Helping family with money is great, but you will draw a line somewhere. A Redditor approached a popular forum and asked, “Am I abusing my younger brother financially?”
We want to know what you think about this. Here is the entire story:
The Original Poster (OP) is a 26-year-old female who resides with her 28-year-old husband, their 1-year-old infant daughter, and her 18-year-old younger brother in his final year of high school. Additionally, OP is currently 30 weeks pregnant.
OP’s parents went through a divorce, and both moved away from the school district. After completing high school, the younger brother received grants and intends to pursue his education at a nearby community college.
OP, her husband, and her younger brother all hold jobs, with OP working part-time and the husband and brother working full-time. The younger brother contributed $600 per month towards all bills, while the rest of the expenses were covered by OP and her spouse. In addition to the $600 monthly, the brother contributed towards groceries and assisted with additional expenses if they fell short.
He used to save a portion of his income from each paycheck to cover any college expenses not covered by his grant. Although he had reportedly used (his friends told OP) some of those savings to assist his sister and her husband in the past, he did not request repayment from them. OP and her husband were saving for their second child and did not dip into for anything else.
The younger brother, OP, and her husband all receive bi-weekly pay, with the brother’s income coming in one week and the spouse’s and OP’s paycheck coming in the next. As the brother did not have his car, he used OP’s car and was required to contribute to gas expenses. He contributed approximately $300 towards groceries, $600 towards bills, and at least $200 towards gas per month, which amounts to a monthly contribution of $1,100.
Additionally, he assisted with purchasing items for the baby if OP ran out during the week that neither she nor her husband received payment.
OP’s parents and her brother’s friends have accused her of being financially abusive towards her younger brother due to this arrangement, even though he has not raised any concerns himself.
What Happened Next?
OP says that upon writing this post, she understood why her parents and the brother’s friends believed they were financially abusive towards the younger brother.
Despite his efforts to save for college, he must contribute $1,100 towards monthly living expenses, which could be considered a substantial amount. While they occasionally lend him money when he requests it, OP feels that this may be why he has yet to speak up about his concerns.
Furthermore, according to OP, her brother may be hoping that the grants he receives will cover all of his college expenses, which may alleviate some of his financial burdens.
What Is OP Thinking?
OP is considering contributing a portion of their baby fund toward the younger brother’s college fund to assist him. With around $6,000 saved, she is contemplating adding a month’s living expenses to his savings or informing him that they will cover his costs for the first month of college.
OP is reflecting on accusations of financial abuse from her parents and brother’s friends regarding the living arrangements with her younger brother. She is considering contributing to his college fund to rectify the situation and is open to feedback and suggestions from the audience.
Redditors gave a tonne of it, but what happened next will shock you.
What Happened Next?
OP and her husband spoke to the brother. They decided that the brother would now pay $500 a month alongside gas and phone bill. If he decides to eat out, he will pay for it. He also have to pay for his snacks and drinks.
OP clarifies “When I say snacks and drinks I mean junk foods and soda, my husband and I don’t really go for junk food and soda but we constantly have juice, tea, and cool aid around for him to drink if he doesn’t want water so if he wants soda and junk foods he needs to start shopping for himself.”
Besides this, he decided to get a cat (for which he is responsible financially). OP says “I feel like I caved and let him have the cat as an apology” In short, he got a cat, he pays 500$ plus gas and phone bill.
OP knew she was financially abusing her 18 year brother. Was it right for OP to still charge him $500? Was it inappropriate for OP to not offer what she promised before (adding funds to his college account and covering his first month expenses)? What are your thoughts?
This article was originally published on Mrs. Daaku Studio.