I’m an only child of a Jewish father. My parents are divorced and my father married a goy, who has since passed on. When I was 20, my father helped to babysit a friend’s baby girl. He then bonded to the child and did for her over the years what he never did with me in his first marriage to my mother. Now he’s 83 and after I invited him to live with me, he declined because of his health and the altitude ( I live in Denver) and decided to live near this woman and her family. Much to my shock, He’s given her financial P.O.A and named her in his will, giving her 1/2 of what would have been my inheritance. She is not Jewish and practices no faith but she visits him in Assisted Living and helps him out with whatever he needs because she is close in proximity. I’ve been a faithful, loving daughter to him all my life, despite abuses that occurred and which I’ve forgiven, am his blood and practice passionately in the faith. I’m deeply wounded that he’s done this. Can he give away 1/2 of his inheritance to this non-blood, non family, non believer? Thank you & Lord Bless you Rabbi,
This sounds very sad and unfair, however on a practical level, if he did it legally there isn’t much that you will be able to do. I don’t know what your relationship with your father is, but you might be able to convince him to change his mind. Not by screaming at him, but maybe by telling him that by giving his money to his own children and grandchildren (if he has). You might be able to convince him that by supporting his children, he is giving himself a continuation even after he passes on to the next world, but the mitzvos and good deeds that will be done because of his money will be an everlasting merit and remembrance for him. If applicable you can mention that this woman will not be saying kaddish for him, or light a yahrtzeit lamp in his memory, or say yizkor for him. She will be taking his money and will forget about him. These various ideas can be presented to him in a calm loving way, over time and maybe they will have an effect. You might want to consider telling him that although he feels close to this woman, and therefore he wants to give her some of his inheritance, him giving half of his inheritance to a stranger, it is stating that his blood and family don’t really matter, and that it is very hurtful to you. All of the above are only ideas from someone who doesn’t know the real situation, so take them and you can decide if any of them are applicable.
As a practical piece of advice it is worth your while to do things calmly, slowly and not to get upset, because the situation is very sensitive and you could end up losing the other half too.
I wish you a of of success, and I hope that the relationship with your father will only get better.