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Brother fleecing our elderly parents

(9 Posts)
scattermummy Sat 18-Jun-11 21:35:27

I am no4 of four and db is 43. He has a small mortgage and one ds.
He has a good job but works for himself and always seems to be short. My parents while not poor ,live on a pension and a private small pension. They have some savings in various pots ,but not loads.I don't know how much ,but I estimate between ten and thirty k. This has to last them. My parents are the most generous selfless people you could ever meet.They have always given ten percent of their earnings to charity,even though we were always a bit short.We lived in a big old house,all had music lessons, holidays in Scotland,old car ect. All in all a typical middle class frugalish lifestyle which was quite lovely.
He married a Canadian and is moving there in July,however,mum has told me about frequent requests for money in recent times.
Some examples.,his wife was missing her parents and typically kind of my mum,felt sorry for her and sent her 5Oo pounds so she could fly home to visit parents. She never went but did buy a laptop with the money.
He borrowed money for a tax bill because he had not put money aside.
She gave him the money to apply for a visa recently.He borrowed money off dad last month.Mum said dad gave it too him. He rang this week to borrow £1200 for flights and said they would ask her parents for the same.
I am so angry because he knows that they never say no.She told me in confidence and will have to cash some money in to get it. They said they will pay it back when they sell their house,but I doubt they will ever see it again.
I know that it is none of my business.please don't think that I am jealous because I know that she would give it to me if I asked too.I just feel that they are taking advantage as they know the answer will be yes.
I'm sure that when they are in Canada they will then be tapping money off them for flights back to visits them,which mum will feel obliged if she wants to see her DBS.
I can't say anything to db as I would hate to cause a rift between them but I hate seeing them taken advantage Of
When they visit they let her pay for everything,although she does offer,I cringe as she spends a fortune on rounds in cafes and entry fees as they stand behind her in the queue.
I know that this is because she has enabled this behaviour with her generosity
I don't wNt to be one of these people bitter and falling out with siblings but I feel so cross.Any advice would be gratefully received

Pumpernickel10 Sat 18-Jun-11 21:38:22

You can't do much if your parents are willing to give him the money, they need to tighten the purse strings.

troisgarcons Sat 18-Jun-11 21:45:52

Some people just never grow up and seem to like to remain the child forever. Your parents are facilitating this behaviour. However, some people are more adept at managing money than others. Plus parents, well, you are a parent for life aren't you?

We have childless friends who have two god daughters and have "adopted" us as well. The god daughters "ponce" all the time. Every time they ponce we gat a cheque 'to make it fair' [hmmm]

Back to your OP - really your parents shouldnt discuss your brothers financial mess with you - money always causes trouble. Siblings always havea pecking order and one always feels aggrieved another has more money/attention/is the favoured one etc etc

TidyDancer Sat 18-Jun-11 21:48:14

It's tough really, because any stand against your brother's disgraceful behaviour absolutely has to come from your parents. It's meaningless if it comes from you and they don't carry through on it. Not to mention that you will cause an almighty rift in the family if they are seen to be being controlled by you (even if you have the best intentions, which I'm sure you do).

I suspect you need to chip away at your parents on this one, rather than 'confronting' them about what your brother is doing. They need to slowly change their attitude towards him, so they can stop him getting used to the money.

Do they know about the laptop? That was fucking awful of your SIL. What a nasty piece of work she sounds. I take it she didn't pay the money back?

SugarPasteFrog Sat 18-Jun-11 21:56:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lookingfoxy Sat 18-Jun-11 21:57:29

Really its down to your parents to say no.
Ex and I borrowed largish sums off his parents (£500 up to £1200) when we needed it (all car related problems and we used them for work), but never without a firm agreement in place to pay it back at £100 to £200 a month.
I felt sometimes as if we were using them and felt awful, but really grateful they were able to help.
I feel as if your brother and sil are taking the piss, however it really is not for you to say, but the fact that your mother is confiding in you smacks of that she thinks they're taking the piss as well and could have been guaging (sp) your reaction to see whether she is right or not.

lookingfoxy Sat 18-Jun-11 21:58:42

Oh and ex could have managed his money better btw, but if we borrowed money and it hadn't been needed it would have went straight back without a doubt, not spent on a bloody laptop.

scattermummy Sat 18-Jun-11 22:11:35

Tidy dancer. ,mum told me about the laptop so she does know.Part of the reason I feel cross is that they don't even bother sending birthday cards to her.I am not jealous as I said because she would do the same for me.I will not say anything to him as I don't want to make trouble , I will just seethe,but I find it hard to watch.

poppyknot Sat 18-Jun-11 22:18:00

I was reading a related problem this moring in the Guardian (it often seems to be a son and his wife.....). It is very sad that grown up offspring seem driven to treat thier parents as a constant source of money regardless of the means.
Hope this helps in some way...

Guardian personal effects

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