On Economic Outpatient Care and Relatives Who Ask for Money Habitually

I first heard the term economic outpatient care (EOC) in the book “The Millionaire Next Door” by authors Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko. There’s actually an entire chapter in the book devoted to it. EOC refers to the affluent parents’ act of giving money (on a regular basis) to their adult children (who normally have jobs of their own). The authors believe that EOC tends to encourage laziness among the recipients and instill a false sense of security in them. Apparently, instead of empowering them, they are weakened by this financial practice.

I have seen and I know of working adults who continue to receive money from their well-off parents. This could be in the form of cash gift and most of the time, debt (the kind that is intentionally unpaid or forgotten to be paid). From what I have noticed, the recipients tend to use up the money on luxuries instead of growing it through savings or investments. Sad, but true.

EOC doesn’t only happen between parents and children but also among relatives and friends. I don’t know if I’d be a recipient myself had my parents been wealthy, but I have some relatives coming to me to ask for financial help so somehow, I know how it feels to be on the other end of the line (i.e. the benefactor).

Just the other day, my cousin from the father’s side messaged me on Facebook to ask for money. He’s a tricycle driver in the province and is currently serving as breadwinner of his family. He’s currently having a hard time making ends meet. I’ve helped him several times already and now he’s at it again. My heart wants to continue giving, but my mind says otherwise.

That cousin of mine has made use of all the imaginable reasons, from a sick mother and a dying pet dog to a business he wants to put up and a motorcycle that is on the verge of being taken back by the creditor. One time, he said he had recently joined a band as a side job and their band leader wanted to buy a universal guitar interface (something like an irig for android) but didn’t have the funds yet. He wanted to borrow money from me to help finance that. I’m not sure if he’s just making up stories or what. I’ve reached this point where I don’t believe 100% of what he says anymore.

Helping other people in need is good but when the very people you are trying to help is not helping themselves, it can get tiring. I hope and pray they soon realize that standing on their two feet remains to be the best option and honestly, the most dignified way to live. Receiving EOC is just a band-aid solution to a financial problem that could get permanent in the long run. The earlier they realize this, the better for their future.

Any thoughts on EOC? I’d love to hear them! 🙂

May you choose happiness always,
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14 Replies to “On Economic Outpatient Care and Relatives Who Ask for Money Habitually”

  1. I used to work with an NGO that promotes social entrepreneurship. I’m all for this concept because it seeks to abolish the dole-out mentality of the less fortunate, and instead instil in them a sense of sustainability and work. I apply the same attitude to relative and friends. Asking for money should always be the last resort, hard work should always be the practical first. If I see, by evidences from their lifestyle, that they ask not for need and real desperation, then I’m not letting out a single cent. 🙂 (Well, I do make exceptions sometimes for close friends who I know for sure are responsible enough to pay it back, at the time they* promise to.)

    1. Social entrepreneurship is empowering and beneficial to society. I salute NGOs for championing this cause. True, borrowing money from other people should be our last resort and only if we know we are capable of paying our lenders on time. As for me, when I’m the one borrowing money, I make sure to pay on time. I just don’t understand why some people wait for their lenders to ask for their payment (sometimes they even intentionally forget about it) when it’s their obligation in the first place.

  2. EOC pala ang bonggang term sa ganun, thanks for the info. am not a reader of personal finance book, i would love to but since im a literal-book kind of nerd, i dont have access where im currently located.
    i was a beneficiary of such arrangement myself, i finished schooling through the generosity and mercy of my brothers (my parents being old enough to support financially support me) but i guess thats a different drama from what you mentioned here.
    but one of my brothers had almost succumb to that. rebelde ang kuya ko, few months before college graduation, nagtanan ng babae. hindi tinanggap ng parents ko sa bahay, i witnessed how they started miserably. nakita ko kuya ko nagluluto ng kanin using biscuits tin just because my parents wont lend them even a single cookware. the rationale was, he had the guts to leap, he should be gutsy enough to make it through. my brother hated my parents and as a result, he persevered. now he’s a supervisor in one of the largest company in Saudi. after a decade of hatred towards my parents, he has understood everything. he has now two gainfully employed nurses, one future engineer, elementary pa ung bunso.and he loves my parents more than before.
    tough love works.
    sori sa nobela, i just carried away.
    cheers!

    1. I read PF books pag may time, hehe. Ako naman ang tumulong sa akin magpa-aral nung college yung isang uncle at dalawang aunts ko. Kaya sabi ko I have to pay it forward sa ibang relatives namin. Kaso pag nakikita ko na wala naman pagbabago sa kanila, medyo nakakafrustrate.

      What happened to your brother after he learned to stand on his two feet was admirable and inspiring. At least maganda ang naging epekto sa kanya ng karanasan na yun with your parents. Pero hindi lahat ganun ang ending, karamihan sa atin patuloy na hindi natututo. Sana pag magising tayo sa katotohanan, hindi pa huli ang lahat. Time kasi ang kalaban natin, diba? Ang hirap na kumayod ng todo pag matanda na.

      The longer the comment, the better. Thanks, sis! 🙂

  3. Wow! there’s a term for that pala. I grow up poor. And I have a lot of poor relatives. When I first graduated, and because my mama is very generous and giving (in short malambot ang puso), I helped my family and my relatives as well. I would usually buy pamasko, school supplies, would lend them money, etc. But I grow older (and wiser!), I realized that it’s wrong. Sabi nga sa bible, teach a man how to fish do not just give them fish. Dito kasi sa atin, parang masama ka if you do not give and give but if you’ll really think about it, you are not actually helping them. Tinuturuan mo silang maging tamad. Now I apply that to my family. I am still the breadwinner but my siblings won’t ask for something basta basta. Either they would work hard for it or prove to me na kailangan talaga. Basic needs kumbaga. And still they have to work for it. As to my other relatives, well, I do not help anymore. Kasi hindi naman nila tinutulungan ang sarili nila eh. Umaasa lang sa bigay. Yung iba, ihihingi ang anak nila ng gamit tapos sila may bisyo. Aba! Ang galing naman. I would always tell them, “hindi ako nagpapakamatay magtrabaho para sa inyo”. Pero pagdating sa parents ko, ibang usapan yun. I feel that I have to shower them with little this and that. Mga bagay na di nila naranasan. Hahahah! I can’t help it eh. This is a good read Edel. 🙂

    1. Salamat, sis! Yes, at yung EOC, academic-sounding pa, ang taray. Haha. Saludo ako sa mga breadwinners na tulad mo. Dati rin akong breadwinner. I remember my first blog’s title was “The Life of a Breadwinner.” After isa-isang nakatapos ang mga kapatid ko, gumaan ng gumaan ang responsibilities ko sa house. Pero siyempre, hindi naman mawawala ang obligasyon, it’s for life. Nakakalungkot lang ang mga relatives na nabubuhay lang sa pahingi-hingi. It’s not sustainable. Darating ang time magda-dry up ang well, eh. Kailangan talagang magbanat ng buto. Pag gusto, may paraan.

      I so agree to the act of spoiling our parents! They deserve it. And since they’re ageing fast, we need to take advantage of the short time left. At siyempre, dapat paghandaan ang pagtanda nila dahil alam naman natin, ang mahal ng healthcare ngayon. Buti may 20% discount ang mga seniors. 🙂

  4. I have a lot of experience of these before but now since single income kami and the economy is not good right now sa oil and gas, i learned to close my eyes or magbingibingihan, sobrang lambot ng puso ko talaga but I set my priority better now, I have my immediate family’s needs to attend kaya I feel sorry pag may mga nagsasabi sa akin at nahihindian ko. I had a not so good experience also in lending money, a hs classmate messaged me in fb before, she said she will give it back on a certain date, I asked my mother to give her money, up to now 2 years na ata she never say a word to me, kawawa naman mother ko allowance pa naman nila yun, sayang din yung trust ko sa kanya. When I was in sg naman, my ex housemate refused to extend her help sa relative nya, kasi 1 month na di pa din nakahanap ng work, timing naman na lilipat na din kami ng house before naawa ako at sinama ko na din sya, I provided her needs hanggang sa magkawork sya, the problem is sobrang late na sya umuuwi and napupuyat kami ng husband ko and we need our privacy din kaya since may work na sya I had to let her go, pero ayun di ko na din alam ano nangyari sa kanya, nawala na din kontak namin. I had experience din with a college batch same din. wala lang parang walang sense of gratitude, minsan ang tao umaabuso talaga kahit hindi lang pera kahit sa efforts mo sa kanila, kaya sobra ako ngayon ingat ang hirap din masaktan sa huli. sorry napahaba at napalihis ata ng konti sa topic hehehe =)

    1. It’s okay, sis. Related pa rin naman kahit lumihis. It’s actually a blog topic on its own. Hehe. I’ve had my fair share of experiences with those kinds of people. Like you, takot na rin ako magtiwala at mas maingat na rin this time. I admire you because in the end, you chose to forgive them and move on. Pansin mo ba, mas blessed tayo ngayon siguro dahil yan sa kabutihan ang tinanim natin. At sila, waley pa rin ang life kasi hindi na sila natuto at hindi sila marunong lumingon sa pinaggalingan at maging grateful sa mga taong nakatulong sa kanila.

      I can forgive but I can’t forget. Siguro ganun talaga once nagkalamat na ang trust, mahirap na ibalik sa dati. At present, talagang immediate family ko na lang ang priority ko sa bibigyan at pauutangin, hehehe. At paminsan-minsan, charity rin at yung mga relatives and friends ko na maayos kausap pagdating sa pera. 🙂

  5. I also have that kind of relatives both on my parents side. Di na siguro maaalis yan sa culture natin kasi close family knit tayo. Nagbibigay ako ng monetary help if kapag emergency reason or kung may budget ako. Hehe.

    1. True, hindi talaga maiiwasan. Pero sana wag masyado maging dependent sa ibang tao. Mas okay if matututong magsumikap at kumayod at mag-ipon para sa kinabukasan. 🙂

  6. I agree that it’s a band-aid solution. It doesn’t teach the person receiving the money any financial values at all! They tend to rely on the benefactor all the time. It usually happens in my family and even if it’s really difficult to say no, I do say no. They leave me no choice eh 🙁 How can they learn if they always have someone to rely on all the time, di ba?

  7. I totally agree with you. It is not a permanent solution but sometimes we can’t help it but give in. Naaawa kse tayo and it’s like embeded na in our culture to extend help. But yes, we have to think twice na if parang sunod-sunod na. 🙂

    1. Yes, embedded in our culture na nga. At sadyang maawain din ang mga Pinoy kaya ang tendency inaabuso. Mahirap tumanggi sa humihingi ng tulong, nakakaguilty rin pero yun nga, sometimes dapat matuto rin tumanggi lalo na at walang nakikitang pagbabago sa tinutulungan. 🙂

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