My (25) mother is completely financially dependent and it’s affecting the whole family

Obligatory throw-away account.

Bottom line, my mom is financially unstable and I want to know what resources there are to begin to fix it. I know there is no overnight fix but I’m not sure where to begin.

She has gotten herself tremendously into debt and relies completely on my step-dad financially. She has a great job actually making more than he does, but she relies on him for food and a roof over her head. Her bi-weekly paycheck may last at most a week. They have had marital issues for a while and if he leaves I have no idea what will happen to her or my teenage brother. Inevitably I will end up having to completely support her and I want to get help before it comes to that. He has told me they probably will end it once my brother graduates high school (less than 3 years). She has virtually no financial knowledge and is completely uninterested in becoming financially independent/stable to my knowledge. She also has not seen any repercussions as someone is always there to give her money when she can’t make rent, etc.

I recently found out that my step-dad has only been putting minimal effort into keeping her accountable. He is (we think) aware of what loans/etc. she has and has provided her with a budget, but still keeps having to give her money beyond what he should. He states he has has no idea where the extra cash is going but admits to not following through to find out. She has filed bankruptcy twice and has taken out many payday loans. But I do not know yet the actual extent of how bad her situation is…. I’m under the impression that she is not being entirely honest with him.

I have only very basic financial knowledge myself, so I want to have all the resources and knowledge I can before I confront her. I want to protect the future of myself and my own family.

We are in the US if that matters.

TLDR; Mom is severely in debt and financially dependent on step-dad. Most likely divorcing soon. Need to know what resources there are to help her become financially stable before she becomes completely dependent on me.

EDIT: Wow… I am struggling to find the right words. Reading as many comments/messages as I could during breaks at work, I’ve been fighting back tears of relief all day.

I want to genuinely thank each and every one of you for taking the time to not only read this long depressing post, but offer your suggestions and support. This has been a dark cloud of anticipation over my head for quite some time (parents have been rocky for a while). I saw the future I’ve worked so hard to build for myself being slowly ripped away with every paycheck. I posted this expecting a couple responses with websites and types of financial advisors so I could do more research when I got home from work. But instead… this beauty. The idea that I would be hurting more than helping never crossed my mind, nor did the glaring fact that she doesn’t want to be helped. Why would she? She’s got the gig. But also the fact I was most blind to… that this is her problem and NOT mine.

I plan to talk to my step-dad tomorrow. I know he believes he’s helping the family rather than enabling her. I’ll give him the insight and build him up like you guys built me up, but also let him do with that what he will. Because I’ve got my own stability to worry about!!!! They’re grown!! (See guys, I’m learning!) I promise to update if anything worthy posting comes of all of this.

Just… thank you guys. You saved me from making a big mistake.

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