My mother passed away three years ago, leaving us behind—her three sons, and our father. They had a very troubled marriage. Our father was a wanton womanizer and he took advantage of my mother’s quiet and generous nature by indulging in his vicious vices, women and gambling.
She came from a very wealthy family in the province. Her father helped my father finish his studies when he was still courting her, making sure he became the man suited to his daughter. He even built a house for her—not for them—before they even planned on getting married.
My father was made to manage one of the family’s thriving businesses. But, instead of being grateful, he almost ran it to the ground. He barely came to work, believing he could do anything, being the boss. My mother’s brothers had to wrest it away from him, instead giving him a position in another business that wouldn’t inflict any harm to the company.
When he started disrespecting my mother during her many hospital confinements by bringing his girlfriends home, her family made sure my father wouldn’t impoverish us, her children. They drew up an airtight legal document to prevent him from ever getting his sticky fingers on our properties, including the house we lived in.
He only agreed to sign over his rights after he was given a very generous cash settlement by my mother’s family to ensure her freedom from him. After only a few years, he lost all that as well and came back, begging my mother to allow him to come home. My mother relented because she really loved him, and to make our family whole again.
However, when my mother passed away and he started bringing his girlfriends home, my brothers and I put our foot down. He caused so much misery to my mother, and we agreed we wouldn’t extend the generosity and kindness she had accorded to him anymore.
Our relatives are saying we are being selfish. Should we defend ourselves?
THREE SONS TOGETHER
Are you being selfish? Gauging from your narrative, your father’s self-indulgence—having squandered his gift of a veritable nest egg stupidly—has gotten the better of him.
Did he think he could appeal to your sense of filial piety? Probably. He had assumed you’d just forgive all his thoughtlessness and continue banking on your mother’s wealth till kingdom come.
Clearly, he truly has this willful sense of entitlement. He should remember that all he did was plant his banana in your mother’s family’s rich soil.
Yes, in deference to her memory and her love of your father, you can probably give this scoundrel a roof over his head and some allowance if he is unable to earn anything for himself. But draw the line regarding his women benefiting from your family’s hospitality by ever setting foot in your house. That would be desecrating your mother’s spirit too much.
His women probably believed they had found an old fool in him, and a cash cow for their needs.
At this stage in his life, your father’s spoiled behavior and his rotten vices should be crushed. Ignore the talk of your relatives. There’s nothing more annoying to these kibitzers than just hearing crickets.