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My husband and I just got married less than a year ago. We are talking about buying our first house, starting a family, and all the exciting steps of a newly married couple. His mother is 74, divorced, and is suffering from depression and anxiety that has gotten much worse during COVID-19. She had a horrible fall last year that cause a traumatic leg injury, but thankfully she is still pretty mobile, but is starting to forget some things. He's asked that we look for homes large enough where she could have a MIL suite or her own live-in area. I'm worried our marriage will suffer if I say yes. I'm worried our marriage will suffer if I say no. Any advice???

No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, Nope, No, No, No, No, No, No, Nope, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, Nope, Nope, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, Nope, Nope, Hella No.
Helpful Answer (29)
Reply to Screennamed
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disgustedtoo Jun 28, 2020
I think you missed a few "No" entries, like maybe NO NO NO NO NONONONONONONONO NOOOOOOOO! ;-)
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Oh, hon. If you’re worrying about your marriage suffering if you say “No”... your marriage will suffer 10x more if you say yes!!

Listen to the advice here. Don’t do it!!
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Tothill Jun 25, 2020
LoopyLoo,

I think you have said it best.
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Well, let's see. My father insisted HIS mother-in-law move in with us after he & my mother bought their first house back in 1956. Grandma was young; in her late 50's probably, a widow, and an old Italian who believed it was customary for the parents to live with the children, which is what my old Italian father believed as well. My mother was against it, but since it was a 3 bedroom home, she agreed, albeit reluctantly.

My mother & her mother spent the next 25 years fighting like cats & dogs. I was adopted into the crazy house in 1957 and spent my childhood with a bad stomach ache thanks to all the histrionics going on in the house. Dad worked late hours at the deli, probably to get away from all the insanity.

Nobody prospered from MIL living in our house. The marriage suffered, my childhood was ruined, my mother was anxiety ridden to the point she needed to be in a psychiatric hospital, honestly. I kept a journal of her insane antics so when the men in the white coats came to take her away, they'd know what she'd been up to.

Will your marriage suffer if you say yes? More than likely. You will give up your privacy to have a relatively young, anxiety ridden and dependent woman move in on you. She can live to be in her late 90s, don't think otherwise. My grandmother lived to 91. My mother is still alive at 93-1/2 in spite of having 10 different health issues, moderate dementia and being wheelchair bound. She lives in Memory Care b/c there ain't NO WAY I'm repeating history by having her live with me and my husband. It's bad enough she wreaked havoc on our new marriage since she moved here in 2011. As an only child, I am obligated to do EVERYTHING for her including finances, purchases, arranging doctor visits, dentists, and on and on and ON. Hospitals, rehabs, neurologists, physical therapists......the list is endless. The only thing that saves my sanity is that she's not physically located inside our home. That would be the final straw and I'd have to shoot myself.

Will your marriage suffer if you say no? Maybe. But it will likely suffer a whole lot LESS if you put your foot down NOW than it will if you don't, and if you have to live with the consequences of taking in a 74 year old dependent at the start of your new life. There are tons of other alternatives for the woman; look around at independent living apartments for her and offer to do everything humanly possible to get her set up in one and on her own two feet.

THAT is the biggest favor you can do for her. Give a man a fish and feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and feed him for life. Your MIL has plenty of life left in her. She does not need to be dependent upon ANYONE but herself. Allow her to be.

Good luck!
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againx100 Jun 26, 2020
Great response but I have a question.

Why are you obligated to do everything you listed for your mother in memory care? Don't they handle some of this kind of stuff? Or am I just ignorant, which is entirely possible since I don't have anyone in memory care. Is there any way you can offload some of these responsibilities?
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Pros: none
Cons: everything

Beware of Mommy's Boys. There a reason Norman Bates was single.
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katskorner Jun 29, 2020
This just cracked me up!
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Please don’t do it. My parent moved in with us. There are no other options due to their finances/ don’t medically qualify for nursing home- but a handful and can’t live alone. If there was any way to get out of this, I would. Parent has sucked the life out of me mentally and physically. I feel like MY life is over because as far as enjoying my kids, my home, my spouse, etc it is. - no privacy! Their own suite does not help!!!!! And that isn’t enough- they want to be the center of attention- and just wait until they do get sick! It is hell. At 50 years old I know there will never be another vacation for me, another dinner with just my spouse and kids. Kids hate it, spouse hates it, I hate it, and parent hates it too, but is unable to make good decisions to sustain life- won’t eat properly, stay hydrated, or follow simple instructions without being directed like a 2 year old- plus old people flat out get selfish. My parent is jealous of any attention my kids get!! Ridiculous!!!!! And this is MY parent. You are talking about an in-law! Do you want her there when you bring a baby home? Sticking her nose in your parenting? If you married a mama’s boy, I am sorry. I sure hope he discussed this with you before marriage! If he did, you should have said no or not married him. If he didn’t, tell him you did not marry her! He needs to grow a pair and put his wife first. Make your plans for if your hubby chooses mom over you. Brace yourself for the worst. You do not want to have children with him until you settle this. I can’t even describe the entrapment you could feel. Don’t put it off on a sibling! Help her find options for in home help or get her to assisted living. He should get a handle on her finances too. My parent blew through all their money before we figured it out now there is nothing to pay for care outside ss. She is draining us financially in smaller bites with incidentals.
Even if he has cared for her 7 days a week for months on end, he should not expect his bride to do so even if there were no kids! Nor should expect you to live with her if she was perfectly healthy or any of the hundred degrees in between.!!!!
It sounds selfish, but I guarantee you do NOT want to do this. Imagine right at this moment she is sitting with you NOW right there. Ok, good. Now imagine it is forever- or at least until every minute of your prime young healthy life is GONE- middle age and early retirement too. Good bye life!!!!! By the time you get your house back you will have missed your children’s lives and a lot of your own. You will be old, bitter, and very very tired.
Take a bigger step- vow to never do
this to YOUR children- buy long term
care Insurance!!!!!
I pray she has some money, long term
care Insurance and some options. If she is going to be out in the street then you probably have to do it like I have, but make hubby do 100% of care taking, management, doctor visits, etc, Do everything you can to not Let her suck the life out of you. I feel so sorry for you. At least my children were a lot older before this happened to me- almost out of school, but that precious time with my kids is gone!!! Another thing- she does NOT move in unless you control her finances and she pays her fair share! No keeping a house she refuses to sell for sentimental reasons so it can rot tomthe ground or paying to store her crap! - don’t let her spend HER money like that then you give up your home! No way!!!! She pays for her own
way and do not buy a house with her!!! Do not mix her finances with yours! And she gets a will and DPOA and POA, etc etc with your hubby in charge!
God help you if you have to do this.
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Nncbb57 Jun 28, 2020
This is such a great response. I think it covers everything.
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No,  He needs to understand her financing and look for senior housing or whatever is appropriate.  She needs a place where she can meet people her own age and get assistance as needed.  Explain to hubby that in the long run EVERYONE  will be happier with this.
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He married you, not his mother. Your home can have only one queen. If he insists, I suggest you really give some thought to the state of your marriage, before you consider having any children with him.
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I live by the “5 Second Rule.” When I know that my answer to anything disagreeable to me is going to be “No,” in the past I would agonize over it and try to find ways to delay saying it in order that other people wouldn’t be “mad” and “disappointed” with me. I’m 60 now and have learned the hard way that in the end....I will eventually say “NO.” So, why agonize for 5 minutes, 5 days, 5 months, 5 years, etc if my answer is STILL going to be “No” and saying it is STILL going to be very uncomfortable?
5 Second Rule: Say it in the beginning, quickly. Save yourself hang wringing angst and emotional distraught, worry and future resentment. People will always expect us to do what they want us to do, even if it’s subconsciously.
“NO honey, I don’t want to care your mother in our home. I’m not going to start our new marriage/ life with me as her caregiver.”

Hope this helps someone.
Hope this is an encouragement.
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RedVanAnnie Jun 28, 2020
I like your idea of saying, "No" right away if you going to come to a "No" anyway after a lot of stalling.
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My husband and my mother decided to move her in with us. She had a 1 bedroom apartment downstairs. No inside stairs, outside only. I was not the person I am today, I would have said no. As soon as the kids were grown, I ran away from home. Mom still downstairs, Ex upstairs. I never looked back. As clear as day, I remember the first morning I woke up in my apartment, sleeping on the floor. I looked out the window and felt like someone had let me out of jail. She had no boundaries and I wasn't able to establish any. It took 6 years of therapy for me to get rid of most of my childhood problems.
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blueday5042 Jun 30, 2020
Thank you for taking the time to answer. Hugs to you...wish you blessings.
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Don’t do it. It will suck all the joy out of your marriage. He doesn’t realize what he is asking for.
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