So, yes, my brother is a dumbass, the kind of dumbass who probably needs Stacy Campfield to write up some legislation to protect him from the women he fucks and his own dumbass decisions.
That’s fine. The thought of him sitting in jail makes me want to throw up and cry. But then I think, well, at least he’s not in jail in metro Atlanta, and then I feel like a bad person for being grateful for that, since there are a lot of sisters with dumbass brothers sitting in jail in Atlanta and those sisters must be scared shitless. I feel for them. I am also scared.
Instead, I’ve been thinking about my parents, scrambling to come up with the money to get him set free. I don’t say anything. It’s their money; they can do what they want with it; and if it makes them feel better to spend it all on the recalcitrant brother, well, bless their hearts, they should spend it on the recalcitrant brother.
But here’s also what I’ve been thinking, America. I’m not sure how much money they have left to throw at him. They threw a great deal of the inheritance they got from my grandmother at him. They’ve thrown a great deal of their own money at him. And now they’re scrambling to get a loan or, perhaps, to cash in my dad’s life insurance policy, in order to get him out of jail.
I don’t talk to them about their finances. I don’t talk to them about how much money they throw at the recalcitrant brother, because a.) I know if I needed it, they would find a way to help me just as much and b.) I don’t think I could stand to know. It’s got to be literally tens of thousands of dollars over his adult life, I think.
I don’t know where it comes from. I worry that my dad has been fudging the truth about why he hasn’t retired. Every year it’s some story about how the church is dicking him over on his insurance, and every year I’ve bought into that, especially because it seems like, for the past couple of years, there’s been real talk about him actually retiring when he hits 65. But I’m worried they’re spending their retirement money on my brother.
And, if so, I feel like we have to have a talk about that.
Because, America, I can’t support them. It’s fine if they retire and go to work at Walmart or something–you know, retire from these jobs to take other jobs. It’s fine for a while.
But a point will come, I assume, when they won’t be able to work. And they’ll have to have some money to live off of. I don’t have it. The Butcher, obviously, doesn’t have it. And the recalcitrant brother sure as hell doesn’t have it. If they don’t have it, they are screwed.
I am scared shitless that they’re going to need me to take care of them and I’m not going to be able to afford to do it. I can’t even tell you. I’m sitting here just staring off into space between sentences at the thought of them needing to move in with me.
I don’t have a spouse.
I especially don’t have a spouse whose also pulling in a decent salary.
What will happen if I have to feed them and put a roof over their heads?
How am I going to do that?
If you are the praying sort, please pray that my parents are not stupid enough to squander what little retirement they have trying to save my brother from himself and the evil women he fucks.
p.s. Not to mention how shitty a blog this would become if every entry started, “Today, my dad yet again reminded me of how fat I am and how no man will ever love me because I’m ugly and bossy.”
Oh, B, sending hugs your way.
i thought you were Miss Anti-ethnocentic. As you know, most other cultures have the extended family all living together. Think of how cosmopolitan you’d be!
Sending hugs and prayers for you, your bro, and your parents.
It’s all going to be ok. It really is.
B., thinking about you. I don’t know what to say, so I won’t. But I will say that I am wishing your family and you the best.
So sorry you’re facing this. This is tough. Hang in there, B. For all of our differences, it’s these sort of things that bind us.
I am facing something quite similar, although in my case my parents have lost everything taking care of my disabled brother (and being quite impulsive themselves).
But, I am very fortunate that I have an older brother who is much more responsible than I, and his own children are grown. So, he’s not quite as broke as I am.
But both of us will have to pay the piper soon. If we don’t want our parents and brother on the street, we’re probably going to have to buy their house. I have no idea how I’m going to afford that mortgage. Raising my own kids is quite expensive.
I would not have made some of the same decisions my parents have made (like running away to Florida), but they are my parents, and if I go broke bailing them out, so be it.
What really needs to happen is that they need to let go of my younger brother, and let his older brothers take care of him. But, to even request that would tear the family apart.
OMG, I’m sorry. I’ve gone on and on. Mostly, I wanted you to know that I can empathise.
I didn’t mean to unload; I’ve never blogged about this before, and to be quite honest, your post makes me not feel so all alone in this.
All I can say right now is that you’ll have to take it one day at a time.
I have a cousin who has lived a similar life to your brother. I don’t know how much cash my Aunt and Uncle have thrown at him over the years, but I do know that his two successful sisters are only supporting his children and not him any longer. There are no easy answers.
That really sucks, B. If I had the resources to help, I would. Hell, if you can convince him to come all the way down to California, I do have the resources to help. I’m sure he’s eligible for one of the programs I’m affiliated with…
B, wishing everybody well in this situation. My prayers go unheard these days, but many good thoughts in your direction.
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