LLLReader recently wrote: On both sides of my family there is one person in need. I have carried the financial responsibility for both of them for years. Also on both sides of the family there are people who could help share the load--but refuse even though they could easily do it. I have had it with that, and laid it out there about their selfishness. My sweet daughter-in-law said that they see my kindness as weakness and have taken advantage. My belief is that family looks out after each other.
Reading this quote, I was immediately touched by LLLReader's generosity, but it also prompted another question: Is there an expectation in Laestadianism that children will take on the financial responsibility for their aging parents?
As our population ages, medical advances allow people to live longer, and the recent stock market and financial market turmoil erode retirement savings, this becomes an issue not just for Laestadians. However, do Laestadians expect more in this regard than the general population?
I know a Laestadian who had a very large family with the explicit expectation that "they are his retirement plan." He has not saved a dime for retirement, expecting his children to take him in when the time comes. Is this fair? The particular case I'm thinking of is made even more interesting by the fact that I know he has been very irresponsible with jobs, money, and saving --far beyond just the expectation he has of his children.
Should his kids have to "bail him out," and if so, is this part of the Laestadian mindset?