I want to move out of state, but my husband wants his mother to come. Now what? - AgingCare.com

I want to move out of state, but my husband wants his mother to come. Now what?

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We've been married only 3 years. We have no children, my MIL is 62 and has some minor medical issues. She's going to retire in about a month and when I ask her what her plan is, it's basically for us to find a home with an in law suit for her.


My mil is great and we have a good relationship, but I don't want to live with her. My own mother is 71 has mobility issues but won't give up her independence. I just feel it's not really fair to my own mom to take in my mil and couldn't image living with both of them. I feel terrible and selfish, but at the same time I have things I want to accomplish and places I want to travel and I think having them living with us will hinder that. I'm actually afraid to have a baby because I think it will make my mil worst about living with us. I'm I wrong to just want to have my own home with my own family? Another issue is my husband is an only child so there is no one else for his mom. I have 2 sisters, one lives out of state the other also has mobility issues so I can't really lean on her for help with my own mother. So even though I'm not an only child I am the only child who is readily available for my mom. I've been trying to talk my mom into going with my sister who lives out of state, my sister has 2 kids and a in law suite and she wants my mom to come there to help with the kids this would great, but I don't see it happening because my mom wants to stay in the state we live it and I think she would prefer living with me if she needed to live anywhere. I'm close to my mom but I also love having my own space for a mental health break. My mil has a 2 sisters when I mention maybe she get a place with one of them she makes a face. My husband is a little bit of a mamas boy and this puts me in an awkward situation as well. I know it's terrible I sometimes think about running away and just not coming home and I joke about getting my own apartment and my husband can have the house the moms and the dog....although sometimes I think I might be serious. I want to move soon but I feel like I have all these obstacles standing in my way and the only way to keep people from coming to live with us is to stay in the house we're in. Our house is small, there is no off street parking and has lots of stairs so it's not ideal for aging parents. The area is getting a little dicey here and that is why I want to move but I know if we buy a bigger home we might have permanent house guest immediately following.

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Tell your husband that he's married to you, but not to his mom. Thus, as a married man his wife's, your's, opinion on this matter should matter more than his mother's.

On the other hand, it would be a good idea for you two to see an objective third party like a pastor or a therapist and talk about these dynamics. Sounds like your husband needs to emotionally leave and cleave. Such an unhealthy attachments damages the intimacy of a marriage.
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I agree with Katie. State it as a fact. And think about finding a therapist you can discuss this with.

Your idea of running away from this marriage might or might not be a good one, but you should discuss your reasons and feelings with an objective party with training in human relations.
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62 years old is way too young to be moving in with children unless someone is seriously ill or handicapped. They could live 30-40 more years, and maybe even outlive you or your husband. I would say a big no to this whole thing. I can't even figure out why she would want to do it. I'm older than your MIL and the last thing I would want to do is move in with my kids. That shouldn't have even been put out there on the table as a consideration. Encourage her to continue working to 66 so she can get full retirement.
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Also, I would recommend reading the book, When He's Married to Mom: How to Help Mother-Enmeshed Men Open Their Hearts to True Love and Commitment, which is written for wives of mom-enmeshed men.
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I think you need to simply state as fact to your husband. "I do not wish to live with your Mom". I don't wish to live with anyone by my family. I was to have my own family and my own life. So, another arrangement will have to be made for her.

Period. State it as a fact that must he handled that way.

I am sure you have read all the posts from people who started living with in elderly parents and ended in a trap. Don't stick you head in that noose.
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Okay.

Pull yourself together. You don't say how old you and your husband are, but given that the possibility of children is still on the table I'm guessing thirties, give or take? And neither your MIL nor your mother is even close to being a frail elder, in need of formal care. Stop panicking.

Basically, you seem to me to be spending far too much effort speculating about what other people may or may not want, and not nearly enough on communicating clearly with your husband - the only other person with a meaningful vote - about what YOU want.

There is nothing wrong, for example, with not wanting to be responsible for your MIL. But there is a lot wrong with not saying so, and just letting it happen by default, and then blaming her for being clingy and him for being a Momma's boy.

What happened to his Dad, by the way? How long has MIL been on her own?
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Churchmouse hit the nail on the head with that one word - enmeshment. I don't think you are being unreasonable at all to expect to have your own life. I'm proud of you for standing up for what you want.

I actually think you both were somewhat stunted by your overbearing parents who did not allow you to have lives of your own as adults. You found someone who understood your background in your husband, and you started to grow as an individual. Your husband, on the other hand, is allowing MIL to call 100 times a day and has not put a stop to it. He's still stuck as mama's boy, and has not grown like you have. It's time for individual and couples' therapy.

It comes down to the difference between you becoming "individuated" as a 30 year old when you bought your own house and continuing to grow, and him not quite being there yet. I start pushing my kids to individuate in high school because my mother encouraged enmeshment with me, and I want my kids to be their own people at a younger age without therapy. Therapy really helped me learn what appropriate boundaries are - having my own house, answering the phone when I want to, speaking to mthr only a time or two per week, only visiting when I want to see her, etc. And therapy taught me how to set boundaries with her and other people (husband, siblings). The book my therapist had me read first was Boundaries by Townsend and Cloud - you can get this online, at Wally World, anywhere just about.

I think it comes down to, is your husband ready to be your husband? If you want to invest time, you can work together to learn boundaries with parents and each other. Or you can decide you made a mistake and go your separate ways. I believe it is easiest to work with someone else who is also learning boundaries.

I would not bring children into the picture for several years. Don't worry about the bio clock: if you two work this out, you will be uniquely prepared for children who need parents who understand boundaries and can help them with their special emotional needs. God works things together for good. I will be praying for you! I came through the fire of enmeshment and survived to tell about it.
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JMS, I am curious why does a women who is only 62 and still working feels the need to live with her grown son when she retires next month?   What is the sudden change?   How is she managing now under her own roof?

I have know my fair share of women who were in their 70's and 80's living on their own, and were employed part-time.   One company I worked for hired seniors to be front desk receptionists on a job-share.   It worked out beautify.   One lady is now pushing 90 and still coming into work.   She told me she would work for free as she loved her job, gave her a reason to wake up in the morning :)

Ok, if Mother-in-law insists on moving in, tell her she would need to hire a day caregiver to help her with chores and with her care.... since you and hubby need to continue to be employed to help pay for the mortgage on a much larger house, with higher property taxes, and higher utilities.   Unless MIL plans to help pay for the extra costs.  But that could cause a speedbump if later down the road she needs to apply for Medicaid. 

Mom would enjoy it more, if she could afford it, to move into an independent living complex where she would be around people her own age.
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Thank you everyone for your feedback. Yes, we are in our late thirties. My MIL has been on her own about 2 years. My FIL passed away but they were never married and had only recently started living together in the last several years before that my MIL still lived with her parents. When my husbands grandmother passed away that's when my FIL moved in with my MIL and my husbands grandfather. My FIL passed away then maybe a year later my husbands grandfather passed away leaving my MIL alone in her parents house.

I know it's a strange situation for someone of that age. This would be a more common situation for someone of this generation.

I would think now that my MIL has time to herself after all these years she would want to maybe travel with girlfriends or just live her own life finally but she seems happy just sitting around and calling my husband a 100 times a day.

I get it I'm sure she's lonely, but she does have a sister who lives close by who is also a widow and would probably welcome the opportunity to go do things together. Her sister has also asked her to live with her but my MIL refuses because she's waiting on us to say ok come with us.

I've told my husband how I feel about anyone coming to live with us but I almost feel like he's just like whatever we'll figure it out. Which is a little frustrating.

I will not just let the situation happens obviously, but I'm also not trying to be a b*tch about it. I guess since my MIL never left her parents home she just doesn't get it.

Part of this is also about I've only been living without my mother for about 7 years. I was in the market looking to buy a house in my mid twenties when my dad got very sick and later diagnosed with stomach cancer. I put house hunting on the back burner and stayed in my parents home to help my mom. My dad eventually passed away. About a year after my dad died I started looking for a home again and my mother became so upset that I wanted to move out that it guilted me into staying several more years till I finally couldn't take it anymore being almost 30 at the time and still living at home. I finally bought a home at 32 a short while later I met my now husband and we live in my home.

I know this may sound awful but I feel like I just got free and I'm not anywhere near ready to give up that freedom of running my own household.
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Ask your husband why he wants his mother living with you. He may be getting the FOG - fear, obligation, and guilt - from her. If that is the case, your husband is the one who needs to find a therapist. It is perfectly acceptable to say "No" to such a life-altering event as having a parent move in. Your marriage will suffer.
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