very upsetting  

rm__Reality_ 105F
105 posts
10/10/2005 6:42 am

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

very upsetting

I have a friend. We've known each other for years, raised our kids together. Her current situation is dire and i have no idea how to help her.

Before i commit this to "paper", let me say, she's not an AFFer, not even a computer user. Only one other person who might read this knows of whom i speak.

This lady has not one bit of common sense. She has an "artists" temperament interspersed with an Ostrich's ability to sink her head into the sand and ignore the obvious. She's always been this way and there is no talking realism to her, she doesnt hear.

During the time i've known her, she's had three houses. Every move has cost her dearly and those of us watching tried to no avail to make her see the inevitable. Her reasoning is so bizarre that i can't begin to put it into words. Suffice it to say, that she made the final big mistake last year and now, she's paying the price and I dont know how to help her.

This lady was widowed very young. Her children were two and three weeks old when her husband of a very short time died of a brain tumor. At the time, she owned a house, mostly paid for due to an accident settlement. She raised her kids alone, on social security and with the extreme generousity of her Mother. Her children attended private schools, she raised dogs for extra income, but mostly they cost her. Her Mother subsidized her income but she still made many mistakes ending up in a house that she could not afford and her reasons for selling each home were bizarre to say the least. Each move percipitated by some notion that the "neighbors" were out to get her.

Last year the final sale happened. She came out of it with little money and we all begged her to do something realistic. But, sigh, that didnt happen. She had two old dogs {12 and 10} and three old cats and she refused to part with them. I understand that she had given up many animals at the time as she disbanded her kennel, but common sense should have prevailed. I offered to let her move in with me for a time. Her nest egg was very small {profits from this last house were under 20.000} Each move put her in jeopardy as she had to go to mortgage companies that were for those who have less than good credit. You know the ones, high interest, hidden costs etc. She could have come to stay with me, saved her money and thought things thru. But the dogs couldnt come. I had a "no dog" lease. Instead she made a decision to move into an apartment that cost her 54.00 less than her monthy ss check so she could keep the animals. Obviously, her capital would be used up as she had nothing left after paying the rent. We tried to tell her, please please, get on a housing list or something so when the nest egg is gone and probably the dogs {remember they are old}, she'd have something in the works. She wouldnt listen, didnt see the forest for the trees, wouldnt or couldnt see down the road.

This woman is generous, I'll say that. She keeps a notebook of birthdays and at the beginning of each month, when her check came in, she would buy that months gifts. She did the same for Christmas, sending gifts to people she knew all over the country. These werent expensive gifts, the dollar store is her favorite shopping place, but when the lists number in the hundreds, even the dollar store items add up. She kept things organized, this year the men get socks, next year gloves, can't repeat socks so lets see, wallets this year. Was a way of life for her and she continued it, even when all she had to dip into was her small profit from the sale of the house. I could see the handwriting on the wall. I wish I had been able to make her see it.

And so here it is, a year later. The old dogs are still alive, so are the cats. Her money is gone. She has less than three hundred dollars in the bank and since she didnt make any plans for the future, she is in worse shape than she was a year ago.

Her Mother was still alive until recently. She gave my friend a check to purchase a newer used car as the old one was on its last legs. Instead of using the money to buy the car, my friend banked it and took on a car payment. The funds bought her a few more months of living but now she has a car payment on top of it all. She also took on a loan thru beneficial even tho i tried to tell her that borrowing funds at a huge interest rate, to put them in a savings account at a tiny interest rate made no sense. She did it and it bought her a few more months. Now its payback time.

I am so concerned. I spend every day trying to help her but the fact is, there is little help out there. She surely qualifies for housing help but the lists are long and she will not take the necessary steps. Her head is in the sand. All she does is cry and say she will not give up her animals. She has it in her head that she's been a good tenant so her landlord is going to allow her to stay. I cannot convince her that being a good tenant means she paid her rent on time. Once she cant do that, she is no longer a good tenant! This is it. This month. Her lease is up on November 1 and surely she will be homeless. People have offered her a place to stay. I have, others have. But no one is prepared to take in five animals. I can only do so much. I've made all the phone calls i can, got all the information i can. She needs to follow up but she hasnt as yet. Time is running out.

It would be easy to say she made her bed, its her fault. Thats what her children are saying. They are now young adults with lives of their own. They worry, but are in no position to help her. I cant find an answer but i cant turn my back either. What to do, what to do. I have run out of ideas.

I feel guilty that I am now in a little place of my own, safe, affordable. I did what i had to do to get here and it wasnt easy! I offer what i can, mostly advice cuz i dont have much else. She wont listen and time is running out.

Oldsalt554 66M

10/10/2005 9:11 am

Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like there is much that you can do at this point. Everyone has the right to make their own choices. It is surely hard to live with but .... If she does lose her housing, perhaps family will help or most states make provisions for emergency public housing.

Bitchy_3 57F

10/10/2005 10:16 am

First accept that you can do nothing and be ok with that. When I first read this I didn't realize it was your post, Miss REAL. Lady, you just get it from all directions don't you???

First of all our society will not leave her in the street unless she chooses to be there. Maybe this lesson is hers - but maybe it's YOURS. God brings all sorts into our lives. Some are here just to show us our limits. Please, I know you. And you will not stop worrying about her. Don't drain yourself if it will not benefit her. And give Miss SONG back her glasses. It doesn't sound like this will be a rosie ending no matter what color lenses you look at it through. Know your limits. I love you too much to see you make yourself sick.

rm_songbird5419 62F
305 posts
10/10/2005 1:05 pm

Bingo and ditto to everything MissB says...'specially the part about giving my back my glasses...I can't seeeeeee!!! All kidding aside Reality: I love you too much to see you make yourself sick too. All you can do at this point is listen. She isn't going to change cuz some old habits die hard and some just won't die at all. She's always lived in something of a fantasy land and I believe she will continue to do so. Just be there, listen, continue to give her advice whether she chooses to listen or not. That's all you can do now.

If you are strong and push through the pain and the fear, you often find that happiness is waiting for you on the other side.

rm__Reality_ 105F
67 posts
10/10/2005 3:46 pm

Thanks for all the love, support and good advice. Its very difficult to watch a friend drown in her own skewed reality.

Here Song, your glasses wont work this time. No happy ending in sight *S*

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