Bail out my sister financially, or be "dead to my family," what should I do?
Topic: Bail out my sister financially, or be "dead to my family," what should I do?
June 16, 2019 / By Cheyenne Question:
My mother called me and said my sister, who works two minimum wage jobs in a small town in PA, is in serious financial difficulty and needs me to bail her out financially. Her husband also works two minimum wage jobs and they have three kids. They got way behind in their electric bill but were able to hold off a disconnection due to some legal and personal appeals and a law that said that the electric company could not shut off service during the cold weather season.
Eventually though their luck ran out and their power was shut off. With fees, and interest they owe about $2500 and the electric company will not turn their service back on unless the full amount is paid.
My sister did not call me directly asking for the money because she thought I would say no because she did not pay back the money she borrowed from me in the past. She owes money to everyone and has no access to cash or credit.
Now the rest of the family, other than me, is broke and I am the only person with the money to bail her out and get her electricity turned back on.
So far I have said no and the family says that I am dead to them until I bail out my poor sister sitting in the dark. It has been over a month and all attempts to get charity to pay for the electricity is unsuccessful. I am her only hope.
She owes me over $8000 for the prior times I bailed her out. We have no personal relationship.
What should I do? (I have the money but it would wipe out my savings)
The family knows that my sister owes me $8000 but said I should have never borrowed her that money but gave it to her instead.
They live four hundred miles away so they won't move in with us.
I got an email from my sister, written from the library begging me for the money, they are going crazy sitting in the dark at home! (NO POWER)
They have tried all the social service agencies and moving into public housing, no luck they make too much money they say.
Best Answers: Bail out my sister financially, or be "dead to my family," what should I do?
Aspen | 9 days ago
It will only work until next time.
Take her some candles. But them some food.
Tell your family Jesus didn't have any electricity and he never complained about it.
A guy I knew let his sister and her husband move in with them, but he took charge of all their finances. They turned their paychecks over to him, and he put them in the bank until they had enough to move out. They couldn't buy anything without his approval.
Even with that, it was quite a sacrifice. He was sharing his home with them until they got on their feet.
👍 126 | 👎 9
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Are they able to move into public housing? They seriously need to connect with a social worker to help them out.
Do they belong to any church or place of worship? They can try to get their also. Salvation Army would be another place to ask for assistance.
Are any of her children or the adults disabled, so they can get some kind of extra income. I would imagine they are on food stamps if not they should.
My personal opinion. I think if you were to bail them out. You are going to manage their accounting or finances to prevent this ever happening again. If that means no television, no using the dryer machine, air dry clothing only, the refrigerator can only run, no dish washer, hand washing only, and other things that's what you have to do.
In the winter how do they heat or cool their home? If it is electricity then that might be a huge issue. Heat the bedrooms at night, turn off during the day. Do not heat the living rooms, kitchen, or bathrooms.
Power attorney would be another solution if they want to sign over their rights to you. There is so many scenerio's you can help or recommend to them. Good luck.
👍 40 | 👎 2
You have to make a stand. It was wrong for your mother to say that you'd be dead to your family. You have helped your sister out in the past; there has to be a point where she and her husband are forced to work harder to care for their children and each other. If you are always the one who takes care of their problems, they will never be any different than what they are today.
However, they have children. What I would do for the next six months is send them a gift voucher for a supermarket in their area. Definitely not a check, they could spend it on something else.
👍 32 | 👎 -5
If it seems that they are working as hard as they can and just can't make ends meet, help them. If they are spending their money in the wrong places and are waiting for you to take care of them, I would have to say, let them figure it out. I think it's pretty harsh of your mother to say you're dead to the family unless you help her out. This is your money and your choice. I'm leaning towards helping them out because of the children. Let her know that she needs to put forth the effort to pay you back even if it's a very small payment plan.
👍 24 | 👎 -12
DO NOT PAY for your sister. They seem to all be using you. This is the thanks you get for baling her out in the past? Does your family know she already owes you $8,000? If they make a big stink about you not helping her out, I would make this fact known. Do not be an enabler. I will also guess that she has made other choices of what to spend her money on that weren't good choices, so why should you pay for that?
👍 16 | 👎 -19
Don't do it. It's not your responsibility if the rest of your family apparently have no money. You're not their keeper. You have your own life to finance without having to worry about your sister's.
👍 8 | 👎 -26