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  #1  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:08 AM
TurdFerguson TurdFerguson is offline
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Looking for advice on greedy mother-in-law

This is sort of a lame pit rant, but I'm looking for some advice, so I'm putting it here.

My evil mother-in-law (EMIL) is trying to guilt trip us into giving her money. She doesn't give a rats ass about any of her kids except her jailbird son. She treats my wife like crap. I could tell stories about her greediness and selfishness, but I'll just focus on the situation at hand.

EMIL is in her late fifties and is a widow. She's living with a man whose house is paid off and pays for things such as utilities, groceries, etc. She is receiving my late FIL's pension and social security. She also works part time as a hospice nurse and receives the pay under the table.

FIL's father passed away last year, three years after FIL passed away. FIL had in his will to leave any money left to him by his father to my wife and her siblings. After about a year in probate court we received a check for $13,000 yesterday. We are thrilled to have this money because we are in a lot of debt.

A little background about us. My wife has a chronic illness that requires at least 3 doctors office visits per week, and we often have to go to the emergency room for some reason. She takes several medications, where the copays total about $200 a month. She is unable to work and has been applying for disability. I'm a software engineer with a good salary, but it's barely enough to keep up with medical bills and whatnot.

As much as I dislike EMIL, My wife dislikes her even more. They don't get along and my wife dreads any time that we have to see her. There are a number of reasons for this, but the big part of it is EMIL turned a blind eye to my wife being sexually abused for years as a child. My wife feels we owe her nothing.

Guilt Trip #1
Two of my sisters three siblings agreed to give $5000 to EMIL when they get their inheritance money. They agreed to this a few years ago. My wife was not in on the agreement. But EMIL assumed my wife was in on it. We explained last August that we never agreed to it and the money will help us wipe out much of our debt. At the time she seemed to accept it. A few weeks ago, when we got news we would soon be getting the money, EMIL blew a gasket when we reminded her that we are keeping all the money. She demanded that we pay her. My wife said no. EMIL says were screwing her over and putting her in the financial ruin.

Options:
- Pay her the $5000 and be done with it.
- Tell her to screw off and not pay a dime. (My wife's choice)
- Tell her we'll pay her if/when my wife receives her disability settlement. (My choice)

Guilt Trip #2
I was layed off in 10-2001 and again in 11-2002. My wife asked EMIL for some money to make ends meet during my periods of unemployment. IIRC, she had given us a total of $700. EMIL says we owe her $3000 for money that she had loaned us when I was out of work. 1) No way in hell did she give us that much. I'm certainly willing to entertain the possibility that it is more than $700, but $3000 ??? 2) She never said it was a loan at the time she gave us the money. Fine. We'll pay her what we owe her, but I want proof. I'm willing to admit that I should have kept track of how much she gave us, but I would have remembered $3000.

Options:
- Tell her as gently as possible that we would like to see copies of the cancelled checks. Then we will pay her immediately after.
- Tell her to screw off (Again, my wife favors this option)
- Send her $700 and tell her we want to see copies of the cancelled checks before we pay any more (My choice)

EMIL goes back and forth from demanding this money to pleading with us. We are considering just paying her the total of $8000 to get her off our backs, but we know it won't end there. She'll find other ways to take advantage of us. I don't pretend know her financial situation, but I think she has a car payment and that's about it. She spends money on things like excursions of riverboat casinos a few times a year and spent a week in Las Vegas last month. Her actions tell me she's not in dire straits.

So should we pay her? Demand proof on the “loan”? Forget her?
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  #2  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:27 AM
belladonna belladonna is offline
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Ugh, I agree 100% with your wife. Refuse to give in to her demands and forget she ever existed. She sounds positively vile. If you have the $ to pay back the loan than do so, but you are under NO obligation to toss money her way.

It would be different if she was barely making it, scraping by in a hovel with nothing in the cabinets but doggie chow. As it is, it sounds as if you and your wife are much more in need of the money. If your wife's grandfather had wanted his money to go to his ex-daughter-in-law (and really, how likely is that?) he would have listed her in his will.
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  #3  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:37 AM
DeadlyAccurate DeadlyAccurate is offline
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I cannot for the life of me see why you guys would have anything to do with this woman. Ever. She sounds like poison. Just because someone gave birth does not mean that person is a worthwhile human being.

For GT #1, I'd go with your wife's option. For GT #2, I'd go with option #1.

If your wife doesn't want to have anything to do with her mother, respect that.
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  #4  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:39 AM
CandidGamera CandidGamera is offline
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I'll ditto Deadly Accurate's view - if she did loan you money, it's important to pay it back, no matter what you think of her.. however, you are under no obligation to trust her regarding the amount.
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  #5  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:41 AM
Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor is online now
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Point out to her that if she keeps buggin' y'all for bread, that you can fink her out to the Man for cheatin' on her Social Security.

All fixed.

Now, my fee is $5000....
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  #6  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:46 AM
Lyllyan Lyllyan is offline
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Screw her. Don't give her anything and then change your phone number if you have to. Your wife does not owe her mother a damn thing. As long as there is no written agreement between wife and mother stating wife's intention of giving EMIL money, you should be in the clear. There will be flack from the siblings, but I think only because they will be jealous that wife stood up to EMIL.
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  #7  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:49 AM
FairyChatMom FairyChatMom is online now
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My votes:

$5K - no way. Ever.

Loan repay - yes, but only to the amount that can be proven to have been loaned. If my MIL was that evil, I'd have her calls blocked and move to some place she couldn't find me.
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  #8  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:57 AM
TurdFerguson TurdFerguson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
Point out to her that if she keeps buggin' y'all for bread, that you can fink her out to the Man for cheatin' on her Social Security.
She isn't getting her late husband's SS illegally. I believe she gets SS because she is widowed and her late husband was her only source of income. I could be wrong on this though as I'm not sure exactly how this works. Also, my wife just told me she does claim her income as a nurse when she does her taxes. Can't blackmail her.

And can't pay you your fee.
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  #9  
Old 04-27-2004, 10:58 AM
FriarTed FriarTed is offline
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Maybe, maybe, maybe repay the loan that can be proven.

Otherwise, t'hell wit'her!
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  #10  
Old 04-27-2004, 11:00 AM
TurdFerguson TurdFerguson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurdFerguson
Guilt Trip #1
Two of my sisters three siblings agreed ...
D'oh!

This should read "Two of my wife's three siblings...."
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  #11  
Old 04-27-2004, 11:10 AM
Pablito Pablito is offline
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What an amazing, manipulative, two-faced, EMIL from hell! Is there an option #4: "drop her off on a desolate, uncharted island and let her try to manipulate the coconut trees into making her a house"?

Your wife is the blood relative so I would be inclined to wholly endorse her options and not to look back.
That said, I do see some appeal for requiring the EMIL to provide documented proof about what $ she 'loaned' you, especially if you think you're likely to feel long-term guilt about not doing something. And this would send her the message that she will be held to standards and cannot expect to play these manipulative games anymore.
But ONLY go with this option if your wife is ok with it AND if your wife cares at all about continuing to have a relationship with EMIL.
If she doesn't, then telling EMIL to screw off in every case is the perfect way to eliminate this pestiferous weed from your garden and not be bothered by it again.Peace at last!
Having EMIL disown you and your wife as family members would be a true blessing.
Lastly, let me highlight something you've told us:
Quote:
We are considering just paying her the total of $8000 to get her off our backs, but we know it won't end there.
In fact, you probably also know that if you give her ANYTHING at all, she will continue to trot out these painful games to play you with. Stop being a player in her games.
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  #12  
Old 04-27-2004, 11:12 AM
DaToad DaToad is offline
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My $ 0.02:

Quote:
I don't pretend know her financial situation...Her actions tell me she's not in dire straits.
Her financial situation isn't your concern, but if she were in dire straits I think you would be well aware of it.

Do you give her the $5K "gift" ? No way. It's your money, not her's. Use it to buy down your debt.

Do you repay the $700.00? Indeed. It doesn't matter if she said it was a loan or not, you took it, you owe it. I would make it an even thousand, for her "kindness", trouble and interest. If she complains that you owe more, then ask for the cancelled checks.
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  #13  
Old 04-27-2004, 11:27 AM
DeVena DeVena is offline
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Ditto DaToad's post...

But what about the 3rd sibling? If 2 have agreed to give $5000 to EMIL, and your wife is evil and won't bend to extorsion, what's happening with the other person? Is he/she not going to cough up either?

And I wouldn't have anything to do with this woman. She's hurt you enough. Don't let her keep hurting you out of a sense of obligation.
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  #14  
Old 04-27-2004, 11:52 AM
Giraffe Giraffe is offline
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I partially agree with what everyone else has already said. Like previous posters, I don't think you should give her a penny more than the money you owe her. However, I also think you should consider telling her that she's ugly and smells bad, like old hamburger.
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  #15  
Old 04-27-2004, 11:53 AM
TurdFerguson TurdFerguson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeVena
Ditto DaToad's post...

But what about the 3rd sibling? If 2 have agreed to give $5000 to EMIL, and your wife is evil and won't bend to extorsion, what's happening with the other person? Is he/she not going to cough up either?
The third sibling is the jailbird son I mentioned before. DABIL (drug addict brother in law) is about 40 years old and has been on drugs since he was a teenager. He's been in and out of jail several times. What's really twisted is EMIL always bails out DABIL when he's in trouble, then DABIL steals from her. She does this while not being there for my wife when she has had her surgeries.

The epitome of this was when FIL was on his death bed. My wife flew down to Florida to be with the family and be with her dad for his last days. DABIL was drunk the whole time. One day EMIL and my wife went out to store and came back to find DABIL running around like a lunatic. Immediately my wife knew what happened. DABIL took 2 days supply of my wife's oxycontin, crushed and snorted it (don't know if it was all at once or if he stashed some for later). EMIL blamed my wife for leaving her medicine lying around (Admittedly, my wife should have kept it with her at all times), thus giving DABIL a free pass on the incident. My wife couldn't get a replacement for the pills as oxycontin is strictly controlled, so she had to go a few days in complete pain.

DABIL is currently in jail in FL for parole violations. As for him giving EMIL $5000, you can probably guess that won't happen. I predict that as soon as he gets out the money will be spent in a week on drugs, prostitutes and gambling.
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  #16  
Old 04-27-2004, 12:02 PM
ivylass ivylass is offline
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Honor your wife's wishes in the matter of the inheritance. It's your money, you use it as you see fit.

As far as the loan goes, tell EMIL kindly and sweetly you need to see documentation of the loan for your records. Ask her for copies of the cancelled checks very nicely. Tell her that on the advice of your accountant, you cannot replay her without proper documentation of the loan.

Your wife has enough on her plate with her illness without having to deal with a bitch of a mother. Learn how to screen your calls.
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  #17  
Old 04-27-2004, 12:16 PM
Scuba_Ben Scuba_Ben is offline
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You noted that EMIL has sources of income, and is spending her own money on what interests her. This shows that EMIL has an adequate cash flow -- she's not broke. Accordingly, IMHO (tm) the details of those sources and expenses are irrelevant to the matter at hand.

I concur with the other posters, and add this: Spend the inheritance to pay down debt. Then you can stand up to EMIL and honestly say that the money has been spent on your own situation (do NOT give details).

Best of luck on standing up to EMIL!
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  #18  
Old 04-27-2004, 12:22 PM
badbadrubberpiggy badbadrubberpiggy is offline
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I'm with everybody who said "pay the $700 but no more unless she can prove you owe her more." She sounds like a horrible, awful woman who doesn't deserve your or your wife's kindness. That money is yours, and you never agreed to give it to her, and she should not expect it of you, especially when it seems you need it far more than she does.

I also second Giraffe's suggestion of insult, except I would amend it to include "she's ugly and she smells, like maggot infested, e-coli contaminated old hamburger"
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  #19  
Old 04-27-2004, 12:46 PM
Zebra Zebra is offline
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Is your wife's maiden name Lear?

Forget that woman.
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  #20  
Old 04-27-2004, 12:59 PM
Abbie Carmichael Abbie Carmichael is offline
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Pay her what you owe and not a dime more and cut her outta your life. And it's none of her damn business WHAT you use your money for so you don't owe her an explanation. Don't give her one, or you will send her the message that YOU think you have to answer to her. Spend your money on whatever you want.
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  #21  
Old 04-27-2004, 01:14 PM
TurdFerguson TurdFerguson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zebra
Is your wife's maiden name Lear?
Nope. Am I being wooshed?

Thanks for all of the replies and advice. The wife and I are going to talk over our options.
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  #22  
Old 04-27-2004, 01:19 PM
Dogzilla Dogzilla is offline
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I'm with those who say, honor your wife's wishes and tell MIL to screw off, change your phone number and cut her out of your life. If you have kids, tell them their grandmother turned into a wicked witch and now lives in the woods, eating children who wander by.

What bugs me about this torrid tale is not that MIL is not hurting for living expenses, you owe her money, the other siblings will pay up or anything like that. It's how she takes cruises and gambles. She's no better nor different than her addict/criminal/loser son.

Think about which would bug you or piss you off more: The possible guilt trip (from MIL and the other 2 siblings) if you don't give her the money? Or if you pay her off, knowing she will squander the money on gambling, vacations and luxuries when you and your wife need it to pay medical bills, purchase medication and buy down your debt?

This sounds like the least compassionate, hateful, and selfish mother I've ever heard of. If either of my parents had ever acted like this, there's no way I'd be at the point you are -- I'd have cut 'em off after maybe 2-3 incidents. I would not put up with this crap for years and years and then feel guilty about it.

You might consider attempting to play the guilt back on her: You're asking for money when your own daughter needs medicine? Where the f*%# are her priorities?
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  #23  
Old 04-27-2004, 01:19 PM
Zebra Zebra is offline
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King Lear by William Shakespeare


Guy has three daughters, tries to set up their inheritence, hilarity does not ensue.
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  #24  
Old 04-27-2004, 02:13 PM
swampbear swampbear is offline
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Pay her back for the "loan" of $700. If she insists it's more, then I agree with asking for proof in the form of canceled checks. Then tell her to get the hell outta your lives and back it up.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tamaraqueenofgoths
I also second Giraffe's suggestion of insult, except I would amend it to include "she's ugly and she smells, like maggot infested, e-coli contaminated old hamburger"

from a cow with mad cow disease!
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  #25  
Old 04-27-2004, 02:43 PM
Velma Velma is offline
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I would probably pay the $700 just so I could feel that I didn't owe her anymore for anything. Then I would cut her off, and never ask her for anything again.

If you pay her any money - make sure you include a note on the check and maybe a separate written statement saying this is payment in full for all loans. The last thing you want is for her to take a check as proof that you owe her money and are starting to make payments. Make it very very clear that this is all the money she is going to get, ever.

Good luck - I have a craptacular FIL, myself.
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  #26  
Old 04-27-2004, 02:44 PM
Dangerosa Dangerosa is online now
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Pay what you owe her, but no more (unless its a fair interest rate).

Definately follow your wife's wishes. It is HER family. It was HER grandfather and HER mother. Therefore, she should get the bigger vote (even if she thought she should give money to her mother - but she happens to be right).

BTW, we were in a similar situation with my MIL - although she is NOT evil (slightly irresponsible about money - but generous and good hearted and NOT evil). We inherieted money from her ex husbands side of the family. We ended up gifting her 10% of it. But it was money we could afford (we had already paid off our debt with it - so it was part of what was left of our windfall) And we (nor she) NEVER made her other son in law - who couldn't afford the generosity - feel obligated.
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  #27  
Old 04-27-2004, 03:48 PM
muldoonthief muldoonthief is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zebra
King Lear by William Shakespeare


Guy has three daughters, tries to set up their inheritence, hilarity does not ensue.
Oh come on. The scene where Lear is screaming at the weather is hilarious.
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  #28  
Old 04-27-2004, 04:11 PM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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Give the old bat $700, and request documentation of the full amount owed.

Tell her to sod the heck off about the rest of the money. She has more than enough income to be comfortable and you have debts.

Change your phone number make it unlisted and refuse to give it to her, and any relative or old friend of the family that has it tell them that you will change it again and never tell them what it is if they give it to her. heck, I would change my number and never give it to anybody in the family and old friends of the family, and only call relatives and friends of the family with call id blocking on as well.

I hated doing it, but I had a friend who was giving my exfiancee stalker my number whenever I changed it. I now only call her with caller ID blocked and refuse to give her my phone number and she only has a throwaway yahoo email address to get me at otherwise.
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