DEAR HARRIETTE: My 18-year-old brother always seems to be low on money. He doesn’t have a job because he’s in school, and my parents do not help him financially. Although it is not my responsibility to pay for him, I feel bad when he has to skip out on things because he cannot afford it. I try to help him out as much as I can by taking him out to eat or leaving some cash at his apartment, but he rejects my assistance. Is there a way I can go about giving him money so that he’ll take it? -- Help a Brother Out, Roxbury, Massachusetts
DEAR HELP A BROTHER OUT: It is kind of you to want to support your brother. Do you know why your parents do not support him? Whatever the reason, since they don’t, perhaps he does need to get a part-time job. Many people go to school and work. I had a part-time job from age 16 so that I would have extra money.
You can talk to your brother and tell him that you know he doesn’t want your money, but point out that you want to help him as he is completing his education. Tell him you want to give him an extra boost, and you would appreciate it if he would accept a little something when you are able to offer it. He may still refuse, but you can give it one more try.