Social Question

Dutchess_III's avatar

Can you guys help me stay strong?

Asked by Dutchess_III (36153points) March 7th, 2014

And I’d appreciate your thoughts on this situation.

Three years ago we bought a new SUV and gave our 1995 Suburban, which was paid off, to my daughter. However, we retained the title. I have pad the tags for it every year, and the insurance on it every month.

In October I talked my husband into signing the title over to her, but for a variety of reasons I never gave it to her.

About 2 months ago it developed problems with the fly wheel and wouldn’t start. She was thinking of selling it, and that was fine with me.

Recently she became engaged and prepared to move to another town. Her last official day at the apartments was Feb 28, although she actually, physically moved about 3 weeks before that.

I asked her what she was going to do about the truck. She said something about getting a U-Haul with a hitch and towing it to her new digs….but they didn’t.

So her lease was running out, the truck was just sitting in the parking lot. I was afraid the complex would impound it, so I paid to have it towed here to my house. I was kind of pissed at that point and decided since it WAS my truck and I had to do all the work to secure it I’d sell it and keep the money. If she’d taken care of it, I’d have allowed her to sell it and keep the money, but she didn’t.

Well, I found a buyer. We agreed to $750.00. I sent a text to my daughter. She called, wanted to know if my husband knew I’d gotten it sold. I said, yes, he was out there and did the selling. He even got the truck started and running (he’s a mechanic.)
My daughter said, “Well, if Rick knows it got sold I won’t get the money, will I.”
I said, “It’s my truck, I had it towed, we’re keeping the money.”

She got so PISSED. She yelled “Are you freaking kidding me? I’m the one who placed the ad (on facebook.) I’m the one who GOT it sold.”

Now she’s not talking to me. I am so damn frustrated. I’ve helped that girl so much, given her hundreds, if not thousands of dollars over the years when she was running short.

Our relationship certainly isn’t worth losing over $750 bucks, but it’s time for her to be completely self sufficient. I could also really use that money to pay the tags on our other vehicles, which is almost $900. :(


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44 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

This is your testcase to work on her self-reliance and your enabling, no matter how much it was done out of love.

I’d like to know the “variety of reasons” why you never gave her the title.

I do not understand the issue about her placing the ad; you said simply, “Well, I found a buyer.”

What does she mean by “I’m the one who GOT it sold.”

This is the moment. Day one. If you wait out of misguided love, there will be another similar event marching up the road. You are postponing the inevitable.

Is she the mother of the twins, whom you spend so much time taking care of?

stanleybmanly's avatar

Keep the money, reimburse her for the add, and wait for her to mature. You’ll hear from her soon enough. She’ll need help in the future. Depend on it.

Dutchess_III's avatar

She wrote up an ad and put it on a buys/sell/trade group on fb. It was free. Technically she DID find the buyer.

Yes @gailcalled she is the mother of the twins I LOVE taking care of. I asked her to bring them to me when she came back to town to clean her apartment. She could have left them with her fiance.

GloPro's avatar

Wow. Tough call. My thought is that although your daughter is acting like an entitled spoiled child no offense, you DID sign the title over to her in October. At that time you had decided to gift her the truck. The reasons you never gave the title to her may or may not be relevant. You wanting to keep the money is kind of like taking the gift back.
I agree it appears, from the details you gave, that she wasn’t entirely responsible here. That does not negate the fact that on the title she is the owner. Did you forge her signature on the title when you sold it?
Although I see how it pains you, the money should be hers, because the truck was hers. I feel your position and empathize, but you were the one that gifted her the truck in October. When you assumed the responsibility of selling it and towing it she should have been consulted.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@GloPro No. My husband is the only one who has signed the title. Her name isn’t on it yet, nor mine.
I’m frustrated that she didn’t take the steps she needed to take to take care of the truck. She just….left it. It’s that, more than anything, that is causing me to take this course of action.

KNOWITALL's avatar

She sounds like she’s taking advantage of you, and she knows you’ll keep her happy because of the babies. Just split it with her and keep thing’s calm.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

Thank you for trusting us with the details of this delicate personal problem. It is very mature of you to reach out for assistance.

It is only my opinion, but the title of the truck was in your daughter’s name. The money is hers regardless of how much you’d helped her monetarily in the past with taking care of the vehicle. That was a gift from you.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@KNOWITALL…..yeah That’s a good idea.

@Hawaii_Jake No, her name is not on the title. If it was, there would be no issue about who gets the money. I’d just still be frustrated.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@Dutchess_III Now, I’m confused. In the OP you wrote, “In October I talked my husband into signing the title over to her, but for a variety of reasons I never gave it to her.”

Who owns the vehicle?

GloPro's avatar

@Dutchess_III Ah, I see. That is an important detail. Given that she doesn’t own the truck, hasn’t paid into the maintenance of the truck, and your feelings about her leaving the truck for you to deal with, I would keep the money and let her be mad. Her entitlement is mis-guided if the truck did not belong to her.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, he just signed the title. I never gave it to her, so she hasn’t signed it.

Well, @GloPro she’s had the truck for 3 years and she HAS paid the maintenance on it…...

josie's avatar

If you hold title it was yours, and she wasn’t taking care of it properly. You are morally (and legally) correct in doing what ever you had to do, include sell it.

Let her bitch. She is only doing it because she was irresponsible, she knows it, and you did not let her get away with it.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I so appreciate you guys listening and not calling me names that I probably deserve to an extent. It’s so HARD to just leave a kid hanging because there are her kids to consider. For the most part she’s made it on her own. She hasn’t lived at home since she was 18. She manages what little money she has pretty well.

GloPro's avatar

By maintenance I meant tags and insurance for 3 years. That responsibility falls to the owner. It was very generous of you to do that for her (loan her a vehicle and pay for everything). My guess is that it also blinded her to how much owning a ‘paid for’ vehicle really costs. It isn’t just gas and physical maintenance.
For her to ask if Rick knew the truck had been sold… You should remind her that because his name is the only one on the title he was the only one legally able to sell it.

Cruiser's avatar

Tell her she can be pissed about the truck all she wants but tell her to be pissed at herself for abandoning the truck. Tell her this is a lesson in responsibility and you would have had no problem letting her have the car and the money if she was responsible with this vehicle.

flutherother's avatar

I would give her the $750. You gave her the truck didn’t you? In future, if you give her something I would give it outright. I wouldn’t keep the title, that just gets things muddled.

Kropotkin's avatar

”. . . but it’s time for her to be completely self sufficient.”

How does that work? Will she be growing her own food, chopping wood for heating, and making clothes from weaved hemp or something?

I realise this is a bit of an aside, and doesn’t really address the first-world problem you’re having, but—unless she’s going to be a hunter-gatherer, or some lone survivalist in the woods, then she’s not ever going to be “completely self-sufficient”.

Anyway. That $750 must be very important to you.

Coloma's avatar

Helping our kids is one thing, a sense of indignant entitlement is another thing entirely.
I have a friend right now whose 30 yr. old daughter is needing major financial bailout from her again and the daughter gets extremely angry and throws tantrums when mommy says “no more.”
If you have helped her multiple times and she is angry that you are not turning the cash over to her for the vehicle…well…let her have her tantrum. If you cave and give her the cash you lose all credibility and she will continue to emotionally bully you.

This is one thing I am very proud of with my daughter, she has never acted as if she is entitled to help or money. I too have helped and given when I have been able and wanted to but she has never expected this to be a given.
If you do not want to give her the cash for the car then don;t, because then YOU will feel pressured and resentful.

Dutchess_III's avatar

She honestly hasn’t asked for that much. She got a job several months ago but had to let it go because the babysitter started demanding more and more money over and above what SRS paid. While she was working she was actually giving me money for the insurance and stuff. Didn’t ask for anything during that time. She wants to do it on her own.
She’s really not a spoiled brat but she has always had a hard time with reacting with appropriate emotion in some cases.

OpryLeigh's avatar

I’m really torn. If you gave the truck to her as a gift (ie:didn’t expect anything from her in return) then it is hers and the money should probably be hers unless you came to a clear agreement when you gave it to her that she could use it for the foreseeable future but ultimately it was still yours. Also, as she has been paying for maintenance she has invested something in that vehicle so for her to get nothing is a bit harsh. However, if my parents had given me a car I would expect to give them some of the money back if the car was sold, purely out of common courtesy and as a way of saying thanks for helping me out. So, from that point of view, I have to agree with others here that she is acting a little like a spoilt brat. It’s a tough one but I think @KNOWITALL has the right idea and splitting it may help to keep the peace.

GloPro's avatar

Your header is “Help me stay strong.” Your last response is making me think you either think we all think your daughter is behaving badly and you want to defend her, or that you are leaning towards caving and giving her the money.
We all know that your daughter is a great kid to you and mother to the twins. That is evident from past posts. I always react strongly initially, too, so I know how that makes you feel. You can always decide at a later date to go ahead and give her the money. For now, at your request, I’m here to “help you stay strong.” There is no need to rush your decision either way. You’ll figure it out.

zenvelo's avatar

I’ll be Solomonic here, and say you should split the $750 with her. Both of you are sort of right, and also both of you are a bit wrong. And I think you need to sit down with her and both of you work on your communication.

Dutchess_III's avatar

By saying “Help me stay strong,” I guess was another way of asking if you thought this was the right thing to do.
@zenvelo Well, just sitting down and talking about it..well, like I said, she’s always, since she was a baby, had some problem with emotion control. She gets very upset over minor things, especially if she feels she’s being criticized. It just hurts her very deeply.

gailcalled's avatar

Rethinking my first response, I cannot understand the story line at all any more.

Listen to @zenvelo from now on. “And I think you need to sit down with her and both of you work on your communication.”

If her issue is emotional control, then that’s where you and she start. Often, such an issue requires a trained and thus dispassionate therapist.

zenvelo's avatar

@Dutchess_III When I say sit down and work on communication, it’s to sit down and take ownership of any missteps you’ve made (such as not giving her the title back in October), so she can take responsibility on her side.

Dutchess_III's avatar

She’s on medication @gailcalled so it’s better now than it’s been in the past.

gailcalled's avatar

Can you ask her what she suggests as a solution to the problem?

Posing a question will always elicit an answer where a statement might now.

“Do you understand, sweetie, that when you yell at me, I will remove myself from any further discussion?”

“Can we two, together, think of a way to handle our disagreements? What are some ideas you might have?”

“If you tell me you are going to do something, and you don’t, how am I supposed to react?”

(Is she able to have a session or two with the doctor who prescribes the medication?)

Make a plan when YOU are very calm and thinking clearly.

Your language is interesting; you describe both you and her as “pissed.” “I was kind of pissed.” “She got so PISSED.”

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh, and also, I don’t want you guys to think she’s a horrible person that’s kind of why I’m defending her while being pissed at her at the same time. She isn’t a bad person. She’ll do anything she can to help people who need help.

When we had the shop we would go SO broke during the winter. One day she brought over $20.00 and a gift certificate she’d won for $20.00 at Walmart and gave it to us. It was probably all she had.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

Doesn’t sound like she ever paid anything for it. It is true that you are entitled to sell the truck. It is yours, bought, paid for, maintained and cared for.

But, if it were me, I would have taken out the cost of the tow and any repairs, and send her the rest. But that is because I hate conflicts and hurt feelings.

However, now that you have told her what you intend to do, you don’t want to backpedal. That would send her the wrong message. Stick to your guns. Don’t worry, she will come around, all sweetness and light, the next time she needs your help.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Insurance paid the towing bill.

I really hope her needing help days are over. The guy she’s dating is in college, majoring in professional photography. They can make a LOT of money. Maybe I’ll go move in with them some time.

Thank you everyone.

ibstubro's avatar

“It’s my truck, I had it towed, we’re keeping the money.” pretty much says it all. A bit confrontational, in my opinion, but you admit you were already pissed about having to take responsibility for the truck.

How about this tack: Say to her, “I love you, I love your fiance, and I love those babies dearly. I don’t want this to jeopardize any of that, but I need the money for our own vehicles.” Then give her a gas card for $50–100. You could even write it down and enclose it a card. Then do as @zenvelo says and try to sit down and work out some of your mutual issues. If you feel like a counselor would help, you still have $250–300 to invest in the relationship, as you’re currently considering splitting the money with her anyway. You can save a little face, assuage a little guilt and (hopefully) insure you still get to see the babies on a regular basis.

hearkat's avatar

My husband is the only one who has signed the title. Her name isn’t on it yet, nor mine. I’m frustrated that she didn’t take the steps she needed to take to take care of the truck. She just… left it. It’s that, more than anything, that is causing me to take this course of action.
— You agreed to give her the truck, but she never took the initiative to ask you for the title, get the vehicle registered and insured in her name, or to transport it when she moved. Therefore, she never took ownership of the vehicle, and she essentially abandoned it.

I’ve always been a ‘tough-love’ kind of mom, so my position is stated above. I have experienced that when you consistently give to people and allow them to take your generosity for granted, they will resent you for it but will resent you even more when you try to grow a backbone. I know you’re crazy about the kids, but she does seem past-due for a lesson in personal responsibility and accountability, as well as in gratitude. If this is an example of her typical behavior towards the people who take care of her, I don’t place high confidence in her new relationship.

I haven’t read all the other responses, and it seems that some are suggesting a compromise. That’s not a bad idea – however, I suggest that you take the hard line first to explain to her what is stated in my first two paragraphs here. Then let her throw her temper-tantrum and and when she’s calmed down, you might prompt her to calmly negotiate the compromise with you. Even if she threatens with not allowing you to see the kids again, I find it hard to believe that she would actually do so. Even if she doesn’t come to see the error of her ways, she will at some point need you for something (like watching the kids so she and the new beau can have some romantic time) and will come back. If you allow her to manipulate you again, the pattern will continue.

Cruiser's avatar

I recently (3 years ago) bought the company I worked for from the old owner. We were tight and friendly but with the numbers involved we of course signed an agreement/contract for sale that came with covenants I had to comply with or I am in default of the loan. Just last month because of an accountants actions (inactions) I found myself in default of the covenants and I received an email from the old owner that I will be hearing from his attorney shortly. It was a very slight misinterpretation of the time allowed to report quarterly statements to him.

I finally was able to have a phone conversation and although he understood the frustration of the accountants slip up he said though it was minor and rectifiable he reminded me that if he did not hold me to the letter of the agreement now what leverage would he have later on if he let me slide now. I completely understood his reason(s) I am a fan of tough love as it sends messages that life’s terms are not always negotiable to your whims.

Dutchess_III's avatar

She honestly doesn’t take it for granted. She was able to actually pay me back $90.00 that I had loaned her and she was so tickled. At lest twice she said it felt so good to be able to do that. I stashed it and….wound up giving it all back in bits and pieces. She really, really hated her dependence on me.

I think she honestly considered that the truck was hers. IF she had taken the steps to take it with her when she moved, I would have allowed her to sell it as if it was hers. I would have signed everything over. But she didn’t.

I would have signed the car over to her when we gave it to her, but my husband wouldn’t allow it. Just part of the family dynamics. Sucks, but there is that.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Dealers take out ads. Sales peep get commission.

Neither expect the other to work for free.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, update. She’s still very pissed. From experience, this can go on for weeks. For example, when her son was a little over a year old, a toddler, we were at a family function. He was toddling around with a plastic spoon stuck in his mouth. I just leaned over and pulled the spoon out of his mouth. I didn’t say anything, wasn’t even thinking of anything in particular. It’s just what one does in a situation like that.
However, for some reason my daughter took extreme offense. I guess she thought I was suggesting she was a bad Mom for not doing it herself. She snarled, “He’s fine Mom!” And quit talking to me. She refused to come to my wedding three weeks later.

ANYWAY, we’re talking a teensy, tiny bit. I sent her some pics of her daughter Brande singing at a local Mexican restaurant along with her music man father. She had the grace to say “Thank you.”

The guy who was going to buy the truck for $750 never showed up. Last night we got it sold for $1200 cash, so that was cool. I sent her a message asking for a mailing address so I could send her something for their wedding. I was going to send $1000. She asked, “What?” and I said I wanted to send some money so they could have a nice honeymoon somewhere.

She said, “We can’t take a honeymoon. I work and he has school. We’re not getting married yet.”

I just said, “OK.”


gailcalled's avatar

Try leaving your daughter out of the equation for now. How about banking that $1000 for her children’s future, earmarked as a college fund perhaps.For $3000 you can open a Vanguard IndexFund. You can add to it whenever possible. Even dribs and drags add up. How old is Brande? A young teen?

(Please don’t shout. And you mean “spite”?)

Dutchess_III's avatar

She’s 10. I know, I know. She looks older. I, personally, would have had her wear something different.

I’ve been wanting to start investing. I cashed out my KPERS account with the idea of using it as seed money. I’ll seriously look into it @gailcalled. I’m going to ask a question.

ibstubro's avatar

Honestly, @Dutchess_III, it sounds to me like you and your daughter are talking at each other rather than to each other.

To ME, ”We can’t take a honeymoon. I work and he has school. We’re not getting married yet.” means trouble in paradise. The marriage might be off.

Here’s what I see:
You call all excited that you’re prepared to make a good-will gesture (donation) of $1,000.

Your daughter answers after a hard day at work and an even harder day at relationship. “We’re not getting married yet.” has an entirely different context than ”We’re not getting married yet.”

Dutchess_III's avatar

The wedding is still on @ibstubro. She just doesn’t have the money to do it. Needs about $150.

She actually called me last night. We just caught up on events, news about the twins and stuff. Savannah had tubes put in her ears yesterday. It was nice, although I suspect she was trying to find someway to lead into the fact that she needed the money to get married. I never gave her the opening, though.

jca's avatar

@Dutchess_III: Can you update us on this situation please?

Thank you.
The Update Lady

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thanks for asking. Slowly returning to normal. She called this a.m. to give me her new number. The thought of her withholding the twins from me was tearing me up, but I didn’t let her know that. Maybe next week things will be good enough that I can go visit her. I miss them, and my daughter, soooo much.

jca's avatar

@Dutchess_III: Maybe throw it out there, if there’s a big event coming up soon, that you will babysit to give them a break. If they have a wedding, party, or there’s some kind of festival coming, say “if you want some free time, I can babysit for the twins.”

Before my daughter was born, I had a big fight with my mother and I didn’t want to see her. When the baby was a few weeks old, there was a family tragedy and it kind of brought us all together. Even today, though, my mother gets on my nerves for other reasons but she is very helpful with babysitting. I will go visit, or go to pick up my daughter, and our conversation will be superficial. She tends to have “an agenda” and gets her “agenda comments” in. Not a formal agenda, of course, but if she has something she wants to say or some thoughts she wants to communicate, she will steer the conversation in that direction. It’s for that reason that I tend not to tell her too much about myself, because she will throw in her opinions and unwanted comments. My goal, however, is for my daughter to have a positive relationship with her, the way I had a great relationship with my grandmother. It would be nice if you could have a good relationship with the twins and your daughter could overlook her relationship issues with you in order to allow that to happen.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh, she will. Generally we have a good relationship. This is just a bump in the road. She called last night again, just to talk. I left her laughing. :D

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