Thursday, November 20, 2008

Frustrated

When I was young, about 4, my parents took my older sister and moved away to make more money and build a better life for us. Being so young, I was left to be raised by my aunt, who was very young at the time, and my grandparents. I love her and her husband like they are my parents. It’s a big long story. Let’s just say, my aunt gave up a lot for my mother and our family picking up the slack in raising me and caring for my aging grandparents. I had always expected that one day I will help them out financially.

My aunt has decided to go back to school. Something that I support fully and am willing to help in any way I can.

Yesterday, my mom asked me how long I've been working. Strange question because she knows exactly how long I've been working. Then she said I must have saved up a lot of money while working. Again, totally weird question because she sees how hard I work and save.

I told her to get to the point. Apparently my aunt has asked to borrow some money for all the expenses while she goes back to school. Mum wants me to lend it to her and not tell anyone, especially dad.

I was super annoyed. Not at lending my aunt money, but at all of mom's little games. I already know about the lying and manipulating that goes on between mum and dad when it comes to money and their families. I gave up trying to change that. What I hate is that both of them constantly put me in the middle and use me to hide things each other.

Anyway, I figured it's more important to help my aunt, so I let the whole hiding it from dad thing go.

I asked how much. She wouldn't say. Then she said expenses are about $2K a month. My aunt is going back to school for 8 months, which is $16K all together. I said how about $18K so she has a little room. Mom said:"What? Come on, you can spare $20K". I think she already had a number in mind and just wanted to manipulate me into it. When is she going to learn that I see through all her little games? I'm not doing this because she succeed in manipulating me. I'm doing this because I love my aunt.

Also, it hurts me how easily she gives away my money. I didn't even get a chance to offer it. Think of all the things I have to do to save that $20K. I guess she doesn't think it's a big deal because dad has always been generous with me and she would probably convince him to give me that money when I need it (for down payment or a car). But $20K I saved up is no strings attached money. $20K from Mom and Dad comes with strings, which she will be perfectly happy to pull.

I know it sounds bad, but every time I go through this it brings me down for a week. Here are my parents, who have been adults for many decades, why can't they just be honest and talk about things like normal people?

Oh, when I told her I will write a cheque for her to send to my aunt, she hm'd and ha'd and said to wait. It's typical behavior. She probably another little plan, which she won't tell me. It hurts my head to think what it might be. I'll just make sure the money's ready.

7 comments:

An ostrich named Sam said...

Call your Aunt directly and offer her the money, whether you pay tuition or rent or something like that... Your being played as a pawn in a game only know to your mother.... Run don't walk... You have every right to be frustrated but don't let her bring you down!

Anonymous said...

I would suggest handing out the cheque directly to your aunt, without bringing your Mom into the picture. You should let your Aunt know that you love and want to help support her choices, not because your Mom asked you to, but because you've always wanted to.

this way, you Aunt will know you apreciate all that she's done and love her truly. And no matter how many games your Mom tries to play with you, she'll get the picture you couldn't care any less to be part of her plans. Just my two cents!

- Tina

nancy (aka money coach) said...

Oh, I am so sorry to hear how you are being put in the middle. That is simply not right, for you, and I'm glad you correctly perceive it for the manipulation it is.

If you are savvy enough to have saved that much, a) Good for you! and b) Give yourself FULL PERMISSION to decide how YOU want to handle the situation, on your own, regardless of your parents. You were thinking of helping anyways, I think? Even if not, could you consider just going directly to your aunt, and making an arrangement directly with her? She may not be happy about the way your parents (your mom esp) are handling things in any case. You and your aunt are close. She would like funds for a worthy cause. You may - or may not- be willing to provide. I honestly think that since it's YOUR money involved ONLY YOU should be involved in how you handle this.

Having said that, as an outsider, I know there may be many more implications (eg. family dynamics) to consider. I'm sure you'll do what, in the end, is most empowering to you.

Again, huge congrats on being a saver, and having a generous spirit. The world needs more people like you.

Money Minder said...

Wow.

I agree with Nancy. It's your money and you decide how to best help you Aunt. Would your Aunt be okay with the money coming directly from you or did she ask your Mom to keep her request quiet?

Kudos to you for seeing through all the family drama and keeping focussed on the main goal of supporting your Aunt.

You should be very proud of all your hard work and saving. I don't even know you and I'm proud of you. Keep it up!

Don't let the drama bring you down. If it makes you feel better, there is financial drama in every family.

Jackie said...

Money given shouldn't go through another individual in any case- ever. Reach out to your aunt directly.

Anonymous said...

Ditto, ditto, ditto!!!

As somebody else with a hugely manipulative mom / parents, I could not agree more.

At the end of the day, it's none of your mom's business. Cut out Mom the Middleman and speak directly with your aunt.

M

Fabulously Broke said...

I agree with the above commenters.

1. Hand the cheque to her or talk to her directly. Say "I heard you're going back to school and need help with expenses" or something along those lines.

2. Enough money games. Seriously.

3. And the whole thing of badgering you to give $20k when she said the expenses were $2000 a month? THat irks me a bit and I can't figure out why right now... maybe it's because you were going to pay the $2k a month anyway, but then she wanted you to "not be cheap" and add on a little extra?

I dunno. Am I reading too much into this?