OP (Original Poster) is the only grandchild who inherited something from his grandfather. Now he’s thinking about how he should handle the money. Should he split it three ways, two, or not at all?
OP is a 32-year-old who recently inherited a large sum of money when his grandfather, G, died. It was a sizable, life-changing amount, and it was quite a shock to OP as he never knew his grandfather had that kind of money.
G had three grandchildren: OP, his 29-year-old sister, S, and his 36-year-old older brother, B.
He wrote, “I wasn’t the only one he left money to in his will, but I was the only grandchild.”
A Period of Grief
When G passed away, OP and S were devastated; they were close to him. However, the same could not be said about OP’s brother.
OP shared, “B never really had much of a relationship with G—cards or calls on birthdays and Christmas but no contact in between. He came to the funeral but didn’t seem particularly broken up, but he may have been more upset than he was letting on.”
Grandfather and Grandson Bond
Unlike B, however, OP was as close as he could be with his grandfather. He spent a lot of time in his house, and they shared many interests.
They had a bond like no other, and even OP’s sister, S, couldn’t top what they had.
S loved their grandfather and spent months every year trying to find or make the perfect gift for birthdays or Christmas. OP shared, “Gift-giving is very important to S; she firmly believes that the effort you put into a gift reflects the level of affection you feel.”
Unfortunately, G never really “warmed” to her as he did with OP.
At Arm’s Length
G and S shared a love of art, and S would invite their grandfather to galleries and museums, but he rarely accepted. OP never knew why but had an inkling that it had something to do with his sister’s depression.
He wrote, “S has always suffered from depression, and my grandfather was of the generation where depression was seen as being ‘lazy’ and something you could just get over if you tried a bit harder, so maybe that was why.”
A Granddaughter’s Pained Heart
G was never rude to S. However, he never went out of his way to spend time with her the way he did with OP.
So, though S hadn’t said anything about not getting anything from G in his will, OP could tell she was hurt not to be remembered by their grandfather. OP shared, “I don’t think she’s even upset about not getting any money, but some people who weren’t left money were left keepsakes while she got nothing at all.”
Keepsakes and Memories
OP noted that S had asked their parents to give her any of the poems she had written for him if they found them. She used to write and illustrate poems for people as gifts, and it was something she gave her grandfather that she held close to her heart.
A Generous Heart
After finding out about his inheritance, OP told his parents he wanted to split his inheritance in half. He knew that S tried her best to have a close relationship with their grandfather, and it wasn’t her fault that G—for whatever reason—chose not to have a close relationship with her.
Taking a Step Back
Although OP’s generous enough to share half of his inheritance with his sister, he’s not too keen on giving his brother anything.
He said, “I don’t feel any need to give any money to B. He didn’t try to have a close relationship with G, and I’m not surprised he wasn’t left anything in the Will. There are other reasons, but I don’t have room to get into them here.”
It’s Your Decision
OP’s parents reminded him that the inheritance was his money and it was up to him to decide how to spend it. However, they reminded him that giving money to S could cause bad blood between all three of them.
They also told OP that this was the only thing they would say about this issue. From now on, they would let OP and his siblings handle things because they were adults.
Either Way, There Would Be Bad Blood!
However, OP believed that keeping the money to himself could also cause bad blood between them. He didn’t mention this to his parents, though, as they didn’t want to get involved.
Following His Gut Instinct
Though OP believed the “fairest” route was to split the money into three, his gut tells him to just split it between himself and his sister.
He wrote, “I think it might be ‘fairer’ if I split the money three ways regardless of my feelings about my brother’s relationship with our grandfather. I don’t really know why the two of them don’t have a close relationship, and I know there’s a chance I’m making a judgment without having all the facts.”
It’s a Punishment
OP acknowledges that his decisions might be swayed by the fact that he likes his sister as a person more than he likes his brother. They had very different views, and he felt like he was “punishing” him for not having a close relationship with him more than for not having a close relationship with their grandfather.
They were close when they were younger but drifted apart as they grew older. OP feels like this is one of the main things holding him back from sharing the inheritance with B.
Insights From Redditors
Some Redditors pointed out that if G didn’t treat S well because of her depression, then B, as her older brother, wouldn’t have wanted to build a relationship with him, and that’s completely understandable.
One wrote, “I think the issue I have is that he wants to give money to his sister because she tried to have a relationship with her grandfather, but he ignored her. Okay, that’s fine, but his reasoning for not giving his brother the money is that he didn’t try to have a relationship with his grandfather. Well, with how he treated his sister, I wouldn’t want to either. I think stuff is being left out.”
Another commented, “He would know how his sister is treated because of how he treated her as a child for having depression. I wouldn’t have a relationship with someone who disrespects my sister in that way.”
Still Not Entitled
However, other users backed OP’s decision. They said that even if that was the case, OP’s brother still wasn’t entitled to the inheritance.
“I get where you’re coming from, but even if G was a complete a**hole to S because of her depression, and that’s why B didn’t speak to him, it still doesn’t automatically mean B is entitled to any of his money. Whether G was a good person or not, he is allowed to leave his money to whomever he likes,” shared one Redditor.
Another agreed, saying, “Somehow, from what OP said—reasons they didn’t want to elaborate—I’m guessing the older brother’s reasons for no relationship weren’t that noble. Not the a**hole.”
People Will Always Talk
Redditors also reminded OP that no matter what he decides to do, he won’t be able to satisfy everyone. However, he should remember that the money is now his, and he can do what he wants with it.
“There really isn’t a way for OP to escape without being viewed as an a**hole by someone in the family. Someone will call him ‘selfish’ for not sharing; someone will call him selfish or playing favorites if he shares unequally. As of right now, I think OP is not the a**hole regardless because it is now his money and, therefore, his choice. I don’t think OP should feel obligated to share, obviously, but wouldn’t be the a**hole, in my opinion, if sharing did happen,” commented one woman.
How should OP split his inheritance? Do you think his brother deserves a cut?
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This post first appeared as He Refused to Give His Almost-Estranged Brother a Cut of the Life-Changing Inheritance He Received From His Grandfather. He Doesn’t Deserve Anything but a “Punishment” for Not Maintaining Their Relationship! on Quote Ambition.