Family Friction: A Husband’s Desire to Care for His Elderly Father After His Mother’s Passing Clashes with His Wife’s Concerns
Losing a parent is a very tough part of life. Although we all know it will happen to each of us one day, we often hope that it just won’t. It’s especially hard when you are left with one parent who is incredibly heartbroken and unsure how to live without their spouse or a lifelong partner.
Recently a husband wanted to move his elderly father into his home after his mother had died. The wife said NO!
The Moving Plan
The original poster (OP) started by saying that her husband’s mother passed away late last year and that her passing was difficult for him and his father. She said the holidays were rough, and her husband is still struggling.
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OP says she has been doing her best to be kind, supportive, and understanding but feels that he’s been less attentive with their 3 kids, and she’s fairly sure he’s struggling at work, too, but he won’t admit it.
OP’s husband recently started therapy about a month ago and is going once a week. She went on to say a couple of weeks ago, he brought up to her that he wanted to move his dad (75M) into their house.
He said that his dad is struggling too and that being in the house he shared with his wife for the past 50 years isn’t doing him any good. OP’s husband had an entire plan laid out, so it was obvious to her that he’d been planning this for a while without talking to her about it.
OP’s husband would like his dad to move into the room they had just moved their middle child into last summer. Doing this would force their 2 youngest to share a room again. He also wants his dad to put his house on the market or possibly rent it out, which means OP’s father-in-law would be there long-term.
OP’s immediate reaction to this was no, and she went on to say that barely any time has passed since his mom’s death, and it’s too soon to make such drastic changes in everyone’s lives.
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Living Arrangement Argument
OP then told her husband that his dad would improve with time and that everyone should take a step back and not rush into any decisions. OP’s husband was unhappy with her response and kept asking for specific reasons other than “not enough time has passed.”
OP also suggested that they look into different housing options for his dad if he’s uncomfortable in his home. OP’s husband was not thrilled with that idea either because it would mean his dad was still living alone.
OP admitted that there are other reasons she didn’t share with her husband for not wanting his father to move in. Her husband’s grieving has been hard on the family. She says she doesn’t want a second grieving man in their house and does not want to kick their middle child out of their new room. She feels this would be unfair to their child. But OP knows if she tells my husband this, he will think she’s being selfish.
OP feels awful about this because of how hard it has been on her husband, but she doesn’t feel that just uprooting her husband’s father, who lives 3 hours away, and basically kicking their middle child out of their new room isn’t going to solve any issues and will create more.
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Redditors Weigh In
Redditors replied to the OP and gave their opinion on the moving-in plans.
One user said, “He’s 75 years old. If he moves in now and sells his place, the husband is signing up his wife to become a full-time caretaker and a full-time nurse. She’ll have to buy him groceries, cook his meals, do his laundry, be his maid, drive him to his appointments, be his minder, etc. And keep in mind; she’s already taking care of five people (herself included, her grieving husband, who isn’t doing much himself right now, and 3 children).”
Another user said, “My problem is that we don’t know what the FIL wants. Does he want to move, sell the house, or look for a roommate? All I hear is what the husband wants for his father. Please ask FIL!”
Another user related by saying, “NTA at all. After my father died, it was suggested to my mom that she not make any major changes in her life for at least one year. He could make a rash decision because of his grief and end up regretting it. He should get his dad in a grief support group or perhaps counseling like your husband is doing.”
This user pointed out, “NTA. It’s not selfish to want your soon-to-be-teen son to have his own room. Find an apartment near your home, and move Dad there. Have him over to visit a few times a week. There are plenty of ways to solve this that doesn’t involve packing your house full of people and upending your family life.”
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Another Redditor said, “Your husband is barely meeting his duties now- not judging- and wants to add another person to the mix, and all signs point to his father also being your responsibility, and yes, the multiple grieving men is a valid reason.”
Finally, a Redditor said, “My FIL died 2.5 years ago, and my MIL has spent about 5-6 months of that time visiting us in our house. She sold the house she bought in 2021 and is with us again temporarily. It’s not easy and has nothing to do with grief–and we are empty nesters with a spare bedroom.”
Redditors were quick to let the OP know that her concerns were valid and that she has a right to not what the father-in-law to move in with them. What are you thinking? Would you let FIL move in?
This article is inspired by the internet and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Neon Moon.
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