I have an older sister. I love her very much, but sometimes I just want to wring her neck. She is four years older than I am. She has two young daughters, and she is unmarried.
She didn’t graduate from high school. She works at a department store, and doesn’t make a lot of money.
She likes things handed to her. She would rather get handouts from me and the rest of my family than to earn money herself.
I recently landed a job at a postproduction facility that pays me great for my age. (I am 19 and a student as well.)
When she heard that I got the job, she immediately started harassing me to let her borrow some money. She also wanted me to give her my desktop computer, because I had just bought a new laptop.
What makes it so hard for me is that she is not a woman of her word. She asks for me to help her out to buy things for her daughters.
Yet, the last time I gave her some money, the next time I saw her, she had her hair done nicely and her nails done. She had also bought a designer purse. I do not spend my money on such luxuries for myself.
I consistently have to hear things like “you don’t have kids, you don’t know what it’s like” or “you don’t know what it’s like to have so many bills”.
I just don’t know what to do anymore about this situation. I have tried to ignore her calls, but she keeps calling and texting.
I don’t want to become resentful of her, as she is my sister and I do love her. I can’t figure out how to improve our relationship.
Please give me some advice.
Signed, Younger Sister
Dear Younger Sister,
The time has come for you to stand up for yourself. When she asks you for money, simply tell her “no”.
She is going to continue to try to place a guilt trip on you, but don’t fall for it. You will have done nothing to feel guilty about by refusing to continue to finance her lifestyle.
If she asks you why you are not assisting her anymore, you don’t owe her a long, involved explanation. Simply say that you are not going to continue to give her money.
You certainly can occasionally buy gifts for her or your nieces. If would like to, then you can buy the girls some clothes, or give your sister a gasoline card, for example.
These would be gifts that you give when you want to, and out of the goodness of your heart. And you should only do this if you have the financial ability to do so.
This should really help with your feelings of resentment regarding your sister. It is really best for both of you, although it may take a while for your sister to truly understand.
I have a job right now, and I really don’t like it. It is so boring. I have been tempted to quit many times, but I am not sure that I will find another job.
I feel like I am constantly in a bad mood, because work is such a chore. I wish it could be more fun.
I admit that my boss is very fair to me, and that my coworkers are nice people. Also, I don’t have to drive very far to work.
What do you think that I should do? Shall I wait for the job market to get better, or should I just go ahead and quit?
Signed Bored Employee
Dear Bored Employee,
I do not recommend that you quit your job. Although it is great when a person enjoys their job, the reality is that in many instances it is simply not the case. Many people do not enjoy their jobs.
Work is not something that is meant to entertain you, or to necessarily be fun. It is the reality of being an adult, and of earning money to make your way in the world.
You can probably make the job a little more enjoyable, however, if you attempt to change your attitude. You can be grateful that you are employed, when there are so many people that are looking for work.
You can volunteer to help your coworkers. You can focus on giving outstanding customer service.
Also, you can find out if there are more challenging areas of your job that you know little about. Ask your boss if there are other aspects of your job that you can learn more about. You may be pleasantly surprised.
Focus on the positive aspects, and if nothing else, you should be in a better mood when your work is done.
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