I'm 9 months pregnant and my husband wants us to move in with/care for his grandmother with dementia. Any advice?

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My husbands grandfather just passed away,and his grandmother has progressive dementia. She refuses to go to a nursing home,and has stated that we are the only people she would allow to stay with her. We just bought our first house,and are currently renovating it. I am also 9 months pregnant with our first child. I am very upset,but my husband doesn't understand why this living arrangement would be hard with a newborn baby. We have the resources to bring someone in to stay wit her during the day,and we can check on her at night(we live less than a mile away). I really don't feel like I'm being selfish, wanting to move into our new house with our new baby. How do I convince my husband,as well as his grandmother,that although we are more than willing to help her as much as we can,it would be a bad idea moving in to her house? Additionally,she refuses to move out if her house,even to ours.

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Have him read all of the posts on this site, that start with "I moved in with..." Everyone one of them have been disasters.

Read the ones where the young wife is working 24/7 to take care of the elderly in-law and the other relatives expect her to pay rent, for living there.

Read the ones where multiple locks have to be put on the exterior doors, because grandma likes to walk away, at night.

Read about changing grandma's Depends and trying to make her take a bath.

I am 60. My mother is 95 and is very healthy at NH. She just about wasted away at home, but now, she is healthy. You would not be doing the grandma any favors by trying to take care of her. Are either one of you CNAs, LPNs, or RNs?

No way would I take a new born, there. Grandma could burn the house down.
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No. Just no. I mean it. No. Not open to discussion. Period. End of story.

You don't have to "convince" anyone. You don't have to do it. And you shouldn't. I think it's peculiar that your husband wants to do this in the first place, frankly.
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If Grandma has the right to refuse to go to a nursing home, you certainly have the right to refuse to move into Grandma's house. In fact, since you are in your right mind and can reason this through, your decision should carry much more weight than hers. The fact that your husband would respect her wishes but needs to be "convinced" about yours is disturbing.

On the positive side, it sounds like hubby is a generous and compassionate guy. He just needs to adjust his priorities.

Grandma has dementia. If she said she wants to spend the rest of her life on a cruise ship, would he be racing around trying to make that happen? What someone wants, what is best for them, and what is practical to provide may be three entirely different things. This is a truth he will be faced with as a father. Best he start learning that right now.

No. Just no.
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By moving into grandma's home, you will be at her mercy. She Will call the shots. And she Will expect more and more from you. Not necessarily hubby - because he's a man, and her grandchild. But you will be a different story. As a woman, it's your job to take care of her, of your hubby, feed them, and jump to all her demands. It may start out as requests, but as her dementia progresses, it Will become demands. And when you fall short (which you Will), she will complain to all the relatives how you guys are freeloaders, you Tried to buy a house and that didn't work, and how you're not doing anything at all. She has to do all the work.

As for your newborn, trust me on this, the baby's cries Will Grate on her nerves...just as it did to my dad's (when my nieces would visit with their newborns). And as grandmother's disease progresses, she will NOT understand why you and hubby want some family time (you, hubby and baby) in Her house or going out (babysitter for grandmother at home). She most likely will refuse having someone come to her home so that you, hubby and baby can go out (July 4th parade, special events at the Mall, etc...) She will NOT understand that your first priority is to your infant - to toddler - to young child to elementary child, etc... In other words, it doesn't matter, as your child grows up and the years go by, that your child comes first. Nope.

When my dad got his stroke (which accelerated his senility), he understood that his bedridden wife came first - in feeding and changing pampers. But a year later, he was beginning to get irritated that I was doing mom first. We have gotten into an argument because I refused to do him first. He wanted to be first. It was getting so bad, that I was actually soooo relieved when mom passed away within that year he became self-centered. Because I didn't like where it was going. And I was already past the caregiver burnout, and was beginning to black-out, severe dizziness, etc... I was very close to killing myself from exhaustion (full time job, come home and take over the shift, changing their pampers all by my self, etc...or hospitalized (per therapist) ....or heart attack (per my physician.)

Your grandmother will not understand this - only about her wants, her needs, in her home. There Are Other Ways of helping grandmother. Moving in is not the only option.
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Everyone else has outlined the downsides of moving in with Grandma. Now I will look at what else may happen.
You are about to give birth for the first time.
Do you want your new baby to be an only child?
Can you imagine being pregnant again and trying to change grandma's Depends lifting and turning her while she is being disagreeable and generally unco-operative.
Before that your baby will be crying for food or screaming with colic while grandma needs help to the bathroom and "can't" wait. She will be very jealous of the baby.
Will you want to entertain your own friends (in grandma's house)
How about personal time in bed? How relaxed will you feel if grandma can hear everything or you need to keep one ear open for her in case she calls.
What about grandma disaproving the way you do everything.
Can you cook to grandma's satisfaction?
Are you prepared to iron grandma's clothes?
Do you have a job you wish to return to after maternity care?
How about grandma hearing the baby crying perhaps while you are taking a shower and she picks him/her up to soothe and somehow drops the baby.
There are so many negatives to this. just because grandma will only agree to you and hubby taking care of her should be a very big warning sign.
So I add my own DON'T DO IT. DON'T EVEN DO IT FOR A TRIAL PERIOD.
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Also I would NEVER ask my own children to care for me or their Dad... I know first hand what being a caregiver to a 92 year old dementia patient entails.. It's not a bed of roses!!!
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Your child must come first. You cannot possibly meet the needs of two totally dependent people when one is an elder that will be jealous of every thing you do for the baby. DO NOT GIVE IN! I see this from two sides. My mom wants me to drop everything and move the 300 miles to live with her. She did it for HER mom... but I was the child who moved in with grandma at 5. She was supposed to have only 6 months to live. Lived 13 years. I loved my grandma, but mom never had time to do mom things like come to school performances etc. Don't make your first child a second fiddle.
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Your husband might be thinking in the terms of money. Maybe he sees the chance of moving in with Grandma as a boon, since you could possibly rent the new house and have extra income, and having Granny paying utilities and such could help too. Even with the improved opportunities in today's work environment for women, most men still shoulder the bulk of financially supporting his family. Your husband could be under this stress, what with a new house and new baby, and might very well see moving in with Grandma as a way to take care of this burden for him (as well as being a hero in Grandma's eyes... Being willing to come to the rescue is a good trait in a man, but ill placed in this case).

It could also be that this Grandma was a very important part of his life and he loves her very much and cares what happens to her. I was never that close to my Grandmothers, but I can tell you right now that my granddaughter is going to be in for some sad times as I get older, as she adores me (and I her). If your grandmother was that close to your husband, he's having a very hard time seeing her in such distress.

Or it could be a combination of the two, or something else, like maybe just the sense of obligation since he's the only one she'll consider in the family to care for her.

Problem is, whatever the reason, what he's not seeing is that, by doing this, he's asking for a world of hurt! Moving in with her could very well turn his life upside down and could tear his little family apart. Because he has blinders on right now, you need to be the level headed one here.

First off, you need to do your best to be empathetic toward his plight. If you start out by being adversarial, it could simple make him stop listening to you, or make him think you just don't care about Grandma and are being selfish, which of course isn't the case. You're wisely watching out for your mental well being since you are going to soon be fully in charge and responsible for the life of another. Right now, yourself, your child and your husband need to be where your focus is and will need to be for a quite a long time to come.

You need to be proactive in this decision, but not fight with him. I'd say your first move should be to get him talking, try to figure out why he's wanting to do this so badly and then talk about those issues. If it's money issues, try to assure him that you'll do what you can to help ease those issues now (cutting back on household costs when you can, consider going back to work when the baby is 6 weeks old...whatever works for your family to help take some of the financial burden off of him. If it's his love of Grandma, assuring that you guys can still help without moving in, that you're not asking him to abandon her but that you simply do not have the energy to look after yourself, him and the baby and grandma. Let him know that, under no circumstances, will you move in with Grandma. It's not because you don't care, that you do understand where he's coming from, but because your responsibility is the same as his...to your immediate family and, with a new life to be responsible for, you won't have the time, nor the energy to deal with living with grandma.

Then stick to your decision...you owe it to yourself and your child (and it's the best thing for your husband too...he just won't see that now).

As a total last resort to save your family, if he tries to force the issue, then tell him your sorry, but you're not going. He'll just have to move in with Grandma himself, and that you, and the baby will be there at the new house if he should come to his senses. Tell him that you'll also have to hire someone to help out around the house since he won't be there to help.

Good Luck and God Bless!
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Your husband may be thinking in terms of this being short term. People can live with dementia for many years. Ask him if he is willing to devote the next 10 years to his grandmother while maintaining the home you just bought.
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I agree.. Don't do it!!!!!! You can offer to help her find/hire caregivers.. She should pay not you..

Tell your husband to read through this site.. You need to take care of yourself and your child...

Grandma has to realize that everyone ages and help is available, but not you!!!!

Please don't become me!!!

Doesn't Grandma have any children? What about your husbands Mom or Dad?
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