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He Expected a Relaxing Stay at His Brother’s Home, But What He Didn’t Anticipate Was Being Turned Away at the Door.

When the Original Poster (OP) offers his resort-city home to his family, tensions rise over boundaries and privacy. Amidst an escalating dispute with his brother, an unexpected rental opportunity and a past trauma lead to conflict. But will family bonds survive these turbulent times?

A City with Famous Resorts

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OP, a single man in his early 40s, owns a lovely home in Myrtle Beach, SC, known for its beautiful beaches and exciting entertainment options. Living with his three dogs, OP has plenty of space to share. Friends and family frequently visit.

An Office in the Guest House

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Working from home, OP has set up an office in the guest house where he works remotely several hours a day as an IT consultant. Sometimes, he rents out the main home and lives in this smaller space in the back of his property with the dogs.

Financial Finesse

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By renting out his main house during peak vacation season, OP has been able to pay off his mortgage in a decade. Now he is debt-free, living a breezy, low-maintenance lifestyle at his own pace.

The Brother’s Pre-Pandemic Visit

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In February 2020, just before lockdowns began, OP’s brother visited with his new wife and stepchildren. No renters were booked that week, and plans were made in advance. It was a week of family time.

An Unexpected House Rule

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OP typically moves freely in his own house when he is entertaining guests and not renters. However, his sister-in-law and her children wanted privacy, insisting that OP ring the doorbell before entering his own home.

Privacy, At a Cost

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The pandemic has ended, and the brother wants to visit again. OP declines, valuing the freedom to use his own property and not have to tiptoe around high-maintenance guests. For exclusive use, the brother would need to pay a rental fee.

Hotel Alternatives

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The brother finds OP’s rental fee, $1,500 weekly, to be steep, especially between family. Arguing that hotels cost the same, he challenges the offer. OP simply suggests he books a hotel instead and not use his house like one.

Parents Intervene

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OP’s parents believe his stance is petty to charge his brother money to visit him. They urge OP to let his brother’s family use the house for free because it’s the right thing to do in this situation. Family tensions are rising.

A Counteroffer on the Table

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Offering a compromise, OP proposes a house swap. If he can stay at the brother’s house near scenic hikes in Virginia, the brother can use OP’s. The parents believe the sister-in-law wouldn’t agree.

Last Minute Rental Opportunity

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Suddenly, OP receives an offer for a short-term rental through his rental management app. It overlaps with the brother’s desired vacation time, which would bring an end to the argument. OP accepts, ensuring the brother can’t stay.

Family’s Heated Response

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The parents and brother are angered by OP’s decision to rent out his house during his brother’s week off work. They accuse OP of ruining the brother’s vacation plans. Tensions within the family reach a new peak.

A Surprising Call

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The sister-in-law unexpectedly calls OP directly, hoping for a compromise. She explains her side, mentioning past traumas causing her need for privacy. OP listens, trying to understand as she opens up about a robbery in their previous home, which has left them scarred and anxious when someone enters without warning.

An Emotional Reckoning

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Realizing the depth of the issue, OP feels a mix of empathy and frustration. Their wish for privacy wasn’t just a preference; it was a coping mechanism. The family’s communication gaps are evident.

Was The Brother’s Behavior Appropriate?

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Unsure whether he did the right thing, given his options, OP posted his story online for feedback and reflection. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter.

Forum Responds

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One reader said, “It’s ridiculous that your family expects you to allow him to use your house but is okay with him not allowing you in his.”

Another Commenter Thinks

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Another responder wrote, “Your kindness to your brother and his family by letting them have the use of your house rent-free was generous. The nerve of your sister-in-law refusing to let you use your home during their visit is simply outrageous.”

A Third View on The Story

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A different person stated, “They took advantage of your kindness the first time, and you were understanding because it preserved family peace, and communications may not have been clear then.”

A Final Perspective on the Matter

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Another reader commented, “If your brother’s family lived in your house for free and set their own rules. I understand why you wouldn’t want them staying in your house anymore.”

What Do You Think?

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What are your thoughts on their actions?

What would you have done in this situation?

This story is inspired by a thread from an online forum.

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