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To not get why she can't stand on her own two feet?

125 replies

EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:10

Hey, this is about my SiL and how she quite clearly is taking advantage of me, Dh, and the family and I just want other's opinions as I might be overreacting. Let me just say from the off that I do like my SiL but in small doses, don't get me wrong she's a nice person I guess and she loves mine dh's three children to bits but she's a nightmare too.

She is a single parent to three children after a string of failed relationships over the years. Her kids are 11, 10 and 8, she doesn't work but is currently training to be a teaching assistant at college. She relies on benefits as her main income and gets around £900 a month in CSA from her children's fathers (they all have different dads). Now I'm not benefit bashing before anyone starts, I'm simply telling you how things are with her.

As she's been single for years she has come to rely heavily on my MiL, FiL and my other SiL for help with her kids and she regularly (I'm talking every week) asks to borrow money. She has now started to ask me and dh to lend her money and quite frankly I'm gettin sick of it.

She is not organised in the slightest when it comes to her life ie money, paying bills on time, meeting up at a pre are fed time, she's always late or doesn't show when we've made plans and the last few times my kids have stayed over at hers (they for stay often) they've come home saying they're starving and that there was no food in the house. As well as the asking to borrow money she is also asking for us to drive her places, and this too is becoming rather a regular occutance and just because me and dh have a car each (we have no choice not to as we both work) she thinks it's automatically a given that we'll chauffeur her about and it's not on IMO.

She is frequently asking for me and dh to lend her £20 here and there because she "forgot" a certain bill hadn't gone out and she'd spent all her money. She has text the other day asking can I lend her money for the bus fair to college but I know she has a monthly bus pass! Then she's making plans to come up to ours to have a BBQ and a few drinks or come round for a family gathering ie birthdays and she cancels saying she can't afford the taxi fare there and back, well I'm growing a little sick of it.

She thinks the whole world revolves around her and whilst usually I'll do anything to help anyone I'm sick of bailing her out. She says she has no money but then spends money on wine and having her hair done, manicures etc but her cuboards are always empty. How do you think I should deal with this as if she carried on asking for "favours" in this entitled and expectant sort of mannor then I'm going to snap.

OP posts:

FenellaFellorick · 03/08/2015 18:13

I'd start saying no.

Sorry, I can't afford to keep subbing you. You can download a budget tool that will help you keep track.

Let her get mardy if she wants to.

There's only so long people can keep enabling her. If everyone stops then she will have to step up. Really it's about whether or not people are willing to let her suffer the consequences of her poor choices in order for her to grow up a bit.


ThinkIveBeenHacked · 03/08/2015 18:13

Stop loaning. Stop facilitating her. She is who she is and she may well just be shit with money. You dont have to bail her out.

Good on her folks for helping her out with the kids - three is bloody hard, especially when you are on your own. £900pcm doesnt stretch far between an adult and three growing kids.


youareallbonkers · 03/08/2015 18:17

You have to train to be teaching assistant?? Csa payments aren't benefits, don't know why you think they are?


FirstWeTakeManhattan · 03/08/2015 18:17

Say no to her then.

Don't underestimate how much she's juggling. Life probably isn't a picnic for her.

I didn't like the '(they all have different dads)' bit, OP.


EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:18

She doesn't just get £900 though, she gets more in benefits each month than me dh earns and almost as much as what we earn together! She also get free schools dinners where as it costs us £140 per month. And I know I've got a partner but i also have three children plus we both work and we get no help from family at all, only very rarely when they'll sleep over at SiL's.

OP posts:

EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:20

Oh don't start please, I was merely giving you the best possible over view I could of her situation so mentioning the fact she gets three lots of CSA (which obviously means three different fathers) is me doing just that.

OP posts:

MythicalKings · 03/08/2015 18:21

Just stop doing it. She'll sulk but don't give in.


FirstWeTakeManhattan · 03/08/2015 18:22

I didn't 'start.' I said that I didn't like it, whilst offering my reply to your dilemma.


KateSpade · 03/08/2015 18:24

Sounds just like someone I know, you realise if you say no to lending her money I.e to get somewhere/taxi fare to BBQ/whatever, she'll have magically found the money.

My friend won't ever lend her sister money. Ever & this always happens everytime. Especially for nights out!


FundamentalistQuaker · 03/08/2015 18:24

The real issue is her inability to control her impulse to spend and to set realistic financial priorities. That would cause problems whatever her income was. A subsidiary issue is emotional blackmail/taking you and your help for granted.

Just tell her ( as kindly as you can manage) that she can't go on like this and has to get herself sorted. That handing over cash and giving lifts is just feeding the problem so you won't do it any more except in emergencies and occasionally for the children.

My father stopped me lending to a relative for this reason. He said as long as help from me was available this person would not grow up and get organised, and he was right.

In your SIL's case I suspect she will need more structured help, like courses on how to budget etc. You could find one and offer to pay for that, if you wanted.


EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:25

Well I've not said yes this time but I've said no a few other times too yet she still keeps asking. She genuinely thinks that just becasuse me and dh both work that we are minted but nothing could be further from the truth. It costs us over £700 each month to pay for our cars (finance, petrol, insurance) alone plus we have a high rent where as she has no car to pay for and pays only £200 a month towards her £880 rent!

OP posts:

FuckOffPeppa · 03/08/2015 18:25

Just say no. The rest doesn't matter.

Have you asked family to help with your dc or are you waiting for them to offer?


TondelayoSchwarzkopf · 03/08/2015 18:25

TLDR version.
AIBU to stop lending my SIL money? For context, it is very important that you know her children have different fathers.


EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:28

So what if I stated that her children have different fathers, they do! so why shouldn't I mention it?.....

OP posts:

RamblingRosieLee · 03/08/2015 18:28

Hi Op sounds like something far more serious than you being pissed off over being asked for money going on.

Sounds like she is really really struggling, why arn't you or your DH her bro - offering her real help with her actual life?

Doesn't it worry you - her cupboards are bare? Is there substance abuse? How old is she?

Sounds extremely worrying to me - for the childrens sake, their life sounds chaotic which is not so bad, but no food worries me, she doesnt even feed your DC when they go there.

I would forget about 20 piddling quid, forget about her asking for child care and start asking questions - WHY are the cupboards bare WHY does she have no money and perhaps get your DH to talk serisouly with other family members whether she is actually OK or severally struggling and do her children need far more support than they are getting now?


RamblingRosieLee · 03/08/2015 18:30

The real issue is her inability to control her impulse to spend and to set realistic financial priorities

Her real issue could be that she hates her life, is being dis engaged from her DC and just wants to go out and enjoy herself.

We dont know - what the real issue is - but something serious is going on here and I think op is missing the point.


RJnomore · 03/08/2015 18:31

I think it does matter its three seperate lots of maintenance - is it not 15% for one child, 20 % for 2 Erc - so 3 people paying for one child each would pay 15% of all of their income which is going to be more than 25% or whatever of one persons?

So ops just pointing out why there's a lot of maintenance there I think.


EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:34

Why aren't I helping?......because I have three children of my own, I work, oh and my dd age 6 is autistic! I have a lot to deal with daily but I offer to help when I can and I always have her kids over for sleepovers in the holidays.

As for he cupboards being bare, my kids were probably over exaggerating, they're used to put kitchen being it for bursting and all of my SiL's kids are of a healthy weight so they're not malnourished or anything. I genuinely don't think that my SiL is struggling, not one bit, she just has her priorities all wrong and is used to being bailed out by mummy and daddy.

OP posts:

EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:35

Sorry for the typos, I'm typing as I'm cooking.

OP posts:

Getthewonderwebout · 03/08/2015 18:35

Don't lend to her then. And thank your lucky stars you aren't in her situation.


RamblingRosieLee · 03/08/2015 18:38

No you dont think she is struggling financially and you feel bitter about it.

But do you think it sounds like a happy family situation? A lone parent with three from different fathers, who wants to go out all the time?

It sounds like she is struggling and I think you should get your DH her brother, to find out if she is actually OK.

You seem to think she is living some life of riley? What you don't seem to understand is, she actually sounds massively unhappy and wants to escape her life.


The5DayChicken · 03/08/2015 18:39

"Sorry SIL, we can't afford it I'm afraid. I can help you work out a budget if you're struggling though? to work out how to spend the money that you get from your DC's 3 different dads"

It's quite a simple thing to say no to really. And I agree with PP that the number of dads is completely irrelevant when you'd already told us how much maintenance she gets.


EvaU · 03/08/2015 18:40

Thank my lucky stars......seriously? She has more money than we do, she has more support and help with her kids than we do, her sitsution is not bad, she'd just rather spend her money on herself than on her kids and then expects us to bail her out. Well as person who puts her dc first and makes sure the cupboards and fridge is full before spending a penny on myself I'm getting rather pissed off at being asked to lend her money.

OP posts:

Happy36 · 03/08/2015 18:40

You have to say no.

If she is a friend, as well as a SIL, offer to help her manage her finances. If she isn´t, perhaps your husband could offer instead? Or, just say no. She is an adult and presumably has others she could ask to help her get organised, if she wants to.

For your children coming home hungry, perhaps it would be better if you feed them before they go round, or offer to send them with food (thanks so much for having them to play, shall I make a shepherd´s pie for you all to save you having to cook as well?) Or offer to have her children play at your house instead.


Wombat22 · 03/08/2015 18:40

and the last few times my kids have stayed over at hers (they for stay often) they've come home saying they're starving and that there was no food in the house.

Perhaps she's asking you for money as she feels that you should contribute if your DC are staying so often?

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