER story and a desperate request. Again and again and again!

I am happy that you have friends who are giving you support in saying no. I too say NO, NO, NO!

She is going to have to solve her own problems, whatever they are. Also, the advice from commenters above to protect yourself and your finances from them is wise. I have this vision of sharks circling in the water. Protect yourself.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 11:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I will not give her any money, ever. As I was upset and feeling guilty before, now I am not. The reason: my telephone conversation with her. I do have caller id and for some reason, it did not show up. I was expecting another call so I answered and there she was. I thought it was in response to my email to her where I told her that I was convinced more than ever that buying this house was not a good idea. She obviously had her own agenda with this phone call.

She tried the sweet approach at first. Then the guilty one, where they will be living in a shelter next week or if that doesn't work, she is going to have to ship the children off to SIL's sister and brother-in-law to raise them. I have been told in the past that they are broke, having wasted all their money. So, how in the dickens are they going to provide for these children or for that matter, pay for plane tickets? When that didn't work, she informed me that her husband's grandparents, who are filthy rich, told her and my SIL that it is my obligation to buy them this home and bail them out of credit card debt which supposedly had been incurred as a result of this committment. Then I let her have it. I told her that she and these people have some nerve to suggest that and put that obligation on me. Did any of them consider me or my financial situation? I then told her I was hanging up and would not discuss it any further. Guilt, no more. Blood pressure, through the roof but somehow I have a feeling that too will change.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 12:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Charro, Good for you! I feel good reading your post. That anger is such a good feeling in this case. Great!

There might be a tiny little fragment of truth in what she told you. So often when someone is lying, they use some little bit that is sort of truthful. It is possible that her in-laws said, sarcastically, if you (meaning your daughter and SIL) want money, go ask your mother (meaning you) for it, because we're not giving you one more cent!

Please imagine that you are receiving major applause for standing your ground and saying NO. YEA, Charro!

BTW, you might not have seen caller id on your phone because when someone wants to block caller id, they can enter something on the phone before they dial the number, and then the number doesn't show on the recipient's phone. (I can't remember the combination to enter but I used it once upon a time a long time ago.) So she was planning to get through to you most likely by entering that on her phone before dialing.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 1:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for your support and encouragement.

Right now, I am livid. She just sent me an email. Her sense of entitlement amazes me. I guess I am being kind in describing what she said to me. I guess I should just come out and say what she is: an ingrate.

She knows with the loss of my husband that it has been hard on me. I am self-employed, and my business now has been slow. I'm scared. If things do not improve rapidly soon, I am going to have to look for a job. Again, she knows this.

But that is not stopping her. She said it is her right to have this money. She needs $5,000 now from me and after that, I can worry about myself and my income. I would then be free to look for a job. I kid you not; this is what she said.

I will not respond to this email tonight. This one I have to think on.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 5:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Charro, She has some nerve! She is TELLING you what you can and can't do with YOUR OWN MONEY? She thinks she has a RIGHT to YOUR MONEY?

She is thinking she can tell you when you are ALLOWED to think of yourself and YOUR income?

She certainly is an optimist!

I'd suggest to her that she not hold her breath while waiting for money! Unless she is fond of the color blue!

Charro, I feel so badly that you are being treated this way. That is obnoxious!

BTW I am self employed too and we are having a bit of a hard time too. So I know how that is. There is no paycheck that arrives every week.

She sure does have some nerve!

I can understand why you are livid. I would be livid too.

I can imagine how you might be having a hard time composing a civil response. Of course, it might be a two letter response: Two letters, one word: "No."

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 7:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

don't know what state you're in, or what the laws are, but if your husband died intestate, maybe your daughter feels that you should pay her a portion of the estate.

If he didn't have a will, talk to an attorney *right away*.

but if he left his estate to you, tell her if she doesn't stop harrassing you, she will leave you no choice but to sever communications.

You cannot let this grown woman give you a stroke.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 8:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I know, the nerve of her. I really can't believe it. What gets me is that she knows my financial status and still believes she is "entitled". I cannot get over the "after you give me the money" bit, then you can worry about yourself.

My husband did die without a will and left me with a mess and no money. My daughter knows the stress I have been under. And if I don't calm down, I may have a stroke or a heart attack. Did not feel well last night; it was indigestion. I really do need some peace, and I think the only way is not to have her in my life.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 6:36AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Is your indigestion better?

If not, call an ambulance, right now.

Women's symptoms are different from men's:
we often feel jaw pain & "indigestion".

If you are not over your indigestion at this very minute, call 911 & do what they say.

Please do this.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 9:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What sylviatexas says is true. I have heard too that the symptoms of a heart attack in women are often misinterpreted as being indigestion.

I hope you are feeling better, charro.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 10:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This is a tough time for you and you are doing a great job, hang in there. It's time for her to grow up and be an adult, and that's hard for some people.

You can assure her that if the family ends up in a shelter, you'll be happy to have the grandchildren stay with you for a short while until she and her husband get back on their financial feet!

Good luck.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 10:06AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh you sweet people, I am feeling better, thank you for your concern.

They are no more going to be in shelter as I am. Of course, my grandchildren are welcome anytime. She just won't let them out of her sight and believe me, she would insist on coming along so that she could have a free vacation with Mom financing everything. She did it to me once before.

I read my horoscope this morning, and it said to "beware a family member who is not being truthful with you. Things are not as they seem". How appropriate.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 10:25AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

charro, I've been estranged from my daughter for 12 years now. She has behaved in an obnoxious manner which has shocked and appalled me. The things she has done are different than what your daughter has done. But she has made it clear how little regard she has for me. In her case, she does have a mental illness although I can't be sure that the illness is the reason that she is the way that she is. I know that I didn't see it coming. I know that I never will have the kind of relationship with her that I wanted or thought we might have. I don't know if we'll have a relationship again.

However, I do miss having a relationship with her. I don't miss being taken for granted. I don't miss her interest in fighting. I don't miss being abused. But I do miss having a relationahip.

So for me there has been a question that I still haven't answered. The question is: Is it better to have an unsatisfactory relationship with someone I love and accept for whom she is or to be estranged and not to try to have a relationship with someone I love who can be so disappointing and even abusive?

I don't know the answer yet. I do know that not having a relationship with her has been painful. I also know that some parents who do have relationships with their difficult adult children also experience a lot of pain. Sometimes I realize that I might be fortunate not to be experiencing what they are experiencing.

Sometimes I think I would like to try to have a relationship with her. But my daughter is seriously abusive and appears to enjoy being abusive. I might be lucky not to be on speaking terms with her. I don't know.

I think some decisions need to be made when we are calm and centered rather than when we are furious. The decision might be the same either way. But it is better made from a cool point rather than a hot one. If it is made when we are calm, I think we are more likely to feel comfortable with it in the long run. Whatever it is.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 10:29AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

imaginny, I am so sorry about the situation with your daughter. It must be especially hard for you during this holiday season.

My daughter also is abusive. Actually downright scary. When she was a teenager, I think I mentioned this in one of my other posts above, she scared the living daylights out of me. When my husband was sick and when he died, she came home. The stress of his illness and death was bad enough; she acted like a monster. On the first day of his wake, she threw such a fit because she had nothing to wear. I mean who thinks of clothes at a time like this. I wound up taking her shopping that morning. I was in such a state that the salesgirl and one of the customers came over and asked if I was alright. They had more compassion than my daughter. The reason I took her was that I lived in an apartment and she was making such a scene that the last thing I needed was for one of my neighbors to call the police. The second day of his wake she started throwing things at me. My friend actually told her to leave and stay at a hotel which she did. My friend was appalled and frightened for me.

Like you, I miss having a normal relationship with my daughter. I hear my friends speak about the things they do with their daughters, and it makes me sad. Just to go shopping without having to feel extorted would be nice. To hear her say "how are you, Mom, talk to me" would be nice.

I realize now unless she has a divine revelation, this is never going to happen. I thought surely after my husband died that she would come around. It's just me and her; we are a small family.

I don't know what the answer is. I think a relationship is a give and take proposition. One side cannot always be taking. In my case, I feel like she has sucked the life out of me. Unless the person who is abusive is willing to get help and change, I don't see much hope for a good relationship or any relationship for that matter. Being scared about how the person may react and fearing for your safety both physical and emotional is not a way to live.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 1:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

charro, You are right. One side cannot always be taking. It is sad when things are this way. I have been mourning something I haven't had.

Once people get to be adults, they don't tend to change. Although there are exceptions. Some people do go and get help. Some go to twelve step groups. Medication helps some. It is true that no one can do it for them. They have to do it for themselves.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 2:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What an interesting series of posts. A lot of wisdom in this thread.

Charro- the suggestion I was going to offer was not mentioned until the last post and I could highly encourage you to consider it. AlAnon is a Family Support group for people who have family members who have an alcohol addiction. There are the same type of groups for gamblers, etc. People like you and me have "addictions" ourselves - to family members. We become enabelers and the beat goes on and on and on. Even though there is not alcohol mentioned here- addiction is addiction. You will find huge support from alanon family group meetings or from Codependents groups. You may want to read the book CODEPENDENT NO MORE by Pia Melody. There are a lot of tools and support available to you which will also be the best possible gifts you can offer to your daughter and grandchildren. Someone must model serenity, and "sober" living. Sounds like it gets to be you.

As a Realtor, I can tell you that there are loan programs where a parent can provide gift funds but it sure does not sound as if your daughter is at all in a position to take on the responsibility of home ownership. Your money will be lost to a home that goes to foreclosure. Why not save it for your grandchildren's college fund or something that can make a real difference for you when they are ready.

Kids HATE the feeling of dependency, even when they try to use guilt and blame and shame to keep the cycle going. If you culled down all the wisdom here- the summary would surely be NO is a complete sentence. You have no obligation to explain.

A response I learned from a wise counselor to use as my ONLY REPONSE to someone who was harassing me with similar verbal battering. When they throw any judgement or cricisism to you about your self... just anwer. "I'm sorry you feel that way." The point was that at some point, the person must not only take responsibility for their actions but for their "feelings". She is choosing how she intreprets your choices. Let her know you won't fall for it and put it back in her lap. Remind her you are confident that she has the capacity to make wise choices for herself, her children, and her family. You wouldn't deprivce her of the right to owning her own adulthood by allowing her to be dependent on you.

Let her own her life. COnsequences are grand teachers. People who get into financial trouble never get out when bailed out. They must figure it out for themselves. There a many programs to assist them and their realtor/lender should be sure they have those resources made avaialble to them. Whether they choose to take advantage of them and to take responsibility for themselves... is up to them.

One more thing I haven't seen mentioned here is the power of your intercessory prayer for your daughter and her family. I think it was you who said it would take "divine intevention" and that is truly the answer. Pray for the Lord to send a "stranger" to be the witness of wisdom and love to her. Find scriptures to pray inserting her name. "For God shall supply all of >>>>>'s needs according to His love in Christ Jesus." When you can claim a power beyond yourself and beyond your daughters capability to see in the moment.. that gives me great hope. It's a part of the 12 step process that makes the release possible.

Thanks for sharing. May the Lord bless you and keep you and make His face to shine upon you. May the Lord shine His countenance upon you and give you peace.


    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 8:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I did actually have a good night's sleep and for the first time, (I can't remember the last time, it's been so long) I woke up feeling peaceful.

I have made it perfectly clear to my daughter via email, that she and her husband are going to handle the "emergencies" from now on, I am not going to bail them out. She will read what she wants to read, and I am sure she will ask again. I won't give in. I am finished being her "enabler".

I do agree that the house would be foreclosed upon and probably in record time. My daughter and SIL are two children in adults' bodies.

I have a stronge suspicion that they are moving back to her husband's home state where they will be near all his family. My daughter emailed me from her place of employment saying that she was packing up her things. The comment from her about her paycheck being delayed until January did not ring true. Before I would have been on the phone or emailed her back with all sorts of questions and concerns. I didn't. I don't want to know because I refuse to put myself through this any longer.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2007 at 10:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good morning charro!

You are sounding much better. It's kind of nice to feel as though you have some control of your life!

After I read your comment of today, I had this vision of your daughter trying to push your buttons. And all of a sudden the buttons disappeared! She had no buttons to push!

I am so glad that you are getting in control of your own buttons and that you are getting them out of her reach.

Your message to your daughter was such a good one: that they have to handle their own emergencies.

I am wishing you many more good night's sleep!

I do agree with spiritfolk that Al anon and other twelve step groups that are designed to help those in relationships with people who are addicted to something can be immensely helpful. I am not a religious person but I have gone to Al Anon in years past and I do say the Serenity Prayer often. My concept of a higher power is not a traditional religious one. My concept of a higher power is different from that. I do have faith that in general the best will happen even if I have no control over the outcome and maybe ESPECIALLY if I have no control over the outcome.

Even a discussion board such as this one can be a form of higher power. When we listen to what our gut is telling us and when we take out hands off of the controls (and remove our buttons from other's access), then things tend go turn out well. Or better.

So my approach is different from that of spiritfolk's approach but similar in a way.

Here is a link that might be useful: Estrangements: The Website

    Bookmark   November 25, 2007 at 11:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


I am with you too, reading about your life.

I think seeing your have changed the way you react to your daughter....then eventually things will settle down.

She will get the message and will have to cope with things on her own.

You have done the right thing.

I would not engage in ANY of her manipulative conversations.

Just go vague, just stick to what YOU intend to do.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2007 at 5:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good morning, everyone,

I actually enjoyed my day yesterday; something that I have not been able to do for ages. Took the doggie for a long walk in the park and started decorating the house for Christmas. It was peaceful, no demanding calls, no "I have a problem" ones. My head was not throbbing.

Until my daughter can realize that I am not in existence to live her life for her and cater to her every whim, I honestly don't see how we can even have a meaningful dialogue. It has always been about her. I will have a "wait and see" attitude. She knows exactly how I feel now. There is no going back.

And my horoscope for today, again right on the money (no pun intended): "Things that used to be difficult for you are getting a lot easier - like letting go of the people who are not good for you. Today, you will find it effortless to turn away from the dramatically unhealthy people in your life - and not ever look back again, no matter what the consequences."

Your support, encouragement and advice means the world to me.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 7:12AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I ran into a quote recently that I like a lot. The quote is, "Wait long enough and people will surprise and impress you." The speaker went on to say, "When you're pissed off at someone, give them more time." The speaker was Randy Pausch. The speech is one he gave recently and has become famous in a short period of time. I'll put in a link to the NY Times article about Pausch. (I don't know if you'll need to register with the NY Times. If you do, I'm sure it's free.) If you scroll down in the article, you can access the video that has the entire speech (But you should have a fast connection if you try to watch the video. It is about an hour long.)

Pausch's words give me hope that some day I might be surprised and impressed. Miracles happen! Being a parent, I need that hope that miracles can happen. Maybe they just need time. Time and more time.

Here is a link that might be useful: NY Times: A Professor's Farewell Speech

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 10:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My Best friend is in almost the exact same situation except for a few things, you do not know how lucky you are that your daughter is so far away from you!
My friend does have guardianship of her grandchildren now thank goodness, this daughter was always trying to blackmail her into giving her money by saying if she didn't she was going to take the kids, she has stole lied and cheated my friend out of quite a bit, the thing is she is always trying to lay a guilt trip on my friend (I did this because you wouldn't do such and such) She has even beat her mother because she was not getting her way, my friend has a broken neck, is lucky to be alive and here her daughter is knocking her around! she grabbed her sons game system one time and threatened to sell it if they did not give her the money, she said it was her son's so basically that it was hers to do with as she wished (it was a xbox and she most certainly did not purchase it as she never gets those kids anything) she has basically broke my friends heart. I was soo proud of her the other day, her daughter called said they had no money for food, My friend gave them a bag of groceries when they walked in instead of cash (I wish I could of seen the look on their faces) her Boyfriend makes plenty of money and they have maybe 500 to 1000 a month in bills, so where is it all going??? Her and her boyfriend had another neat way of extorting money, he would dump her off saying he was sick of her, she would stay a day maybe, but during this time she would be snagging a check out of the checkbook, then she would call bf they would "make-up" he would come and get her and then they would cash a check the daughter had written to herself, see my friend has epilepsy, and has a hard time maintaining (well with all the stress who wouldn't?) so she has a awful memory she thought she was just forgetting to write down things, it took her DH going over everything before they caught on.
This is what really irritates me I never once seen my friend have a seizure until this girl started causing all this crap, now she has at least one a week:( This girl does not care, she is selfish and it sounds like her and your daughter could be sisters. This is just the tip of the iceburg, they had this girl set up in her own home even, and she blew that, her bf and her tore up the house getting into fights, once it was ruined they wanted to move, so my friend sold it and gave them the money (as it was the daughters right to have this money, rolling eyes here) well that money was gone inside of a month, I think they are into drugs which is really sad as she is pregnant with her third child.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 2:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thinking much clearer now and much calmer, I am amazed at the "blame game" that goes on. They don't get what they want; we are the ones who are responsible for the messes they create, in their minds only.

In one of my daughter's last emails to me, she blamed me for everything. I was responsible for her husband's credit card bills, her not getting a paycheck until January, her children not getting Christmas gifts, her rent being raised; the two cars being inoperable, waiting until the last minute to find a place to live; the list went on and on. Not once did it dawn on her that she and her husband are the grown-ups here, responsible for themselves and their families.

I was getting sick from the stress. Could I continue with the relationship that my daughter and I had? I've had time to think, and now realize that we never had a relationship. It was give, give, give on my part and take, take, take on hers. That is not a relationship.

I have not heard from her. Once I told her that I was no longer going to bail her and her husband out of their "emergencies", the communication stopped. And that's okay; I need a break from the insanity.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 5:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Guess what? I am in almost the same spot. The only thing different is myt daughter did take make my grandkids away. She got mad because I would not pay for her divorce. She does not know how to manage her money and just spends it on junk. Toys, animals, whatever. When she asks for money, I say for what, she says to pay bills. Her husband makes a very good salary. He was so disgusted with her he asked for a divorce. I don't blame him. She manipulates everyone. She is never wrong and has to have the last word. After 35 yers of her big mouth I put my foot down. She asked for $5,000. I said no. I told her to give me your bills and I will pay them. I would not give her cash. I offered my heart andf home to her and my granddaughters. She insulted me and said why would I want to do that? She stopped calling me and told lies to my other daughter. Now I don't see them. She was mad I would not give her money. I feel like someone died. I miss my grandkids so much. I sometimes say to myself I should of given her the money. I just could not do it anymore. I was ready for a nervous breakdown. When my DH and I called to take them out, they said they had issues with us and they told our grandkids we were not nice people. I just about raised all of them. How could kids treat good parents this way. I think I gave to much of myself. I wish I could help you. I know how you feel. It's seven months now. Good luck. I guess the parent is always wrong.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2007 at 11:16AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

elephantlover, My situation is different from charro's in that I wasn't rejected over my having said no to something. I was rejected after voicing an expectation of the relationship being reciprocal which led to an argument which led to my being rejected. But the feeling of being in a no-win situation is probably the same.

But then living a life where you are being blackmailed to do what someone else wants you to do is miserable. Being extorted because you love someone is miserable.

At some point most reasonable people say no to something. To have rejection held over your head as a threat and a punishment is repugnant. Chances are that anyone who uses that as a threat is going to find a reason to carry it out some day, no matter how many concessiona have been made in the past.

I feel so badly for you and everyone who has had their grandchildren used as pawns in this way.

Here is a link that might be useful: Estrangements: The Website

    Bookmark   December 2, 2007 at 1:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"How could kids treat good parents this way. I think I gave to much of myself". I don't know how many times I have said those same things to myself, elephantlover.

It is heartbreaking, especially when, as imaginny said, the grandchildren are "used as pawns".

Like you, my health has suffered because of all the stress. If I would have let this continue, I really feel like I was headed for a heart attack or stroke. Although life has been more peaceful these few days, I still cannot relax. Don't know how to anymore.

My grandchildren only knew me as the grandma who gave gifts. I would also send them little cards and notes telling them that I love them but my daughter always forgot to open them or read them to the children. These children know nothing about me which is sad. Growing up, I adored my grandparents, and loved to hear their stories. I guess my function in my daughter's eyes was just for the material things. I mourn the relationship that we never had.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2007 at 4:51PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"My grandchildren only knew me as the grandma who gave gifts"

"I mourn the relationship that we never had."

My brother went through, & still is going through, the same thing.

Although he paid child support & spent all his "extra" money on his children & spent all the time he was allowed with his children, his ex & her parents taught the children that he had abandoned them, that he didn't care, that he would hurt them, etc.

He never once took up for himself, afraid that if he contradicted the ex & her family, they'd brainwash the children even more or they'd refuse to let him see them at all, & my brother couldn't afford to go back to court.

He always said that the children would grow up & realize the truth, that he'd always been there, etc.

This past autumn, when they found out that he had gotten a small, badly-needed insurance settlement, the children emailed him that he should give it to their grandfather, because "he raised us when you wouldn't, he gave up everything for us".

They believe what they were told instead of what they experienced;
they believe he abandoned them *even though he was there*.
they believe he didn't support them *even though he paid child support & spent all his money on them*.

(His 2nd wife just recently told me that the first gift she bought him was a pair of shoes; he had literally stuffed cardboard into the soles of his old shoes so he'd have enough money to take the children to the skating rink that next week-end.)

The final straw was when the older one sent him an email that said something like "I need to know what you're going to do about that money. Take some time & think about your answer, because it will determine whether we have a relationship in the future."

My brother was crushed;
he realized then that he never had had the relationship with his children that he thought he had had.
He came close to giving in, but finally he told me that he just couldn't bear to continue to submit to emotional blackmail.

I hope that one day they'll realize what really went on & come back to their father, & I hope your grandchildren do as well.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2007 at 3:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

sylviatexas, Reading your brother's story makes me feel so very sad.

Some people apparently don't have a clue what love is.


Here is a link that might be useful: Estrangements: The Website

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 10:20AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

sylviatexas, my heart goes out to you and your brother. His kindness was overwhelming. How children could be that cruel is beyond me.

I fear that my grandchildren will never know about me either.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 10:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My sympathies to all of you in these sad situations. Sure makes me appreciate my family and how lucky we are -- at least for now ... (who knows who my kidz will bring home).

This is practically off topic, because I am NOT suggesting Charro give or loan her daughter the money. But I want to mention that whenever you loan major money to a friend or relative, no matter how good the relationship or your trust that they will repay, execute a written note with some sort of interest, even very small. I don't suggest this as leverage or to make them acknowledge it's a loan, not a gift -- rather, if for any reason they do not or CANNOT pay it back, you will be able to write it off as an unpaid loan on your income tax return. I have done this when loaning money to close friends and family that I know would saw off a leg before stiffing me, and my mom does this with me, too; it is always clearly understood that it is not a matter of distrust, just getting a documentary record for the IRS in case the borrower is in an accident or something and cannot repay.

There is another reason, too, even if you totally trust the borrower -- you never know who else has a claim on their money/estate. Once my parents had loaned money to a nephew, who never would have cheated them -- but he died. They weren't going to ask his widow for repayment, but then they learned that (a) she had gotten $1,000,000 in insurance, and (b) she was going around at the funeral complaining that his family had never helped them, ever. When they asked when they could expect repayment, her attorney replied that she said (not withstanding (b), above) that the money had been a gift, not a loan. Good thing they had that note! They sent a copy to her attorney, and a check came in return mail.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2007 at 11:25AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
parents of estranged adult children
I too have been where all of you are. I am so happy...
College Tuition Demand Upheld in Court
Surprised I hadn't seen anyone post about this yet,...
Abusive Adult Children
I dont know how much more I can take. I have a 30 yo...
Normal Behaviour?
I'll keep this short... is it normal that 10 year olds...
Mothers of estranged children....part II
I thought it might ease the posting if I restarted...
Sponsored Products
Beige 'Grandma Mother Daughter' Frame
$6.49 | zulily
Sumak Light Blue and Multi-Colored Rectangular: 5 Ft. x 8 Ft. Rug
$300.95 | Bellacor
Safavieh Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Safavieh Rugs Sumak Brown/Gold 6 ft. x 9 ft.
Home Depot
Four Leopard-Print Napkins - BLUE
$75.00 | Horchow
Sumak Rust Rectangular: 8 Ft. x 10 Ft. Rug
$600.95 | Bellacor
Safavieh Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Safavieh Rugs Sumak Grey 3 ft. x 5 ft.
Home Depot
Room Magic Zoo 4 U Window Valance - RM14-ZU
$36.99 | Hayneedle
Littlest Sailor Personalized Framed Wall Decor - 18W x 24H in. - WAL-NKS-I-F
$99.99 | Hayneedle
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™