My spouse accepts the junk mail we receive as truthful. What do we do?

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When declare that it is a scam, she replies, "but they need our help". We argue constantly about junk mail, as well as telemarketing calls. At the moment she is buying much merchandise from "Publishers Clearing House" for items that are cheap Chinese junk, and that are already in the house. Her false hope is that we are going to win a million dollars. I have insisted that we go to counseling, threatened divorce, become exceedingly angry; nothing works! How do I get through to this woman?

Answers 1 to 10 of 10
Top Answer
Short and sweet: INTERCEPT THE MAIL..........are you the one that walks out to the mailbox? Make it dwindle... pick and choose the ones where NOTHING can be ordered, bought, etc. This is a quote from above message: "Mom would order more checks without me knowing and write dozens of checks on the sly".

Use a fake checkbook

Oh, I am glad I am re-reading the post. Mom's mail is forwarded to you! Awesome. You have already intercepted it. Cool!

If mom has no POSTAGE STAMPS, she cannot mail out anything. Politely say, Okay mom, I'll mail this for you, which will be the fake checkbook...

How's that? I think it would work for my mom. Not sure what other folks think. My point is I don't want to fight with her. So, whatever it takes to keep the peace and make them think they are buying whatever, so be it.

If the item never arrives *hehe*, you can say, "See mom? They are a bunch of scammers, they took your money".

I know, it is one more thing to deal with. Not earth shattering, but bothersome nevertheless.

M88
If need be I would get a p.o. box and pick up my mail myself at the post office.. Tell her you heard someones been stealing peoples mail..

I have a phone that announces who's calling or says where the call is coming from.. I never pick it up unless I know exactly who it is... All you have to do is add the name to the number you want to pick up..

You could shut of the ringer and check it during the day for messages and call back who you need to..
Actually no, Rarefind. I just had this conversation with my mail carrier last week. He was bringing a package to the door and I thought it was a good opportunity to apologize for the masses of charity mail. We talked for a bit - most charity requests are second class mail. It you write "return to sender" and resubmitt it, the post office merely throws it away.
Blackdog - lol, our story is even more similar. My mom had searched for her perfect church for years and believed she'd found it. Small group, always poor, always having fund raisers. My mother was probably one of the most well off in the congregation. They were forever getting mom to give them large sums of money - this was before she had any signs of dementia so I just had to bite my tounge. Fast forward a few years - mom had a hip replaced and they helped her out a bit and mom kept on giving. Fast forward a few more years and mom was getting more eccentric than usual plus had lost her drivers licence. So mom asked for someone to pick her up and take her to church. No dice. No more invites to church book club, no more visits etc. yet the phone calls and letters asking her for money just kept coming. Once a year when they would hit her up for several thousand two people would show up for the full court press. Finally mom said - " you'll have to talk to my daughter, she takes care of my money now". Never heard from them again. The really funny part was that unbeknownst to them mom had put them in her will for six digits. Once they stopped coming around mom changed her will and cut them out. If they only knew! Lol!!!
You don't say how old your wife is. How long has she been this way?

I have discovered that sometimes mental decline manifests itself in different ways. Sometimes it causes people to be obsessed with something. Sometimes it makes people neglect things, it makes people repeat themselves or forget things. Still, other times, people just exhibit poor judgment.

I would consider everything that you have observed about your wife and whether you think she just is not able to process the truth about the junk mail. She may not be able to understand what you are asking her to do. There are various reasons this may be happening. I'd consider that possibility and try to protect her and you.

I think that I might figure a way to get a post office box and stop all incoming mail. You can get most statements sent by email. I'd explore keeping the mail out of her sight.
Lassie - tell me about it! When my mom would start to complain about the phone calls I would try to explain to her how it connected with her writting all those charity checks - didn't work. Don't even get me started on what came next - trying to show her how caller ID worked on her phone. I swear I almost had an aneurism over that one.
Trust me - I tried everything suggested and more. I would show her reports on how much of every dollar actually reached the animal or child. .08 cents? Didn't matter. Mom was in independent living at the time with a care giver so there was no way to withhold stamps or offer to mail - unless I was the 24/7. No fake accounts either - if she managed to write one on a bogus account and get it mailed it could be considered a crime - writting checks on a closed account - explored that idea in the first six months. I thought of it or tried it - whatever "it" is! Like I said this was a fight that went on for over two years. Because the letter was addressed "dear Nancy" mom truely believed she was the only one helping. If I had a dime for everytime I heard "if I won't help them, who will"?!! Then she'd get the photo of the horse, cat whatever with the handwritten "thank you" on the back, she'd believe that was THE specific animal she saved. I tried to get her to condense to just a couple charities - but no, they ALL needed her! When I suggested donating locally it was the same answer. And as for this being a life long habit? Mom never did a days volunteer work in her life. And up until this started she'd wrestle a hobo for a penny on the sidewalk. BUT it's finished now - thank God - except for our mail carriers glares. But it truely was the most frustrating thing I've ever dealt with in my life.
Maybe she would be open to it if you said that you could make a donation to a local charity, GrandpaDan. There are people and animals in need, but many of these nationwide charities are simply cash cows for the fundraisers. All of the charities asking for $19 a month sponsorships are cash cows. Wounded Warrior Project got caught just recently, with little of the money going to the vets and most going to support a lavish life for the founders and fundraisers. Shame on them.

People often like to give to the national Humane Society. Most of that money goes to the fundraisers and fundraising projects. A few cents of each dollar goes to the local shelters. However, a donation to your local humane society goes to the animals.

Talk to your wife about donating locally. That will give you some control over the amount spent, since maybe she'll let you be in charge of what you decide.
Possibly for "normal" mail.....mis-delivered....but not for "junk " mail....
As a retired Postal Worker we had the same problem with my mother when she lived alone 200 miles away. She would receive, this is no exaggeration, over a foot of mail every day. Organizations wanting money, fortune tellers, every money grubbing leach you could imagine and maybe 5 pieces of 1st class mail. Bulk mail or 3rd class mail and 2nd class mail will not be returned so don't bother wasting your time. You have a few options. There is a postal form you can fill out to have bulk mail stopped, but this does not always work. If there is a way around it these organizations will find it. However if you order something from any of them they do sell you name & address to others. 2nd option is to get a P O Box. Only 1st and 2nd class mail is forwarded. There again if you order something your bulk mail will begin piling up in your box. 3rd option, most drastic option, is to move. Same option as P O Box, same result. 4th options is to have their mail, if you are POA, forwarded to your residence. That way you can take their 1st class mail to them, personally. Depending on their independence, that may or not work or just tick them off, your decision. We move mom in with us and all but 1st class mail stopped. She was shelling out over $7,000 a year and dipping into her stocks and bonds to pay her bills. I put an end to that quickly when I found out. Good luck everyone.
I'm sorry to say I just don't know. My mother went through something similar. Mom never went for the sweepstakes things, never bought magazines or crap to enter or qualify - moms problem was the charity requests. I fought this battle with her for well over two years! "Save the tigers, donkeys, ferrel cats, farm animals, bears." Feed children, war widows - US and foreign. Dogs for the blind, deaf, veterans. Forests, national parks, oceans. Prisoner bible study. PETA, human society - local, national, international. I could go on and on. Mom would get upwards of 20 - 30 requests a day in the mail. By the time I figured out what she was doing with her personal checking account she was writting 40 checks a month. I tried everything to get her to stop or even get it under control. I would look up charities on Charity Navagator to show her many were bogus, limited how many checks she had access to, even agreed to a budget and made it something we did together once a week. Mom would order more checks without me knowing and write dozens of checks on the sly. Absolutly nothing I did or said worked. To make things worse the charities would personalize the letter request with her first name and she was convinced they were writting to her personally. The really odd part of this was that my mother has been a very miserly woman all her life - she could make a dime scream! What finally put an end to it was a fall she had in August that brought her dementia to full gear and I had to place her in a nursing home. I was finally able to get the checkbook and mom is unable to mentally process getting more checks - and to be honest I don't think she really remembers the whole thing. Plus, now all moms mail is forwarded to me. On the down side I think our mailman hates us now as those 30 request come to my house daily. We haven't sent a check in seven months but there has barely been a difference in the number of requests that come daily. (Sigh!). So I'm no help other than to let you know you are not alone and I understand.

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