In Summary
  • Despite our relatives knowing the difficulty we are going through, they keep demanding financial support.
  • My husband is so strained and we are hurting as a family.
  • Do you have a problem to share with Just Brenda? Send your questions to lifeandstyle@ke.nationmedia.com

Hi Brenda,

I lost my job recently and we are struggling to make ends meet.

My husband and I didn’t earn much before; but our combined salaries pushed us through.

My husband is very supportive and caring and takes care of everything right now.

Despite our relatives knowing the difficulty we are going through, they keep demanding financial support.

My husband is so strained and we are hurting as a family. Please help.

 

Hi,

In a marriage, it is the responsibility of the respective partners to manage the respective families.

Unfortunately, this means that your family is a “you” problem, and his family is a “him” problem.

And the way African families are difficult to deal with. You're going to need a thick skin and a firm spine to deal with your relatives.

So, this is what you're going to do. Say no. When they ask for money, say no. When they ask why, say you don't have it.

When they say you're being stingy, say you don't have money to be stingy with.

When they ask how you can do this, say they know that you just lost your job and even you don't understand how they think this is a good idea.

When they say they'll ask your husband, tell them to go ahead. When they say they'll tell your parents, tell them to ask them for money too.

When they say you'll never be invited for family meetings, say that they can't erase the blood that flows through your veins.

Be firm. Be rude. Cajole. Explain. Be polite. But say NO – before you impoverish your family's finances at the altar of propriety.

Your family – the one with your husband – is your priority, just as their families should be theirs.

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Do you have a problem to share with Just Brenda? Send your questions to lifeandstyle@ke.nationmedia.com