Would This Man Be Wrong To Keep An Inheritance From A Friend When The Friend’s Family Was Left Out?

Whoo boy, y’all, this story you’re about to read. If you think the issue of LGBTQ rights and the treatment of LGBTQ people is a bit of a history lesson these days, think again – it was not so long ago that a person’s sexuality could mean being completely shunned by their own family.

OP is a friend of a gay man who passed away. His friend had endured over 30 years of estrangement from his ex-spouse and children, along with much of the rest of his family, after coming out as gay in the 1990s.

I (35M) recently had a friend pass away unexpectedly from COVID. My friend (61M) was nearly twice my age however we met at a social event for gay men and struck up a friendship based on our shared love of 80s TV shows (particularly the Golden Girls).

My friend, lets call him Jack, was estranged from his family because he divorced his wife and came out as gay when his kids were teenagers. This was back in the 90s and things weren’t as accepting as they are now for gay people, so he faced brutal social isolation and rejection from his children after he came out.

He told me he truly thought he was straight when he married his wife but through the course of their marriage he realized he was gay.

The friend moved, found a family of like-minded people in an accepting city, and became a successful businessman. Even though his children continued to not speak to them, he paid for their college education and had made his peace.

After Jack was rejected by his friends and family he moved to another state (my state) and found a gay friendly city and started a small business.

His business was quite successful and he paid for his children’s college education (even though they still didn’t speak to him) and he remained estranged from them until his death.

After his friend died unexpectedly of Covid, OP and others learned that he had left them all money instead of his ungrateful family.

OP received a large chunk and is being harassed by the family, who believe they are owed it for their “pain and suffering” as children.

After he passed away his lawyer contacted me to let me know that because he never reconciled with his children, and their nasty conduct towards him well into their adult years, he decided to only give them a token amount in his will. The vast majority of his money was given to his friends who he said he considered his true family.

Since we were very close friends, he left me a considerable sum of money in his will. I think the amount I was left drew the ire of his children/ex-wife and they are saying that he robbed them of a normal family and life and they deserve the money for the suffering he put them through.

Should OP back down and hand over his share of the inheritance or tell them to kick rocks?

WIBTA if I told them to shove it (as I would like to) and keep the money regardless?

Let’s hear Reddit’s opinion on it in the comments!

The top comment reminds us that death brings out the worst in people.

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More than one person pointed out that those kids made their bed, now it’s time to lie in it.

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And of course, OP’s friend left it to him because he wanted him to have it, not those kids. Those were his wishes, and they should be respected.

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No one is entitled to money from someone, even if they’re family.

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If they did get the money, maybe the could have built a bridge to get over it.

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I always think that will’s and estate planning should be followed to the letter. Unless the person wasn’t of sound mind, their wishes should be respected.

What are your thoughts here? We want to hear them in the comments!