My parents-in-law are going to Europe next month for four weeks. These are the people who have come to Mr L and I multiple times over the years and asked us to help them manage their spending, and then ignore all our advice. They’ve got 6 figures’ worth of debt, all from decades of living an upper middle class life without the income to match. They’ve already travelled to across the country four times in the last year (but it ‘doesn’t count’ since they were visiting family). It bothers me so much to see them blow money this way, and yet I have to acknowledge it’s none of my business. What difference does it make to me if they want to live this way?

I tell myself that, and yet every time I hear them talk about hiring gardeners and buying new patio furniture and whatnot I can’t help but get exasperated. Two months ago we talked them into not getting a new car just because one of their current vehicles was paid off. Sometimes I think they tell us their plans just so we can be their conscience and tell them not to. This time they waited until three weeks before they leave, and only then because they need us to feed their pets.