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Old 11-06-2014, 11:45 AM
 
37 posts, read 52,923 times
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My In-laws, whom I do really like but at times are nerve wracking due to an difference in personality, mannerisms, and personal space, visit often and for more nights than I am comfortable. My husband and I were married a month ago but have live together in a house a year prior to that. We do have a spacious house for just two people and a separate guest room and bathroom so we do have a great space for hosting. I also do not mind hosting them at all for 2-3 days at a time. After that I kind of reach my breaking point. I am an introvert that does have extrovert tendencies and can be a very outgoing person, but after a while you could say I reach my "social limit" and need to shut down. My mother-in-law is a very quiet person who constantly needs assurances if something is okay to do and when she is here she will literally follow me or my husband everywhere (whoever is more available at the time) she can save for the bathroom and our bedroom. My father-in-law is much better because he likes to be involved and socialize but can entertain himself by pulling out his book, turning on the TV or just taking a nap, in fact, we actually have very similar personalities.

I really like my in-laws but last year they visited every 6-8 weeks. They started by arriving on early Friday night and leaving on Sunday afternoon which was the perfect length of time for me to enjoy hosting. By hosting I mean cooking every meal for them, making sure the guest bedroom and our house is clean, taking them out for fun things, ect. Then they starting making them longer by arriving Friday morning before 11AM while we are at work and leaving Sunday morning. Sometimes they arrive Thursday night/afternoon and the latest trend is they find out when we have Monday holidays off from work and staying until that Monday night. We received news recently that they have the entire week of Thanksgiving off and the last two weeks of December off from work. They said they would like to see us for both holidays and I'm worried they want a week long visit for both. Setting aside the issue of fairness to my parents who want time with us around the holidays, I think that week long visits are excessive, especially given that they tend to want to super size their weekend visits now. They also live a 3 and half hour driving distance away. If they lived a plane ride away I wouldn't be questioning a week long visit.

I have also never been a fan of staying at other people's homes in general nor having overnight guests for more than 2 nights. I didn't even like sleepovers when I was kid. My husband is sensitive to my needs and has intervened on my behalf before when visits got out of hand but I also understand that he wants to be sensitive to his Mom's needs. I say Mom's needs because my father-in-law isn't really behind these extended visits. My husband is not a "Momma's boy" but he was definitely the favorite of his two brothers so he likes to make her happy. I have been away on my own twice for 4 days once and the other 7 days and both time just his Mom came to visit him alone. I wasn't there so I can't get upset but it's honestly a bit weird that the second she gets wind of the fact that I am going to out of the house, she has to come visit her 32 year old son. I also know that he doesn't care for it, he would be more amendable if she wanted to stay for say half the time I am away and he was able to have the other half to himself, but he doesn't feel like he can say no.

I am also very family oriented and love having his parents stay with us but given the relatively short distance they are away and the frequency of said visits, I honestly don't understand why they need to make them so long. When I was younger and my family stayed with family that was within a reasonable driving distance and the visits were never longer than 2 nights/3 days, for both our comfort and our hosts. I also think it is quality over quality. I should also state that they are good guests. They help clean up and always offer to cook. It all comes down to an issue of personal space with me. When I feel myself starting to get snappish due to over socialization, I do go up to my bedroom and shut the door but there is only so often I want to do that. Pulling out the vacuum cleaner on the day they are scheduled to leave also doesn't work as they just offer to help. One very desperate time I even starting painting the trim on the stairs but to no avail.

My husband's older brother, wife and 3 young kids also live with his parents so they are not short on having family around. I also apologize in any way if this post was offensive to anyone as that was not my intention. I was wondering if parents of adult children or adult children could weigh in.
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Old 11-06-2014, 12:21 PM
 
37 posts, read 52,923 times
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I realize this probably should be in parenting. I'm not sure how to move something.
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Old 11-06-2014, 12:58 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
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Interesting problem. My son and his wife of 1+ years come to visit us once in a while and for holidays but we would never show up at their place unannounced, especially since they would not likely to be home with work and in her case work and school. My parents are 3 hours away and come here only for Thanksgiving, and are not up to driving so we go fetch them so they are on my timetable for length of stay. Normally they come the day before and back the day after. My daughter/son-in-law/grandson we see more often since they sometimes let us watch the little guy for a day or overnight, but again, we would never show up unannounced. Even if we were in their neighborhood (45 minutes away) we would at least text to see if it was convenient. While I feel that family should spend time together it should not be overdone. A young couple recently married need time to discover more about each other without constant interruptions, and the parents should respect that and let them get on with their lives together.
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Old 11-06-2014, 01:11 PM
 
37 posts, read 52,923 times
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Thank you for your reply. The weekend visits are announced usually. Say we invite them or they ask to come up Friday the 27th through 29th. They will be under the assumption that they can come a day or two earlier and stay a day or two later. I usually wind up asking my husband to call at the beginning of the week to confirm what day they are coming. He will usually say they said Friday why do we need to double check and when he does call and talk to his Mom she says things like "oh well your father has Thursday and Friday off from work (she's recently retired) so we thought we would come on Thursday and stay until Monday morning so we can enjoy all day Sunday together". And then I remind him that is why we need to call and check. If I hadn't have pushed my husband to call they would have just shown up or texted they are 30 minutes away. It puts me on edge knowing someone is in my home (not that I mind them being there when I'm not there, I just want to know ahead of time) while I am at work and I haven't had time to prep or clean the house. I work full time and enjoy many hobbies so I have to budget my time accordingly.
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Old 11-06-2014, 01:53 PM
 
Location: NC
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The thought occurred to me that perhaps YOUR home is their escape from the live-ins with three children.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:01 PM
 
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As a young mother, my in-laws (MIL and SIL) criticized everything I did. I defied them and even my own husband who took their sides. When my babies didn't DIE as infants, they reluctently gave me credit where credit is due. In fact, in the subsequent years, my MIL took MY side over her own son.

Stand your ground. They will learn to RESPECT you for it.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:02 PM
 
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The thought has occurred to me as well and I am sympathetic to that. However, I don't think there lack of foresight/desire/initiative to set boundaries, goals and expectations with their other son and his family before they moved in and kept expanding should have to put me out of my own house. I like the fact that they consider our house an escape and do enjoy providing them with a nice visit. I have a limit though.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Huntsville, AL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poodlecamper View Post
The thought occurred to me that perhaps YOUR home is their escape from the live-ins with three children.
My thoughts exactly....
Have you talked this over with your husband? Did they come and visit you a lot before you were married? In conversations with you, does his mom or dad ever talk about the son that lives with them? Are they living in the older son's home, or is he living in THEIR home? Seems odd that someone old enough for 3 children would still live at home with his/her folks... If you're old enough to be responsible enough to have kids, you'd think you were old enough and responsible enough to have your own place...

My parents (married 60 years next November) never came to visit unannounced and when they did come to visit it was always for just a couple of days. My wife loves my parents very much and always enjoyed their company - but, like me, appreciated short visits.

Talk it over with your husband and come up with a way to nicely put him in charge of letting them know that an occasional visit is fine, but the almost moving in visits gotta stop...

He is the head of your household - they are his parents - and I'm sure you two can start enjoying your weekends together without the help of his folks...

Good luck!
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:29 PM
 
37 posts, read 52,923 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tumf View Post
In conversations with you, does his mom or dad ever talk about the son that lives with them? Are they living in the older son's home, or is he living in THEIR home? Seems odd that someone old enough for 3 children would still live at home with his/her folks... If you're old enough to be responsible enough to have kids, you'd think you were old enough and responsible enough to have your own place...


Good luck!
It is my husbands parents home. They have a nice 4 bedroom 2400 square foot home in a quiet suburb. They are also both highly educated with his Mom having a Master's and his Dad having a PhD and being at the top of their fields. I know that they have actually lived below their means while there children were growing up and now have a sizeable nest egg. Especially since the Dad is still working. My husband is more like his parents but his brother has what I think is some kind of undiagnosed behavioral issue. His wife his just kind of a witch. They moved in with his parents after she had twins and they couldn't afford their one bedroom apartment anymore because she obviously had to stop working. They did not expect to have twins but they also wouldn't have been able to afford one child either especially since they choose to stay in a high cost of living area when they would both fare better in a cheaper area. While his brother and wife were already living there, she got pregnant again, supposedly by accident, and just had another baby two weeks ago. He isn't trained for anything at 35 and works 15 hours a week. She is trained to be a legal assistant but isn't working and really can't for at least a while. The brother and wife have no savings, no plan but don't have to pay for anything, including their children's expenses. The situation is horrible and I have talked to my mother-in-law about it. She is a wonderfully sweet woman but is very meek and not assertive at all so she lets all this happen. One time she talked to me for a whole hour about how she feels like a stranger in her home and her other son and his wife treats her horribly. I think her husband needs to stand up for her but he deals with the situation by working a lot and staying away from the home. The whole family needs counseling.

Thank you for your advice. I know I have no real control over what my in-laws allow in their home but I also want to help be a mental health break for them when they visit. But I don't think it should come at the expense of my own mental health.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Huntsville, AL
2,851 posts, read 913,975 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alottolose View Post
.....The situation is horrible and I have talked to my mother-in-law about it. She is a wonderfully sweet woman but is very meek and not assertive at all so she lets all this happen. One time she talked to me for a whole hour about how she feels like a stranger in her home and her other son and his wife treats her horribly. I think her husband needs to stand up for her but he deals with the situation by working a lot and staying away from the home. The whole family needs counseling.
I think that explains a LOT - and as others have said, you and your husband, are now the fall guys.
They get some sort of 'vacation' from being away from their own home (that she, yourself said, feels like a stranger in.).

I think all four of you need to have a sit down.... come to Jesus meeting... so to speak.
Be understanding, and maybe think first of a solution to their problem and a way to get their son out of their house - before you make it known that you'd kinda like them out of yours......

Seems to me as if your BIL and his wife haven't become motivated enough on their own. Mom and dad may need to push that little bird out of the next, and make him provide for himself.... tough love is hard love - but it's needed to keep everyone's mental state of mind in tact.

Good luck and God bless... keep us posted please!
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