Yes. Bonds and other debt instruments are part of almost any well diversified investment portfolio. However, a $1,000 loan to someone who doesn’t have the means to repay or the gumption to find a way to do so is simply a hand out that’ll destroy your relationship.
As a rule, I don’t loan money to family or friends.
I have it.
You need it.
I give it.
What’s a thousand dollars between friends?
Normally, it’s no big deal. The problem surfaces when the “need” for a gift results from reckless money habits. I’m indescribably frustrated when a friend isn’t mature enough to ensure her necessities are taken care of before she makes the conscious decision to engage in frivolous activities.
Sometimes I wonder if Larissa would make different choices if she knew she couldn’t ask me for money. I imagine her saying to herself right at the point of doing something stupid, “I know I shouldn’t buy this, but if push comes to shove, I’ll call Shawanda and desperately plead my case. She has a good job and extra cash coming in. She’ll give me the money to pay my bills if I really need it.”
*Sigh. Throws head back.*
When Larissa called to “borrow” $1,000, naturally, I asked questions any reasonable person would want to know the answers to prior to opening up their checkbook.
- Why don’t you have any money?
- Did you have it?
- What happened to it?
- How do I know you won’t ask me for money again?
- Do you have a budget?
Of course none of the answers were satisfactory, but they didn’t have to be. Larissa is my friend. Ultimately, I agreed to give her the money. But let me say this. Larissa wasn’t asking for money to pay her rent. She spent the rent money. What she wanted was a subsidy for stupidity. Which I said I’d provide….this time. Then, I let Larissa know should she ever find herself in this situation again, eviction would be the outcome.
The whole incident made me wonder. What the heck are people like Larissa thinking?!
Here’s the problem with people who force themselves under the umbrella of a financially responsible loved one’s emergency fund.
They don’t take responsibility for their circumstances.
It’s always something, isn’t it? “Times are hard. The government needs to stimulate the economy. Credit card interest rates are too high. I’m old.”
They refuse to make any sacrifices.
You do all the work while they watch. Basically, you’re the Little Red Hen. It’s amazing how many people believe that if you have money, acquired and accumulated through old fashioned hard work and sacrifice, you should just give it to them. No questions asked. No strings attached. It doesn’t occur to them that you’ve been earning and saving all these years for your own gratification. They don’t make sacrifices, but you do. So, you have money, and they don’t.
They think people with money owe them something.
It’s really difficult for my brain to follow illogical reasoning like this, but let me try to understand what these people are thinking. I believe they’re subconsciously convinced they deserve to live as well as people who have more wealth than they do. Why? Because people with money are either greedy, stingy or lucky. Therefore, they should be willing to hand over enough money to those who aren’t any of those things in order to level the playing field.
I wish I could do a better job explaining it, but I seriously cannot comprehend this attitude.
Their problems can only be solved with money.
If liquid money is available, even if it’s not their’s, irresponsible money handlers immediately reach for it. The first solution to any setback doesn’t involve any creativity. How about taking a second job, working extra hours, or doing a little freelance work? Ever consider selling some of that s@&! that’s stacked so high in your garage it’s touching the ceiling? Can you take in a boarder?
In conclusion, it’s hard to see a loved one suffer financially, because you, well, love ‘em. But at the same time, you shouldn’t be put in a position of choosing between whether you’re going to feel like a sucker for helping out a friend or a jerk for letting them pay the consequences of their actions. I’ll keep you posted on my dealings with my financially irresponsible friend if she hits me up for cash again.
How do you deal with family members and friends who ask you for money?