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Man has mental breakdown when he receives 'sociopathic' mother's inheritance; 'My family & my GF has turned against me.' AITA? 2 HARROWING UPDATES.

Man has mental breakdown when he receives 'sociopathic' mother's inheritance; 'My family & my GF has turned against me.' AITA? 2 HARROWING UPDATES.


When this man feels like his life is breaking down after receiving his inheritance, he asks Reddit:

"My life is falling apart after receiving my inheritance. Am I handling this all wrong? AITA?"

Where do I even begin? I'm so lost right now I don't even know how to put things into words or find a good starting point. I guess it goes with how two months ago, my life was exactly where I wanted it to be.

I've been with the girl of my dreams [27F] for the last 3.5 years, we have house, animals, both of our families get along beautifully and honestly...

the last 3 years with her and my family and her family around the holidays have been some of the most warm, fuzzy, memories I've had in my entire life and, believe me, I've been thinking about those times a lot lately.

So, like I said, this problem is going to come in parts because my entire life feels like it is on the brink of completely falling apart. My mother was a very very wealthy woman.

Most of my life, she and I did not get along very well but I started working in the family business roughly 5 years ago and since then- we've actually developed a great relationship.

It was one of those things where, after many years of feeling that my mother hated me, she was at last proud of me and not afraid to say she loved me and valued me. tbh I think she was a bit of a sociopath. But I'm not sure. Then, last month in mid-March, she passed away.

I'm tearing up thinking about this as I type because I've always felt that- despite her resentment towards me in my early years- I loved my mother more than anyone else in this world.

I won't say much more than that- she had a hard life in spite of her wealth and I feel I could write a whole book on our relationship.

Anyway, she is gone and my siblings and I are now extremely wealthy and have taken possession of the business and all of her investments and property.

If that isn't scary enough- I'm having a hard time figuring out what I need to do next. The business I was associated with: I can handle and my siblings and I have really come together on this and they seem to trust me with that part of it.

But it doesn't wash away the hurt and guilt I feel that I only got a few good years with the woman who gave me life.

Anyway, my plan is to marry my GF by next year and we've already discussed the pre-nup situation, which I will be getting due to my newfound wealth. She has been nothing but wonderful after my mom's death.

But the problems comes in her family. I won't go into much detail, but I love these people- like an extension of my own family- but they have already started trying to pry exactly how wealthy I am out of my GF and her mom has always had a gravitational pull towards- for lack of a better term- pyramid schemes.

Her first sibling, "Terry" just got married and is working a fast food job. Terry and his Wife have decided they will be starting a family soon and stated that they want Wife to be a stay-at-home mom.

This talk has only recently popped up and been brought to my attention and (I feel like I'm being paranoid) been directed at me as there is absolutely NO WAY they'd be able to afford this on the money they currently make or even while living in their small apartment.

Like they are expecting me to help them out in a situation they are wholly unable to handle right now. Sibling no. 2, "Leslie" has run into some pretty serious legal trouble and is also pregnant- the father has a history of abuse and neither have steady incomes.

They have recently come back into our lives after a 4-year long absence between GF and Leslie- though, prior to this, the two have always been extremely close (as GF is with all of her siblings) as throughout their childhood, a lot of the time all the had was each other.

Sibling #3, "Kasey" who I hardly ever speak to has even started chatting me up on facebook more than she ever has in the entire time I've known her.

Is this just my brain devolving into paranoia or is this actually happening? Like the lottery horror stories you hear where people come out of the woodwork with their hands out when they smell money on someone they know?

I know for a FACT my mother, for all of her faults, fell victim to this when SHE inherited this money. She became increasingly bitter throughout her life due to all of the husbands and friends that took advantage of her for what she could do for them.

She drank herself stupid every day for 30+ years and moved through carton after carton of cigarettes and alienated her own children. I don't want to be like that, I don't want that to happen.

It's been less than a month that I've had more money than I know what to do with and I'm afraid to spend a dime or do ANYTHING with it because I feel like my GF's family is only the beginning.

What's worse- and will probably make me look like a total shithead- is my GF has already committed to helping Leslie. They were close their whole lives and with all of the legal trouble and pregnancy, GF cries at night thinking about what's happening to her.

She has not asked me to help financially or anything, but I have been there every step of the way to help support them and her as best as I can. But how will it look when my GF starts giving out her money to people while I don't and get viewed as a selfish scrooge.

All of this is too much. The last three years were just so wonderful. So many magic trips to the beach, wonderful holidays, surrounded by not one but two families full of great people that accepted and loved me and now it seems like...

because I lost my mother and am getting a windfall because of it, everything is changing- I don't get to be happy with family anymore and my whole life is crashing because of this.

I know this is so far beyond a first-world problem- 'poor baby is now a multi-millionaire and is a little sad he can't have a happy christmas wah wah' but I feel so broken. My life is in shambles.

I miss my mom, I don't sleep at all, I hardly eat, and- despite knowing full well the path my mother went down- I've been drinking a bit and smoking weed more than I ever had- on a daily basis in fact.

My siblings seem to be coping just fine, and now I feel like everyone is out to get me. Even my GF is getting a little tired of hearing me voice my concerns over GF Siblings 1-3 and her mom's sudden extra interest in me- which is understandable, they are all very close and take up for one another.

Now, I'm even doubting myself and thinking it's all in my head maybe- too many times my mother drunkenly telling me about all the times she trusted people and was let down. I'm just so lost.

Before we give you OP's updates, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

imjustken writes:

OP, I can sympathize. When I was 23 I came into a good deal of money. Nothing like what you describe, but a healthy amount that could have set my retirement for life had I been smart. I didn't inherit or win it; I got it because of a car accident settlement.

But that didn't stop all the people coming out of the woodwork with their hands out. I lost friends - my best friend thought I should buy her mom a house because when we were 16 we both said that's what we'd do if either of us won the lottery. When I refused she got angry. We aren't friends anymore.

In the end, I lost my money because I usually couldn't say no to all the emergencies my friends and family had. I have horrible medical problems and terrible insurance; that money was supposed to be there for that. And when the handouts stopped, I lost people. And the money is gone, too. Don't be me.

mechantmechant writes:

Sorry about your mom. Of course you're emotional about this money-- it's what your mom's left you. If your inheritance were a collection of salt and pepper shakers, you'd be upset to know they are appraising it, too.

I suggest that you have a heart to heart with girlfriend about the money. Before people marry, talking about money is essential. Explain that it's your mom's business and you intend to grow it instead of cashing out.

Discuss the type of lifestyle you will have that will allow you to grow the company, that will be a good balance of freedom, pleasure, attracting attention, and sustainability. Make sure she's onside and understands that this means there can be some "woo! we're rich!" but it comes at a cost-- namely, alienating others.

I suggest doing what so many pro ballers do-- offer everyone a job. Explain that you're not the manager, so the manager has to treat them like anyone else but you'll get them hired. If you don't want them at your company, buy a franchise and hire an experienced manager with those instructions.

Everyone with their hand out gets a job, but no one is promised they get to keep that job. Help the sister in the legal emergency, but overall, "You need money-- here's a job" will be your stock answer.

Sure, you aren't enjoying the money yet. It's not free-- it came with the loss of your mom, and GF has to get that. But if you plan well, it can mean much more freedom. Don't let it be a burden.

baffledsoap writes:

If you haven't already done so, get the right team of people around you to help mange your newfound wealth. Don't spend anything before you have this team in place. Just Google "what to do when you win the lottery" & you can find some excellent advice on all of the help you should be getting.

Second, you need to ensure that you & GF are on the same page about your wealth. She has agreed to a pre-nup, & that's great. But you need to have a very frank (& possibly very uncomfortable) conversation about your newfound money.

First, decide with your team if you're going to provide lump sum gifts or college accounts to her family members. From what I've read, if you choose to share, it should be clearly understood as a one-time payment.

Ot maybe you could choose to sponsor a family holiday each year to continue those family memories. Since this is your independent wealth, this is your decision to make. Then, explain the plan to your GF.

After this agreement, your GF should understand that she is to shut down anyone that approaches her for a handout / loan / investment. She should never act as a pitchman or encourage someone to approach you directly.

You two need to have a united front on this. If she is wishy-washy or tries to plead a case to you in private anytime someone is in a bad spot, then your relationship is going to become very rocky very quickly.

And if she feels that she cannot agree with this (she feels you should share your money but you do not), then this is good to know before you proceed.

heyapple writes:

I've been in very much this situation and I wanted to comment. First, I can't believe the most upvoted responses advocate placating these deadbeat family members with some sort of payment. Once that genie is out of the bottle, you are on the hook for every "woe is me" sorry tale for life.

Let's be clear... quality people do NOT go around asking for handouts. They work, they go to school, they earn their own keep... they do NOT impose on family based on some unrealistic expectation of charity.

Anyone who seeks to abuse this windfall for their own personal benefit is a toxic influence on your life and should be DISCARDED. In the short run it will be painful, and you will learn true friends from pretend ones. But in the long run, you will save your mental health.

Money only changes you as much as you let it. Find a routine of work and life that surrounds you with positive influences. Set boundaries for people who inquire about your finances. With practice you will learn to dismiss or redirect such conversations.

Above all, you need to have an honest conversation with your girlfriend about your wishes for the future. She needs to have your back in this. Kicking the booze and weed would help too.

Honestly, with all the drama, I wonder if you wouldn't be better off taking her away for a fresh start in a new city. Manage the business remotely, and supplement with regular visits. Good luck.

And now, OP's initial update:

First, I just want to say 'wow'. This whole thing blew and has made me feel much better about the whole situation. THANK YOU EVERYONE for your understanding, condolences, and advice.

I read the 'lottery winning' thread many of you linked to and- while I'm not currently $300 million dollars richer- I will look into a smaller scale version of all of the things you offered up.

I'm not sure if it's worth writing a whole update but last night, I called my sister and drove an hour to her house and stayed the night with her, her husband, and my nieces and nephew.

Over some beers she and I started talking about the whole situation (oddly, it's the first time we've really talked about anything alone without attorneys or my other siblings around since my mother died)

SIDE NOTE: She passed away on March 8th and I know there was at least one comment that said this seemed like everything was moving too fast. Anyway, it turns out she isn't as together about everything as I thought she was.

I showed her the thread and all of the replies and both she and I agreed to talk to a financial advisor and look into getting attorneys to help us with this (she had been primarily working with my mom's attorney up until now).

I'm going to look into setting up a trust as well. Nothing too crazy but enough that I can give small gifts to these people and have a 'cap' on it so to speak for whenever it does come up.

I talked to my GF on the phone this morning and kind of 'laid it all out' and she was in total agreement.

She said she was surprised Kasey has suddenly started talking to me and that it was very suspicious, she also said that Terry's Wife brought up the kids again and was showing her houses they wanted to get that were WAY...

out of their price range and my GF kind of played dumb and just kept asking questions about how they planned to afford all that so I know she and I are (for now at least) on the same page.

Lastly, when I was talking to my sister last night, she said something that both uplifted and destroyed me.

We were talking about our mom and what a hard ass she was and my sister said that one of the last conversations she had with our mom, my mother said "You and (my brother) trust Windfallcurse, he knows what he's doing and he will make sure everyone is okay."

Anyway, thank you all again for all of your comments. I feel like a better and stronger person just one day later.

Readers weighed in on this first update:

anotherrtfan writes:

I have seen greed drive families apart, have to talk to my mom about inheritance shares this week, and had my kind nature taken advantage of. I know it is 7 years too late on an inconclusive thread, but for those who may need help one day I have a plan for “Terry”.

Terry is working a fast food job with a baby on the way, and looking at OP for money. Honestly, in that scenario, I would try to see about getting Terry a job at the company.

Doesn’t have to be glamorous or high up; it could be as simple as security. That way no one loyal/essential/hardworking gets screwed, you’re not being taken advantage of, and offering the FBiL a better job makes you still look generous.

littlepony writes:

Just because you consider your problem above first world doesn't make them less devastating emotionally. Replace the alcohol and weed with the gym and a therapist.

When acting out of fear you usually end up getting what you fear. When you are acting out of fear you keep your eye on what you fear which causes what you fear to always be right in front of you.

Since what you fear is always right in front of you the stress of not being able to shake what you fear starts to wear you down and as you wear down you keep getting closer to and closer to what you fear until BOOM you run smack dab into your fear.

So I would say the GF's family stuff is real, but your fear is making is seem worse and it's keeping in the front of your mind and it's starting to stress you. The therapist will help you with managing this fear, it will also help you deal with the loss of your mother, and your new found business responsibility, and life changing inheritance.

Plan of action: Don't feel the need to deal with everything right now, you aren't required. No, is a complete sentence. Start using it.

Stop smoking weed, and stop drinking altogether. Join a gym and hire a trainer at the gym to work with you, you could also take up kick boxing, or boxing but get a trainer regardless of what activity you pick.

The trainer will develop a plan and keep you on track, physical exercise will help to keep your head clear and a trainer will hound your ass to stay on top of your commitment.

Find a therapist and get your emotionally house in order, your life has changed radically and you need to come to grips with the changes, your GF also needs to come to grips with the change.

Her life has changed radically as well, but she doesn't have the benefit of the inheritance being hers, so she's dealing with similar but different issues. If you really feel like your GF is the one then you should get her working either with your therapist or someone who works with your therapist.

You'll want her by your side and if she isnt' getting the same emotional support that you're getting the relationship will quickly come apart.

In a couple of weeks or a couple of months once you've got your emotional house in order you'll be able to see a clear path to your own goals, and the issues with her family won't be front and center clouding your vision and creating stress.

I work in high tech and I have friends who's net worth end with a B and I've got a ton of friends who's net worth end with a M, 8 and 9 figure M's. A couple of the people I know had 50-75 page applications created for anyone who wanted money or a favor.

In order to submit the application the person needed to give the rich friend full power of attorney, and access to all financial accounts, it required the applicant to pay for a full background check, criminal, financial, employment etc.

The application must be filled out perfectly in order for the application to be accepted for review, it included a $1,500 processing fee, to pay for the a lawyer to review the application and conduct the background check..

if the application was accepted and request for money or favor approved, the $1,500 would be returned or added to the amount loaned.

If the money or favor was granted there was a long list of requirements which included full control of requestor's finances, among other things, I'm sure if you go this route your lawyer will have fun dreaming up ways to exert control.

If there was a mistake on the application, or sections not filled in, or it was unreadable the application would be rejected, but the fee would be kept, still gotta pay the lawyer.

You could use this approach and tell everyone that it was a condition created by your mom as part of the inheritance. It acts as a simple filter.

Years later, OP provides this second WILD update:

Hey everyone! I saw so many kind PMs that it really did make my heart full. Really. Thank you everyone. I can’t describe to you what it feels like. I lost my mom 7 years ago and, honestly, some days it doesn’t feel like it has gotten any better. That life would still be better if she was here/had a chance to build a better relationship.

So, where do I begin from so long ago? My stepfather sued me and contested the will. He lost. But my younger brother (his son) and I have also lost our relationship and…oh yeah… I’m divorced.

So, in an attempt to pick up where this post left off, my mom has just died and I was settled with a whole lot of first-world problems.

THE GOOD: I managed to invest in crypto with a large chunk of my money and (by some miracle entirely out of my know-how and against the advice of my former financial advisor) bought “low” and sold high years later.

This made me the wealthiest of my siblings by far. My sister’s and my relationship has grown thick as thieves. We sold our mom’s company (despite some complications) and went in on a number of real estate investments together and its worked out VERY well in spite of the pandemic.

She is my very best friend in this world and my constant protector as my “big” sister and all of her kids get everything I have when all is said and done.

THE NOT SO GOOD: I am divorced. The GF in the previous post and I did end up getting married (no expense spared) and despite all of the Reddit warning I received, I “spread the wealth” amongst her family.

It turns out, however, that she was not who I thought she was (and I was not who she thought I was) as she decided to attract a boyfriend during our marriage and she paid for their “outings” through my account.

To say I hit a low would be an understatement. However, I am still good friends with my BIL and he has shown nothing but gratitude for my helping his growing family in the ensuing years.

I love him and I hope to keep him close for the rest of my life. Otherwise, I traveled and did too many drugs and became an alcoholic. Yep. Just like my mother.

However, UNLIKE my mother, this is something I'm actively working on. Also, during the “grieving” period of my mother’s death, I was SUED by my stepfather as he contested the will and my brother sided with him.

So for what felt like an eternity, I was fighting against my brother and stepfather, footing ridiculous legal bills, and drinking like they were about to make it illegal. Eventually (thank the gods of old) they LOST and I was suddenly quite single (against my will) but had quite a bit of wealth.

However, after all of the legal problems (thanks to my incredible attorneys during my divorce and being sued) I bought a motorcycle and ala my hero, Neil Peart (RIP), traveled North and South America.

I saw so much and wrote about all of it but also picked up a pretty terrible drinking habit along the way and when I returned home. Something with which I am still struggling as I type this.

I haven’t spoken to my brother for almost 4 years which crushes me every day of my life.

I miss him so much but I just can’t seem to get through to him or my stepfather (who I also love very much) in that I would give them most of what they want money-wise but they have since become evangelical Christians (whole other can of worms) and what I’m willing to do is suddenly not enough.

I’m also paying for my ex-wife’s expenses because, frankly, I loved her and I thought she loved me. Money doesn’t mean much anymore to me and some days it feels like that is all I’m good for. I want her to be happy despite all of the heartache and pain. It was both of us.

I see that now despite her “stepping out.” That being said, I have been “involved” with a young lady for the past few years who has her own career and she is beautiful and makes me feel like a good person when I’m with her.

I’m taking it slow but she is, frankly, out of this world incredible. If marriage ever exists in my future again, it will be with her.

I visit my mom’s “grave” often (that’s in parenthesis as she was cremated and her ashes spread along her favorite coastline) and it’s always hard.

I often ask her if she was proud of me and if I’m on the right path (usually having brought a few bottles of her favorite wine with me) and I know I’m not as I only hear the ocean breeze in response.

Every year it’s the hardest thing I have to do without the worry of how I’m going to pay my bills. It’s a grand privilege (I know) but I miss her. We had so many hard years. So many arguments and fights.

She told me more than once that she “loved” me only because she had to but was “disgusted” by me otherwise. Still, I really felt towards the end that she felt some sense of pride in me.

Like I had finally done something worth remembering with her business only for her to up and die. Do I feel alone still? Yes. Absolutely. As a person, I sometimes feel I do not have any worth whatsoever but the money I can offer.

I guess that is the monkey’s paw part of this whole thing? I have 7 total good friends (I journaled and counted during my motorcycle odyssey) for which I am grateful.

One of them is my sister and I am so grateful to share DNA with such a wonderful human being. In the process I have lost my only father-figure and my baby brother who sided with him and my wife who I thought was my great love.

I’m older now and getting older. Still, I have the 7 and my new lady and I feel enough from that to push forward day-to-day. I know this is probably not the happy ending people wanted but (if I’ve taken anything away from this) things aren’t clean.

They are always messy and complicated. Humans are hard. I have a few houses which is a great privilege but I have lost a lot of the human connection of which I was worried about during my original post (self-fulfilling prophecy maybe?)

I often think about those beach vacations or cozy holidays filled with so much love and acceptance and warmth from so long ago that I cry. It still breaks my heart knowing those days are behind me.

I miss them so much but also know that I can never get that back and my only hope exists in the road in front of me. I know my life changed completely the day my mother died and I lost a great deal in the years after but I still have years ahead.

In conclusion, I guess my original problem from so many years ago is “solved” but I have a lot more life left to live (hopefully). Finally and most importantly: Thank you all for the extraordinarily kind words and messages and the repost in this subreddit. I suppose that is the end...for now.

Wow. What do YOU make of OP's harrowing story? Any advice for him?

Sources: Reddit
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