Money Leeches in the Family?

If you have not yet read Part 2 of this article, please click here to read it now

In the last article, I talked about being aware and effectively stopping your Money Leeches!  Should a Money Leech appear who is NOT Immediate family, I recommend that you only offer P50 and not a Centavo more. Although it may seem very harsh, this is the first real step in getting your money to stay with you. Also remember, if you think you can’t do it, think about the welfare of your immediate family. Money leeches are not your burden, they are not your problem. Instead, think of them as “Money Management Tests”. If you are able to stop your leeches, you pass the test and you immediately get to the next level. Fail the test, then you will stay stuck where you are.

But what if the “Money Leech” is from immediate family? Like a brother or a sister or a parent, what then?

First, let me define what an “immediate family money Leech” is. — This is the brother or sister or parent that will habitually ask you for money. Most of the time, they even feel entitled to it because of the blood relationship they have with you. You know the type right?

Well, this is where it gets very sensitive for a lot of people. Everybody has a different opinion on this, but this is my clear cut view on it. Not all members of your immediate family have the same weight. You must prioritize who within your immediate family to be generous to first.

In my life, this is my prioritization: My first priority is to my wife and children, then my parents and then my siblings. And with that in mind, I give 90% of my money to my wife and children first, then the next 5% goes to me and the remaining 5% goes to a special fund just in case an immediate family needs it.

Side note: If you give 90% of your money to your wife / husband and children, make sure that it is not siphoned off by a relative of your wife/husband because they too may have a money leech or leeches. This is a concern of many married people as well. –Sit down and talk to your wife / husband about this if this is indeed the case with you. Your objective is to teach your spouse about money leeches and have a unified front against them.

Now, should there be a money leech in my immediate family the maximum amount of cash I or my wife gives is only the 5% of whatever we have at the time. Now depending on how much money you have right now, that can be very little or that can be very big, the point is, even if it is immediate family (outside of my wife and children) our cash generosity is budgeted, controlled and managed.

Another side note: If you are single, I do not suggest offering 90% to your immediate family unless you plan to never marry, still budget it to 5 to 10% because of 2 reasons: 1.) If you give more than that, you might not have a money leech now, but if they get used to it, you would have created a money leech down the road; And 2.) You need money for when you get married someday. If there was a major regret I had in my life, it was that, I didn’t plan financially when the time to marry the love of my life came along. Even though it worked out in the end, I could have planned so much better.

Make no mistake; my life’s wealth is meant for my immediate family. Everything I make and have is meant to be shared with them, and to give them a better life BUT if I have a Money Leech problem and do not budget, and control it. The Money Leech will most definitely bleed me dry financially as well, especially if it is family –and let me add, if you are married, a money leech in the immediate family, if not managed will DESTROY your marriage. Trust me; I’ve seen it happen to those very dear to me. This is why I urge you to understand what I am sharing. If nothing else, I want all of you to have a great and happy marriage.

Be Generous in the Right Way

Now some of you who have read up to this point might be having a violent reaction right now saying “I can’t just abandon my brother, sister, parents and just give them 5% if they desperately need the money??? If I do, I am not being a good son/daughter/ brother/sister, I am a Filipino, they are my blood, I must give!”

Okay, calm down before you decide that I am a heartless scrooge.

Remember that we are just talking about Money Leeches in the immediate family who “habitually” ask for money and even feel entitled to it. If they are not “leeching” you dry and they desperately need help and you can afford to do so then give what you can. But I suggest that you only do so once because if you give more than that, you are creating a money leech down the road.

I am a very generous person by nature. The problem that I had before was that I was generous in the wrong way.  Being overly generous with money, especially if you do not know how to manage it, is extremely dangerous and is a clear recipe for money running away from you instead of towards you.

So instead, what I learned to do, and what I want you to learn to do as well is to be extremely generous in the right way, and that is to be generous in “kind”. To explain this further, I will give you 2 assignments today.

Assignment 1: Read my past article entitled “Business Reciprocity”. Click Here To Read That Article. Then Comment on either that article or this one. Complain to me about the problems you have in completing the assignments. Believe me, I will read every single one — even yours and I promise that I will not ban you or even get mad at you when you do. It is all part of the process.

Assignment 2: Set a budget for your Family Leeches and stick to it. Create a script on how you will say it to them. You can email it to me if you want. Email to:

Good luck and see you in the next article!

Author Box:

Mark So is a fervent businessman, Investor and educator.  He is the Chairman and CEO of Businessmaker Academy—a business, finance and corporate training center.  He is the founder and Chief Forex Trainer of Forex Club Asia, A Trading club of Forex Traders across Asia. He is also the Founder and Chief Trainer of the Philippine Franchise Institute which specializes in training and growing existing Franchise businesses.  A sought after speaker for business, investing, You may email your comments and questions to: or call the office at 6874445 / 6873416 / 6874645 for a schedule of his seminars

  1. marijo says:

    is regular stipend to parents included here?

  2. hi mark, i do believe in what you’ve shared as this things happen in my life. in japan where our ship is alongside the rain pours so the operations in the cargo hold where temporarily stopped and the workers made their way home to quarters. As a seaman it’s my duy to make a round roving and while doing it so i found a wallet with a money inside and has the picture of the japanese man. It’s my luck to find it but i look for the guy who on that moment was worried and searching the said wallet. And we give the wallet and he was so happy. 3 days after i was scheduled to go back to philippines because i had already finished my contract and my officer called me to report and unto my surprise i saw the man who lost his wallet with a grocery of japanese noodles. I feel blessed i didn’t expect something in return in helping him but the japanese has the culture of thanking to the people who helped them.This same in bussiness and in life. Learn to helped and be generous in the right way! May God be praised!!!

    • Nap says:

      Honestly, this money leeche in the immediate family circle is the biggest burden for me till now. I cannot explain in it in details.

  3. alvin palmos says:

    sir mark,

    ive learned alot from each and every article that ive read, and i usually browse it again and put it to heart, thank u sir

  4. Aidan says:

    Hi Mark,

    Now I know how I call them. But my concern is that sometimes they (my in-laws) misinterpret me as being selfish because she (mother-in-law) knew that I can afford to give her such amount. As I read this article, the first thing that pop-up in my mind is my mother-in-law. Although she pays the money she borrowed and give extra money if she had the money to repay her debt. But now, I realized that it is me who is at fault by giving into her demands. From now on, I will try to apply your advice.


  5. Jerry says:

    Though this is quite hard to resist , I would try to follow this advise. As this if for the future of my family.

  6. TyroneS says:

    My last comment was entirely about this article, but I wonder that the so called “leeches” are not humans but just expense from here to there, that the budget will shrink without me noticing it, that my “somewhat little blunder”.. About your reciprocity.. well its good that you had help someone, naturally, most literate people have the tendency to help back those people who have help them. What about the people who have not been good to you at all, what then? I mean, its a perfect story to help, but does that really apply to us all? Guess I’ll continue reading sir Mark.. really ..

  7. Janjan says:

    Another great article Mark! Hmmm… the problem is, my money leeches don’t really borrow from me. They are there to take my groceries and the food on my table, use up electricity and water (that I pay) without thoughts of conserving. They even take personal belongings without asking. I actually just think of them as part of my perpetual community service.

Leave a Reply to richard c viador Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s