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Old 08-14-2016, 03:28 PM   #41
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And YOU are a good man, DawgMan. Kind hearted. Generous. Grateful for your own bounty and compassionate to the less fortunate.

I have a strong faith that, if you are ever taken advantage of for those qualities, that the person who does will have a higher power to answer to for it one day.

Listen to your heart, and never be afraid to speak up for what you feel is right. It's not easy to speak hard truths to family, but if it's what they need, then be strong for them and speak your concerns. Make clear the demarcation of your gifting and generosity and that you and yours are experiencing heartache if you don't think they are getting that message and acknowledging your pain.
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Old 08-14-2016, 04:48 PM   #42
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You seem to feel strongly about not accepting financial aid from friends or family no matter what. How come?
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Because I should be prepared enough to not need the financial aid. It's been tested;...We make our own 'luck' in this world. I don't believe for a minute that a financially irresponsible adult is a victim. I do believe that they prey on those who are responsible. To me, if someone is capable of making enough to need $100,000 for a year's support when a crisis happens and they get back on their feet, then they are not stupid, they are unethical.
skipro33, thank you for your thoughtful reply.

But, as to making our own "luck," I've never been sold on that. I've met lots of people who are "financially irresponsible." They either don't/won't or can't get it. I'm not sure it's a skill that everyone possesses--or that everyone can develop. I think it might be how some people are wired.
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Old 08-14-2016, 04:57 PM   #43
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I would not be willing to give that much $ to someone unless they were willing to make sacrifices, recognize how they got into this situation and certainly not help them pretend they have enough $ to continue to live as they were. If he does not get better and has to go on SSDI which can take years to get you might have as well just lit a match to that $ you originally gave them. It will just allow them to postpone the inevitable. I would help them come up with a plan such as would selling their home be better to get the equity and is renting cheaper, etc? They are really in denial since they are not open to changing the kids schools, etc. Maximum medical improvement for most injuries occurs within the first 6 months with a smaller improvement from 6-12 months. Usually by the end of 12 months the gains are done. I would also help them to find what programs they may be eligible for and what items do they have of value that they could sell. Boats, RV's, jewelry, etc. Yes this will be painful for them but it should be.
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Old 08-14-2016, 05:14 PM   #44
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Many folks that have posted here for a long time have abided by LBYM, often not knowing that was what they were doing. It just felt like the correct/sane thing to do. Lack of upscale residence, lack of new/top shelf auto, kids educated at community college/state U, thrifty vacations...I could go on and on.


Others have chosen to purchase that large house on the hill, bought those two Lexus autos that are parked out back, sent John and Mary to the "best" private schools in the land, taken numerous winter ski vacations and European summer trips.


We all make financial decisions based on what we think is best for our gang. In the long run, we all think we made the right decision.
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Old 08-14-2016, 05:21 PM   #45
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People that make the big lifestyle choices should not expect family to bail them out when they suddenly can't afford their lifestyle.
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:14 PM   #46
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Just another POV....

How much do you think they would help YOU if you were in their situation


IOW, if they are stretched to the limit before the accident... what kind of assistance could they give... probably none... and I doubt they would change their lifestyle so they could help...


Yes, I know it is family, and that can be a big issue... but I think about my family and ask who would help me... of my 5 siblings I think maybe 2 would... another might do things for me, but not help financially....

For me I have only 1 that would need any kind of help... all the others would not need help...
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:16 PM   #47
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Can I start using this one whenever I lecture people?
Be my guest.

(The friend in question, eased out through downsizing, immediately took a cruise, and stated she'd figure out how to pay for it later.....after all "It's only money".)
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:22 PM   #48
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My heart goes out to the family going through such a difficult and shocking event. That in itself is devastating to deal with. It looks like that it's double tragic this has happened to a family who is most unprepared financially.

Having said that, I will have to agree with Teacher Terry. The best thing for them to do is to face the new reality. You could help them put together a new game plan, using the resources they have themselves and utilizing whatever programs they are eligible for. I could see myself giving them grocery store gift cards and pack them home made frozen meals so they don't have to cook as much, but I am not sure if I would go any further than that, if they are still thinking of keeping the kids in private schools and such.
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:41 PM   #49
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If the husband can't be left alone maybe various family members can help with staying with him so the wife can find a f.t. job. There are millions of ways to help as suggested above with meals, errands, etc. For years I worked with people with disabilities to help them get back to work. The sad thing is that many had exhausted all their retirement $ etc before coming to us for help or hearing about us. There are also lots of programs to help people but it can take time to research and navigate the bureaucracies so that is some of the other ways they can be helped. There are tons of ways to help without having to give $. Giving $ can build resentment on how it is spent, etc. Obtaining a sudden disability is really a difficult time for families due to role changes in the family, depression, financial probs, etc.
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:50 PM   #50
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My heart also goes out to the man who experienced the accident and his immediate family grappling with with this dramatic change in their lives.

I can understand the extended family wanting to "be there" for this family. My own family has a strong "charity starts at home" ethic that unfortunately isn't accompanied by an "ant and grasshopper" ethic. I am afraid this will lead to entitlement/enabling or an unpopular tough love call in at least one case.

However my gut reaction to imagining myself in the shoes of the OP is that this event could be a stone that has the potential to drag everyone down financially and affect long term financial goals. I know that is a very selfish view. I don't feel like I would let a family members misfortune derail my long term financial goals. I would figure out what I was comfortable giving vs what the family members needs are.

And as others have mentioned, I would like to think we would not seek or expect family members to assist us. For our whole adult lives dh and I have kept expenses in check, not lived lavishly and saved regularly. We liked to think we were positioned well to weather and recover from any storm at all points of our journey. Knock wood that has so far not been tested.

fwiw...
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:18 PM   #51
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... Case in point, my 54 yr old BIL recently had an accident that for now has him wheel chair bound as a quadriplegic. There is a reasonable chance he will regain a fair amount of his mobility, but we will not know for 12 months. He & my SIL both have college degrees, however, he is the bread winner in a very narrow industry with limited income potential. SIL has always been under employed working part time in a sandwich shop. 4 kids between ages of 14 - 20, 2 in college. They have sacrificed everything to send their kids to private schools and college out of state. Fast forward today... this accident to my BIL has totally exposed their financial situation.
Lots of parents sacrifice to send their kids to private schools and out-of-state colleges. Nothing unusual in that. What are the reasons the kids are in private schools and out-of-state colleges? And, now maybe with the family's dire financial straits, maybe there are grants and scholarships to be had.

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... I would help them come up with a plan such as would selling their home be better to get the equity and is renting cheaper, etc? They are really in denial since they are not open to changing the kids schools, etc.... I would also help them to find what programs they may be eligible for and what items do they have of value that they could sell. Boats, RV's, jewelry, etc.

What boats, RV's and jewelry are you talking about? (I may have missed it in the OP's postings).

Yes this will be painful for them but it should be.
The guy is in a wheel chair and is a quadriplegic. How much more pain should the family be in? How about water-boarding them as a group?
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:22 PM   #52
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We all make financial decisions based on what we think is best for our gang. In the long run, we all think we made the right decision.
I'd never judge a man who decided to spend his coin as opposed to saving it for a rainy day. But I DO hold him accountable and responsible for those actions.
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:26 PM   #53
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Obviously the children will have to quit school and get jobs and Ma needs a better job or they're gonna be homeless soon.
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:34 PM   #54
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skipro33, thank you for your thoughtful reply.

But, as to making our own "luck," I've never been sold on that. I've met lots of people who are "financially irresponsible." They either don't/won't or can't get it. I'm not sure it's a skill that everyone possesses--or that everyone can develop. I think it might be how some people are wired.
Skills are possessed only after they are learned. I certainly have no natural skill when it comes to money. The primary thing I learned about money is this; you get to spend a dollar only once. Then it's gone. It's not rocket science. I don't need to understand all the nuances of money management. Anyone with a 4th grade math education gets it. It need not be developed beyond that.

Stipulating that a rational, thinking man who can earn enough to fund a $100,000 a year lifestyle can't develop the basic skill to manage a budget that includes future debt should consider a career in politics, where having a propensity to spend other people's money is how they are wired.
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Old 08-14-2016, 07:41 PM   #55
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I am not insensitive to his horrible position right now but that still does not excuse the fact that the family should not be expected to support them. I made a general suggestion that they may have items of value that they could sell. Horrible things happen to people all the time but this family will need to look at their financial position and make the necessary changes. The family can't support them forever so they are only delaying the inevitable. Having worked in human services for many years there are many programs/services they can use to help them and the family's time would be better spent helping them in that way. If he is a quad there is a good chance he won't improve enough to return to work depending on the type of work he did and any reasonable accommodations that can be made for his job. So instead of hoping that he is much better in 12 months their time might be better spent finding resources to utilize since most likely this will be a long term permanent problem. This type of injury is devastating to families and especially when it happens to the major breadwinner. They could barely afford all the schools and now they can't. If they can't get scholarships etc the kids will have to face the facts that they will need to change schools. Not fun but not the end of the world either. They need help coming up with a plan because they are in shock. Setting up fundraisers for medical expenses and a Go Fund Me account might be good ideas too. Insurance often leaves behind big medical bills. It does not cover everything. I did 4 fundraisers for a friend's daughter that needed a liver transplant at age 18. She had to travel for the transplant and even with insurance, etc and her parents being good with $ there were tons of expenses. I am not against the family helping but I think it is a mistake to allow them to just live like nothing has changed for a year and then after a year if he can't work for the family to quit giving them $ and then they are still in a horrible position and will be forced to make the hard changes they could have made a year before. I worked with people with disabilities for years and do not know too many quadriplegics to recover that much in a year. If he was a paraplegic then that would be different.
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Old 08-14-2016, 08:34 PM   #56
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I don't think we should be predicting the likelihood of recovery of a person we know very little about. This family needs to be thinking positive right now and hoping for the best. Financial issues aside, this type of accident is devastating, and we should all be wishing him the best for a full recovery.




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Old 08-14-2016, 09:39 PM   #57
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I think this, unfortunately, is the majority of people. My Sis and I talk about this often. While I am not in perfect shape and could have done MUCH better (as evidenced by some on here), and a catastrophe would thwart ER, I think I would be able to make it without burdening others.

One of discussions with Sis is how those in situation like your BIL and his wife seem to live without a care in the world, while those of us that have the foresight and understanding of this need seem to have the more stressful lives...

I would not put it in terms "more stressful lives". Once FI is achieved and even when halfway there, stress drops dramatically. When you reach $250k, then $500k and milestones beyond, you should sleep very well at night. I also felt I could tell my employer they could pound sand for most of my career (if I had to, but rarely did). Good decision making eventually becomes second nature for some of us.


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Old 08-14-2016, 10:08 PM   #58
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I would not put it in terms "more stressful lives". Once FI is achieved and even when halfway there, stress drops dramatically. When you reach $250k, then $500k and milestones beyond, you should sleep very well at night. I also felt I could tell my employer they could pound sand for most of my career (if I had to, but rarely did). Good decision making eventually becomes second nature for some of us.
But HOW does someone ever reach FI when there's family that you feel obliged to support if THEY have a catastrophic event happen to them? Do you plan in your ideal of FI to gift X number of dollars for family outside your home budget and stick to that limit? Do you foresake your own FI in order to keep them in the lifestyle they've become accustomed, or is there some other method to deal with this?
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Old 08-14-2016, 10:37 PM   #59
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How does someone ever do anything?

Because they want to do it.

If you want to help, help, if not don't help.

Same as it ever was.
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Old 08-15-2016, 12:14 AM   #60
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OP - I hope your BIL gets better as these are terrible things to happen to anyone.

As for the family pitching in to help, I can easily imagine some say that , but if you suggest the members put in $5K each right now to a bank account with double signing (you and someone else), then you will see who suddenly gets cold feet.
It's possible some other family members lived like your BIL.

I doubt your retirement plan included your BIL's family for the rest of their lives.
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