Irked by $ request from wealthy sisters.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-04-2003
Irked by $ request from wealthy sisters.
Wed, 08-06-2003 - 1:33pm
Just seeking opinions here - and venting. I have 5 sisters & 1 brother. 2 sisters married into very wealthy families & have no money woes as I do. I'm a divorced single mom of 4 struggling to just make ends meet after being unemployed for 9 months and having to settle on a job that pays less than what I collected while on unemployment.

3 weeks ago my cousin & sister planned semi big party for our twin moms. 3-4 family members provided the food. Not sure who bought liquor. Normally when a big party like this is planned we all are in on it and discussing costs - nobody mentioned costs or planning to me at all so I assumed the family members planning party were taking care of everything.

A week after the party my sister (who just inherited tons of money from very wealthy father-in-law) called & said they broke down the cost & expected me to pay $55.00 for my portion. I was shocked at the request - I'm bewildered that they wouod even put me on the spot like this for they full well know my financial predicament - I'm barely able to make ends meet on a month-to-month basis. Furthermore, they are more than financially able to handle this party so it's not like they are hurting for money. Lastely, I can honestly say that if they tables were turned & I was the one with all the money I would never put my single divorced sister who struggles just to afford the bare necessities on the spot. I reminded my sister of how broke I am at the moment and she told me to figure out what I could afford - obviously, they strongly feel I should contribute.

Later, I come to find out that the 3 siblings that did not come to the party are not expected to contribute at all because they did not attend. Now I feel like I could have politey said I can't afford to come to this party had I knows I'd be expected to pay $55 in the first place.

And another thing.....I think the biggest cost was the liquor bill....I DON'T EVEN DRINK!

And one more thing....our mom's husbands, who also both have plenty of money are not expected to pay a thing either.

Again, venting & seeking opinions.....haven't paid yet & thinking of what to say.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2003
Wed, 08-06-2003 - 3:22pm
I suggest giving them as much as you can (even if it's $1), and say that is all you can afford. Remind them in the future to include you in the planning if they expect you to split the costs, as you are in a tight financial bind. If you want to, tell them that perhaps you would not have attended if you were warned you had to split the costs. Be polite and tell them they did a wonderful job planning, and everyone had a great time.

On a side note:

Honestly, this isn't a wedding where you are a bridesmaid and expected to split the cost of the bridal shower. With bridal showers the people who are listed on the invitation are expected to split the costs. Was your name on the invitation to this party? Don't tell them this though, it's not worth it to fight with family.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2003
Wed, 08-06-2003 - 3:47pm
I agree entirely. That is exactly what I was going to say. Either pay nothing or give them a little bit of money and say that you are really sorry, that is all you can afford seeing you have been out of work etc. etc. and that its too bad they didn't let you know beforehand because then you could have told them beforehand that you were not in a position to contribute financially, but that you would have been happy to help in other way.

People are so darn inconsiderate - especially when it comes to family!

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-14-2003
Wed, 08-06-2003 - 3:52pm
It was extremly rude of your family to expect you to help pay for a party after it already happened and on principal alone I would refuse to pay. You on the other hand have to deal with these people again so that might not be an option. I would definitely express my annoyance on how they handled the situation. It's not only poor judgement on their part but, also poor manners. It's like getting invited to dinner at someone's house and after your finished eating they put a bill on the table. If you don't want to have a real headache on your hands with seeing these people again even though I think they were completely in the wrong I would give them what ever you could afford. I would however express your disappointment in how they handled things and in the future if they do not include you in the planning of events do not expect you to contribute. Sorry, families are difficult at times.


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2003
Wed, 08-06-2003 - 5:18pm
I agree w/ the other posts too. I think the best thing to do is give them whatever u think is a reasonable amount, like maybe $10 or something, and let them know that in the future u need to know up front what is expected from u moneywise. Reading thru these posts I agreed w/ almost everything and I do think these wealthy sisters were being rude asking for the money. However I do think it would have been totally fine if they told u up front about the cost and expected u to chip in. I mean its not their fault they have more money and u dont. I know its WAY different but a while back some friends and I were out and 2 of my friends have jobs (so do I) and 2 don't and it was like expected that the 3 w/ money would pay for the other 2 and I don't agree w/ that. On the other hand I do like to help ppl. Like i Said that example's way different but hopefully u get my meaning :-) Good luck! Rhiannon
Avatar for cl_2and1more
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Wed, 08-06-2003 - 6:14pm
I do agree that you should make a token donation to the "fund" but I also have one other thing to consider. If your family is going to gossip and talk about you ( only you know your family and what to expect fromt hem ), I would write a letter telling that you were never told that you were expected to pay anything for the party and if you had known that it would cost you to attend the party, you would not have attended. Send a copy of the letter to all the planner and to the ones who don't have to pay because they didn't come. I see that as the only way to make sure that everyone hears what you have to say and not gossip with half truths.

It is wondeful that you are finding a job and doing all that you can to support your children. I hope that things will turn around quickly for you and you will recieve the pay that is needed to support you and your children.

Best wishes and let us know how you decide to handle the situation.