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I'm BU but I'm pissed off my parents(17 Posts)
First of all, I know I'm BU but I need to get this off my chest.
My parents treat me and my siblings very differently whilst at the same time being adamant that they've always treated, and continue to treat, us all exactly the same.
Me and my brother are both having work done on our houses. My dad's a builder. Last year my brother wanted his garage converted into a second reception room and asked my dad to do it. My dad went to my brothers, which is about three hours drive away, every weekend for about three months to get this done.
I wanted the same thing done with a building in my back yard. Telling my dad about these plans he immediately said 'I would do it but you're too far away'. I'm about a four hour drive away. For the last six months I've been scrambling around for a builder who can and wants to do it with no luck and I'm looking at paying about £6,000 for the work.
Then earlier this year my brother decided he wanted a WC put in his downstairs of his house. So he asked my dad to dig out a new drain. My dad said yes. He went to my brothers for a weekend and dug out about 6 feet of earth and laid a new drain.
I want the old outside toilet reconnecting which means laying a new drain. My dad's reply to me telling him my plans was 'Ah, that shouldn't cost you too much money'.
I am very isolated where I live. Me and DH both commute to work so we don't actually know many people in the city we live in. We have no family around us. DB, on the other hand, has his wife's family all within spitting distance.
I know I'm BU. I know my mum and dad can treat their kids however they want and, of course, are under no obligation to help us with anything. In fact, I wish my parents would stop doing stuff for my DB and Dsis because I think they take the piss. But it feels so unfair that I'm going to be shelling out about £6,000-£7,000 to builders that I don't know for work on my house which my brother got done for free. All at the same time as my parents insisting that they treat us all the same.
Sorry. I don't have a question. I know I sound like a sulky entitled twat. I'm not. I'm just upset and annoyed and needed to vent.
I have no advice but just wanted to say that I know exactly how you feel. There's a long history of this in my family going back years...my parents paid my brothers rent for him through uni, but not mine, they gave him 10k for a deposit on a house, but not me, they paid for his wedding, but not mine etc etc etc
Of course it's their right to spend as they see fit, but it doesn't stop it being very hurtful.
I would have to say something. While it might be their 'right' to do as they please, it is actually very bad parenting (and the act of parenting doesn't stop imo when the kids hit 18). I wouldn't be able to let it lie when they come out with guff about treating you both the same - if they are going to favour one child over the other I would at least make them own that behaviour. Might give them pause for thought.
Jenny and Hope Thanks for your responses.
I have pointed it out to them. There's always a reason why I'm BU and they're absolutely in the right. Their response about the building work is that (a) I'm 1 hour further away than my brother, (b) my brother hasn't got as much money as me and (c) I don't know enough local tradesmen to get issues fixed if they come up when my dad's doing the work.
My response is (a) 1 hour won't kill you, (b) but I won't be well-off once I've paid for all the bloody building work, plus we're not actually that well-off, we're just not wasteful or showy and (c) if DB knows so many tradesmen around by him then why does he need you to do the fucking building work?
It's not that I want them to do stuff for me. I don't. My dad's 60. He should be slowing down. My DB and Dsis shouldn't be asking him for stuff all the time. But they do, and he says yes. But when I need something he won't do it yet constantly protests that they treat us all equally.
Well YANBU but you are also not playing it well. Instead of, 'it's only another bloody hour' ( and an eight hour round trip plus working all weekend is a big ask of anyone, more so at 60), how about, 'Dad, I'm desperate and don't like asking but is there any way you could help us?'
My dad was a builder and lives a long way away. He would come for a week or so and would want my dh to take time off to help him. We would line up all the materials etc and really look after him. Depending on the size and length we also paid him but less than the going rate.
Appeal to his better nature and explain how difficult things are it's far more likely to work than whinging.
Also, does your brother help him or treat him in a way that encourages him to help? Consider it.
There's always a reason I'm BU too! The rent at uni was because my brother didn't get a part time job but I did, the house deposit was because my household income is higher than his (I have no idea how my parents would know this...I've never told them what my household income is!!) The wedding was because they couldn't afford it at the time for me (despite the fact they were both working full time when I got married but had both retired before my brother got down the aisle )
There's always a reason.
I sympathise op, my two sisters always take precedence, they're younger than me.
When I had the first dgc my DM categorically told me never to ask her to look after dd; both my sisters' dcs were there day and overnight from a very early age.
I now live15 miles from my DPs, in 20 years they visited once; in our first home 8 miles from them they came three times in 20 years (their excuse was it was 'too far' and they declined our offers to collect them wtf!
I've given up now but guess who gets the calls for help etc?
I've just found out they've given (not lent) huge sums of ££ to both of them (apparently because I worked full time for less than £15k a year I didn't need the money).
One's married to a near-millionaire, the other's fond of bragging about what she's recently bought (£30k car anyone?)
Maybe your dad has a mental tolerance for long drives? I know I would do 3 hours but not 4. Also maybe your DB and DSis are just more needy than you? Would you like to live closer to your DPs?
I stopped asking. It is far, far easier to manage your own expectations when they are zero.
Sorry, but sometimes people are crap... and that includes parents!
It's an awful thing to say/think but it's behaviours like this that's made me very low contact/non help with my 'close' family.
It's not a tit for tat thing. It's a 'this is how much/little you value me ' thing - or not!
You honestly expect your dad to do an 8 hour return trip for weeks on end and do your building work for free? Yes, your brother is taking the piss, but surely it is one thing to appreciate that and other to take the piss yourself? Find a builder and pay someone.
Sometimes fathers and sons like working together on these projects. Does your db muck in during the building work so something they can bond together over? Maybe they have a good working thing going that your df enjoys. My df would have been like that with my dbs. I was glad to see them happy together.
I would be far happier to be independent. I have no idea what my parents did or didn't do for my siblings. Stop looking at your db and just have your own relationship with your dad. Maybe your sense of entitlement puts him off doing it. Complaining would drive me the other way.
June, it is impossible to just focus on her own relationship with her dad - they don't exist in a vacuum so of course the relationship will be coloured by how her parents are with her db. It is hard to feel positive when your parents constantly demonstrate how much they favour your sibling. I am not seeing a sense of entitlement in the OP. I only see someone wanting equal and fair treatment and the same demonstration of love that they show her db.
BeenThere No I absolutely don't expect my dad to do a massive round trip to build our extension or do work in our house. I'm an adult. I'm independent. I can pay someone. What fucks me off is that DM and DDad are always insistent that they treat us all equally yet when DB and me need exactly the same thing doing, he doesn't hesitate to go to DB's but categorically states he won't help me. It's not the building work, it's not the roundtrip, it's the hippocracy that pisses me right off.
I don't complain to him. I've never asked because that's dickish and entitled. When I was just talking through plans with him, he said he wouldn't do because it was too far before I'd even thought about asking for his help. When he, at another time, said something about treating us all equally, I pointed out the inequality that he went without hesitation to DB's but won't help me and asked how he thought that was equal. As I said, there's always a reason.
June DB helps where he can as I would if my dad was working here.
Matilda Of course we'd line up all materials and make sure everything was great when he was here. We always look after them very well when they come here. We'd said that if they did do some work for us, we'd pay for a holiday for them (we said that to each other, not to them). DB bought them a curry for their work on his house
And yet I bet you'll be the one they'll expect help from when they're older (as the daughter).
Don't get me wrong, I expect to provide care for my mum when she is older. But then she has sought to treat all her children equally.
It doesn't matter if you are further away or better off - they are still not treating their children equally and shouldn't claim that they are. They would be better off saying that they treat each child according to their needs (but thereby lies a completely different argument).
I am aware that my older child has had more financial help from me in recent years and was hoping to make it up to my younger one, but he has only got his act together in terms of property etc and needing money in the last year when I am now semi-retired and have much less. I will still do what I can but it irks me. I acted in the way I thought best at the time though and would hate to think it might be thrown back at me some time in the future.
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