I’m in my early 20s, and my 18-year-old sister is attending community college. All my memories of her consist of her putting me down. We reconciled just as I was moving out. She is extremely dependent on the family. If I refuse to help her, I am told by my family that I’m selfish or a “b—-.” They have a running joke that she’s going to live with me and be dependent on me when our parents die. I have heard that she is actually OK with it and looks forward to the day I can support her. I have tried pointing out that it’s neither healthy nor realistic, and her issues aren’t my fault, but again, I am put down. They say we’re family and it’s my job to take care of her. But when did family become a job?
From Kansas City, Kansas
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All too often, family members can make requests that are unfair and unreasonable. Even though in your case, both are true, I don’t think you should pass up an opportunity to get even with your sister for insulting you over the years. Because your family thinks it’s going to be your “job” to take care of your sister, then you should demand that they pay you, whether it’s giving you a portion of their paychecks, or them acquiring the funds through a series of convenience store robberies. Try to discourage her from wanting to move in with you, by letting her know that you’ve taken out an insurance policy on her life, and then let her see you constant googling “fast acting poisons”. If she eventually moves in, have some rules so ridiculous that she hates it there, such as there are certain rooms she is not allowed to breath in, including the kitchen. However, she is family, so you may feel compelled to welcome her into your home. So, to insure that your residence is always neat and clean, tell your sister she can stay as long as she does all the duties of a janitor, and 24/7 wear a khaki uniform. And the remind her that she will be immediately evicted, if you ever see her more than five feet away from a pushbroom. I hope this helps.