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Dad is Broke and in Debt, Can't Get SW, and Won't Look for Work

  • 07-03-2021 9:18pm
    Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭

    Skip to the end for the TL;DR

    My dad has made some utter financial mistakes in the past. We grew up ridiculously deprived whilst our father would spalsh huge amounts of money on things that were just an utter waste-he is financially stupid. I'm sorry but there's no other way of saying it, he is. He is self-employed, and operates a small transport business. He blew all the savings which had been put away for a rainy day/3rd level education on an unneeded extension whilst we grew up so poor he wouldn't even buy a toothbrush or shoes for us. Well he started giving up a lot of his contracts for fixed work a few years ago, and Covid basically meant he had barely any business, he's now after loosing his last regular contract and the only thing keeping him afloat. He has a small contract for a school coming up in a month for a month-he will basically be doing overflow due to social distancing on school buses.

    He whines constantly about not having any work so he has no money, he even suggested that he get some work elsewhere in the meanwhile-but when I showed him all the jobs and opportunities in the area for a driver with his qualifications, he doesn't want to apply. He just keeps saying 'ahh sure we'll just see how this other contract comes along'-the contract for only about passengers to school for a month, IDK how much its for but I'd bet my last euro that there's barely enough profit on it to cover the cost of fuel used, and its only for 1 month-he is hoping to win back a contract in September for schools but he forfeited that contract years ago so its very unlikely they will rehire him after somebody else took over the contract all those years ago, and even at that those contracts start in September, 6 months away-he has no business bar maybe 1 small run a week atm, but he refuses to look for work, he has a 'wait and see' mentality even though he is already SEVERELY in debt from that horrendously overpriced extension. I even told him hiring can take a lot of time, a month or two, even three, and that his small contract for a month's work would likely be over by the time he would be hired. He doesn't want to hear it, he keeps saying oh maybe down the line but thats just him putting it on the long finger. I even made him a CV but nope, he's not interested. He cannot apply for PUP or social welfare as he is self-employed/the PUP requires that he would have lost all his work, he is have very small contracts with the HSE, like literally he drives maybe a patient in a wheelchair from the nursing home across the car park to the local health center once a fortnight. He says worst case scenario he'll go work for DPD-he is already on their list of drivers for the past 6 months and they have never called him up to do a run once, they gave him the training and never used him, I really don't see why all of sudden he expects them to start giving him work.

    We have a courtcase against someone atm, its been ongoing for 8 years and no court date in sight, I think he is expecting that to save him, in fact I think that's what he expects to cover the cost of that extension but having seen the accounts it definitely won't-the bloody extension is over 1/3 the cost of a good house in this area, what he would win wouldn't cover 1/3 of the extension. The court case he thought would be over 5 years ago, and even at that there's no guarantee he will win it, but he has been banking on that money for years. He gives my sister a horrible time about looking for permanent government jobs-he's trying to force her into one, she is in her early 20s and works in a Centra and is very happy doing that, but he is constantly on her case about getting this other job, however when the tables are turned and he knows he needs to look for work elsewhere he is refusing to do so.

    I cannot contribute to the house atm as I am on illness benefit-I am even renting but back home for medical treatment so a fair portion of my SW is going on rent, I have not a penny-the only person working is my sister who is on minimum wage and she already pays the heating and electricity and her own food. He is a very bull-headed man and can't be told what to do, its his way or no way. I don't know how to get through to him, he is relying on a lot of ifs and buts, and that he needs a job, even just for a few months just to tide himself over-he agreed until I actually started showing him jobs he could apply for-I guess it got too real. My dad also acts like he is constantly working and busy but the truth is he has a horrible work ethic-like he is very picky and choosy about the work he takes on, even now-he wont accept a run if its on during the news or a match or something. I don't know how to get through to him that he is in financial ruins and needs to find work elsewhere. Any advice?

    TL;DR: My dad is in debt and has no money coming in. He has a very small short contract coming up and somehow thinks this will tide him over for 6 months-and realistically he won't get the contract he thinks he will in 6 months-he knows he needs a job, he even admitted it, but once he was actually shown jobs he could apply for he decided against it. I am scared he will end up financially bankrupt-we've been bankrupt before-he tends to make financial situations worse than what they are-he expects some miracle that never comes so doesn't mind digging himself deeper into debt. I dont know how to get through to him he needs to look for work. He has an excuse for everything. How do I convince him when he won't listen?


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,369 ✭✭✭YellowLead

    Hi OP,

    All we can do is give good advice to those we love and try and help them in difficult times - but if unsuccessful we have to just leave it. Particularly when it is attitude related.

    He is your father, not your husband, so his actions don’t have a direct practical impact on you except for causing you stress. Let it go.

    Hopefully you can move out once your medical treatment is done and when you are not facing it every day you can get on with your life and leave him to his, don’t shoulder the burden of stress for somebody else - you’ll run yourself ragged worrying. You just have to accept he is his own person and you can’t change him.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,704 ✭✭✭Xterminator

    Hi Op

    Not everyone makes wise financial decisions. And for varied reasons. You cannot make him change his mind.

    You sound like you have tried but unsuccessfully. And that is all you can do. You dont want to alienate your father and turn the atmosphere toxic in the house either.

    You must protect yourself, and look after yourself - that is your primary responsibility. You can try not to stress about the things you cannot control - like your fathers decisions. When you are back on your feet and available for work, and if you chose to do so. perhaps you can help out.

    But for now you need to recover, and that has to be your primary focus.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,953 ✭✭✭Jequ0n

    Sounds like he needs to crash before he can even consider taking advice on board.
    There is nothing you can do apart from minding yourself

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,419 ✭✭✭antix80

    Hi op... there's nothing you can do except live your own life.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,241 ✭✭✭StevenToast

    Get him on the PUP...he can qualify if his work has reduced...

    "Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining." - Fletcher

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