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Old 03-03-2015, 06:00 PM   #21
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You guys are great! I'm standing down and letting this play out. I don't want to go to my grave knowing I perpetuated this nonsense. I especially liked MRG's quote; "People don't change until the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing". Thanks for the great advice everyone!
And like others have said, it's commendable that you want to help. Maybe one day he will give you the opportunity...be patient.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:11 PM   #22
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Even when people have asked for my financial advice, I've had exactly one convert and I married her. Beyond that, it has had either no or negative consequences to the relationship.

Wish it were not so.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:30 PM   #23
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maxed out credit cards, paycheck to paycheck, raising 2 daughters largely on his own (divorced).
Those kids' mother must be a real doozy for your brother to wind up with them.

For the most part American consumers live pedal to the metal, and they think anybody who doesn't is a loser.

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Old 03-03-2015, 06:38 PM   #24
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I have a similar situation with my sister. I tried the soft sell and heart to heart talks for many years. Now (at 60) she sees the light but and is asking for advice but the only solution/help I can offer now is to find a better job, save everything you can and plan on working as long as you can. I mean she has a collage degree (that I helped pay for) use it. Such a shame. My advice is to speak your mind. He's your Brother and if he doesn't hear it from you who's going to try to give him good advice. Good luck.
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Old 03-03-2015, 06:54 PM   #25
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Dear Abbey had a column recently that dealt with same issue. I was kind of surprised that she lite into the writer for getting into someone else's business, no matter how good the intentions were.... I should have wrote to her 10 years ago and followed the advise. I have gotten nowhere with a close friend the past 10 years, and it's even worse now. Tried suggestions, hints, plans, and chewing his ass off. None of them worked. Though the friendship never suffered, I am more at peace with our friendship giving up, knowing it really isn't my problem or concern.
He never got mad at me, but I am sure he is happy I don't bring it up anymore as I am sure he was tired of listening!


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Old 03-03-2015, 06:54 PM   #26
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+1,+2,+3,+4,+5,.....

Such good advice.
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Old 03-03-2015, 07:34 PM   #27
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Dear Abbey had a column recently that dealt with same issue. I was kind of surprised that she lite into the writer for getting into someone else's business, no matter how good the intentions were.... I should have wrote to her 10 years ago and followed the advise. I have gotten nowhere with a close friend the past 10 years, and it's even worse now. Tried suggestions, hints, plans, and chewing his ass off. None of them worked. Though the friendship never suffered, I am more at peace with our friendship giving up, knowing it really isn't my problem or concern.
He never got mad at me, but I am sure he is happy I don't bring it up anymore as I am sure he was tired of listening!


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I have 2 brothers. One was drinking very heavily, and I mentioned that he might be hurting his health and was certainly hurting his family. He paid no attention but just got very cold toward me. Then a couple months later he drove home drunk when my other brother was at his house. They got into a fist fight that went so far as the drunk brother having his head rammed into his brick house. Only thing that did was knock him out for a while. Slowed down his drinking as long as he was out but really not much beyond that. These are middle class, educated, job holding middle aged men.

IMO, people are basically a lost cause. And it can be dangerous to piss them off. As existentialist author John-Paul Sartre wrote, "l'enfer c'est les autres" Basically, hell is other people.

Ha
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Old 03-03-2015, 11:48 PM   #28
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I only give advise to one person and he is 18 and asked. His mother and grandparents asked me to talk to him and I declined but then he asked himself. I was a CPA and I saved over a million dollars so they all think I should be the one to ask about money. Boy's father wanted him to study accounting, mother wanted him to work with disabled kids, I wanted to stay out of it. Boy decided to study finance and accounting and wanted to learn investing. I explained 401K, ROTH and IRA to him and answered a few questions not lecturing. When he was home from college for Christmas he asked a few more things and told me he really used accounting in finance he was surprised. I am giving him basic advice like he wants to work for a hedge fund this summer as an intern in Switzerland with his uncle. I told him not to get tattoos that show and to get a good interview suit. I also warned him to keep his credit record and criminal record squeaky clean. He was already planning to buy the interview suit, he seems to know it is important and his tattoo is on his leg so he looks very clean cut.
I have given him about 11K so far for college so he is willing to talk to me about school. If he doesn't want advice or messes up at all I am done helping. If he comes home before April 15 I plan to buy him his first ROTH matching what he earned last year busing tables and teach him index fund.
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Old 03-04-2015, 03:35 AM   #29
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I agree with the other comments. If he wanted to be different he would have already. As hard as it is to see his daughters not able to enjoy the trip, it will be better for them in the long run. Maybe the dad is a lost cause, but the daughters might learn something from this.

I have also found in my own limited experience, that financially helping someone just produces more dependence and anger. Next time they will want even more, and wonder why, since you have so much, that you give so little.
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Old 03-04-2015, 07:22 AM   #30
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Even when people have asked for my financial advice, I've had exactly one convert and I married her. Beyond that, it has had either no or negative consequences to the relationship.

Wish it were not so.
I have had very similar experiences. If personal finance comes up, I'm usually comparing various versions of LBYM and conservative investing or being confronted with someone that spends every penny and is looking for more. Discussions of index funds versus diversified individual stocks or bond funds versus CDs are probably more useful. We at least talked about things we generally understand.

With the big spenders, it's like we're from different planets. I've even been asked to help someone set up a budget and investment plan. Neither was ever implemented. I don't get involved anymore unless asked and then I just give reading advice with a "if you have any questions...." end to the initial discussion.
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Old 03-04-2015, 07:36 AM   #31
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......... I've even been asked to help someone set up a budget and investment plan. Neither was ever implemented.........
DW went so far as to take actual possession of a flaky relative's check book so DW could pay the bills directly. When the checks started bouncing, DW found out she should have impounded the ATM card, too.
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Old 03-04-2015, 08:06 AM   #32
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I explained 401K, ROTH and IRA to him and answered a few questions not lecturing. When he was home from college for Christmas he asked a few more things and told me he really used accounting in finance he was surprised.

I have given him about 11K so far for college so he is willing to talk to me about school. If he doesn't want advice or messes up at all I am done helping. If he comes home before April 15 I plan to buy him his first ROTH matching what he earned last year busing tables and teach him index fund.

I like your style!
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Old 03-04-2015, 08:26 AM   #33
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I've got an older brother who has been totally dependent on our parents since he was a child. They set him up to take over the family farm and I watched him lose everything, but he drove a Lincoln and vacations overseas twice a year. Still does years later, they pay him not to farm now. They've even asked me to help him financially because "I've been lucky and have some money" I did help him meet with a banker to restructure his debt, but he ignored any financial advice I've given him. He walked away from the note he owed my parents (over 6 figures), and still lives in their house while they moved to a tiny apartment. He's 53. The only advice I can offer is don't enable your brother and don't let him get at your parents' money either. I feel bad for his children and hope they don't learn his habits.
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Old 03-04-2015, 10:50 AM   #34
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DW went so far as to take actual possession of a flaky relative's check book so DW could pay the bills directly. When the checks started bouncing, DW found out she should have impounded the ATM card, too.
I run the entire financial life of a friend, as well, but fortunately he's a thrifty sort who definitely wouldn't knowingly bounce checks, just forgets to pay the bills!

We once paid for a younger couple to attend a Dave Ramsey seminar in town, and it was a great experience. I think they got a lot out of it (we went with them) and I hope the lessons on LBYM stuck.
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Old 03-04-2015, 11:23 AM   #35
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Looking for advice if I should confront brother on financial matters. Goal is to get him to change his ways, downsize, adopt principles of sound finances. Danger is he will rebel and we'll have strained relationship forever. It kills me that he is living with maxed out credit cards, paycheck to paycheck, raising 2 daughters largely on his own (divorced). Completely born into the American consumerism bs. He's 46 now. Do we let let the house of cards fall at some ponit or intervene and try to save him? Any advice?
It sounds like it's your goal, not his and that's the problem. About all you can do is talk about how you don't live on your credit cards, how secure you feel not having to live paycheck to paycheck, how you are looking forward to the day you can retire because you've been living within your means and making a plan. If he comes close to asking how you manage to do that, then start with a simple bit of advice, like, "Do you know what you spend every month? If you kept track maybe you'd find something you'd be willing to cut back on to make it work."

The only time I gave advice was when my sister asked for help straightening out her checking account. She couldn't understand why her checks were bouncing if her last statement said she had money. She was recently divorced, hurting and emotionally needy. She thought her retail therapy was helping but the chaos and debt was crushing her. I helped her straighten out her checkbook and even wrote her a tutorial on how to manage a checking account, because she couldn't even manage addition and subtraction at that point.

I could help her with the checkbook but when she showed me the laundry basket full of months of unopened bills (multiple maxed out credit cards, utilities, bank overdraft fees, condo HOA fees) I knew it was a bigger problem. She solved that declaring bankruptcy (not my advice) and marrying the right guy.
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Old 03-04-2015, 11:33 AM   #36
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I asked him "Does she have bit t*ts?" His answer was "Yes."

You can't help those that don't want to be helped.
I assume you meant "big".
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Old 03-04-2015, 11:47 AM   #37
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Looking back it is easy to figure out who is not willing to change. Most of my friends I have talked to with poor money management had the same common denominators. Unwilling to consider changes in cable bill, high dollar phone plans, and refusal to eat out less (which is very often). If the low hanging fruit was off limits, there was little chance in addressing other issues.
The one friend I did have success with has adopted all above. But caveat was, he wanted to improve his situation and "saw the light". Now all he talks about is how stupid he was the past 20 years... He doesn't need to feel too upset however. He just needed to get out of debt which he finally has. He will have a combined household pension of over $130k a year. He will be fine now...


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Old 03-04-2015, 11:55 AM   #38
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I have a 45 year old nephew who is going on 15... gave up trying to help him..lost cause.

'You can't push a rope' kinda sums it up...
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Old 03-04-2015, 12:10 PM   #39
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I could help her with the checkbook but when she showed me the laundry basket full of months of unopened bills (multiple maxed out credit cards, utilities, bank overdraft fees, condo HOA fees) I knew it was a bigger problem. She solved that declaring bankruptcy (not my advice) and marrying the right guy.
If frugality fails, sex appeal is always a good fallback.

Ha
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Old 03-04-2015, 12:41 PM   #40
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If frugality fails, sex appeal is always a good fallback.



Ha

It certainly has worked on extracting many a dollar from me over the years.


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