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Thread: Sorry, Nobody Wants Your Parents’ Stuff

  1. #1

    Sorry, Nobody Wants Your Parents’ Stuff

    AJ posted this on facebook...its an interesting read.

    -After my father died at 94 in September, leaving my sister and me to empty his one-bedroom, independent living New Jersey apartment, we learned the hard truth that others in their 50s and 60s need to know: Nobody wants the prized possessions of your parents — not even you or your kids.

    Admittedly, that’s an exaggeration. But it’s not far off, due to changing tastes and homes. I’ll explain why, and what you can do as a result, shortly.

    The Stuff of Nightmares

    So please forgive the morbidity, but if you’re lucky enough to still have one or more parents or stepparents alive, it would be wise to start figuring out what you’ll do with their furniture, china, crystal, flatware, jewelry, artwork and tchotchkes when the mournful time comes. (I wish I had. My sister and I, forced to act quickly to avoid owing an extra months’ rent on dad’s apartment, hired a hauler to cart away nearly everything we didn’t want or wouldn’t be donating, some of which he said he’d give to charity.)

    Many boomers and Gen X’ers charged with disposing the family heirlooms, it seems, are unprepared for the reality and unwilling to face it.

    “It’s the biggest challenge our members have and it’s getting worse,” says Mary Kay Buysse, executive director of the National Association of Senior Move Managers (NASMM).

    “At least a half dozen times a year, families come to me and say: ‘What do we do with all this stuff?’” says financial adviser Holly Kylen of Kylen Financials in Lititz, Pa. The answer: lots of luck.

    Heirloom Today, Foregone Tomorrow

    Dining room tables and chairs, end tables and armoires (“brown” pieces) have become furniture non grata. Antiques are antiquated. “Old mahogany stuff from my great aunt’s house is basically worthless,” says Chris Fultz, co-owner of Nova Liquidation, in Luray, Va.

    On PBS’s Antiques Roadshow, prices for certain types of period furniture have dropped so much that some episode reruns note current, lower estimated appraisals.

    And if you’re thinking your grown children will gladly accept your parents’ items, if only for sentimental reasons, you’re likely in for an unpleasant surprise...

    http://www.nextavenue.org/nobody-wants-parents-stuff/

  2. #2
    I kept my mom's sofa and love seat when she passed away as it was newer and more stylish than what we had. I didn't really keep much else. Pretty much everything left from the estate sale was donated to thrift stores. Any treasures I kept were small and mostly jewelry. I'm not one who is attached to stuff.

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    Romans828 (02-16-2017)

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    Senior Member Romans828's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by curly sue View Post
    ... I'm not one who is attached to stuff.
    Ditto!

    I kept a few (sentimental) things when my Mom passed 2 years ago, and my sisters did too, but most of her things were either given to my friends' Mom (her brand-new recliner, a TV, dinette set, and a bookcase), or donated to Goodwill.

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    Quest (06-15-2017)

  6. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by curly sue View Post
    I'm not one who is attached to stuff.
    Me too - it's just that my parents insist that I use their old things... how do you handle such discussions?

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    Super Moderator Quest's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Constance View Post
    Me too - it's just that my parents insist that I use their old things... how do you handle such discussions?
    With grace and respect.....some may take a rejection of the stuff as a rejection of them if they have a strong attachment themselves....fact is when they are gone it can be dealt with differently if need be...at that point they will be in Heaven and would certainly understand then what they can't now..

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    curly sue (06-15-2017)

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    Senior Member Colonel's Avatar
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    My dad has all kinds of stuff filling up his three storey townhouse. He's too attached to most of it but I don't think he expects his only child to be attached to much of it. He's 74 and I expect him to live for a long time yet, but there is always the possibility that I could be wrong.

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    Super Moderator Quest's Avatar
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    When we downsized the furniture of value was distributed to our kids...the custom made dinette to one son...the flat screen tv and sofa loveseat dual recliners...the rest we just gave away or donated....all but my set of China..my brother bought it for me 46 years ago in Germany....we are not collectors....

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    Resident Chocolate Monster Lista's Avatar
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    I don't WANT to keep a lot of stuff, but it's sort of expected in our family. We're currently fixing up a house that my great-Grandfather built back in the late 1800's early 1900's. (If you saw my facebook, you saw the picture of my newest blonde moment...trying to blow up an air mattress) All that to say...we can't even get rid of the homes!!! The good thing is, I'll be able to take a lot of the furniture and STUFF over to that house when we're finished.

  12. #9
    Resident Chocolate Monster Lista's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Constance View Post
    Me too - it's just that my parents insist that I use their old things... how do you handle such discussions?
    You mean, they're asking you to take their stuff now?


    oh...and welcome to the forum.

  13. #10
    I'm pretty sentimental. Most of my parents' stuff I remember fondly from my childhood. It's hard for me to part with it. A funny thing happened the other day, though. My dad had a large green glass ashtray that I remember from way back when. I don't smoke, so I just kept it on my desk as a reminder. The other day it accidentally got pushed off the desk and broke into several pieces. For about five seconds I was sad, then I was actually glad. It's one less thing I have to deal with--memories or no memories. I'm so tempted to "accidentally" break a bunch of other stuff I can't bear to part with.

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    tschau (06-16-2017)

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