I am from India and in our culture elderly parents and children and grand children live together. I believe it is my obligation to take care of my parents and my husband's parents. But i am caught in a peculiar situation. My husband's distant relative (grand mother in a way) has landed in my home as she has no one to care for her in her village. My husband do not have parents. long back when his parents were alive they lived with this lady and her co-sister after they ladies lost their husband (the man had 2 wives). the man and his 2 wives did not have children so after the man passed away they kind of adopted my father in law so that they has some one to take care of their agricultural property. My husband and his 2 brothers grew up in that house. the first wife of the man passed away when my husband's parents were alive. But the other wife is still alive. She is about 75 years old and lived in the village till recently she broke her arm in an accident. My husband and his bothers had all moved to city in search of job opportunities by this time and i was also married to my husband by this time (time of her accident).

Coming from the culture i do, i could not deny her care that to when she had broken arm and thus accepted her into my home 3 years back. Now she is completely healed and is capable of all house hold chores. But now she refuses to return back to her village, perhaps because she has realized she is having an easy life here. She has all the comforts here.

But she has started to irritate me a lot. She is very lazy and does nothing at home. Her appetite is amazing for a 75 year old. She expects an endless supply for breakfast, coffee, hot drinks, lunch, dinner snack, fruits, dry fruits, special religious day food etc which i am not interested in doing as she also does not show any interest in our home affairs. All she needs is food and more food, comfort and more comfort. Even on request she does not do anything unless threatened to withdraw supply of food. But i feel like i am abusing her if i threaten her that way. But with out that she just does not do anything. She sleeps all day and all night except getting up for food and soaps on TV. Note she is very healthy and is capable of simple house hold chores.

I have has a few fights with her when i expressed my concerns. But she just does not seem to get my point. My point if she wants to be treated as a family member she should behave like one sharing what ever responsibilities she can. But she is very passively adamant. After the fight she does involve for a few days but slowly slips back to her inertia. I have to be abusive to get things done from her or i should just shut my mouth and do every thing my self. Request does not work with her. She thinks its her right to stay at our place and she is entitled to all facilities at our home. But i don't think so. Even my husband is very puzzled with her and he shares my point of view.

Her hygiene right now is kind of ok but as time goes by and she gets older, i am afraid she is going to depend more and more on us. Even if i want to send her back to her village now, we have to spend money on mending her house parts of which have broken down. Even if we decide to put her in a old age care we have to shall out money. Or else we should keep her at our home which is getting increasingly irritating. I cant at this point expect help from my husband's bothers.

What should i do in such a situation ? Am i obligated to keep her? please share your opinion

Thanks in avance

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
If you aren't happy with this arrangement, it's your husband's problem to solve. If you and he aren't presenting a united front, things will just keep on just exactly how they're keepin' on.
Helpful Answer (3)

I think the important question is: What does your husband think? Because he had stayed and grew up in her home, how does he feel now? Does he feel obligated to take her in? Is he willing to send her away and face the family's (his brothers, etc..) disapproval?

You both need to figure out what you really want. Sit down and work down the cost.
1. How much would it cost to pay for her transportation back home. The cost to fix her home. The cost to hire at least one or two villagers to help her - one for in the house and one for the land. Once she's settled in, how much can you pay to help her out monthly - whether by food or labor. What you're doing - is to make moving back home look like a good deal.

2. Calculate the cost of sending her to the elder care facility - doesn't matter if she wants to go or not. Your husband must be the one to put his foot down. He must be the one to tell her this. Not only because he's the male, but he is Her Relative.

3. Calculate the cost of keeping her home with you. Remember, she's bad now. She's going to get worse. She's only age 75. My dad is now 85. Who knows how long she will live. Are you really willing to put up with her meddling in your home, expect to be treated like a VIP guest, etc? ... In your place, are you able to expand your home? Add an additional room just for her. She stays in her side. Put boundaries in where she can go in your home.

Elderly people, no matter where they live around the world, all think that because they are old, they deserve to be shown respect, can tell off people and don't care if it hurts them (yet we need to show respect to them), and as the top female (being older) she is higher status in your home than you. Again, it's up to your husband to set her straight. He needs to remind her that when she's in her home, then she's the head of the female household. But when she's in his home, that you (his wife) is the head of the female household. As long as your husband doesn't say anything, she will continue to be Queen Bee in your home. Sorry.
Helpful Answer (2)

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.

Ask a Question

Subscribe to
Our Newsletter