What Do You Do When Family Members and Relatives Ask For Your Financial Support?

Posted by Fitz Villafuerte under Life Lessons, Mindsetting, Personal Finance on April 8, 2008

Filipinos have very close family ties and as a child, I was raised to honor this tradition.

And since this is a big part of our cultural upbringing, it is often considered inappropriate to decline giving financial support to family members and relatives.

I was able to talk to one of my friends regarding this issue.

I specifically asked for his reasons why he agreed to finance the education of one of his cousins despite the fact that he already having a difficult time being the sole breadwinner for both his parents and a younger brother.

He relates:

Nakakahiya kasing tanggihan ‘yung Tita ko, isa kasi siya sa mga nagpalaki sa akin ‘nung nasa ibang bansa pa si Nanay. Nakakaawa din naman ‘yung pinsan ko kung hindi makapag-aral eh matalino pa naman.

Okay pa naman ang budget ko, kaya ko pa. Konting tiis na lang din naman ako kasi two sems na lang, graduate na ang ang utol ko at pag nakahanap na siya ng trabaho, makakatulong na rin siya sa akin.

[ I find it difficult to say No to my aunt. I feel indebted to her because she was the one who took care of me as a child when my mother was working overseas. I also pity my cousin because she’s smart and I don’t want to her to stop going to school.

My budget can still manage it anyway. And besides, my brother will be graduating in two semesters. When he finds a job, he can finally help me. ]

If you were in my friend’s situation, would you have done the same thing?


Lending out money or giving financial support to family members and relatives is often an emotional experience. Nevertheless, I think that we should learn how to handle the situation as objectively as possible. By letting our emotions and pity control our decisions, we could end up in our own financial mess.

I already wrote an article on how to handle friends who borrow money. I recommend that you read that first before you proceed because most of the advise that I will dispense below are based from what was discussed in that post.

Going back to our topic, we now continue by asking ourselves this question: So how do we carry ourselves when faced with a family member or relative who’s asking for financial support?

If you’ve experienced being asked for money by a relative, I’m sure that you know that these situations typically start with the telling of a sad story. Listen with an open heart and empathize but do not promise anything. Show genuine concern and ask questions so that you’ll fully understand the circumstances that led them to ask for your help.

After that, tell them that you would need some time to think about it. Be clear that the reason why you’re asking them to wait is because you want to assess your finances. Make them understand that you’re currently not in the best position to commit to anything.

Furthermore, be sure to give them a reasonable date when you’ll have your decision and offer to be the one to call them on that day. Doing so will lessen their anxiety and likewise assure them that you are sincerely willing to help.



You’re next step is to naturally assess your own financial situation if you could afford to give your support. Again, we realize the value of tracking our expenses and the importance of having a personal budget.

You should also be aware that it may seem that you can afford to lend out the money now but don’t forget to consider your needs in the coming weeks or months.

Once you have thoroughly assessed your financial capabilities and found out that you could afford to extend your help, then arrange to make the payment directly to their need.

What does this mean?

In my friend’s case, rather than giving her aunt the money for his cousin’s tuition. He writes out a check payable to the school. Likewise, rather than giving his cousin allowance for books and other school requirements, he asks her to give him the list and buys them personally.

This will ensure that your hard-earned money is being put to proper use instead of being spent on unnecessary expenses.

Lastly, don’t expect to be paid back. Even though they might say that they will return the money someday, in most cases, it never happens.


Whatever financial support you extend should be considered a gift rather than a loan. This way, you avoid family rifts and unnecessary feuds. If you cannot afford to lose the money, then the best option might be to offer non-monetary support.

So what should you do if after seriously considering your personal finances, you found out that you cannot afford to help? How do you say NO?

First, make them understand your situation and explain to them your own financial goals. Be sincere and diplomatic.

Moreover, be willing to offer support in another way such as helping them find income opportunities and teaching them financial responsibility.

To restate a famous saying, “Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; and you have fed him for a lifetime. But teach a man to sell fish and he will eat steak.”

What are your thoughts about this topic?

Kindly share them by giving your comments below.

Enter your email address for your free subscription to Ready To Be Rich:

Photo credits: jezpage, rg-b and broken_ombrello

Tags: , , , ,

50 Responses to “What Do You Do When Family Members and Relatives Ask For Your Financial Support?”

  1. discovered your site via your guest post at macuha.com. you’ve got quite an informative and interesting blog here. wish you more readers and clicks! btw, i subscribed via email.

  2. Fitz says:

    Hi Lui. This is my flagship blog. It’s my own way of paying it forward for the graces I’ve received in my life. Thanks for the visit, your well wishes and for subscribing. I hope to hear more from you soon.

  3. Ambo says:

    If they ask for financial support especially for education why not? Though sometimes we need to set some limitations to avoid “corruption” of other parties. Like in the case of your friend, he pays directly to the school. I must agree to that idea.

    In this case, if you think you can afford all the finances then go ahead and do not expect to be paid back. If they pay you back, then thank them.

    I believe in “Karma”, that whatever you do to others will get back to you as well.

    Nice post Fitz. Very Pinoy!

  4. Fitz says:

    Yes, I agree to your point. Another aspect to this is their dependence and abuse of your generosity, which I think is another thing you should consider before giving financial support.

    Thanks Ambo.

  5. Ambo says:

    You’re welcome brother. Stumbled! 😉

  6. reynz says:

    Eeeeekkk!!! Hahahaha! Should I answer this question? Baka abutin nang Volume 9999 ang sagot ko! Hehehe!

    First: bulyaw
    Second: pangaral
    Third: sori wala akong pera


  7. Fitz says:

    Hi reynz. I think you really have a lot of stories about this issue. Hehe.

    Anyway, I’d suggest that you avoid saying that you don’t have money (remember the law of attraction), instead tell them that “you cannot afford to give them what they need.” 😀

  8. mussolini says:

    What percentage of your savings should you spend on loans to relatives without shortchanging them or yourself, in your opinion? For instance, if you have a savings of let’s say P1 million, is a P100,000 loan too much?

  9. pinaywife says:

    Hi Fitz,

    this tradition is putting my marriage on rocks. My husband is not pinoy and he cannot understand why our relatives always make “utang” and never pay back, especially if ur married to foreigner they think they can just ask money without the need of paying.

    If you dont give naman, they say bad words to all relatives. I hope this tradition will change…. i just wish you can also blog about “the proper way of refusing your relatives in borrowing money”

  10. Fitz says:

    I understand your situation. Your relatives must think that you have an endless supply of money because your husband is a foreigner.

    I’m not a marriage counselor but in my humble opinion, you should choose which is more important – your relatives or your husband.

    I’m assuming that it is your husband and with that, you should side with him and be strict with your relatives when it comes to finances.

    You cannot please everybody – and I believe that your marriage is more important than the bad words that your relatives will say to you.

    The best way to refuse is to be honest, straightforward and firm. Tell them, “I’m sorry but I cannot give you money anymore. I want you to learn how to be financially responsible. I’m not being greedy, but I believe that this is for the best interest of everyone.”

    Again, never mind the bad words that they will say. You know, deep inside you, that those bad words are not true – and that is what’s important.

    I wish you all the best.

  11. Kelly says:

    Fitz, I don’t like the way you give your advice pertaining to this issue. You are actually propagating selfishness. You know what, I noticed that most people who tried hard to earn more money and save more money are selfish. Money is not everything. Earn more money, save more money, but by all means…always see to it that you set aside 30% of your income and treat it as “allowance for the needy and unlucky relatives”. This 30% is reserved for the relatives who want to borrow money (regardless whether they will pay or not), or the needy and hungry and sick people you meet along the way.

    Just put yourself in the shoes of those who are poor, sick and hungry.

  12. Fitz says:

    Hi Kelly,

    I’m not saying that you should be selfish with your money. What I want people to realize is that they should not lend money which they cannot afford.

    It’s hard to help your family and relatives financially if you, yourself is in a financial mess. Prioritize your own finances first.

    Lastly, every situation is different – “needy and unlucky” can be subjective – some relatives DO NEED the financial help and you should give money IF YOU CAN AFFORD IT.

    However, others, unfortunately, are only just taking advantage of your generosity. When it comes to people who are like this, it’s usually better to help them in another way.

    If you truly care about your family / relatives, then you will go beyong “giving them fish” – you cannot just give them money whenever they need it, even if you can afford it.

    You should, more than anything else, also “teach them to fish” – teach them how to manage their finances or help them find a job and seize income opportunities.

  13. Shaun says:

    Nice! already bookmarked your blog and subscribed. ill be reading some more back topics in the next few days, thanks! Can anyone lend me some money please, i promise to pay it back :-)

  14. margaux says:

    You teach people how to treat you. The very first time they ask you for money is what sets the limit. I am not a believer of loaning people money—–loaning to friends and family members particularly. For one, given the Pinoy culture that we are familiar with, chances are, your friend or relative will no longer pay you—–and it will definitely ruin your relationship. I would much rather give what I can afford to give as a gift and will not expect to be paid in return. Say they ask for $100 and I can only afford to give and lose $20, I’d say that “I can only afford to give you $20 as a gift, here take it and put it into good use, it’s a gift, I don’t expect that I’d be paid back”. Because the moment you give out money that you cannot afford to give out, you are lying not only to yourself but also to the people you care about. Also, pay yourself first. Make sure you have stashed money for yourself for the rainy days. If you won’t love and respect yourself first, who will? Most folks back home think that money grows on trees in the USA or overseas. And I’d say that you’d have to correct that notion early on. Otherwise, they might blackmail you emotionally and say something like they wouldn’t talk to you anymore, and the elder relatives might say that they won’t live that long and yet you don’t want to spare them some money which is just a small portion of your wealth, or they might say that you’re too selfish (though you just sent them 5 balikbayan boxes and a thousand bucks last month!), etc., etc.! It’s also good to let them know early on how hard life is overseas. If you always tell them good stuff, then they’d think money is easy and that you’re just unkind. And to the person asking if a 100 K loan is too much if you’ve got a million bucks, I’d say, firstly, how do you know how much asset the other person truly has? It’s inappropriate to count other people’s money. Secondly, how sure are you that the 100K loan would be repaid? As what was discussed here, loan only the money you can afford to lose(in short, you’re actually giving it out not loaning)—–so that when you don’t get paid back, you don’t ruin your relationship with your friend or relative. Now, can you afford to lose 100K? If so, that’s fine. Also, even if one has 20 million but he has a debt that hasn’t been paid yet amounting to 21 million, then technically, he really doesn’t have any money to give you. And lastly, people who claim “money is not everything” either don’t have money at all or have too much of it—–and in most case, it’s the former, so why listen to them? I am a big fan of sharing—–sharing what you can truly afford—–not in sharing the amount that your friend/relative demands for even if you cannot afford it; or sharing something just to be a big braggart.

  15. margaux says:

    To pinaywife, Why don’t you test and see for yourself how many of the people you’ve helped will help you back if the tables were turned and you were the one now needing money? My friend actually had enough of her money-sucking relatives. So she said that she’s so broke but have to pay up their electric bill. She asked three relatives (they are all working abroad now too) who she helped before for 100 bucks, only one gave her 50 bucks—–and after that incident, her relatives stopped asking money from her again! It might work for you as well! But if you pretend to act like everything is fine and you can afford their demands, then you’ll suffer the consequences for life most likely!

  16. Gaita says:

    Hi Fitz,

    Thanks for this post. Sometimes I feel guilty for being resentful of my cousin who keeps abusing my mom’s generosity. She has habitually “borrowed” money from my mom, even promising to pay her back, but she never has. She has also “borrowed” money from my older brother, but he knows better than to expect the “borrowed” money to be returned. Several years ago, my cousin put a haphazard business plan together and requested my mom to finance the project. I was away, abroad when this happened, so I wasn’t aware of it. I found out a couple of years later that my irresponsible cousin took a vacation the first week of business on a trip to the beach and treated her friends to parties. She left the business with an in-law who naturally did not have the business’ best interests at heart. Needless to stay, the business went kaput and she has not paid my mom back. In fact, she is allowing my mom to support her child’s schooling, parties (yes, her child has to have parties to keep up with De la Cruzes), and who knows whatever else. I have asked my mom to ask for the school’s vouchers and pay the school directly, but I don’t think she has done so. She texts my mom every other week, to ask for money. My mom’s old already and she is set to retire soon. I don’t know how long my cousin will keep on doing this! My mom actually worries about her and wonders where my cousin will borrow from next.

    I can’t control my mom’s attitudes towards my cousin. They can afford to lend my cousin money. My dad even says, “At least we’re in the position to lend; be thankful to God that we are not on the borrowing side of things.” He has a point. However, I feel they must draw the line between being charitable and being enabling. I probably would feel better if my cousin LISTENED to my mom’s advice, but she never does. Can you believe that? After all the generosity my mom has shown her, she has the gall to disrespect her that way. My relationship with my cousin is cordial at best.

    Anyway, from reading your post, I can say that in the same situation, I probably would have acted the same way as my mom. I may have lived in a culture where people are more assertive (US), but I think I’m prone to spinelessness like my mother is. However, I believe it is time to break the cycle.

    Unlike my mom, I do not have the means to support anyone else’s abuse. I am not really struggling financially, but I am only starting out and do not have enough money to lend. It hasn’t happened yet, but if my cousin asks me for money, I will know how to respond. Thanks again.

    God bless.

  17. Eva says:

    What if your relative is asking for money every payday for about 50-100 pesos? Most people can give this amount of money especially during payday. But i am sick and tired of this. My tita has a son abroad and her daughter is already working. I don’t really understand why she is doing this and I am having a hard time to refuse her. Any suggestion?

  18. Burt says:

    Eva, I have been in the same situation as you. My relatives have been receiving money from me every paycheck for a long time and I am finally going to end this nonsense once and for all. To help someone is good. But to give cash is not always good. Letting someone sleep on your couch because he lost his job is okay. Sending him money to pay his rent is NOT okay. If he cannot afford to pay his rent on his own then he should stay for free with a friend or relative. (This is just an example.) When you give CASH to people you have no power over how they spend it, and most of the time it will be spent on things that were not truly critical. This can frustrate you and make you miserable. Also, sending cash ‘enables’ the person receiving the cash to live carelessly as that person knows she can always fall back on you for money if she spends her money unwisely. People who receive cash handouts tend to become dependent and ungrateful over time. This is not healthy!! You cannot afford to support the whole world. People have to work and pay their own bills. Everyone does. I would explain this to your relative when you tell her that you cannot continue to send her money forever. Take care. -Burt

  19. Every Man for Himself says:

    Why is it expected that people that shared the same womb share the same wallet? These are truly ‘involuntary’ financial relationships and people should not feel trapped by them. People truly in need should be helped, but then must learn to help themselves. Often the ‘trouble’ people are in is of their own making, and many of these relatives that ask for money are repeat offenders. I have run into situations where relatives that are alcoholics etc. keep falling into the situations brought about by these personal problems. Even when family has tried to help out through intervention, they have refused. They perfer to be given the fish rather than be taught to fish. This is the point at which they should be cut off. I feel that for the hardship they can place on others, they have no right to refuse intervention help. There are no rights, just responsibilities, and the privileges that go with them.

    Those that are trying to get money will try every avenue, they will play the ‘family’ card, the ‘kids’ card and the ‘religion’ card all trying to get to you, after making their own messes time and time again. Some bleeding hearts go for it, and those are the ones that get hit up most.

    My Good Book says ‘Bank of America’ on the front.

  20. Melinda Macapagal says:

    Ypur site is so informative. It gave me new insights onhow to handle “awkward situations” . Thank you and more power!

  21. Nana says:

    This is an interesting article. When my father was alive, I had no problem whatsoever to give as much money as he needed, and then as much as he didn’t need. However, with my father I had a wonderful relationship so money was never an issue.

    Fast forward a few years, and now I am married expecting our first child, and extended family in the Philippines have heard through the grapevine and my husband and I are doing very well. We make a decent living, but I believe most of our properity comes from having a strict budget, making sacrifices and planning for the future.

    So what angers me the most, because we plan and save for an uncertain future, it is assumed because we don’t live paycheck to paycheck, we should be in a position to share our savings. I have found that all of the relatives who are asking us for money, including relatives that live in the US, are in have financial burdens because of poor planning. From my observation, those most in need usually don’t ask. They make more sacrifices to make ends meet.

    If you need money for food or rent, why do you own a designer bag or go on fancy vacations or gamble at casinos.

    I have savings because I sacrifice by having a very small spending budget, I make my meals at home or buy in bulk using coupons. I do not understand that if I am able to make these sacrifices, why cannot others make the same sacrifices?

    We have given a lot of money and resources to our family, but it seems that they are aleays in need giving them money has only made them dependent on our income. I will admit, saying no to family sends me into a guilt driven stressful state. Then I realize, I don’t need to ask for money from others because we plan, save and make sacrifices. I am glad to see other Filipinos feel the same way.

    I am very sad to have to refuse my cousins, but when I see them with iPhones I have to remind myself they made the choice for the TV or the phone over saving or necessities.

  22. Tony says:

    Hi, I need your help for my very special friend. I’m hoping the community can also contribute with their stories and personal experiences.

    Here is the situation of my friend. The father is already retired, their mom has already passed away. It is my friend and her brother that supports their family. They are 3 in the family. The eldest is in Canada, already married and planning on starting their own family. Then my friend which works in a good company here in the Philippines. Then the 3rd is still studying in her last year.

    Here is the problem: My friend after 3 years of working 12-hours per day (its a good company but also very demanding), has been unable to save any money. Everytime she puts aside money, something always comes up. And usually that something is a NEED/WANT of a family member (dad, younger sister, or elder brother).

    Here are just some examples: Dad wants a new TV, couch, generally more allowance money. Elder brother fails to pay share of the rent, needs to borrow money. Sister gets into an accident. Car needs fixing, etc.

    Being exposed on how to save money, I advised her to set a limit on the amount of money she’s spending for her family. In your example it’s simply a cousin, but this time it’s immediate family. And I think that’s a HUGE difference. How can she deal with this?

    Additional info: She really wants to give and give, but at the same time gets depressed when she has nothing left for herself. She especially wants to meet the needs of her dad, who is right now getting depressed because of the lack of “freedom with money”. I have talked to her regarding ‘setting limits’, but it was met with a reply that “I don’t understand the feeling of denying requests from family”. (She has a very valid point here, because I was lucky to have been raised in a well off family). I really want to help her.

    Please share your personal experiences here when the person asking for money is someone REALLY CLOSE to you.

    Thank you and I look forward to your replies.

  23. Roselyn says:

    Hi Fitz: Excellent article. I have a financially needy younger brother who asks me for money for seemingly emergency situations. I am a very frugal individual as I am saving for early retirement. I found out later that my brother has a live-in girlfriend in the Philippines who he is supporting in the lap of luxury. He’s even paying for her school and maintenance. Sometimes, these emergency situations in the Philippines are made-up so that relatives can extract money from hard-working big-hearted relatives overseas. When I confronted him about his situation, first he denied it and then become combative. Sometimes you just have to walk away, even if it hurts you.

  24. Mark says:

    @Tony, your special friend is what’s called an enabler
    and that goes for Gaita’s mom too. You can google it
    to find its meaning.

    But in a nutshell, an enabler is not helping out.
    When the enabler helps out and gives money to
    say his family relatives, they would never learn
    to stand on their own two feet.

    As a policy, I never lend money to relatives, I give
    money away. Also, I only give money for emergency
    situations and I ask for their financial picture so
    I can find out why this emergency happened in the 1st
    place and how to avoid it by always having an emergency
    fund hehe.

    It worked for me so far.

  25. Anne says:

    What would you do when your husband passed away and a brother in law is asking for money for his illness or upcoming operation (his raising money), but you’re still struggling to live your life because of the traumatic death of your husband, and money became a huge issue because of that situation. You became jobless after his death due to grief but you’re doing your best to find a way to live a new inspite of what happened. Some family members are just supporting you since then, but not totally. That support from them is not enough to pay all your monthly bills. You’re in abroad and your brother in law is in the Philippines. How would you handle this situation? What would you say to him? Thank you in advance…

  26. Carla says:

    thanks again for addressing a typical dilemma of a Filipino worker.
    i guess 80 to 90% of us can relate to the scenario that you used in the article…more blessings to you and to subscribers like me ;p

  27. SFAZNPINOY says:


    Just stumbled on your site. I totally agree with your advice.

    The problem I have had recently is connecting with people I do not know very well in the Philippines through Facebook. Facebook is evil! :-) (kidding, really….since I’ve re-connected with long lost friends).

    But now the problem is that once you connect with someone (long lost cousin you haven’t seen since you were 2 years old and 40 years ago!), they start asking for help.

    Then once you do offer some help ($20 or $25 or $50)…all of a sudden, you will get another friend invite from that cousin’s brother…and so on.

    It’s a never ending problem. I actually did NOT log on to Facebook for almost 2-3 months because I was constantly being bombarded with financial requests from relatives (close and not).

  28. In total agreement says:

    Thanks so much for this E-mail. My spouse’s parents are very poor and he spent ten years sending all of his money. It amounted to nothing. I sympathize with their situation and my MIL lived with us for a couple of years and when she returned home, I’ve even sent some support personally as my spouse is studying. Now, his mother wants to come here to America and live with us. I know she will help, but I hate having my privacy invaded. I do not see an end to their need for support. The whole family has made some bad financial decisions, despite many opportunities for themselves and I hate feeling like I have to pay for it. I really like your answer about being straightforward and saying that you do not want them to be dependent anymore. We will pay ourselves first and see what is left to help out with. Hard decision, but needs to be done as we have two kids of our own. Thank you for touching on this important subject, as there really is not much out there about it.

  29. Kaye says:

    Thanks for this article. I hope that I will have stronger guts in the future to say NO should any of my family members and relatives ask for financial support.

    It just hit me home. I am a single mom with one child and I am trying to make it on my own. I’ve helped in the past by giving a certain amount monthly but stopped because I am completely living independently from my parents and I am sending my daughter to a private school. I resented a lot of my previous financial decisions. Because what happened was, if there was money involved, my mom would always remember to call me or to check on me. In short, we a had an okay enough relationship based on money. So when I stopped supporting monthly, I got less calls from my mom.

    I’ve made lots of loans and loan renewals for both of my parents. It also hit me home when one of the credit card companies called me asking for payment. Now I’m living in a different place and they will find it hard to contact me as it’s going to be a long distance call. I was already chided to be disrespectful already because I reminded my mom’s friend more than 2 times of the debt thru credit card cash advance that she owed me.

    Lessons learned the hard way. I still have one more loan that I made for my dad. After that, I am not going to make loans for anyone anymore. I don’t want to be called by any of the credit card or loan companies anymore. I am tired.

  30. I am done says:

    2 days ago I deactivated my facebook account. I am stressed and tired of supporting my family and for random people asking to barrow money. they asked for money left and right. my mom and dad are seperated. i am married to a foreigner I work as a part time teller. 37 weeks pregnant of our second child. I have supoorted my younger brother thru college and sent balakbayan once or twice a year sent money for birthdays and holidays and fiestas. recently we processed my dad’s visa to come and visit us he got aporoved and ofcourse we paid for everything including round trip plane tickets locally and pocket money while he is doing his interview in manila i sent money 3 times coz he said he allowance is not enough for 3 days stay in manila. he stayed at my aunts house. few days later my mom asked for his allowance so i sent another moneygram. The next day i got a facebook msg from my brother that they owe money from neighbor that needs to get pay right away. i was mad..boy was i mad. i am so done with this filipino tradition. this cycle of life should change. parents, brothers or sisters should not live off thru the others siblings. they should save for their future and not live for today only. on top of all of that crap 2 days ago my other brother was asking money he said he was not feeling good that he needs to go the doctor. what the f**k .. thats it i deactivated my account. Most people in the philippines do not understand that money do not grow on trees here in the US. they are selfish and insensitive especially my family. I am tired of them. call me selfish, whatever. i am done!!!! i have a family of my own. i am pregnant and ready to pop any minute they dont even care. i will be off work for 12 weeks without pay since I am only working part time . I begged them not to asked moneu and give a little break but they didnt listen. i am working my freakin ass off tilly due date I am tired physically and emotionally. these brothers of mine chose their lives they were given a chance to go to college but they were just plain lazy. Im fed up and I should just focus to my kids and husband. I am glad i stumble into this blog becoz I am so depressed none of my friends in the philippines get me. I was venting to my bestfriend in the philippines about the situation she didnt understand me..she even said why dont u just give them (your brothers 5 thousand pesos month) i cant belive she said that. i am beyond frustrated and disspointed with people i know in the philippines. our culture sucks!!!

  31. hon says:

    I am sick and tired of my brother always asking me money to support him, he is too lazy to find a job and always making excuses; i finally decided to changed my cellphone number, blocked him in my email acount and facebook.

  32. forgiener says:

    Whatever it is, stop being selfish and stop thinking about your needs, before going to ask handout from married relatives, who have their own obligations to take care of. Secondly, don’t disturb foreigners married to Filipinas, they have their family to take care off, and also to support their own parents. Earn your own. The ten commandments teach, don’t desire what belongs to others. This handout, “i am entitled to money or I will hate you” culture in the Philippines needs to end. stand on your own two feet and earn with dignity and live within those means. If God willed you to be wealthy you will be, if not accept it. Blackmailing others emotionally does not make you a good person. Don’t use “culture and Christianity” as two crutches to support this lame excuse of emotional blackmail or judgement of others as ‘selfish” just because they don’t give you free handouts. A husband’s job is to support his wife and children. A christian wife’s main role is homemaker for her family not bread winner for all her relatives. And stop accusing foreigners of being ‘lack of family values”, every culture on earth has family values, not just Filipinos. That arrogance also needs to end, “We Filipinos are the only ones with family values”, everyone else in this world has family values, they know the boundaries and common sense better. And stop killing foreigners just because they don’t give the Filipina’s relatives cash on demand. Taking care of the Filipina and the children is more than enough dedication and commitment.

  33. Elmer says:

    Very good insights put together.

    There is a saying ‘mahirap tulungan ang taong ayaw tulungan ang sarili’

    i’ve worked hard for the financial independence I have today. I usually lecture about responsibility and assess if the need merits assistance.

  34. vicky 926 says:

    Well I will say just help them food and utilities that’s it . I have problem too and until now still the same after we help them nices and nephews to send them to the top of the line school my husband hiding his money for 10 yrs. I thought he save lots of money I just find out his is in financial mess currently my husbsnd friends and relative they already moving forward and we are moving backward . My husband and I married for 13 yrs. And we have 3 kids .ages 10, 9 and 6 . Most of the time I stay home Because of my kids. We been her in Canada for 13 yrs. Our friends and relative are already moving forward and we are moving bsckward. My husband snd his friendz have the same salary but they save money for downpayment for the house and bought a new car in cash. And I discover for how many year my husband hiding the our tax refund for almost $4, 000 every year and when I asked he cannot explain were is it. For 10 yrs.his money is only his money we just joined account 2010 we file d for credit counselling and we cannot afford to have car because we are bad credit.

  35. vicky 926 says:

    I hope this will be a learning lesson to everyone. In my opinion I believed both couple should know the expenses inside the house and communication is very important . I know the good feeling of helping other people or relative but we have to think about , are we capable to help them? Do we have an excess money to help them or we just get the money thru credit card?do we have money for rainy days? In my calculation my husband gave them $75, 000 dollars and until now we still sending them some money to them but I guess is kind of different now because I have access now to my husband account but still they are asking for their extras curricular activities! Cont…..

  36. vicky 926 says:

    This year my husband brother ask for motorcycle he said he gonna use it for delivering frozen goods, so I send 500 $ and the brother told the sister from middle east, that she will send money for the sidecar so after 4 month they ask money again for side car I told my husband I thought your sister will send money for the side car and my husband answered me back she have lots expenses. So I send 400 again and 250 for my mother in law, I don’t mind helping my mother in law every month cause shes’s my mother too . I told my husband for how many year we been here for 13 yrs and your brothers and sister is not working and since then we are boyfriend and girlfriend, I think its about time they are getting old and are kids are growing and asking me why we don’t have a house and car?

  37. vicky 926 says:

    For how many year they are expecting and asking money from my husband send money for laptop send for our plain ticket going to boracay ,send money for plain ticket going to davao to attend reunion they are asking our plain ticket ! Can u send money for my wedding and can send money for my birthday and can u send for the stroller of my baby! For tuition fee and allowances for school,For me its kind of too much! They are asking money every month for food and utilities on top of that they asking more and more. Good thing my mother in law she have her own house. And aside from they want to come here in Canada the sister, the brother with expense of my husband again!

  38. vicky 926 says:

    I’m kind of sick and tired of them. I said to myself this is too much ! They are the reason why we are in financial mess and still they never stop . Isaid to myself I have to do something ! 2yrs ago my father passed I barrowed some money from my bff and my mom send money for my kids plain ticket going to Philipines. I have conversation with my husband niece and the next day my mother in law talked to me and asking me what’s the real score the truth about our life at first I told her why you are asking me ask your son my mother in law replied iwanna know what’s going on tell me the truth? Ok so I detaile d everthing our expenses and I told her , we don’t have house , we don’t have a car we are in financial mess and we are bad credit. I told her all of my husband friends are moving forward . I did’not see any emotion or concerned cause after I told here evething she gave this kind of response I wanna go to USA because my brother is there so I can see America, my sister went there already and I was already behind that’s why I wanna go to USA.

  39. vicky 926 says:

    To be continued.

  40. kismaytami says:

    A cousin from father’s side came to our house and ask me to support her for education. Take note, college education. She never even talked to me directly, but instead made one of our aunt talk to me, whom she thought could persuade me. I firmly answered my aunt that it’s not my obligation to send her to school. Besides, why don’t she oblige her father to send her to school. My aunt pointed to my cousin on the my mother’s side whom I support schooling. I told her, having been a godfather to him, I accepted the obligation, and it is my obligation to keep his well-being. And beside, Why would I support her college education when she can’t even pass the college entrance exam she took even before she came here. If you don’t call that a waste of money, spending money for schooling of somebody who can’t even pass the easiest exam. At least my cousin from my mother’s side that I support has the brains to continue schooling. But now my dad, having been the eldest is supporting him somehow. But guess what, my dad do not have job and is already in his senior years, so the money he is giving her could only came from either me or my elder brother who share all the expenses in the house. Sometimes relatives are stupid they thought of us like bees who flies flower to flower just so they could have their honey.

  41. hardworker says:

    Hi All,
    I have been trwaling through the web to read about this situation primarily because I am also in one. I grew up in a dysfunctional household. My education, food, clothing – it was supported by my aunt, my mom’s only sister and her grandaunts and uncles. Lahat sila LAON, did not marry, to support the nieces and nephews.Theyre teachers and such givers.My mom and her husband has 5 kids. My mom, her hubbby – they were given everything – free housing, access to jobs, etc. Pero my siblings and I grew up with our tita and lolo/lolas. I grew up being beaten, abused – bugbog sarado from my dad, psychological abuse from my mom. Lahat inasa nila sa lola,lolas,tita – sila parati ang galit, mapagabuso.Ilang beses akong nabugbog ng tatay ko, sa eskuela, sa plaza – not because Im a bad kid.Contrary to that – mapride siya, selfish, umiinom at lahat ng frustrations niya dinadaan sa galit sa pagbugbog ng anak. So I did my best to be top in my school, at mapalad na naging self supporting iskolar ng bayan.Matapos ng kolehiyo, sinkap ko na magistart ng buhay sa ibang bansa.Noong huling sem ko sa kolehiyo at kailangan ko ng pambayad sa tuition, humingi ako sa tatay ko – pero binugbog at pinalayas niya ako.Matapos nun, hindi na kami nagusap.Ang galit ko ay dahil hindi lang siya mapangabuso, ginagatungan pa siya ng nanay ko at ang nais ng tita at mga lola ay pagpasensiyahan ko na lang.Hanggang kailan ang pasensiya? Matapos nun, umalis na ako ng Pilipinas – nagsapalaran sa ibang bansa. Matapos maging iskolar, at magtrabaho sa ilang bansa, narito na ako ngayon sa UK.Maayos ang buhay ko, isa akong manunulat ng isang pahayagan at masaya sa piling ng aking asawa.Off and on ang communication ko sa pamilya.Pag nagcommunicate ako, hihingi ng pera.Pag nagbigay, kulang parati at may panibagong excuse kung bakit hindi sumasapat.4 years ago nagkasakit ang lola kong siyang nagpalaki sa akin.Since wala siyang insurance, I took the financial responsibility of providing her an inhouse nurse, medical needs at kung ano pa. I said I was gonna do this until she died, because she was there for me. I tried to help my siblings – pero in the end, the financial help – however large it will be, its never enough. Then I’ll find out through other means that the excuses for money is not really the case – plane tickets for job interviews, tuition fees – paniwalang paniwala ka ng may malaking pangangailangan sila pero in the end, walang updates at wala ring pasalamat. So I stopped sending money to help the youngest go to college. Naka 4 na unibersidad na siya, at nalaman ko na meron siyang drug addiction problem. Since namatay na rin si Lola, I thought it will end na.But now my aunt is telling me that its my responsibility to help Dad and to send the youngest to school. The youngest is 21.I wanted to speak to him and to my mom about the financial plans so as to agree how I can support the youngest and my supposed father but both refuse to speak to me.All my aunt says is, if I am a good person, I will send money. This is bonkers because its illogical and most unfair. First, the father was nothing but my abuser, the youngest brother is a spolied brat who refuses to be responsible.But im always told of how lucky I am so I have to help. They do not understand I got here because of me, and being here means working hard. I am nothing other than an ATM machine and even if I feel bad, nobody bothers to say thank you or send a christmas card. So it ends today. No more!

  42. Edward camara says:

    Hi what do you do if your wifes relatives dont pay respect to you like for example not saying po or kuya to you then your wife is being addressed by them Ate and sometimes they show disrespectful gesture tou you when you were together as if they are not younger than you?then if you tell these grievances to your wife shes like being irritated and pressured addressing problems regarding relatives actions , then conflicts starts.

  43. Fed Up says:

    My gosh!! I am in F-ing the same situation. I’ve been in Aistralia for about 26yrs. I haven’t been home but has great memories of the old country. I got on to FB on the sole purpose of keeping in touch with families & friends.. & guess what!?! My paternal uncle’s wife asked to pay for my cousin’s tuition few for college! I thought that was odd but I said I’ll see what I can being a few years still to go.. At that time I have a child who is a toddler. Then after a couple of years or so they rang me out of the blue asking for the money I promised!! This time I just gave birth to my second child. I tried to explain that I have no money to give & they rang my parents here in Australia & accused me of not honoring a promise!! The F-ing nerve!!! The mother is a teacher & employed! Why is it my responsibility to pay for their education?? I have my own kids to support! Then later on a cousin who works in the Middle East asked for money to pay his mortgage! What about my mortgage?? They even kept ringing me even when I told them that I work night shift. He told me his wife is getting upset that I haven’t sent the money! Omg!! & then my other cousins asks for money & says her husband had a heart attack.. & then her mother had asthma attack, no electricity, no food, kids are sick etc!! What of my kids?? I have 3 young ones. They never bother to ask how they are, me nor my husband! I deactivated FB for awhile. Found out that Auntie left my uncle & dresses like a try hard cow posted all over FB.. She left my uncle & shows pics with another guy. My sister warned me about them because they treated her the same way. But they abuse my trust & my willingness to help by telling me lies just to get more money out of me. Now they ask for more money because my Auntie needs a cataract op & a baby is sick.. I’m not sure if all these are true. Anyways my own son is sick & I have to put him first. He needs medication.

  44. RAP says:

    it’s good to know that i’m not alone. it is a surprise to see so many people in similar situations. i have been blessed with a lot of opportunities but all is not without hard work. i almost always give a helping hand when i can because i used to be on the other side. 15 years ago i got my gf pregnant while we were still in college. we had absolutely no money, so my siblings helped me during these trying years.. school fees, milk and diapers for the baby, etc. we eventually found our luck and have been living comfortably abroad since then. I also do my best to give back to my siblings in any way i can, from financial support to business advice.

    recently i setup a business in Philippines which is now doing well so i brought my wife and kids back here. What i notice is that i suddenly receive messages from friends and relatives asking for help.

    My strategy is to let people know that my priority is my family (wife and kids), if you are single, your priority should be yourself and establish a financially secured future. When i get asked for help, i always say, “eto lang kaya ko kasi due na rin tuition fees ng mga kids” or “eto lng matutlong ko kasi nakabudget na kami”. with these simple hints i am hoping they would get it and not ask for money again unless really needed.

    i also pray for those people that they find financial independence. everybody wants that, some people just don’t know how to get there.

  45. Confucius says:

    Hi! I earn more than my partner..the thing is his mother ask for financial support regularly through his allotment..this is fine by me but what bothers me is the extra money being ask fr time to time. When his not in the ship i shoulder all the expenses and here comes the pity stories fr his mom and his brothers that prompt him to excert effort by lending money from me or loaning to someone. He tries to hide it from me but i caught him a few times and explained that this is not right and off course we end up in argument! The point is not to give what you do not have! He is stress out not because he has no means to provide us assistance but he is frustrated not to provide his mothers need. He has no savings and is totally dependent on me to initially provide financial assistance to our kid and will later make up when he has work but mind you..he will 1st send money to his mother rather than me even if its just a petty amount it sucks!Ps the has 2 more brother 😡 and he expects me to uderstand that we can manage if he has no work but his mom does not!

  46. Ross stevens. says:

    Just tell them to f#@k off…end of discussion. They will say bad things about. So what.. In England we say..if you don’t like it it’s your problem.

  47. Kaori Sakamoto says:

    I googled around about like this problem and found this. I am half japanese and filipino. And i only work for part time job here so my salary doesn’t enough for my one month living expenses. My mother is a filipino and she has 2 sisters. The “A” aunt cared me when my mother was working in japan but they treated me like maid so i got phobia about them till now. So i moved to “B” aunt when i was 13years old. And i was treated like same and had brainwashed by them. Of course about expenses is from my mother. I just don’t know where it goes by their hand. And i have feared about “refusing” for someone. Then i felt phobia towards to them.
    Now i am in japan, i work like no rests, and no going out like having fun. They think the yen’s like a big amount. But if you spend here, 100,000yen is not enough for one month living expenses.
    And last two years my “B” aunt’s uncle died and had many debts from my uncle and now asking for help to my mother and me. We gave and lend lots of money to her but still not paid all of it. Paid like 60-70%% i don’t know.
    now she trying to ask for money for paying debts and said “don’t say to your mother about this”. Even i said i don’t have amount of money because i pay all of bills here in japan. And i only give just 10,000yen which is like 3900 pesos but she demanded to add one more 10,000yen for their internet bill and said show mercy. I said “don’t pay back” because i know it won’t return in that situation. And now i can’t buy any food because i gave my last money. And i have to wait 1 month untill my payday.
    And also my “A” aunt asks for the food here cup noodles and the ointment etc a package to me. Now I always think why do they only ask me, they should ask straight to my mother because i am out of their problem. Plus i have a cousin which is older than me works at office. My “B” aunt should ask her too.
    I just think that it is too “unfair” for me always asking for money to me.
    I am really getting tired about this. Until i couldn’t stop thinking and didn’t sleep properly. I feel like they treat me like stupid that if they ask me, i give automatically. And when i don’t give they’ll judge you that you are the bad person and greedy even you gave many things from past..:(

  48. Anonymous says:

    Being married to a Filipino woman myself, I fail to understand the Filipino Culture. I believe it’s a culture that revolves around money and only money. No matter how much money you give them, it never shows, it’s like pissing on sand. They care about nothing but receiving money. They don’t care if you don’t have it. They don’t care if you live on credit. My in-laws constantly suck our blood and whenever I confront my wife about setting limits and not giving them money anymore because all they do is take advantage of us and ask for money they don’t actually need, she takes their side. They are very extravagant, they waste money all the time, because they know whenever they are in financial trouble, their daughter will come to their rescue, and that just makes me sick. It’s a culture where kids, once they start working, have to pay back their parents until they die (unconditionally). Like in other cultures parents don’t make sacrifices to raise their kids. They would use any lie to get money from their kids. I am so confused, I don’t know what to do.

  49. Thank you for the article sir Fritz! Been doing some of your tips about helping family and relatives a long time,and share it with my co-OFW’s here,but I think I’m misunderstood. Madalas nilang sinasabi na “mahina ang puso nila” para sa pamilya nila.Magiipon ng pera para itulong sa pamilya,bakit di pa ibigay ngayon. Pero sinasabi ko na tulungan muna nila ang kanilang sarili(by means of saving) bago tumulong sa pamilya.
    What can you say about this,Sir?

  50. jang says:

    True , teach them how to fish rather than always give them fish. Because if we tolerate them by just giving everytime they ask they will never learn how to handle their finances and up to next generation the habits will pass onto. Its not easy to refuse but thats for the good of everyone. Bec. in time that they really need a help( like in case of real emergency) and u dont have something to give them or u dont believe their excuses anymore then… more conflicts might happen.

Leave a Comment and Join the Discussion