My 22-year-old brother is an inconsiderate jerk. My parent's have kicked him out. He's about to be homeless in an hour, with literally nothing to his name. I want to help him not live in a ditch but should I do that?
posted by youandiandaflame to Human Relations (101 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Oh, Mefites, have I got some family drama for you!
I'd like some help on navigating a family situation quite a few years in the making. See, I have this 22 year old brother. Basically, he's a spoiled rotten mess. He's rude, he sleeps all day and only wakes to go to his job, he's constantly driving and fucking up my parents vehicles, and did I mention that while we all bend over backwards to help him out when we can he's a giant jerkoff most of the time? Yeah, there's that.
He has been living with my parents (who happen to live across the street from me) since high school graduation. He's had a few jobs, good ones too, but inevitably leaves them when he feels even a little slighted, and sits around for months while waiting for something to fall in his lap. About a year ago my (now ex-) boyfriend got him a job and through that job my brother got his CDL, which was what he'd been dreaming about since trucking with my dad as a youngster. He makes about $500 a week, has no bills, eats for free at my parents, and my mother is even kind enough to wash his damn underwear. He drives my dad's vehicle to and from work.
A few months back, my parents decided to let his girlfriend move in with them also. She's a great girl who's been dealt a real shit hand in life but she works incredibly hard, has pulled herself out of the poverty hole in which she was raised, gotten an education, and pulls her weight around the house. She's shy but pleasant to my family and we all love her. She's good for him. Unfortunately, he tends to drag her poor ass down. Ugh.
In short, bro was SUPPOSED to be saving for a vehicle while my parents paid his way for the most part. The goal was for he and his girlfriend to move out by the end of May, get their own place, and start a life together. Bro has not done that. He's blown through pert' near $2500 in a month and has not saved a dime. When he's not working he's out partying. I absolutely cannot fathom, nor can my (very tight knit) family, where his money is going. Before we go there, he's not on drugs, so who knows.
Things have come to a head this morning. While my mother has spent my brother's 22 years on this planet coddling him, she's fed up. He railed on his lady last night particularly hard and cursed her out. This is obviously unacceptable, especially since his doing so just reeks of the verbal abuse that used to be hurled towards my sister by her ex-husband. It's a sensitive subject in our family -- you DO NOT EVER speak to a woman that way. My mother watching my brother interact and ultimately mistreat his girlfriend has opened her eyes. She's made excuses for him all these years and we've complained about him getting away with whatever he wants. Now, she's kicked him out. My brother is totally homeless as of an hour ago.
I get where she's coming from. When he's around he's an utter bear to deal with. He's got a shitty entitled attitude. Plus, when my mother is done, when she's had it, she's quite volatile, I'll give him that but he's basically earned this.
Here is my dilemma: He's my brother. He is now without a home (none of his friends live here anymore), he's without a vehicle, and tomorrow he'll be without a job. He has a couple hundred bucks in savings but basically his only option is to hoof himself and his belongings up to the local motel. Unfortunately, we live in a small town and they will not be open until Tuesday so until then, he's up a creek. I spoke to him in person about this earlier and basically said, as he tried to lay his current predicament at my parent's feet, that he earned this shit. That his concept of living as adult is utterly screwed. That his speaking to his girlfriend and family in the way he does is totally unacceptable and it just reeks of Spoiled Brat Syndrome. My parents have greatly contributed to this but ultimately, he's a grown up now and should get it together. I do not blame my mother (my dad's not totally behind her on this) -- I get where's she's coming from and I agree with her 100%.
But...uh, kid's homeless. He's my brother. Letting him stay here is not the smartest. In our family, I suffer his shit the least so we'd be at each other's throats over his asshole ways in a day. I have a 7-year-old and I'm not doing that. He could stay with our sister but that's gonna call out the wrath of my mom which is...Christ, no one wants that.
I told my mom I had her back 110%. And then he was over here bawling about this situation and kid's right. He's totally screwed. He's earned it but watching him wretch and panic was heartbreaking, no matter how much of a shit he can be.
So. What are the options here? If your brother was a total turd with no respect or sense of value or ability to live life as a grown-up, what would you do? How do I help him figure this out? Do I help him at all? Genuinely, he has earned this. GENUINELY HE HAS. But he's my little brother! I know I can't teach or force him to grow up over night but is this the answer, to just turn him out? My mother seems very firm on this but is it wise to try to talk her out of it and if I can, what are some conditions she could lay down and stick to (something that, admittedly, she is obviously poor at)? My speaking up on his behalf is going to A. make me look like a hypocrite because I've been on her for years to teach him that not everything is given so freely in adult life and B. she ain't gonna like it. But is the answer to go from 0-60 overnight, from coddling one day to "YOU'RE OUT!" the next? Is there not a buffer area here that I can suggest before he ends up totally homeless?