My [27F] SO's [34M] brother [48M] borrowed a significant amount of money and says he's sick but I don't believe it
Oct. 15, 2019
First, for some background: I've been with SO for 8 years. He's the youngest of 4 and has always had a noble but increasingly debilitating saviour complex (I guess that's the best way to describe it). A year before we moved in together he ended up being conned into giving a relative a significant amount of money because (SO's words) "everyone gave up on the guy and I want to help him get on his feet": he didn't ask any questions, and it ended horribly and with SO being in a significant amount of debt that has never been repaid by this relative. The relative ended up in prison for unrelated issues but everyone learned about the loan SO gave them. Not a single family member checked in on him, asked him how he was, offered support. Nothing. He fell into a huge depressive cycle because of how much he owed, he gained a significant amount of weight, lost some, and then we met and got together. All that his family did to "help" was complain about how much weight he put on. I helped him pay off the debt and things slowly began to look up.
Fast forward to this year. SO's brother, who owns a small café, has always looked ill to me. I've mentioned it before and SO never thought anything of it. The man looks like a skeleton. I started to think it could be drugs, but I kept this to myself. About 6 months ago SO's mum tells us that his brother looks scarily ill and she doesn't know what to do because he won't go to a doctor, and that his business isnt doing well, that he seems to always be at the store and he isn't making any money. She's tried to tell him to sell the café but he refuses. Not long after, we find out from his mum that the brother finally went to the doctor and "they found something in a scan of his prostate". This is what she was told. My SO doesn't inquire further. I keep asking. I'm not a doctor but things start to sound off to me. When I'd ask his mum about what tests he's doing, what the doctor is saying now, what the next steps will be, she can't tell me. She has no idea and he isn't saying anything. Apparently they're not doing anything about it? No treatment plan? And it's been a long time. Then a month ago, SO gets an out of the blue call from the brother and by the looks of things it was a tough call. He never calls just to say hello. What happened? SO's brother was asking for $3K. I asked SO what it was for and what he said sent me into a rage: "I didn't ask. He's my brother and It's none of my business". He doesn't seem to understand that this is very much his business if the money is going to his brother. This is common sense, at least to me. What if the man is in a jam and needs help that goes beyond money? He says I'm overreacting. A few weeks go by and the brother calls back when I'm at work. SO tells me about it. He needs more money, but this time the brother tells him why. It's for a delivery service he wants to set up for the business. He needs another $2K to set this up. I am seriously losing it, and decide to call the delivery company and ask how much it would cost or whatever, as if I had a business. They said they don't have any kind of plan that makes it so you incur charges, especially nothing like this. So it was all a lie. He absolutely made this up. I tell SO that and he decides that while he may be lying, he must surely need it for something important and is maybe too embarassed to ask. SO gives him the money, from OUR savings and then promises no more. That's $5K gone to god knows what. His answer is the same "It's none of my business what it's for".
We go see SO's mum and find out the brother is now working on trying to sell the business. Where all the money he borrowed went, I have no idea. Is he still sick? No one knows or cares to find out. I feel like I'm the crazy one when I ask and his family members shrug and move on with a conversation.
Yes, I did press that this is our joint account but he put in more than me, he says, "so consider it from my cut". I get upset and reminded him about what happened with his relative before. I didn't mean this in a malicious way at all, but in a "you need to be more mindful/I'm stressing this because I care about your well being" kind of way. He got upset, said that this was hurtful and out of line, and then fell into a depressive mood for a week. I'm at a loss as to what I can do. His family is bizarre and being around them gives me immense anxiety. I feel like he's constantly being taken advantage of and that our relationship will crash and burn because he can't ever say "no, I'm sorry" to people. How can I convince him to change his ways? Should I? Or am I being dramatic?
TL;DR: SO is allowing himself to be conned and manipulated by his sketchy family. How do I convince him that this is happening, and to take charge?
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