Advice

On your dad’s money

Dear Coquette,

My dad is an idiot. He has three kids, and one stepkid who is significantly younger (comes with marrying someone 10 years your junior). He makes upwards of $300,000 a year. Now I’m living in poverty. I just graduated college and I am $70,000 in debt right off the bat because he didn’t help me with one cent of college. He was far too busy buying boats and multiple cars, not to mention two houses. I don’t have a functioning car, I can barely pay my bills and I’m completely drowning. Could you please, please explain to me how I can ever let go of all the resentment and anger I hold, every single day, toward him? It’s poisoning my life, Coquette. I want to let it go, but I can barely look at him and his new wife with her five-carat diamond ring on her finger and her brand new car. What can I do to fix this?

First of all, your dad is broke. Even if he wanted to, he couldn’t afford to pay off your college debt or buy you a car. Your dad’s money is an illusion. Go ahead, ask him.

You’ll discover that after his taxes, his alimony and his insufferably predictable midlife crisis, he’s barely got enough left over to keep the damn lights on. No doubt he’s refinanced to the hilt and upside-down on the boat mortgage, and the secret he won’t tell anyone is that the ring on his trophy wife’s finger isn’t a real diamond.

Sure, a better man might have used the same money to set up educational trusts for his children, but that’s not the way your dad played it. That sucks for you, but then again, he never owed you a college education in the first place.

It’s time for you to grow up. Your dad is a materialistic douchebag, but you can’t afford to act like a spoiled brat. You’re an adult now, and his money isn’t your money. It’s as simple as that.

You also can’t afford envy. It’s worthless and ugly, especially in the face of an entry-level existence in today’s economy. It’s rough out there. Nothing is gonna come easy, and you’re going to struggle for a while. That’s just the way it goes.

Frustration is perfectly understandable, and resenting your dad is awfully convenient, but at the risk of turning this into an allegory for the millennial generation’s relationship with the baby boomers, you need to accept that he’s never gonna help you out. He’s only in it for himself, so you might as well just get on with your life.

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