I'm constantly trying to explain to my mom that the letters that she gets in the mail, which promise her money are scams.
I've shown her websites, newspaper articles and pamphlets about how to identify these "sweepstakes" or these "free prizes". But she won't listen. I've watched news segments on it with her and I've even helped her close two bank accounts and file two separate police reports after she's gotten money stolen from her bank accounts.
Now she doesn't have a bank account. She doesn't write checks anymore... now she sends money orders.
She'll send $12.00, a "processing fee" for a 1.5 million dollar check. And she'll tell me things like, "Well, if everything works out." And she truly believes it.
I don't know how many cars she's told me she's won. She's been absolutely convinced.
This is a constant argument. I used to yell and get high pitched and everything. Now I just try to patiently tell her how I know something is a scam.
"Mom, free money is always supposed to be FREE. You're not supposed to send money in order to get a free prize. Free stuff is supposed to be FREE."
"Mom, stop responding to these people, they're scamming you. Look, this isn't 'Publisher's Clearinghouse' it's 'Publishers', they're not legit, and see, they're asking for money."
"Mom, they're sending you junk. You paid $80.00 for something you can get for $20 at Wal-mart. Stop sending them money, I'll take you to the store, wherever you wanna go."
"Mom, this isn't an iPod, this is an MP3 player."
Nothing I say or do makes a difference. So now my mom has become very secretive about why she needs money orders or stamps, and tries to redirect the conversation when I ask her what she's sending.
It's her money, but it makes me feel sick that someone is taking advantage or my mom.
It's EXTREMELY frustrating.
She doesn't send letters or cards to anyone, she only mails back her claim forms for her millions of dollars, or her free cars, or her expensive jewelry and prizes! All of them are scams, scams, scams. They aren't even CONVINCING scams, they're very OBVIOUSLY scams
Tonight, she asked me for three stamps.
I took a deep breath, and very nicely asked, "Who are you sending mail to, Mom?"
There was a long pause while my mom considered her answer. Finally she says, "A loved one." which we both knew was a lie.
My husband in the kitchen says, "Who are you in love with? Ed McMahon?"
|My mom's cherished loved one|
|Super-official junk mail sent by the PRESIDENT of Processing and Judging!|
|Yes, she opened this one.|
|Federated Allocation Bureau|
"Personal and Confidential"
(because we don't want your daughter to know you're getting scammed)
|"To Be Lawfully Opened By Addressee Only" |
"Open Without Delay"