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April 2013 Weddings

NWR what to do about brother

So idk where else to get advice from so I came here for an outsiders opinion. In June, my brother graduated high school and moved in with me and FI. We did this out of guilt mostly because he was living with his friend in the town we bought our house and he basically assumed we'd let him stay here once he had to leave so he could still live near his friends. The deal was supposed to be he couldn't live here unless he had a license and car and job and maintained a 3.0 in his classes. Well here we are six months later and the only thing he has is a job which he only works about 15 hours a week at. My mom lives 40 minutes away and has been driving from her house, taking him to class a half hour away, and dropping him back off. My family was in a serious car wreck last week and now my mom driving him isn't an option and he assumes my FI will take him now. My FI is such a caring person and every time I've had it with my brother he's the one who reminds me how sad my brother will be to leave his friends and live with my family 40 minutes away. I already work 2 jobs and go to school and FI works 44 hours a week and should NOT have to come home and drive my brother to school. Basically I'm ready to send my brother back to my parents, which is closer to school btw, so my stepdad can take him. My thinking is, if I wanted to take care of a kid id have one. And I can't take it anymore and honestly feel like we're enabling him. But everyone in my family is guilt tripping me saying I need to be there for my brother cause its hard right now after my mom and sisters were in the accident. What do you all think? Sorry I'm on my phone so no paragraphs!
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Re: NWR what to do about brother

  • I say kick him out next week.
    This week is still a little sensitive.... you don't want to burden your recovering family.
    But he really has become just that -- a burden.

    Unless he can prove himself worthy by Sunday, come Monday, he better have his stuff packed.
    If he can't drive himself anywhere, he should have plenty of time to do housework. Dirty dishes, windows, dust pictures, polish everyone's shoes, make dinner atleast twice a week, even if it's just a casserole that he can make in the morning so that you and FI can pop it in the oven and eat it for dinner, he can clean the oven, organize the pantry, do some laundry, clean the floors, vacuum the stairs, etc.

    It's sad, but seriously consider assigning him chores. He can pick whichever ones he want, as long as he does 3 (or however many you choose) a day.

    He has to earn his keep!

  • tiny specktiny speck member
    1000 Comments 100 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary
    edited November 2012
    I would also have to agree that he needs to go. He's not upholding his end of the deal, which didn't seem to be much of a deal in the first place and more of just an assumption that you guys would care for him. And honestly, having to live 40 minutes away from his friends is not that big of a deal. Even if he doesn't have a car and license, surely some of his friends do, and even if not, there is always public transportation. I also think it's a bit ridiculous that your mom had been driving him around in the first place. He needs a bit of tough love.

    ETA: And what is he assuming he's going to do when you and your FI are married in April? Surely your brother doesn't expect to keep living with you as newlyweds? I really think that now (at the latest over the holidays) is the right time for him to figure out his own living situation and if that means living with parents for a while so be it.
  • I agree with PP. I can actually relate to this. FI's twin brother sounds very similar to your brother. He doesn't live with us, but FI lets him drive his truck around because he doesn't have a car of his own even though if it broke he wouldn't be able to fix it. They got in a big fight last weekend and FI decided he doesn't want him driving his car anymore, amongst other things.

    Its not your responsibility to take care of your brother. Sometimes I think they need tough love and a reality check (which is what we're trying to do).

    Good luck with this situation, I know it can be tough. 
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  • First, I am sorry about your family, I hope everything is okay! I will keep them in my prayers.

    Before I ask any questions I just want to say that I think it is completely unfair of you to say that he has to get a 3.0 in school in order to live with you. He is at least going to school so that should count for something.

    Why does your brother not have his license yet? Does he just not want to get it or something? How does he feel about living with your parents? How far away is his job?

    sorry for all of the questions, I feel like I am missing something. I agree with PP about helping out around the house, does he do his share?

    Without knowing everything, my advice would be to suggest he live with your parents Sunday - Thursday so they can take him to school and what not; and then Friday and Saturday he can stay with you so he can be closer to his friends. Let him get used to going back and forth while he can still crash at your place.

    I agree that he should be out by the time the wedding comes. Have you talked to him about moving out at all? Or does he think everything is fine?

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  • ChiGirl2013ChiGirl2013 member
    500 Comments 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary
    edited November 2012
    My sister is 27 and still living at home with my mom - no job, no car, no ambition, and a drinking problem.  Do you want your brother to be this way?  If not, it's time for some tough love, and if your family doesn't like it, THEY can take him in.  You made a deal with him and he didn't uphold it.  That means he has to get out.  That's how the real world works and you're not doing him any favors by babying him.

    I would sit him down and remind him of what he promised when he moved in.  Tell him that he hasn't even come close to upholding his part of the bargain so he has until (date) to get his act together or he's out.  I would give him a few weeks because it takes time to find a job and all that, and your family DOES need a little time to heal from the accident.  But whatever you tell him, you HAVE to stick to it.  Whether your family likes or not, it's YOUR house so it's YOUR rules.  If he chooses not to uphold his end of the bargain, that's HIS fault, not yours.  You gave him plenty of time to get it together and he CHOSE not to.  They can't get mad at you for choices he made.

    As far as school goes, tell him you will drive him 1 day a week until his winter break starts and the rest of the time, he needs to find a ride there and back.  If not, he will have to either move back in with mom, drop out, or start paying your FI $20 each way - which is way cheaper than a taxi.  After winter break, he gets zero rides from you.  This way, you're not telling him what to do (so you can't get blamed for whatever he decides to do) but you CAN tell him what his options are and let him choose one.  He needs to talk to his professors too.  There are, what, 3 weeks of school left until winter break?  He can figure something out for 3 weeks - maybe telecommute if they allow it, due to family circumstances - and by the time he goes back in January, hopefully your mom will be healed and he will be back home with them.

    I love my family. I would do ANYTHING for them, even if it didn't make me particularly happy.  That's what families do.  But he's taking advantage of you and there's a difference.  It's time to put your foot down.  I am happy your mom is on the mend, but I would NOT just dump him on her tomorrow, because I'm sure she doesn't have the strength to deal with him either - that's why I suggested waiting until winter break is here for his school.  By then, your mom will hopefully be back to her old self.  Tough love really stinks, but you can't go on enabling him and letting him believe that life owes him a free ride.
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  • edited November 2012
    Oh, tell him he has to move home. That it's not an option- no negotiating. He has a week to pack up. Be firm about it, and make sure FI is on your side and you stand firm together on this. He needs to move home- maybe that will make him get his act together by getting a better job and a car so that he can see friends more often. It's not your job as a sister to feel bad for him and drive him around, or let him live with you. Not your job at all, so don't feel guilty, and don't let him make you feel guilty if tries. He can help your parents after the wreck (which I'm really sorry btw, hope they are ok!!), and if they can't drive- he can take local transportation as well if it is available. There are plenty of options and as an adult, he needs to take care of himself and figure it out!
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  • Can your brother rent a place near school?  If he's working 15 hrs a week he can probably make rent on a room somewhere.  No one would have to shuttle him around if he could walk to campus.  I don't know where he works and how close it is to school but he could hop on the bus to get to work.  People will list rooms for rent at the info boards on campus and he could also check Craigslist...just make sure he has a buddy go check out those places with him.

    I agree with PP that it's time for him to take responsibility for his own independence.  I'm sure he wouldn't mind a little more freedom as well.

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  • Thank you all for the responses! My brother only makes maybe 400 a month so no way he can move out on his own yet. I didn't think asking for a 3.0 was too much considering with everything I've been juggling I've been making deans list every semester, to me its no different then telling your child they need As and Bs or they're grounded. I've had this argument with him about him moving out a million times, we caught him smoking pot in the house THREE different times and he's weasled his way out of it every time. He cries and says he feels like he's gonna be a loser like our dad and pulls on my heart strings when deep down I know he's taking advantage. My FI and I barely know what it's like being on our own anymore cause he's ALWAYS there. It's been a source of tension and a lot of arguments. There is NO WAY we are going to be newlyweds with him around. I realize we're enabling him but I don't wanna damage our relationship by kicking him out, which isn't even what I'm doing really because I made the rules, HE chose not to follow them.
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  • As for his license, he's failed the written permit test four times and hasn't been back to take it since August. Even when he gets his permit he's still six months away from taking the road test. His job is right down the street from our house but he's just a dishwasher it's not like he can't find another job making minimum wage by our parents house.
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  • Yeah it sounds like nothing will change if he lives with you, the best thing would be to tell him he has so long left and he needs to move back to your parents after that. Everything else is his problem to deal with, not yours. Do you know what you are going to do?
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  • Can you give him till the first of the year or so and then send him back to your parents' house?  That would give him the holidays to get the situation sorted out and might ease some of the post-accident tension for the rest of your family.  Also, your stepdad would be able to give your mom and sisters some more attention over the next month and help them get things back together.  

    If your bro was smoking pot in my home I would consider that blatant disrespect for the rules.  I really think you and your FI have his best interests at heart and that you would do him a favor in the long run by kicking him out.  If he's at your parents' house, 40 min away from his friends, that might light a fire under him to work hard over winter break and through the summer to save up some money and move in with friends for the next school year and take his transportation burden off of your family.

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  • Yeah, the pot thing would have had his [email protected] on the front stairs the minute I found out!  OMG, what would happen if the cops showed up at your place and found that he had it?  Do you know how much of it he has?  Since it's YOUR house, there's a chance you'd go down right along with your brother.  No, sorry.  Smoke if you wanna, but not in MY house.

    It sounds like no matter what you do, someone is going to be upset.  But the thing is, why should YOU be upset all the time for basically having to babysit a grown man?  He has no reason to get a better job, get his permit/license, or get better grades because you put up with what he's done so far.  That's the same as approving of it.  What you allow is what will continue.  If you don't want it to continue, make sure he knows it's not allowed.

    When my sister did inpatient alcohol rehab, they used to invite family members for speakers and presentations.  I will never forget what this one guy, who had 28 years of sobriety, said.  He said "If you want something to change, something has to change."  SO true, and so appropriate for many of life's situations - including this one.
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  • I'm sorry about your family's medical problems. That said, your brother is acting like a child. Children need to be taken care of by their parents. You're not his mother. You're taking care of yourself and being an adult. What else is there to talk about? There is no reason in my world that would justify not being self-sufficient (working enough to pay for rent/food/utilities/transportation) or being in school full time AND having an arrangement where someone else (YOUR PARENTS) take care of you. Either he needs to be self-sufficient or he needs mommy and daddy to hold his hand.

    I'm VERY demanding about adults taking care of themselves. There are times when illness prevents that but that's CLEARLY not what's going with him. He's just being needy and lazy.
  • You're all saying exactly what I've been trying to explain to my fianc and brother. I KNOW we're enabling him by staying here but going through the actual process of kicking him out is hard, but I need to do it. He's at class right now, and needs to be picked up BY MY FI in a few minutes. I told him last night he has to leave before his classes start next week cause there's no way we can give him rides three days a week in addition to our busy schedules, only getting busier during the holiday season, until the semester is over. He was like "you realize I'm leaving behind everyone and everything I know here" and I was like "ok I get that but you can't have honestly thought you'd be staying here forever" and he's like "ok just wanted to make sure you realize that." Like guilt tripping me, I just can't believe he honestly thinks he DESERVES to stay here after everything he's done. Tonight it was just me and my FI, alone, and it was so great and peaceful. When were ready to have kids, we will. In the meantime he needs to either figure his life out or move back home. I moved out when I was 17 and stopped relying on my parents for EVERYTHING, completely cut myself off, and to be doing all this for him is just pissing me off so bad. I can't handle it anymore, I want my house and mine and FI life back. Ill keep you updated on how it goes.
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  • Maybe your FI needs to read this post so he can see that you aren't the only one who finds your brother's behavior unacceptable.  And, I'm sorry but your FI doesn't call the shots when it comes to YOUR brother.  If it were his brother, I could see him putting up a fuss, but from where I sit, he gets no say in your brother's future. 

    My sister is also the queen of guilt trips.  My standard response is always "Sux to be you, doesn't it?"  lol
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  • You got this, Ally!  Tough love is hard but it's ultimately the best choice for everyone involved.  That's why you are family, to tell him how it is when no one else will.  Good luck :-)

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  • In Response to Re:NWR what to do about brother:
    [QUOTE]. He was like "you realize I'm leaving behind everyone and everything I know here" and I was like "ok I get that but you can't have honestly thought you'd be staying here forever" and he's like "ok just wanted to make sure you realize that." Like guilt tripping me, I just can't believe he honestly thinks he DESERVES to stay here after everything he's done. Tonight it was just me and my FI, alone, and it was so great and peaceful. When were ready to have kids, we will. In the meantime he needs to either figure his life out or move back home. I moved out when I was 17 and stopped relying on my parents for EVERYTHING, completely cut myself off, and to be doing all this for him is just pissing me off so bad. I can't handle it anymore, I want my house and mine and FI life back. Ill keep you updated on how it goes.
    Posted by allychase[/QUOTE]
    That is so wrong. Not to mention, that 40 minutes isn't that far away from him to be from his friends. Its not like your parents live across the country. 
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  • Almost have the same experience with my younger sister. She had very bad grades, no job, no car and living in a bad home situation. She moved in with us on the condition she went to school, raised her gpa, got a job, respected a curfew and learned how the real world worked.. That quickly turned south.. I didnt even expect her to do much around the house... I had multiple talks with her about her behavior and how it wasnt working out. To the point where i told her she needed to either act like an adult to be treated like one, or continue to act like a child and i would enforce a lot more than a curfew, or there was the door.

    Turns out she got herself pregnant, dropped out of school, moved back in with her parents because the baby daddy's in jail. (not that he could of provided...)

    We also had a similar issue with FI's sister and her daughter.. basically lazy mother autistic child. And in the end we were the bad guys to the entire family because of her lies....

    Sometimes its better to end the drama. Some people dont want to be helped. In the end you gotta look out for you. If by you supporting someone else is interferring with your life... its gotta end. I am the first person that will reach out to help in anyway I can... sadly it turns out that people like to take advantage of that kindness. Dont let your kindness be mistaken for weakness Wink
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