man relaxing while woman doing chores at homeAsk Rene:
My Mother Makes Excuses
For My Deadbeat Brother!


Hi Rene:

Hello, I have had a problem with my older brother also. I’m 29, he’s 44, divorced and gets his child on the weekends. He lived rent free for 9 years before his marriage then got divorced 2 years later and lived with me and my mother for additional 3. He never spends a dollar at our home. I pay for everything yet he works and pays all his child support and more to his wife. He hates us although we contribute so much towards him. My mother feels really bad for him and even now tells me that she would rather have me move out so he could move in .

I even paid for his wedding when I was in high school!  What would you do here? The only person preventing me from punching him in the face is my mom; I truly want her to be happy.

I’m so sick of him I will never want to see him ever if it weren’t for my mom. I have no jealousy issues I don’t even have any problems with helping him but I feel that he’s not a man because he can’t take care of his responsibilities. He’s a coward and plays games with my mom’s feelings to get stuff for him.

What should I do?

Signed: Disgusted in Detroit


Dear Disgusted:

I hear you. I get it. You have a couple of options but the first has to begin with you being 100% truthful with yourself. It actually does sound like you are jealous or envious and you know something? You should be! If this all went down the way you said, you’re living with a brother who’s a deadbeat and a mother who enables him. That would make me nuts too! I think you have a couple of options.. so here’s what I would do if I were you.

1. No Incentive.. No Change

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Human nature is a funny thing; it's also quite predictable. Your brother may be a deadbeat but it's because everyone around him (yourself included) has allowed him to be. It sounds like he hasn't really experienced the kind of disappointment that would propel him to success. People need to fail in order for that to happen yet no one in his orbit is allowing him to do that.