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My husband and I are moving into my in-law's home with them. Has anyone else out there done this and if so, what should I be looking forward to??

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I would really think it through, I did this just over 1 year ago. It's not easy, especially if there is siblings that don't realize what it's like.
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Everything said before is absolutely true!!!! At my strong encouragement, we sold our house and moved 2 miles down the road to care for my father-in-law. He was a saint and a true Christian that I had known my entire life. When "his" mother-in-law passed away, he took in a 2 yr old boy, 17 yr old boy and father-in-law in the late 1940s. He had the father-in-law for 15 years of his early married life and raised the 2 yr old as his son. All that said, I felt like he deserved the same help. Knowing him and loving him has helped but it has not been easy at all.

He is at the stage of Alzheimer's that he doesn't understand directions or communication from more than 1 person at a time. His son has always been the one he trusts, eventhough he has an adopted and another blood son. So now, I'm the bad guy. He only wants the son around.

You just have to understand and take everything in stride. If you can not let words roll off, you do not need to move in. If you are emotional, do not take this own.

We have been married 40 years and I considered us a very strong couple. But this has tested us in ways never considered.
Nothing will stay the same. Over time they will get worst and require more and more from you.

With everything that has been said, I would do it again. I still believe it was and is the right thing to do. There will come a day that we can't handle the situation and have to find a home but until then we have added several more quality years to his life that he has enjoyed. That is the reward that we needed.

In years to come to be able to look back and know that you did not abandon and look away when you were needed, will give you peace. Good luck!
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We are moving in with them because they need our help and refuse to move anywhere. We realize that tihis will not be a permanent solution, but at this time we feel it is the right thing to do. Our son and his family of 5 are moving o=into our large home and maybe someday they may even decide to stay there.
Fiancially we will be able to share the folk's expenses thereby making it less stessful for them.
This is an agreement between my familly that we will give it a try and see if this solution helps them for NOW. How long NOW will be, only God knows that.
We will need lots of support and hopefully we will continue to get it from his siblings and by kids.
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You should expect no help from siblings. If u get some that would be a plus, expect very little privacy, you should volunteer to pick up some of the expenses, you should help cook meals, clean up, cut grass, do repairs on the house, go on Dr's visits.
Are the in laws disabled to the point of having to be fed; if so you are expected to do it. Any thing that has to be done you r expected to do it.
Before things get to this point it would be good to discuss anything u have on your mind with whomever it concerns. (inlaws, siblings, etc.) It is always better to discuss things before and know what is expected than to find out afterward.
Things work out better when they can be discussed politely and caringly. It takes a lot of love and compassion do get thru these times but they can work. As long as things are discussed with love and in the open I think they can be handled.
If u walk in on a discussion being discussed in a whisper ask what they r talking about and not assume it is about u.
There r also social services that can help with things. Good Luck! Dane
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sorry, i missed who the comment was to. Oh well
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We moved in to help because my dad asked us to. Financially it is no problem for either one of us so that makes some things easier, thank goodness.
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Teristeve. You didn't state if u were moving in to help them or if u were moving in because of maybe financial difficulties on your part. The reason u r moving in with them would make a lot of difference in my answer to you. Dane
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crowemagnum, my husband was up to moving in and helping out. We were here for about 1 1/2 years before he started working out of town. He is in construction and is only 2 years away from retirement. So since there is no work here he almost didnt have a choice. It really has been working out. Our house is only one mile away and we have great neighbors over their looking out for the house. They tell me all the time that they miss us but understand that we will be back some day. So far the worst part was the day it snowed SEVERAL inches and I had to physically shovel the drive and the walks because the I couldnt figure out how to get the snowblower to work. Oh Well, I always try to make sure our house looked lived in.
I work full time with special need students who need me just as much as my dad does but I use my full time job as a chance to get away. At least I dont have to take their problems home with me since they are a lot bigger than what I have at home.
The latest news is that hubby will be home in a few weeks and he has a lot of work to catch up on! Ha! Its his turn :)
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Yes, doing what you know is right is worthwhile, but not always easy. My husband was very sick the other day and I could not take him to the DR. Thanks goodness his sister was available and took him. I could not leave mom alone for 4 hours that it would have taken to drive to his DR. Once, he had to go to the emergency room in the middle of the night. I had to come home, checkj oin mom and go back because my brother would not come and stay with mom. When he was admitted to a hospital 35 minutes away, again dear brother would not even come and stay with his mom on a Saturday night. Too dangerous- too many dear. What a jerk. So, it isn't always fair. Don't expect everyone in the family to feel as you do. You will lucky if they help at all! My husband has been so understanding, but her own son is a jerk.
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Sounds like you have your hands full with both houses. Are they very far apart. I noticed that you didn't say anything about how your husband felt about all of this before taking the out of state job for a little while?
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My husband and I moved in with my dad. Our house is empty right now waiting for the day when we will return to it. That is when dad is no longer here and hoping it stays empty for a long time. We thought that this would be the perfect time to remodel over there while we are here but that hasnt even started yet. Probably wont ever. HA! We were here for 6 months and then my hubby took a job out of state for a little while. So I get IT ALL. Maintaining both houses, taking care of dad, etc. I am at the point I just want to go to MY home, but I know it is not possible. So here I sit. Would I do it again??? Yep!! Would I really like to be home??? Yep!! But in right now I am here.
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Thank you for your comments. I am sorry that you had a difficult time and that things did not go well with your marriage. I hope we will be able to recognize the signs that we have to stop caregiving when that time comes, as I am sure it will. For now, all we can do is to try it and to do our very best wearing lots of different hats. We had a trying time in the past 2 days preparing and taking Gramps to have a colonoscopy. He went through the whole prep scenario, was up all night emptying. Then he woke up before anyone else and snuck a cookie and half a banana! I thought I would scream, but it never came out. Just a nice understanding voice that remained calm. I don't really recognize that voice at times and then I realize that it is the caregiver's voice that God has lent to me until I don't need it any more. When that voice begins to leave me then I hope I will know that I have to stop and allow a professional to take over.
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Oh man. My husband, son and I moved into my mother's home. My brother still lives here.

If your marriage is strained in anyway, this could end it. Not to be negative, but as other have said, you'll have no privacy. You can't have any relations without feeling like a dirty teenager and you can't have an argument (relating to the extra strain) without everyone knowing about it.

My husband and I had a horrible marriage to begin with, so we ended up splitting a for a few months. The biggest reason I took him back, was from fear of dying alone, after my mother is gone. That is one of the hugest fears a caregiver can face.


If nothing else, realize that your spouse is going to be in turmoil. They are going to be broke between "honor thy father and mother" to "honor thy husband/spouse". How confusing is that?


The inlaw/parent will still try to play that parental role, while your spouse will be the one that's truely parenting.

After years and years of it, the caregiver becomes a shell of a person. After dedicating your life to someone for so long, you don't know where to pick up the pieces after the role is finally over. a lot of time caregivers die not long after. Very rewarding.

Loving daughter hit it on the head.
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I thank all of you for your wonderful suggestions and comments. I think I know how difficult this is going to be. We have been remodeling the loser level into an apt for us to live for the past 2 months. It is almost completed -maybe 1 more week. My son and his family are going to be renting our house for awhile so we don;t have to rent our home to strangers. What a relief that is! We (7 of us and 3 dogs and 1 cat) have been living together in our house for the past 2 months.
It really has gone pretty well and we are still a tight loving family! The big move in a week will be difficult and I know we will all have adjustments to make, including my m-i-l. she does not have a memory per say and sometimes does nit know who we are. My father in law has a better handle on things as far as his mind goes, but his physical health is failing.
We will need to pay this day by day with the good Lord's help. We have been married for 42 years and are best friends. We work together in the same hospital and I just went part time so I could help with the folks more.
We have committed support members with specific routines and schedules laid out. I think that will help us. One weekend a month we are taking off on our own to do whatever!! The siblings have agreed to that. So I hope this will help us!
We will soon find out!
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I don't know how old you two are or how active a social life you are use to having along with do you have children of your own who will want to visit at various times of the year? I think these things need to be taken into consideration also.

Just marrying into someone's family is one thing, but going to live with them can push the envelope from a healthy closeness to conflict over boundaries and how use each is to living the way they have been living for years or a false peace where people become codependent, enmeshed and walk on eggshells until someone has just had enough and exploads one day.

I have seen young couples try this after their wedding or try living right next to their parents in a complex or house, but most of them got divorced. I think elderly adult parents need if possible their own space like we adult children have our own space. Your husband has already left home once. It's going to be very easy for your MIL to start treating him like a her little boy once again which will create conflict between him, his mom and you because of the potential tension for which woman is going to be number one in his life, you or his mom? I don't know you and your situation or your inlaws, but I just raise these as possible issues to think about as I reflect on the family dynamics that I observed up close as a pastor for 20 years.
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p.s. you can expect what Nance says!
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I don't live with my mother but when I'm there she has the radio on and the T.V. Both blasting.
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I just bought TV Ears for my mom. They are great!!!!! She wears the headset that takes 30 minutes to recharge. The unit plugs into the wall and acts as a cradle when they are not in use. You can turn the volume down to the lowest and she can hear it at her level, but you can't hear anything! It is great when you want to watch it too since you can put the TV at your level. I bought them on the internet for about 69.00. I went to various sites and the prices varied, some at 100.00. Buy.com gives you a range of retailer and prices, and you pick the one you want. Good luck.
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mariannette, I only wish we could get into the volume settings...can't do it on our TV, though...so I end up wearing a pair of industrial headphones...the kind the guys who run the jackhammers wear! And, while taking care of inlaws is something one should do when at all possible (and sometimes there is no other choice), it certainly does have its frustrating moments!

Thanks for sharing that suggestion - for many, it will be very helpful!
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Like 'ndolan', my father-in-law is deaf, for all intents & purposes, and puts the tv volume up loud. I like Andy, Opie, & Barney as much as the next fellow, but I am of a quiet nature--tv more often than not makes me nervous/tense: not just loud volume but also the nature of the programming. My blood pressure pills quit working. It was at that point I got into the "Settings" and blocked the level of the volume. My f-i-l never noticed the reduced volume. I hope I have not condemned myself to you-know-where.
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My mom came to live with us 4 years ago, and it is the hardest thing I have ever done. My husband has been a saint, but it is wearing thin on him now. What ever you expect, triple it and then maybe it might be just close to what it will be like. It is not an issue of love. It is an issue of freedom, no privacy, and lack of help from the rest of the family. Believe me when I tell you, those from whom you would least expect bad behavior, will be the ones who run like rats off a sinking ship!!! My brother lives 37 miles away and won't come see her unless he is invited and gets a free meal. In 5 months, he has seen her twice. Both these times have been special occasions.

If you can place them somewhere else where they have help, independence and dignity, do it!!!!!!!!

I wish I had done it. I love my mom, but I can't even get her out of her chair since she is so disabled. She just doesn't understand that it is hard on me and that I am not getting any younger!! Good luck.
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My husband and I moved from the East coast to the West coast to move in with and take care of my in-laws. It has been an adjustment. Neither could take care of themselves or be left alone for any length of time. They are in a two-bedroom condo with not a lot of space for privacy - and we need to leave our bedroom door open a crack to keep an ear open should anything happen during the night...which put a strain on our marriage. Basically, this was my first exposure to my inlaws, and for them to me...so my mother-in-law hovered a lot - especially when I was cooking meals. She was used to one way of doing things for the twenty some-odd years they had lived on the west coast away from family.

Last year my mother-in-law passed away, so it is now just my father-in-law...who is mostly deaf, can no longer walk even a foot without a walker. It is more stressful as he turns the TV up to 20 to listen - and refuses to get hearing aids...says he has no hearing problem...we listen to the TV usually at 9, so now my husband is a candidate for hearing aids! His hearing was terrific before we moved here!

These are a few of the things we've run into. It has not been easy, but my inlaws deserve to live out the rest of their lives in dignity in their own home.

My best suggestion is to visit, scope out the situation first, then determine what ground rules you are able to set...and whether you can cope with the rest...before you make the move. This is a major move under the best of circumstances, so it is wise to be prepared.
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-How big is the house -- will there be a place you can go for peace and solitude?
-Will your comings & goings disturb the older folks?
-What financial contributions and time commitments are you two expecting to --or being expected to -- make to care for the senors?
-Are there siblings; are they ok with the decision to have you two live in what will eventually be part of their inheritance?

The outcome of your decision depends on your in-laws' states of mental health and physical dependency and the square footage of the house!
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It depends on your in-laws and your relationship with them. My sister in law and brother in law has tried this and it was hell.
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Are you new on here?
You can look forward to being a caregiver for your in-laws !
Good luck to you.
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