Methuss

A question of morals

Should I make him pay for the repairs?  

17 members have voted

  1. 1. Should I make him pay for the repairs?



Recommended Posts

Hmmm...

Living with the parents or vice versus isn't going to be easy; especially since your not a kid anymore.

It must be very stressful and likely more so for your wife, she afterall doesn't have the same relationship with your parents as you do.

I would assume this "pattern" isn't something all that new, maybe just something that your now realizing?

Here's the real question, is it this situation, the car scratch that's the real issue or is the real issue that the whole situation, living together ect...

Sounds like a lot more is going on than a car scratch. I bet dad has a lot going through his mind too.

Maybe a nonconfrontational conversation would be better than a car repair bill to resolve this?

If your uncomfortable with the change in roles I bet your dad is too, maybe more than he is letting on?

Jj has a good point, he's older and he's shed a tear over the deterioration of certain abilities, then he came to terms with it and moved on.

I guess my question would be, do you think a bill for repairs at the moment you were going through that struggle would have helped?

I would think once you got "over it" a bill would be water under the bridge, but when you were in the midst of the termoil a bill may have been pretty disheartening.

I guess doing what is right, your father should do what's right. I also think acting like a son and friend and fellow human might help him realize this better than you acting like a bill collector.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Hmmm...

Living with the parents or vice versus isn't going to be easy; especially since your not a kid anymore.

It must be very stressful and likely more so for your wife, she afterall doesn't have the same relationship with your parents as you do.

I would assume this "pattern" isn't something all that new, maybe just something that your now realizing?

Here's the real question, is it this situation, the car scratch that's the real issue or is the real issue that the whole situation, living together ect...

Sounds like a lot more is going on than a car scratch. I bet dad has a lot going through his mind too.

Maybe a nonconfrontational conversation would be better than a car repair bill to resolve this?

If your uncomfortable with the change in roles I bet your dad is too, maybe more than he is letting on?

Jj has a good point, he's older and he's shed a tear over the deterioration of certain abilities, then he came to terms with it and moved on.

I guess my question would be, do you think a bill for repairs at the moment you were going through that struggle would have helped?

I would think once you got "over it" a bill would be water under the bridge, but when you were in the midst of the termoil a bill may have been pretty disheartening.

I guess doing what is right, your father should do what's right. I also think acting like a son and friend and fellow human might help him realize this better than you acting like a bill collector.

I think you show sit on this for awhile,and pull him aside,tell him its not the scratch it's the way you handled it with us.That in the future just come to us and we can discuss it.In the mean time give him a little chore or two that you know he can handle,and if he can't no big deal.I'm sure he feels useless.Remember he used to be in charge not that long ago,so he feel's like he has no say in his life.:-)
Link to post
Share on other sites

If he has a pattern of doing this and you don't nip it in the bud, what's going to prevent him from doing it again? At the very least you can tell him that next time is he going to pay in full.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly, I not sure if I remember the whole story...but...aren't you actually living with them? In their house? If that's the case, all of this could be not-so-subtle reminders that it might be time to move out. We had similiar things going on when we were living with our son's family when we first moved to Iowa. For example, some of my wife's favorite knick knacks got given to the kids to play with...

On the other hand, if its the other way around...they're living in your house...it could be the "he's the kid, you're the parent" thing now. "Who broke the lamp?...Nobody...wasn't me".

I guess I'd still say, if the current living arrangements are going to continue, let it go. Get the scratch fixed. Make sure he know how much it cost, but then let it go...

Link to post
Share on other sites

I can understand your anger and disappointment. I can also understand why your wife is equally upset.

However, this is your father...your child's grandfather. While you would be "in the right" to make him pay for the repairs I think any such attempt could seriously damage your relationship; perhaps even fatally which would rob you and your child's chance to enjoy that relationship for how ever many years your dad has left to be here.

I would suck it up; get the car repaired and try to help your wife understand why you are doing it that way...when he's gone, which will happen must faster than you might think; you'll know you did the right thing.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Wooden Bowl

A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four-year-old grandson.

The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered

The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and

failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor.

When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess.

'We must do something about father,' said the son.

'I've had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor.'

So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner.

There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner.

Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl.

When the family glanced in Grandfather's direction, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat alone.

Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food.

The four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor.

He asked the child sweetly, 'What are you making?' Just as sweetly, the boy responded,

'Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and Mama to eat your food in when I grow up.

' The four-year-old smiled and went back to work.

The words so struck the parents so that they were speechless. Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done.

That evening the husband took Grandfather's hand and gently led him back to the family table.

For the remainder of his days he ate every meal with the family. And for some reason,

neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled.

On a positive note, I've learned that, no matter what happens, how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.

I guess you know how I voted..

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Point taken all.

I have a hybrid solution. I paid for the materials for him to try and remove the scratch. If it doesn't work, then I will pay for the repairs at a body shop. But regardless of if he repairs it himself or not, I made it clear I wasn't angry with the scratch in the door but with the dishonesty about how it happened. And of course he was asked to be more careful in the future.

Willingtocope, the living arrangement is that I used my gift money to pay off the house in Florida rather than use it to save my own from being taken after the bankruptcy. This arrangement made more sense at the time because the houses in Illinois were discharged and already in foreclosure proceedings. There was only enough in what I was given to pay one house off fully, so I eliminated the lien on the house that still had one. All four of us are on the deed (my parents and my wife and I) so it wouldn't be correct to say one side or the other "owns" the house exclusively.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Point taken all.

I have a hybrid solution. I paid for the materials for him to try and remove the scratch. If it doesn't work, then I will pay for the repairs at a body shop. But regardless of if he repairs it himself or not, I made it clear I wasn't angry with the scratch in the door but with the dishonesty about how it happened. And of course he was asked to be more careful in the future

You are wise beyond your years, my friend. Well done.
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you made a respectable, equitable and decent decision! I'm sure your dad was greatful for the opportunity to make things right!

The real question is how does the wifey feel about your decision?

Let us know how it goes!

Link to post
Share on other sites

What the hell?

Not directed at Methuss, but you others in here.

If you're an adult, you act like one. Ask the man straight out if he did it, why he's trying to play it off like he didn't, and why he wouldn't be honest and upfront about it and try to make amends for it.

It doesn't matter who it is--if they're not ethical enough to admit to something as trivial as causing minor damage to others' property and own up to it, what else can you not trust them to take care of like an adult? I would have severe reservations about letting someone like that spend much time around my children--grandpa or not.

Sure, you can't make him pay for it if he's unwilling, at least not without causing a huge rift, but you can make him act like an adult and own up to his own actions and at the very least apologize for it. This whole "let them get away with disrespect because it's family" thing just doesn't fly with me.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.