Never disinherit your kid


Well-Known Member
Its not about the money. Your child will always feel like you never loved him or her and you wont be alive to explain. Although I doubt my mother would have ever wanted to explain. It was her slap from the grave.

I radically accept it but it has caused tons of pain.

A thread on PE prompted this short post. I think its important for us not to be as mean as our parents. Our children may not be perfect (although I think mine are...haha) but we love them and they need to forever feel that we loved them. Disinheriting is sadistic unless your child stole all your money or beat you. Special needs trust funds are different than disinheriting a child. I am not talking about that.
Just my heartfelt thoughts.


member since 1999
I could not agree more, SWOT. It's just a dreadful legacy, in my humble opinion. I don't understand the need to have that last "word", so to speak, much less having that last word be so intentionally cruel. What possible purpose could it serve? It's not like the disinherited will all of a sudden change their ways... "Oh, gee, Mom disinherited me, I must be a real horse's behind. Better get my act together." I just don't see it happening that way.

I think it has a much better chance of further wounding an already wounded kid.

I'm sorry you've had to deal with that pain, SWOT. I am glad you've been able see your own kids in a much more loving way than your mom was able to see hers. It just makes me so sad.

Gentle hugs.


Well-Known Member
I know parents who chose to leave very little to any of their kids. There was too much tension between them, one would have wasted it, one didn't need it, one could have used it well. They left a small amount to each kid and grandkid. And then set up a scholarship with the rest of their wealth (they weren't poor). This scholarship guaranteed tuition for their grandkids (kids, if they wanted to go back to school), for anything at least a year long and in North America - as long as the "student" could maintain a better than 70% average on at least an 80% load, for up to 5 years. But... the "student" had to come up with the money for books, living expenses etc. Some of the grandkids made use of it - one had athletic scholarships that paid for everything, and used tuition money to not have to work during school year. Other students could also apply - there was some application process.


Well-Known Member
As I stated in a comment on the SA forum, that happened to me also and caused me to make sure our will and beneficiaries were split down the middle with no restrictions. I will have to live with the fact that my father decided I was not enough of his daughter to keep my name on his life insurance. It was a very small policy and never was about the money. It was about the message that sent me. But he was always like that, he changed his will every time he got mad at one of his kids. He died with nothing but a small insurance policy. He even left the flag on his coffin to the youngest even though he promised it to me year sago.

I know I sound bitter but I'm not. He was not a good father, he never understood unconditional love. I don't ever want either of my kids to doubt my love for them equally even for a moment. If they squander the money so be it, I will be gone and not see it. But I will not leave them scarred and hating each other. I will never have a relationship with my sister because of what he did. That is the last thing I wish for my kids.


Well-Known Member
Nancy, I totally understand and salute your choice. We have little right now,but if we ever have more, or even if we dont, we will split everything equally. What anyone does with it when we're gone is not my business, just as what they do now as adults is not my business. I wont parent or punish from the grave. Id rather my kids all skip what i had to go through. What she did made me feel very distant and estranged from my siblings too. It impacted how I felt about my entire small foo, even drawing wrong and negative conclusions.
It was the ultimate rejection.
It is so hurtful. You didnt deserve that, Nancy. Its not about the money. I doubt my mother had much either.
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Thank you for this.

I did change my life insurance when everything happened with the burglary a couple years ago so my daughter was no longer a beneficiary but you're right...that's a horrible final eff you that will do no good to anyone and would only screw her up even more. I'm changing it tomorrow.

Her main inheritance though is that she'll get to go through all my junk. *evil laugh*


Shooting from the Hip
My mother in law has a life insurance policy that she has left to her stepson who she adopted a few years back (long after her husband, his father, passed away... Weird). I found the paperwork while going through her tax stuff, she made a mad grab so I didn't see it. I don't care, and neither does Bill. As long as she has enough income to cover her debts, we don't care.

My father in law? Has a pile of debt.

My parents have made provisions for all the kids (not Bill's oldest son as he really never was part of the family). Belle, Pat, and Rose are all equal - but I am the executor, so it's spelled out that I decide how and when they get what. This was based on bio-mom, Belle's behavior, and so on. But since I am an only child, it's up to me.

I really need to get my will written. I did an informal one years ago, but with Rose being so young... *SIGH*

Marcie Mac

Just Plain Ole Tired
Since the youngest and oldest can't be trusted as far as I could throw them, and having no one else, my middle child is in charge of my financial affairs and am giving him POA and putting his name on the house so that way he can sell it and give his brother and sister their share. I have a retirement account, and take extra money out of it every month to make extra payments on the house. When I was home from the hospital the first time, eldest came over and told me what she wanted to have when I died :) And everytime there is a spat with the youngest, he makes threats to have me declared incompetant LOL (Good thing I have a sense of humor with those two) I still have to check with a lawyer though cause I know the both of them will cause James a lot of grief.


Well-Known Member
If my kids were mean enough to threaten to try to get me declared incompetent, I may feel differently. That was nothing I ever did or even thought about with my mother and my kids are not mean to me. Threatening to harm us is different I think. I just dont believe that it should be used as a final kiss off from the grave because one child did not perhaps become what we'd envisioned. Nor do I think we should attempt to control them from the grave through stipulations. Let the last memory be "she loved me."
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Crazy Cat Lady
Well, my family never had any money to fight over, at least not in the US. My mother's family were well-off bakers on one side, and rabbis and scholars on the other.

They fled the old country with the clothes on their backs and not much more, but could afford to book a cabin on the ship that bought them to St. John's Newfoundland, then belonging to the British. My mother was born there and went to Britain with her family as a toddler.

My father's side were serfs and scholars. They came to the US after being rejected by Britain. They came over in steerage.

My husband's family had money, and yes, Stu was disinherited for marrying me. His father specifically. His mother loved me, but sadly died young.

The last time I saw my "in-laws" was at my house 2 days after the memorial service.

Stu was hurt by being disinherited, not because it meant he was missing out on a lot of money, but because of what it symbolized. As it turned out, it was moot, as Stu predeceased his father by a couple of years.

My mother has gotten into this weird mode lately of saying she has to save money so she has something to leave to my sister and I, and her grandkids.

Personally, I'd much rather she spend our inheritance down to the last dime, and have a blast doing so.

If not, I would rather she cut me out of the will and leave her "estate" to my sister and the grandkids.


Well-Known Member
Gn, there was no real money from my mother. It wasnt about money. It was about what her decision meant to her about me. Like stu.

I never ever spoke to my morher about her will. I think its not somehow you want somebody to die becsuse you may gain. Still I didnt expect her to suddely acknowledge me. But when she did what I expected her to do it still hurt very much. Disinheriting is an act of severe rejection, almost always done with malice. I dont like bossy stipulations from the grave either, but its better perhaps than lack of acknowledging a child. It is not an issue that the rejected child will ever forget, and, as nancy pointed out, it often causes lasting estrangement between siblings. I have to put it away in order to love my siblings. Even though they were not the ones who influenced my mother...nobody did or could. She was not the type to allow influencing and my siblings would never have tried anyway.
That all being said, I think it feels way differently if you ASK a parent to give all her assets to siblings than when they just DO it on their own to give you the finger from the grave.


Crazy Cat Lady
SWOT, I wasn't trying to compare my asking my mother to leave her assets to my sister and my niece and nephew to being disinherited.

Knowing my mother, she'll do as she pleases anyway. in my opinion, I can't see her not leaving me anything.

Hell, she still gives me a gift every year for Channuka, LOL!

The only reason I know my mother HAS an "estate" is that she asked me for my social security number so she could set me up as beneficiary on "some accounts and policies".

That's when I asked her to leave me out. She gave me a fishy look, but agreed. She still took my SSN# though.

One thing she did agree to do was to set up my sister as executrix. My sister has a good head for numbers and paperwork. I most definitely DO NOT, especially if there's enough of an estate that it goes into probate.

Interestingly, Stu was born Jewish, as was I. He was not disinherited for marrying outside his birth religion. He was disinherited for "marrying below his "class".

His family was upper class and my family was barely middle class. Small house, older cars, etc. We were scraping to be able to afford to live in the suburbs.


Crazy Cat Lady
Yup. And he made very sure to tell Stu and I, in front of the family, right after he got back from changing his will.

He then announced that "of course, if you divorce her, things will be as they were."

Mind you, this was right in front of me. Man was a complete jackhole.


member since 1999
GN - I'm with you. I would rather my folks enjoy what they've worked for rather than have them worry about leaving anything to me. It's theirs, not mine.

Marcie - I'd like to just *see* old Cheech have you declared incompetent!!! LOL... these kids. I think if one of my kids threatened that, my honest answer would be .... "Please?". :rofl:

Our kids know the estate planning we've done. It's especially important for our family because of Boo - we don't want the financial and physical responsibility of taking care of him to fall on his sibs.

It's absolutely *not* about the money or things.... Allowing your last message on earth to be anything other than loving is just not something I can wrap my head around. My heart truly hurts for those of you who have gone thru this.

Edited to clarify: I'm not saying that leaving stuff is loving (heaven knows, if that's the case, my kids are in big trouble, LOL), but intentionally excluding someone is most definitely *not* loving. Hope that makes sense. ;)


Well-Known Member
Love it, slsh. Also would have been fine with Mom spending all her money on her.
But when you leave earth, be sure your last statement to your kids is love, not anger or disgust. Dont treat your children differently just to teach a child an eternal lesson. Dont say "I dont love you" as your last word. And it WILL be interpreted that way by the left out child and will likely cause discord within the family long after you are gone. An ugly legacy.
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Well-Known Member
These are all very interesting stories. GN I was well below my husband's class also, thankfully his parents accepted me with open arms. They did spend almost all their money before they passed away and we were glad they did. They still had enough left to give all of their six children a small amount.

Slsh it's so important to make sure you provide for the care of a special child. We have family members who have done that also, not wanting any of the siblings to be burdened.

SWOT I can't say it any better than you. Dad lived from month to month so it certainly was never about the money. It was his last act and an ugly legacy. The sad part is if he had left it to only me I would have split it with my sister, honest truth. And the fact that he actually went through the trouble of changing the beneficiary a few years ago hurts more. You know why? Because I got upset that he and my sister drank alcohol on our Christmas Eve get together shortly after my daughter got out of rehab and after I asked them to respect my wishes and not do so. It was for spite.

There is a good chance we will use all our money before we die also but at least both girls will get the same nothing lol.


Well-Known Member
Nancy, mine is a bit more interesting. Although I can't know exactly what was in my dead mother's mind, I do know one incident that infuriated her. It was me sticking up for my two adopted kids.

My grandmother played favorites all her life. I was a favorite and usually she didn't try to get on my bad side, but from her grave, she was determined to give a certain small amount of money to one of her grandchildren biological son. She wanted to make sure the others didn't get any of it. She had told me about it before her passing and I told her I would not cooperate, not even give her Bart's social security number. So after she passed, it fell upon my mother to hold it for Bart until he was 18. Now I guess sh e had to pay a very small tax on this m oney and didn't want to so she started calling Bart telling him she needed his social security number, but he didn't know it and told her so. She called him a liar. He came downstairs upset and said, "Grandma called" (that alone was a shock. She hadn't seen him for years and my mother had NO interest in any of MY children, him included. She never called him). Bart then told me that she called him a liar because he didn't know his social security number. Now I was NOT a perfect mother...nobody is....but I did not call my kids names, such as liar, so it was very hurtful to him. And I know how hurtful my mother could sound.

I was furious that she tried calling my son, who was then maybe 15 so that she could put this money in his name and not pay the tax on it. This is not something I know first hand (about the logistics of the money) so it is what I thought I'd heard about why she was so against having it in her name. Why spend an extra $100 on her grandson, whom she didn't care about, just to satisfy a dead woman's wish to make two of his siblings feel like they didn't belong? My grandmother, who never held back, often told me, "Bart is BLOOD. So I'm leaving him the money only."

My mother could not disregard her rather abusive (to her) mother's wishes, even when she was dead. So she had to deal with the money, since her smarter brother wouldn't touch this hot potato. She cared more about her dead mother's attempt to play favorites from the grave than to just let it go and admit it was the wrong thing to do. Well, apparently she didn't think it was the wrong thing to do as she did the same thing, but as mean as I knew my mother could be, I was surprised at her passion that my biological son be the one to get all of this small amount of money.

I was very upset after she contacted Bart so I told my husband, who was then my fiance, to call her back and tell her not to call again. Although I knew it would infuriate her that he do this, I thought she'd listen to him, even if sh e would not necessarily listen to me. So he called and she listened and she never forgave me for protecting my kids nor for allowing my fiance to "abuse" her. Oh, I doubt she used the word abuse, but she was very rageful that my now husband made the call instead of me. She never did come to our wedding because my husband was so mean to her (her interpretation of a short reprimand.) I did not miss her at our wedding. THAT did not really impact me.

by the way, I have told Bart many times about this and he thinks I did the right thing. He is also very smart and has asked, on his own, "Why did she even want to be a part of this? It's not like I was important to her."

At any rate, my mother totally dropped me after this incident although I tried very hard to call her and make things right while both of us were still on this earth. My spiritual beliefs are that it is best to work it out on earth or you will have to do it afterward. Guess we'll have to do it afterward.

That was the final straw to her, I believe. I did not respect her dead mother's hurtful wishes.

Even before it happened to me, I could feel the shame of my two other children at the thought of being disinherited by their grandmother, who DID have a relationship with her. It wasn't happening on my watch.

Eventually Mother did mail me the check and we used it on all of the kids, without telling them about it. Bart is the only one who knows. If Princess knew, she is so sensitive, she would have brought it up to me and cried. Goneboy is gone so he no longer ever speaks to Bart.

To this day I am not sorry I took a hard stand there. I chose my kids over my mother, which I feel was right. But I paid a price for it. It is hurtful to be disinherited for any reason. She shunned and disinherited me out of spite. There was no other reason. But it still hurt. Everyone wants their mother's love. Disinheriting means nothing but disapproval and disdain and no sane person will likely interpret it in any good way. And it is not about the amount of money. It is about the representation of what the deed meant. Oh, she had SOME money, but that really wasn't the point. It wasn't a lot.

I never even got to see her things to pick out any memories that may have happened before she totally decided I was incorrigible, like pictures she may have had. I was just left out, like I didn't exist.

In many ways, my experience with my mother, minus the physical abuse, resonated with me when I saw the movie "Mommie Dearest." Especially the will, although I doubt I was even mentioned in the will. I never saw any will. Nobody brought it up to me. Nobody said, "Um, you were disinherited." I am glad I never saw it. If there was an obit, bet myself and my kids were also left off. I have no interest in digging up these things.

So that's my story from my perspective. It may not be 100% factual, but I feel a lot of it was. She and I will discuss it in another world one day.
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Well-Known Member
My story is not so different SWOT. It was my adopted daughter that dad and sister did not care about triggering with their drinking. It was also sister who from the very beginning when we adopted our daughter said she was sorry that I was not happy with the family that God gave us. And several years ago dad called to ask for the kids social security numbers. I refused to give it to him. It was either at that point that he took me off his policy or later, but until then I was the beneficiary on all his policies with the understanding I would split it with my sister. So he was absolutely targeting me as being disinherited, not want me to get anything.

by the way just like you, when he died my sister told me he wanted her kids to have all his belongings. I got no momentoes, nothing but a small box with a fleece blanket I had made him and three dirty/stained kitchen towels and a glass jar of holy water. All his furniture and belongings went to my niece and nephew even though my daughter is in serious need of house furnishings and they are not. It gets worse, a couple months before he died my daughter(the one we adopted) went to visit him after work. He made an inappropriate advance to her and told her it was OK because she was not blood. Thatis her last memory of him. Nice huh?


Well-Known Member
Nancy, i am so sorry. They were both MEAN with malice in their hearts.
Your fathers advsnce to his graddaughter was really disgusting.
Well, we can feel good that we supported our children. But it came at a price to us, didnt it?