Freedom - 9:26 pm on Sep 14, 2011 (gmt 0)
I've had family members come to me as well, but they didn't have the self discipline or creative energy to keep up with it.
Two members I did help. I gave them the ideas, did the design, built the templates, bought the domains, gave them free hosting, and told them how to get content on it. They worked on it for 3 months, writing and putting content together after I showed them how and the site was off and running.
For the next 5 years I kept it updated every week and my wife built links for them. They did nothing after the first 3 months of work except cash the checks and spend the money. They were thankful to us, but only at first and then it all went down hill.
Well, they were making money and starting getting the big head and bragging to all of their friends back in their home country about what a big shot webmaster they were, even tho they hadn't touched the website in 5 years. Their home income increased by a factor 1,000 percent and it all went to their head. They became real snobby to us and insulting to my wife and I when it came to "their" websites and "their" money.
I saw what was happening and decided I was tired of putting in work a few hours every week on a site that did nothing for me and asked them to take over the duties of keeping it fresh. So I said, okay, you take over the weekly work I've been giving you for free for the last 5 years. They were deeply insulted, didn't think the weekly work was necessary and made up a bunch of outrageous lies and crazy scenarios about my wife and I relating to "their" websites.
After all the ideas we gave them for free, the start up, and work for 5 years, they just wanted the money and freedom and ego boost it gave them, without the hard work. And, they wanted to complain about us for various reasons, all of it lies that were really hurtful in light of all that we had done for them.
A few months of their BS goes by and I said enough is enough and gave them 30 days to move their websites to another host and to take over responsibilities. They eventually did it because I stopped hosting it and didn't renew the domain names. They had never renewed a domain or set up hosting, or moved a site, so it was a new and scary experience for them, but they had to learn. It didn't go well at first from what I hear.
Then Panda hit them.
Now, they can't come to me for help because they know they burned their bridges. They can't save their websites because they didn't bother to learn anything or keep up with the times, and they can't generate new ideas. Bottom line, their income is about 40 percent of what it once was and they are back to working manual labor jobs and earning less $ from the website to make ends meet.
And, of course, all this is my fault. They won't take personal responsibility for what happened, and what they didn't do, and in the end, my wife and I were the "bad guys."
Other family members who asked for help weren't serious about putting in the work and expected me to basically do everything like I did for the others. I left it to them and they never followed through or came back for help.
The moral of my story is that "helping" family members doesn't usually work out with the good intentions that we invested in it.