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My family is considering moving to Hawaii where my husband was born and raised. He is older, in terrible health, and misses his life and family there. My children and I suffer from a very rare genetic disease ourselves so the future is unknown for our own health. We all love it there and dream of being there where we feel is our home. My mom is independent and in good health, and loves the town she lives in in the very cold northeast. She doesn't leave her house much and is very busy with her own activities in her home. We have asked her to come with us or split time and have offered to spend three months here in the summertime, but she freaks out every time anyone so much as mentions Hawaii, sunshine, palm trees, swimming.... She says we are killing her to even talk about moving. I am at a loss about what to do. The guilt is killing me... On one hand I can't imagine leaving my mom due to how much she is upset by this potential move, but on the other hand I know that my kids, husband and I only have one life as well and this is an opportunity to follow our dreams. Any advice would be very much appreciated.

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I "retired" at 72 and moved out to Front Royal. in the foothills of Virginia where my children and grandchildren (36 of them) live. I was apprehensive at first, but now having everyone near, I feel safe and my soul is at rest. She will come around. She needs to move where you are.
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As others have said I would make the move and stop asking mom to move. She is, of course, more than welcome to visit (if she does during the winter for a little while, she may learn to appreciate the weather, especially as she gets older!) Of course you can visit her here during the nicer weather in NE as well.

I live in the NE as well, my preference and my kids live within driving distance.) My neighbor is close to 70, and has been going for a few months these last few winters to stay with her two of her kids and their families in qatar, but decided she's had enough of that! Her plan this year is to maybe go late winter to visit for a few weeks at most. She missed NE and despite raving to me about all the wonderful things there, this year she mentioned all the things she dislikes about it!

At 70, active with friends and activities, she will be fine. It is your life (and your family) so it is not her decision to make for you. Complain all she wants, but YOU accept no guilt! Certainly there should be plans for the future in place (will, POAs, perhaps IL or AL) but that is something she will have to decide on and agree to.) Hopefully there are enough good friends and/or other family nearby who can at the least keep tabs on things.

Go but don't buy any of those places near that volcano!!! ;-)
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Sounds like your mother is a travel agent for guilt trips. Why should you feel guilty? Children leave home, that is the way of things. Your kids will leave you some day too. You are "killing her"? What a drama queen. I live in So. Calif. my oldest daughter moved to northern Washington State, her oldest daughter moved to eastern Colorado this last summer. That is life.

She is healthy, she should be living her own life.

I am 84, I remarried at 65, we had 17 years of wonderful travels and fun. Now my hubby has alzheimer's so a lot of that is out the window. I worked part time until I was 83. I volunteer with the Sheriff's dept. I have for 5 years now.

On another subject:
I want to take a minute to thank everyone who posts on this great site. I don't know what I would have done or would do in the future without you. I say this because today I realized that my husband is going to start needing help with his meds. Not taking them YET, but ordering them and being sure he has enough. I think I handled it well and that is due to advice I have seen here in the past. Thank all of you..
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Take me instead if she don’t want to go. I will go without a fight.🤗
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I agree with the others who say you should drop the guilt and go. Sounds like mom is afraid to lose you to distance, she loves you and wants you near by and we all hate to see our loved ones move farther away. However, she is being incredibly selfish to ask you to give up your life just to be there for her when she feels like having your company and that is not a loving thing to do. It would be usual for you to be a kinda sad about moving away from a mother you love and to be worried for her etc. The fact that you feel guilty about it, even though you clearly know this is what is best for your family, indicates that maybe mom was always the selfish type? I would love to have all my children living at home with me forever in one great big happy family, but I don't really want that because it's not what's going to give my adult kids the life they will love to live. So, love your mother and live your life. You can do both. If she tries to guilt you about it she is in the wrong. It would be fine to tell her that the loving thing for parents to do is to help their kids follow their dreams.
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70 is NOT old. I am 67 and 70 is too young to be worried about you moving away.

Don't accept her guilt. You have made extremely generous offers to take her with you and/or to visit with her in the summer months.

You're killing her? She'll probably outlive you.
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FOR GOD SAKE WOMAN! DO WHAT YOU WANT. Not what your husband, children, mother, want.
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My experience
---- years ago my grandmother lived with her son (my uncle). He wanted to take his children out for a night on the town however my grandmother did not want to go... he didn't want to leave her alone so he decided not to take his family out. As the evening went on my grandmother decided she wanted to visit her friend down the street so she hopped in her car and gone. My uncle was shocked... he gathered his three kids and wife and they went out and had a blast... needless to say when he wanted to do that again he did it whether his mom wanted to go or not. Your mom is healthy enough to be left and you can visit her, she can visit you. ALOHA!!!
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Your mother has had the benefit of you & your family living close by probably all your life. Of course, she hates the thought of you moving to Hawaii & of course, she is going to voice her opinion about it. If she thinks she can use guilt to change your mind, she will probably throw that in as well. Your mother loves you and her grandchildren & would always prefer to have you nearby, but things change. Your mom doesn't get to decide her life and yours. If moving to Hawaii is what is best for your family, then that is what you need to do.

At 70 your mother is not old. Apparently she is in pretty good health, is independent and living the life she wants to live ... here, on the mainland. You & your family want to move to Hawaii and that is what you should do. There is nothing to feel guilty about.

Once you get settled, invite your mother to visit. She may decide Hawaii is exactly where she wants to come visit year after year especially in the winter! But whether she does or she doesn't, she will get used to it & at some point you will come to understand you cannot please all the people all the time, but you do need to please yourself.
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MOVE!!!!
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cazpot1 Jan 2019
lol sorry had to be amused by this post. I like it in a rebellious way ( victim of a guilt tripping mother who has episodes recently of not even letting me out of the house - sure thats a criminal offence ! ) I often have 2 voices in the head. I wish the MOVE one would win but i feel guilt like alot of people. BUT beleive me its waring thin . But your right in a straight forward without all the detail kind of way lol
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I wouldn't want to live in Hawaii either, but it is a great place to visit. I prefer a change of seasons--fall is my favorite. In another ten years, your mother may decide she needs help and wants to move to your home state. You never know what the future has in store.
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I am not quite 70...I am active...I love my volunteer work. When my Husband and I moved into the house I am in now I said the only way I would move again is when someone puts a tag on my toe and hauls me out feet first!
Moving is stressful. The thought of packing up a lifetime of stuff is daunting. The thought of learning a new area is stressful and frightening. The thought of leaving longtime friends is heartbreaking. The thought of trying to make new friends is scary.
I can see where your Mom would not want to leave.
The "job" of any parent is to raise their child to become a strong independent person that can lead a fulfilling life of their own and hopefully to marry and have children of their own. Your Mom did her "job" and you are doing what you should do. You leave your parents to be with your spouse, this is as it should be.
I can tell you right now if my daughter had a job opportunity or was caring for her husband the way you are caring for your husband, your family and that care or job required a move like that there is no way I would hold them back. My only request is that they found a place with a guest room or an in-law arrangement so I could visit.
Tell your Mom you are going, you love her, that there will always be a room for her so if and when she visits she will be welcome. Tell her that you will visit her as often as you can. I know the trip is not an easy one given the distance and it is an expensive one as well. (And Hawaii is not an inexpensive place to live either!)
Pack your bags...GO!!!!
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Goodness me take me instead for 3 months to hawaii . Im sorry your mum doesnt know how lucky she is. Shes independent like you said , she can visit . Its the change that freaks them out i find. Dont feel guilty one bit . She might not even appreciate it that you stayed anyway if you did? What a dreadful day that would be to have made all that sacrifice for nothing and no appreciation at all? There is always that possibillity . Ive come to realise how hard it is to keep elders on an even keel even the smallest thing not going their way or in their plan ( which can change daily ) sends them spiralling. Alot of trying to get to the bottom of this with her if you can then eventually make the decision. Maybe a rider you will come back under certain circumstances serious ill health or immobillity etc or vice versa come to you in such situations. Be strong you deserve it. At least you can be satisfied you tried to get to the root of the reasons and the lack of compromise. Is it loneliness ( she can visit you ) !!! or vice versa im not sure which way round you meant that arrangement. Id view my comment a bit from the side that im really fed up today with mine already and only been living here 2 weeks . I cant do anything right , i have my own health issues, i get psychological abuse or put downs that are like needles in my heart daily. I was told she preferred it when we emailed and not talked. She clearly cant be bothered to talk. Im either too loud or she cant hear me - anything to avoid interaction, looks away etc says im interrupting her tv , she reads at meal times when im sat there. That one at least im hardened to but it feels all wrong doesnt it when our own hearts are screaming this is so inconsiderate in view of what i give up for you or how i put you first or think about the effect of my actions on you!!! Things like i cant read it, i havnt my glasses on. Well put them on then. The main issue is she doesnt want the effort nor interested unless it interests her. I dont dump encyclopedias on her lap, hardly the odd sentence. Same with the hearing aid. Im thinking of cutting and running when i can. I lost my job due to health ( again i get blamed ridiculously now and then for this ). So view my comments with caution im just a bit blown in holes right now and in a bad mood. But if i was you discuss it to death with her even if you have to make her sit down and do it! to get a reason or list of reasons solid ones write them down so she cant deny them, if you can. Then decide. It would be different if she was not independant. How many of us young singletons are lonely and with health issues we dont paddy for someone to stay. Try get to the bottom of it if you can ? All the best and hugs xxxx It may be just she doesnt want to wear a bathing suit !!! Ive known worse .
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You should follow your moms lead and get out of Dodge. She obviously has no regard for you and the care you give, so go live your life and send birthday emails.
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GO.
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In this day and age children often do not live in the same state as their parents. Granted Hawaii is a long ways away. Rare genetic disease you say? Go! Your mom is still young at 70 and yes she will miss you but she will get over it. Keep in touch with Skype or FaceTime. Why do you feel guilty...you’re not doing anything wrong. Sounds as though your mom thinks more about her happiness than your's. She’s the one who should feel bad about using manipulation.
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I had to smile about this, as DH and I (at the same age as your mother) have just upset the daughters by moving 1800 kms ourselves. It made sense for us for a slab of reasons, but they clearly felt that we should stay more accessible to them!

I wonder if your mother is thinking about the future, rather than how lonely she will be right now when she has many familiar activities. Perhaps you could ask her. If she is worried about how she will cope with you so far away, perhaps you could talk to her now about options that will give her more company. Independent Living in her own town could perhaps be a good idea, and you might be able to spare time to take her on some inspections. Most people think that moving sooner rather than later has real advantages in allowing new people and places to be ‘learned’ while you are still very capable of adjusting. She can take all her activities with her to IL. But ‘you are killing me even talking about it’ is crazy stuff, not worthy of respect.

CWillie is right, the chances are that she will have 10 years of active life in which to think again about her even longer term preferences. You will probably plan to visit every couple of years, with lots of chances to find out how things go at both ends. Your mother may be happier to think about a holiday with you in Hawaii rather than a firm decision to move. You aren't moving to Mars!
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Stop feeling guilty! You have made offers of reasonable provisions for her. Let her know that she is always welcome, should circumstances change and she changes her mind.
Do your best to be sure you can keep that offer open. There are phones now with OnStar service button. One button call to 911, most towns you register her home address with the city 911 system.

I have system with fall detection pendent I wear under my shirt, and unit that goes on belt clip or in my pocket with GPS locator if I fall or push help button when away from home. Pendant has 300 foot range from the base, so she doesn't need GPS system to garden, just to go to store or play bridge. Very discreet!

These are options for now or in the future for peace of mind. Many people will live longer happier lives if they can stay in their own home, and die peacefully in their sleep.

Make a habit to call her daily to catch up. Tell her how all of you are doing with the move. Her side of the conversation will give you a good feeling for any changes in her health.

You might push for some kind of system to monitor for a sudden event. A fall down basement stairs, etc.

Don't hesitate to call local police for a wellness check. In fact you can buy a lock box for an emergency access key and give emergency personnel the code if she doesn't answer. That I would insist on! The unexpected can happen to us all. Having a contingency plan can save her life and allow her to maintain her freedom and lifestyle!
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My question is "is she freaking out because you're moving or because you're pressuring her to move?"

I definitely feel you have to do what is best for yourself, your husband, and kids.

That being said, please respect you Mom's desire to stay in her home and community. If she has said she doesn't want to move, please drop the subject. I'm 70 and in good health. I love my home, friends, and community. I would probably move to be close to family, but I don't want anyone demanding that I do. I am still in charge of my life (with God's help, of course) and don't want anyone telling me what to do. She may be upset because she feels you're putting pressure on her to move and her defense is to ask you not to go.

Also, I often need time to adjust to an idea. If you go to Hawaii, in a year or two she may decide to follow.

Stay calm, tell her you're going, and that you would love for her to join your family in Hawaii but you understand if she wants to stay in her home. Tell her she will always be welcome if and when she wants to visit.
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Often times, seniors don't like to leave their home for fear of burglars, pets, plants tended to etc. I would see if there is anyone who could house sit for a week or weekend and have her visit to see. Short visits could extend into longer visits, especially during the winter months.
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youngerwife, is Mom upset you are moving, or upset that you keep asking her to move with you?

I am around your Mom's age, the only way I would move is if magically my home, my career, my volunteer work, my doctors, my friends, my grocery stores, my hairdresser, my car mechanic, etc. could all come with me.

At my age, the thought of learning a brand new area can be very mind boggling, especially trying to drive from point A to point B. And replacing all of what I wrote, and then some, can be an impossible task.

I had moved numerous times back when I was married, but I was much younger then, and had the energy to be on a new adventure. I wouldn't do that today.

I am all in favor of you and hubby moving back to his home base where he has his family. Plus, if you need caregiving help, his family is there. With modern technology, you and Mom can call each other, and actually see each other.
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GraceLPC Jan 2019
Thank you for your input. People often do not understand how disruptive relocating can be. You put it well.

I am still working on downsizing from a home and community I only lived in for 10 years. It has been two years and I am still unpacking and trying to clear out a storage unit.
I moved to a place without stairs, in the town I went to college, so I had friends to ask about all those services, but they either work (own their business) or are caregivers to their spouses. The city has changed a lot..for the better, but I didn't drive in college, so as you said, I needed to learn my way around. Still working on it.

I am only 61! I don't have family nearby, but they are not nearby the home I lived in for 27 years.

Thank you for sharing your insight.
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I am 70 years old and would never think of holding my children back from their dreams. You need to go with your husband and children! I am dealing with my 95 year old father who does not want to be in assisted living, another story......you need to follow your dreams.......go to Hawaii!....life is short!
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Your priority is your husband and children. I am 69. When I grew up the husband was the "bread winner" and he had the last say about where his family went. You asked Mom to come, she is not willing. That is her choice. Does she have other children? If so, she won't be alone. This is what your husband wants and needs. Go to Hawaii.
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Leave someone you trust (a relative) to check in on mom. Enjoy Hawaii!
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Go for what you and your family want, Let go of the guilt. Visit mum as it works for you. You can't let her control your family.
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Go! Follow your dreams, just as your mother did in her time.

Your mother is healthy and active, why would you stay? Get off Mum's guilt train and live your life to the fullest.

Heck my folks are 84 and almost 90, I would never let their age put limits on the opportunities open to me.
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No offence but Hawaii wouldn't be my dream home either so in that I sympathize with your mother. That said, she can't have her cake and eat it too, she has no right to try to guilt you into giving up your plans to move. In my experience the vast majority of women I know have been reasonably healthy into their early 80's, that gives you a decade before you may need to worry about her needing extra support.
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Sorry, i have to disagree, mom needs to figure out her long term care while she is able. It is not the children's responsibility to make those decisions, especially when dealing with a parent that is not above manipulation to get their own way.

If every adult made plans for the what ifs of life then this website would not exist and that is what we should encourage our parents to do. Not make their kids the plan.
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Follow your dreams. Your responsibility is to your husband, children and yourself. She is a young senior and in good health and has her own activities. Don’t guilt yourself over the situation. Make your plans and enjoy your new home.
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