I spent today with my Aunt, who is the Executrix of her brother’s estate. She drove 2.5 hours to get to his attorney’s office. We then went to the courthouse to get the papers required to access his accounts. From there we were off to his 1st bank, then the 2nd. At the 1st bank, where he has a safe deposit box, we found out that she has to give the bank & state 7 days written notice, via certified mail, to open his safety deposit box. It was a long, stressful day.
After dropping me off at my home she spent another 2 hours driving to her home. She’s not a youngun, and days like this are above and beyond the call of duty.
All of which is my way of saying this: if you know you are going to die, wrap up your affairs, so your loved ones don’t have to!
Her brother knew for at least 2 months that he was going to die. Despite this knowledge, he made no effort to consolidate bank accounts, update his will, write down account numbers and locations, pull the cash and jewelry he had hidden around his house. He left a mess. In fact, we found one of his bank accounts by showing up to a bank near his home and asking “hey – does this guy have an account here?”. Turns out he did. Not that he told her.
If you die suddenly, this is somewhat acceptable. Although I am going to spend the next few months making sure my affairs are crystal clear and easily accessible!
If, however, you have spent the past 3 years dying, leaving a mess is Not OK. This was the 1st day in what will be many cleaning up his affairs. His house is a mess, with stacks of papers dating back to 1996, valuables tied to the springs beneath his bed (literally!), reams of old newspapers with valuable papers stacked in between. Honestly, I’ve had my ups and downs with my aunt but No One deserves this. She is a wreck, trying to figure all of this out.
What a position he left her in. Her choice is this: Honor her brother, and make sure the non-profits he cited in his will get their due, or leave valuables in safe deposit boxes and accounts he hid. How unfair to her! The sister he claimed to love, the one who stepped up in his final days, is now being tortured.
He was a total narcissist, which is why I’m writing this blog. We should all be aware that narcissists leave this life just as they lived it – in a whirlwind of selfish, uncaring actions that can torture those of us left behind. In his mind it is nothing less than her “duty” to clean up his mess, to make sure that his final wishes are granted, even though he made no effort to communicate them legally. It really sucks, what he did. And I am heartbroken for her, that she feels compelled to honor a broken man who never did a damed thing for anyone other than himself.
The only thing I can say here is this: if you are involved/related to a dying narcissist, Do Not agree to be his/her executor! In the end he will treat you the way he treated everyone else – a resource available to meet HIS needs, and his needs only. A puppet whose purpose is to ensure that his legacy is remembered and honored, regardless of his careless actions.
No One deserves this. & again, I am forced to say “I just don’t get it”.
Narcissists are cruel. & yes, they are probably hurt and damaged, but in the end, they leave a path of cruelty that defines their existence, clarifying for those they claimed to love, the selfishness of the life they led.
Me – I will use my boundaries to say NO to all narcissists. With no guilt.