My husband and I agreed to rent a home with my MIL, who has alzheimer's. Her previous living situation living with her retired sister didn't work out, partly because my MIL called daily to "come home" (house sold though) and maybe also because her sister and husband realized it was too much (I'm short on details there).
Anyway, its been a few months and I've rather quickly become depressed and resentful, realizing what this life change has meant. My husband works 7 days a week, so my weekends are spent with mom. I work from home several days a week and, again, its with her. Managing the house comes with all sorts of extra work because she has compulsions that lead her to do things like put a load of dirty dishes in the cupboards, or empty garbage into the compost bin, etc. In the evening when my husband is still working, she calls him incessantly or asks me where he is over and over. She is mean to her grandchildren (the disease, not her). She refuses to eat certain things for dinner so my husband whips out the pots and pans when he is totally tired. In my ignorance of her disease I have tried to work with my husband to contain these things so that our daily choices don't pander to only her disease, but its simply unreasonable given that she can't control herself or her mind. My personal boundaries have therefore slipped away, and home feels like a prison. When I visit the office, I now stay as late as possible because I enjoy the perception of freedom.
All of this has been discussed with my husband, and he, eventually, after many fights, suggested we leave when the year is over, but not without a lot of duress on his part. The main kicker: we have a baby coming. I put it all together and thought: I am definitly not mortgaging the first 10 or 15 years of our child's life for the last years of my MIL's. I imagine all our decisions revolving around the dementia of my MIL since we can always tell a kid "no, we need to go home to grandma" and we can't say no to a vulnerable woman who absolutely needs the care of others. I am also sad that my maternity leave will be spent with her at home needing care as well. I wish it had been different.
But this has brought up a lot of moral questions for me, and questions of duty, and I don't know what is right. I feel a certain liberty as a non-relative to say that I tried, but now that I see what this catering requires, I will not give up my (and my child's) next decade for her. But I am married to her son, and therein lies the rub. I fear the impending discussions with the rest of the family about our (my) unwillingness to care for her. Her alzheimer's could certainly be worse, and I can say that her care is nowhere near as burdensome as a lot of other peoples' stories here, so I am indeed throwing in the towel early compared to those stronger and more willing than I. It almost feels like a crossroads where I need to decide _now_ how the next 10 or 15 years look for my growing family, like a canary in the cave for our well-being. My husband is heart broken over his mother's condition, and he would not take this path without my push.
So is this ok to do? I would like to hear honest opinions, partly because I need to prepared for the rest of the family and understand how others' feel. I know what those who don't care for elders think ("oh yeah get out") but what is our/my responsibility to my MIL? How much is reasonable to contract my willingness to care for her, and during early motherhood?