There’s going to be a lot added to this for detail, but this starts as a placeholder.
TL;DR version: Mrs. Hoffman had a best friend. She died, left a set of twins age 19 who are a month older than our twins. Their dad died ~7 years ago. Twins are in college at the moment.
Among other things, in the last ~2 months we’ve learned:
- The kids lived in an utter shithole. [We knew they weren’t in a “clean” house but didn’t realize the depth of things.] Like, our first house was ~700 square feet; they were in a place about that size, with 9 cats and 2 dogs, and neither parent cleaned but the kids couldn’t clean because “that’s not your job.”
- For virtually all their lives, the kids have lived in utter shitholes. [Definitely not known]
- Their stepfather is a clueless idiot [Mrs. H and I noted when we met him] who I would put money on not being able to pass the entrance exam to pre-K. As in, he exhibits Dunning-Kruger on everything.
- They had no money. As in, we had to crowdsource to raise funds to do a simple cremation with no ceremony - which, we got at half price.
- Mom stole money from the twins. [Not realized.] Like, took their money they earned from working to “pay bills” and got control of their education accounts and looted much of them. Potentially to the tune of $20K. Each. Among other stuff.
- Mom stole money from the twins. Worth mentioning a 2nd time, because they “paid for auto insurance” which she then pocketed, which meant they drove around for at least 18 months (probably longer) without auto insurance.
- Stepfather stole money from the twins. [Not realized.] As in, they were paying his bills though he was working. Occasionally. When he wasn’t getting fired from a job and then “leaving to go to work” to cover for the fact he’d been fired, and then “they had problems with payroll” which explained why he wasn’t getting paid. Even at places like Wal-Mart and Target. Because, you know, major retailers regularly screw up payroll.
- Mom and stepfather suckered money from others under the guise of “helping the twins.” [Amount unknown, probably in the thousands of dollars.]
- Mom was under federal investigation for fraud relating to the kids’ social security numbers. [We’re trying to get info on with the help of someone who knew the mom and twins when they lived in another state]
So, with the help of two other sets of parents - parents of friends of the twins - we’re getting these two away from their stepfather and helping them rebuild their lives. Which, for everything they’ve been through, they could easily be in a really bad spot right now but they’re in college and doing well and have their heads screwed on pretty well, even if they’re working on therapy to deal with the loss of their mom.
This thread may document elaborations of all of this and whatever else we learn, and serve as my place to vent as needed.