Health issues, divorce, change in child arrangements, job loss, relationship challenges, and now…
…dealing with parental financial issues.
Really? Haven’t I proven a high degree already of change resilience?
Long story short, my Mother and Step-Father were well set up for retirement a decade ago, having sold their business, paid off their mortgage, and living simply with a focus on experiences, including travel.
Then the 2008 financial crises happened, and my Step-Dad, who managed their investments, managed to lose ALL of their savings. Literally. All. Of. Their. Savings. Okay, well, perhaps they had $30,000 left.
They re-mortgaged their house. Stopped all unnecessary expenditures, sold my Mom’s car. Have lived exceedingly frugally since then.
The irony is not lost on me, as my Mom was the one who taught me about savings for retirement, and that I should never rely on a man for my financial stability. When I pleaded with her to take what little money she had and put it with my investment advisor, she said the investing was my Step-Dad’s life and she was worried he would fall farther into a depression should he lose that as well.
I may not have mentioned it, but his son, my step-brother, committed suicide in 2008. It was not a good year for my family.
And now, with their sole car needing several thousands in repairs, my Mother has told me it’s looking more likely they need to sell their house. The house they renovated from the ground up, with the amazing gardens which back onto a ravine. Where Liam has learned the names of countless birds, seen deer, chipmunks, rabbits, and foxes. Where he’s learned the fine art of tomato gardening. Which has an amazing water view.
I could pay for their car repairs but don’t have enough money to bail them out in the long term. Well, not without risking my own financial stability.
I know this isn’t about me, but I’m already feeling the strain of the various stressors which didn’t include my Mother’s financial stability. Liquidating everything and moving to some small tropical island and running a juice stand is looking more and more appealing.