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Living with Mother-In-Law: Need Advice

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thedotsons84899 View Drop Down
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    Posted: September 07 2006 at 8:47am
Okay, so I'm from Texas.  I met my fiance there almost two years ago.  (Our 1 year anniversary is coming up...September 15!!!)  Anyway, he is from Florida and was in Texas working.  Okay, so here's the thing, when his dad passed away, he left Jonh, my man, the families land, 20 acres.  4 years ago, John bought a mobile home and set it up on the land.  His mom, Betty, had her own home about 4 hours south of where the land is that she and John's dad lived in.  Jeb, Jonh's brother and his new wife moved in there with Betty.  When they got pregnant, Betty singed the house over to them and let Jeb have it.  (She felt like she was in the way.)  Since John was going to be working in Texas for the next three years, he said she, Betty, could live in his house and keep it up.  They had arranged for him to pay certain bills and her to pay certain bills.  Well, about 2 years ago, Betty wanted to reconsolidate all her debt, so John let her use the house and land as collateral. (Keep in mind that my honey is a very honorable man and respects his mother very much.  Betty is a wonderfull lady, also and I love them both very much.)  The agreement had always been that when John found someone and moved back home, Betty would move out and get an apartment.  Here in lies the problem.  We decided to move to Florida and live in John's home.  Of course his mom would be here for a while, but we get along great, so no biggie, right...
John has a great job and makes 29+ an hour.  Only he hasn't always been very responsible with his money.  He's 37 and has only had 1 other serios relationship, so he just went about spending his money any way he wanted.  His mom has helped keep him out of the red with his bank account, (When John got old enogh to get an account, ho got a joint account with his mom so she could help him keep up with his bills and such, since he traveled for work so much.) and paid some of his bills when he blew to much money.  This has worked out very well for them in the past, because it was just them, but now, I'm here...Anyway, Since Betty had helped him so much, he felt obligated to help her with the debt consignment, because part of her debt was because of him.  Okay, that is very commenable..I mean how many men do you know would help there moms like that?  (Oh yeah, I know what you're thinkin', but he's not a 'momma's boy'...) 
So now that we're here, it turns out that she can't afford to move out and get hre own apartment...Every once in a while, she talks about her house and her yard..I know she's been the one here taking care of the place, and I don't expect her to just pack her bags and go live in a card board box, but when is it going to be my house...our house?  (Oh, I should mention that Jonh is working 10 hours away from us in Homestead, so It's me and her and my 9 yr old daughter, Brittany.) Or for that matter is it going to be our house or are we supposed to just let her have it since she let jeb have hers and she's been the one here all this time?  I mean, she calls it her home...I just don't know how to handle the situation.  I don;t want to hurt anyone's feelings.  It's hard though, movine to a new state where I don't know anyone.  Before, in Texas, we had our own house and Joh was home every night. Now I share a house with someoneI just met a few months ago and he's only home once a month for about 4 days...JUst really hard to adjust... 
If anybody has any advice, please feel free to give it..I need it...Thanks.
Tiffany
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babycheeks24 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote babycheeks24 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 07 2006 at 12:13pm
Seriously! you guys need to all sit down and talk this out and find out who lives where with what and what house etc.. And i think also talk with John about how Betty is basically running your lives i mean shes lived with you guys forever explain to him its time for John and you to live your own life and let her live her own, then have a family meeting and discuss this with Betty and help set her up and get her OUT!:) problem solved lol. good luck!
Babycheeks
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Sharyg11 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sharyg11 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 25 2006 at 10:55pm
This is a very tough situation, and you have to be very wise about handling it. I know babycheeks means well, but I also know is not that simple. You would have to have been in a situation like that to understand. You have a man who is very close to his mother, who has been a very good mother to him, and for a very long time, the only one that has been there for him. I know that originally the plans were different. However if she can't afford to live somewhere else, and part of the reason for that is all the financial help she provided for him... well, it is his turn now for him to be there for her. I understand that you guys are newlyweds and married people want to live their own lives, specially when you have been married for such a short time. By the way congratulations on your aniversary (that date also happens to be my birthday!!!) However when you marry someone you also marry their problems and whatever situation that person is dealing with(that's where the "for better or for worse" part comes in). I am sure your husband feels presure enough from this situation. On one side he has his new wife who he wants to make happy, and on the other side he has his mom, who has been there for him all along, and who now needs his help. I'm sure she herself feels insecure and is affraid of being unprotected. That is probably the reason for her comments about "my house, and my Yard". That is just a way of her letting you know that she considers that her home, and has no immediate plans of leaving. In other words "sweetie get used to me, cause I'm not going anywhere right now"
 
If you decide to talk to him about this you have to be very tacktfull. Instead of approaching it like, "so when is your mom going to leave", or "when is this going to be our house?"say honey, we need to start looking at our long term plans, and start to work on a solution for the future. Let him know that you are in no way presuring him, and that you love his mother and understand and appreciate him being such a good son(remember a good soon usually means a good husband). That you are simply trying to get some perspective, and trying to start getting an idea of what you guys are looking forward to in the future. Make it sound like you are more worried about his mother having a place of her own, where she can have her privacy and not feel like she is in the way; and where she feels like she is totally in charge. Express your concern about her feeling secure and cared for.
Always remember to put yourself in his shoes. What if it was the other way around. Would you tell your mother she needs to find a way to solve her situation because you got married and your husband wants his privacy? Or what if your husband told you he doesn't feel comfortable with your daugther and would preffer you sent her to live with her father, so you guys can have a fresh start? I know he would probably never do that, but how would you react if he did? So those are all things you have to take into consideration. I know if it was me, and my husband didn't want my mom to live with us (as much a I would understand his right to want that) I would explain to him that we are just going to have to deal with that. For how long? I don't know. As long as she needed me to. My mom, just like your husband's has been a great mom, and has always been there for me. And if my husband ever put me in a situation where I had to choose between him and her... I hate to say it, but I would be packing his bags (with tears in my eyes, but packing none the less). Why? Because she was there for me when nobody else was, continues to be there, and will still be there if he ever left me.
 
I used to live with my sister and her husband when I first moved to Miami, and eventhough he was great to me, at one point I started to feel like he wanted me out. I understood. Like I said, married people want their privacy. However, I had nowhere to go, no other family or friends here at the time, and at the time made about $90 a week (and that was on a good week). One time my sister told me I needed to start looking for a place. Eventhough I understood, I also could not believe she would say that to me, knowing that I had nowhere else to go, and made almost no money, so I couldn't even get an apartment. Well, thank God her husband felt bad and I was allowed to stay. But let me tell you, it really hurt me to see that she was willing to practically put me out on the street. Her husband is very close to his family and would have never tolerated my sister telling him to get rid of one of his family members. So how come she wouldn't stand up for me the same way? is what I used to think.
 
 I finally got a promotion and started making good money and was soon able to get my own place. This was after about 1 1/2 years living with them. I continued to move up and make more money and thank God was doing really well. Well a few years after that, they ended up separating after 12 years of marriage. And guess who was the only person that was there for her? Yeap, me. I left my apartment so I could move in with her and her two kids and help her out with the bills and the kids. That was 6 years ago and guess who is still with her? Yeap, me. Still helping her, and still by her side. She learned her lesson the hard way, and apologized many times for not being there when I needed her. That is all in the past now. But she learned that when push comes to shub, your family will always be there. Even after your husband/wife has left you.
Always remember that blood is thicker than water. And yes I know that once you are married you are no longer two but one. As the bible says "one flesh". Trust me, I fully believe that. I am a born again christian. But my family is my family and I would never turn my back on them. I know that's not what you want your husband to do. But that might be the way he looks at it, if you don't approach it with wisdom.
 
And if he is working so far away, why don't you and him just get an apartment in homestead. The rent around there is still cheap, and you guys would be together and alone. That whole only seeing him 4 days a month thing, ain't working. You guys need to be together. May be that should be your stradegy. Tell him to condiseder just getting an apartment in homestead for the both of you, so you can be closer, and he doesn't have to worry about commuting.
 
Whatever strategy you are going to use, just be wise about it. Remember this is your family you are talking about, and sometimes we have to sacrifice a little more than what we bargained for.
 
And hey, if you end up moving to homestead, I'm right by you in Kendall. I'll go visit you, so you can have some friends and not be so lonely, since you had to leave Texas . Just trying to cheer you up LOL. But I would really be willing to visit you if you needed a friend.
 
So think about it carefully, think about what your options are, and remember to act with love, wisdom and patience.
 
Boy I hate giving advice!!! I get too into it. I bet you I wrote like 2 pages worth LOL. But I sincerely feel you, and having watched so many people in the same situation (and having lived it myself) I wouldn't want you to make the wrong decision, or approach this in the wrong way, and end up with a sad situation.
 
I wish you all the happiness and love in the world, and I will be praying for you, and for God to give you the wisdom to deal with the situation, as well as the right way out of it.
 
Much love to you, Shary
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