to not want MIL to stay for 3 months(172 Posts)
We live overseas and MIL lives alone in the UK (but SIL and her other grandchildren live in the same street)
She is becoming more difficult as time goes on (over fussy, unreasonable behaviour, extremely stubborn etc). She is physically in good health though, though can be forgetful. She is 77.
She is coming for xmas and new year.
She can't fly long haul on her own, she gets too confused, so we are flying her out with dd1 who is at uni in the UK (we have to tell her she is "bringing DD for us" because she won't believe she needs support through the airport) - arriving about 18th dec.
DD will need to be back at uni for 13th of jan so we'll probably fly them both back around the 10th Jan. They will both be here around three weeks.
DH now says he wants her to stay until the beginning of march when he is flying back to the UK on business.
Now if dh and MIL has a close loving relationship, that would be fine, but they row almost constantly, which I find very stressful.
When I asked him if he could really deal with his mother for three full months, he said well, she needs the company, it will be nice for her to "miss winter"
By company, he means me. It would be OK while dd1 was still here, but by the time she goes back, the other two dds are back at school, and dh is back at work, it will be down to me.
She has stayed that long before and I ended up very down. I like my own space. I came downstairs every morning for three months to find her sat ready to go with her handbag with an expectant "what are we doing today" face on.
She doesn't like Shopping. Or walking. Or the heat. She has visited us several times before, so doesn't want to do the tourist things again.
When she came for that long time before I naively thought she would make her own plans- there is a big expat retired community here- but no.
Dh is away about one week in three, so isn't even here (but at least that means they are not rowing I suppose.)
For the record, I would not be happy if my parents wanted to stay that long either. They normally come for about two- three weeks and it's enough.
I sound like a complete cow, but would AIBU to say I don't want her for that long and she needs to go back with DD1 mid-jan?
YANBU. Just from the title, YADNBU.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
I would be miserable to have anyone staying for three months if they are expecting to be entertained all the time! argh! and your dh rows with her so added stress.
YANBU. That is a reeeaally long time. Ask DH if he would feel happy looking after your mum for three months while you worked.
YANBU. My mum came to stay for 6 weeks once and it drove me batty. She isn't a guest if she stays for 3 months, she's just a regular member of the household and she needs to entertain herself.
YANBU in the slightest, that sounds like hell on earth. Can you show your dh your op?
Honey - assert yourself - put your foot down and just say NO!
Posting here will give you support and advice (great) but you need to DO something REAL in the REAL WORLD and double fast !
If you don't then that invasion is going to happen and you only have yourself to blame if it does.
The monster in law is an eternal problem and one which you either confront full on or suffer for ever and ever...
Nip it in the bud, talk to DH and be firm about the idea that NO means NO. Sorry but...
You wrote a thousand words on the subject on this forum - but you're not confused so try it again:
"I won't have your Mother moving in here for three months"
Hmmmm - sounds good right - (say it out loud).
Now say it out loud in your kitchen over breakfast.
Three weeks? Manageable.
Three months? Fuck off. Fuck right off.
Three months!! No, just no way. It is not at all reasonable to expect this of you.
Oh. My. Days. You need to remind your DH the effect her last visit had on you. Three months is just TOO MUCH to ask. YADDDDNBU.
As an aside, what the hell is it with old people getting so bloody miserable? I had a couple of older rellies visiting London for just a few days recently and they were a right pair of miserable gits, and they weren't even staying with me. They didn't like anything I suggested, but couldn't tell me anything that they fancied doing, and barely concealed their lack of enthusiasm for the light sightseeing I arranged (and took time off work to do too!) for and with them. Urgh, so frustrating!
I really, really don't want to turn into a decrepit Debbie Downer.
YADNBU!!! just no way in hell. We live overseas aswell but thankfully the GPs don't seem to like Oz that much (too hot, too far blah blah) but when they visit its a matter of weeks not months! I hear you re the expectant 'look'...my MIL asks every bloody morning 'so what's the plan for today' and if I ask her what she would like to see she says 'nothing, I only came to see the kids' - so WHY ask what the 'plan' is???
Lone voice of dissent.
She's no spring chicken. She may be a giant pain in the ass BUT she is elderly and deserves some leeway. Avoiding the winter must be a good thing for her.
Could you not just talk to her about this? She probably relishes her space as much as you do. Talk to her about your expectations and ask her what she'd like/want wrt food, outings, bus timetables etc.
Having been through this myself and living with huge regret when DMIL passed away thousands of miles away, I have radically changed my tune. 90 days to make an old lady happy. It's not such a big deal.
Three weeks? Manageable.
Three months? Fuck off. Fuck right off.
My sentiments entirely
Dude - even if she was your best friend and you got on brilliantly, 3 months would be much too long.
Problem is, if she were someone's child, you could book her in for a weeks activities (tennis camp, ski school) but that would be weird in this case.
Why don't you get DH to work out some form of itinery for her? It sounds like he doesn't realise what hard work this is going to be.
Also - does she know that he wants her to stay until March? She may not want to (my mum would hate leaving her house empty for so long).
I think this thread is so sad.
As I get older I am mindful that before too long I will be your MIL. I will try not to be cranky and set in my ways, but will probably cock things up. Travelling 10000 miles will probably out of my comfort zone and would probably make me anxious.
No matter how hard the journey or how old I was, I am quite sure I would move heaven and earth to see my kids if they lived so far away. I hope that they would accommodate me with warmth and open hearts.
It's just far too long. YANBU. At all.
YANBU, Jesus just the title of your post brought me out in a cold sweat!
We're in a different country and MIL comes 3-4 times a year for 5 days max, any more than 5 days and I start to lose the plot.
Fucking hell, 3 months!!
My parents stayed with us for 2 months over last Christmas for similar reasons (distance, avoid winter etc). My folks are fantastic, help out with the DC, muck in around the house, supply
plenty of wine for dinner, went travelling for 2 weeks, went on day trips.... and it was still a teeny relief to get the house back when they left.
I know you said she didn't make her own friends the last time, but could you help it along? Find out her hobbies and bring her down to the local club etc, persuade someone to take her under their wing a bit? A bit of work for you initially but might give you space in the long run
Another thought - can you make her feel useful? I have some difficulties with MIL, and I find we get on much better and she is more respecting of my boundaries if she is feeling useful - little things like walking up to collect Dd from school, playing with the kids while I put the dinner on.
Would that help at all? Could she be the "adult at home" (I'm guessing if you have a DD at university you might have other school age children who don't need minding so much as an adult around) to let you have a couple of days doing a course or something? (Sorry, am presuming you're a SAHM)
Hang on, it'll "be nice for her to miss winter" but she doesn't like the heat?
There's no way my mum would enjoy it. She was angling to stay with rellies in Singapore for a while, but a ten-day visit practically boiled her. She went off that idea pretty quick!
DH is BU. Time you clarified this
MrRected - but would you reasonably expect to have your kids, their partners and families to put you up for 3 months? Really?
why doesn't she just move in?!
like fuck would I have that.
reading the title made me feel sick.
I think you should say no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no!
I have a strong view on this
MrRected would you have wanted your MIL to stay with you for 3 months?
I'll be a MIL one day to a DIL. with 5 sons, if lucky, 5 times over.
I would not say yes to staying for that long even if they paid me.
too much friction
To clarify, my other kids still at home are 12 and 15, so well beyond the needing to be minded stage. They will sit and chat with her well as teenagers go, bit then they are wanting to go off and do their thing
Last time she came to stay, dd1 was still at home and she had an absurd fit at me one day because I dropped dd (18) off at her boyfriends (parents apartment) and let her walk up on her own (ie didn't walk up with her) she hada slightly smaller got when I let dd2 -then 13 to go to the cinema with friends-no adults. I'm very irresponsible to that apparently.
I know I should be more generous. I'm happy to have her for three weeks over the holidays. But I really want her Togo bank with dd 1 in jan
Sorry for all those typos- on phone
3m is too long by far, YADNBU.
I had MIL come and stay with us when I was having Ds1 - she was invited, she came for 2m and I was relieved as anything when she went home. She is NOT fussy, forgetful, difficult etc, she was as helpful as she could be but by the time she was going it was just a massive relief to be able to relax again!
Your DH is being an arse. It's not like he wants to be company for her, he's just dumping her on you. And that's unfair.
I go every year to stay at my Dad's for 3 weeks. We have a lovely time but I can pretty much guarantee that he's also relieved to see the back of us (as well as sad to see us go) when we go home again, and he can get back to his untrammelled routine.
It cuts both ways!
Anyway, if you're getting her over with DD1 on the pretext that she is accompanying DD1, rather than the other way around, then surely it makes sense that she should "accompany" DD1 back again, to ensure her safety? Otherwise it makes a nonsense of her perceived role bringing DD1 out to you.
I'd be aiming to send her back to UK with your daughter when she returns in January.
My mum is in her late 80s and travels alone. She would loathe staying away from home that long.
Your mil is a little confused already by travelling. .. she shouldn't be away from her home so long. Stick to that reasoning. It'll drive you all nuts.
3 months is too long for both of you, and your dc, and I expect she won't want to leave her house for that long.
Is she covered by medical insurance on such a long stay?
Have you though about working yourself? Then you won't be around as entertainments director. Your dh sounds as though he has good intentions, but the reality is disastrous.
She would probably hate it too, as living with you is very different from a week or so stay, where you do touristy stuff. She would have to just fit in, and if this is explained to her, maybe she won't come.
What about booking the flight jan, and then she can get on it if she wants, flights can be moved. Take her to the expat club, get her doing activities, into the habit of going over there to read the daily mail, have coffee, swim or sit chatting, home for lunch and a nap, dc home, bit of chat, telly .. but surely most expat grandmas/ grandads will be gone by jan anyway?
It could be ok, if you are firm you can't take her everywhere with you, like you would if it was just a week or so, but talk to her. She might be horrified as well
YANBU. If she made any effort to fit in or to help out or even to do her own thing it would be very different - but you are already having her there for weeks, and things are likely to sour over time, whereas you can make the shorter trip into a lovely stay that is all about her.
I wouldn't risk mentioning it to her - she might actually want to stay that long then you won't have any chance if both she and your Dh are on at you.
Yanbu! it's way too long, it's bad enough she won't entertain herself a little but also disagree's
interferes with your parenting decisions.
Really, get your Dh told.
Another poster already mentioned a good idea - get him to imagine trying to entertain your Dm for 3 whole months (MmmHmm! lightbulb moment/look of utter fear) - if he's honest and respects you he should see reason and understand you.
I think this is a great opportunity for you. Why don't you fly back with dd1 (after all if MIL accompanied her out someone should take her back) you could spend time with your parents/? Other family and do a bit of travelling/sightseeing. By the time you get home dh should have MIL organising herself and she should be out most days.
Or say no.
Frankly, 3 weeks is also too long in my book but I would have been arrested for murder of MIL (and DH for even suggesting it) before 3 months were up.
Absolutely not, no way. If your DH wants her to stay that long he can investigate taking a sabbatical and entertain her himself.
Can you ask your DH how is he planning on getting 3 months off work if he thinks she needs the company?
It really pisses me off how some men think it is perfectly fine to invite their parents to stay and then expect their wives to entertain them, whike they go back to work!
OP, you really do have to say no. It's too much for you and not at all fair of dh to expect it, unkess he can afford to miss 3 months of work in order to look after her. She is his guest, not yours.
Would your DH keep your mother company, if the shoe was on the other foot?
(Just throwing that in there; my DH loves my mum and can't stand his own! )
Unicorns/Louise - great minds think alike!! That's what I was going to say
FatOwl - NO Just NO. It is a loooooooooong time to have someone stay, anyone, and especially someone who you know is somewhat difficult. Don't do it. Yes your DH might be upset/annoyed/whatever but unless he's prepared to take the whole 3 months off of work - that's tough. Be firm.
YANBU! As an aside, does your DH realise her home insurance will not be valid for absences over a month? Lots of people don't realise this is a standard clause. I'm convinced it was created by someone in exactly your position
Aha! I love Jinty's idea. Because after all, your DD1 "needs" escorting back so yes, why not you this time? And DH can entertain his own mother while you have a lovely time, and then you can maybe travel back with him (I expect you "need" escorting too, don't you? ) when he brings his mother back. Win win!
Is she alone/lonely at home?
Or does she only "need company" when at yours iyswim?
If so-she might not want to stay so long anyway.
Say no, and say it fast!
3 weeks is absolutely loads ... and 3 months is quarter of a year! Don't even entertain the idea! As others have said, that would be waaaay too long for even your best friend to stay.
It doesn't really sound like she'd be up for it either. Explain to your DH why it would not suit her, and also why it doesn't suit you.
No. Just no.
I live overseas too. MIL has been to visit her new grandson 3 times in the last 5 months. First time was fine. Second time was less so. Third time, she was lucky to get back to Blighty with her head attached to her shoulders. 3 whole months? Hell would have to freeze over first.
<goes to lie down to recover from even thinking about it>
You tell him no unless he takes three months off work. YANBU.
I'd get twitchy after 3 days.
I think you're an angel for the 3 weeks. Jinty has the best idea. Inform your DH that you'll be coming back with DD1 and will stay until he comes back in March. I think he'll see your point of view then
3w yes 3m no. Stick with the original plan. If DH wants to spend more time with his mum see if she can come back in the summer.
"Oh how lovely DH, I didn't realise you were taking a 3 month sabbatical to spend quality time with your mother. That is so sweet. Seeing as you'll be at home keeping your mother company you'll be there for our other children so I think I'll go back to the UK with DD1 for a little bit"
I love all the suggestions you return to the UK with DD1. I live overseas too, and my own mum came over for 2 weeks after my DC2 was born, and by the end of the first week I was thoroughly convinced I'd rather have been home alone with triplet toddlers and triplet newborns 12 hours a day, than with 1 toddler, 1 newborn, and my mother - the stress of another slightly "difficult" adult in the house outweighs any benefit if you don't get on brilliantly and both think you are doing the other a favour! I was much happier managing on my own when DH went back to work after DC3 was born. My parents only come over together and stay in a local hotel now...
I think 3 weeks is above and beyond reasonable unless your DH is taking the time off to spend with her tbh. Take Jinty64 and whois 's advice, or just say NO.
Somebody always pulls the "You hate old people" or "You'll be a MIL one day" sad face card - but this is your DH's idea not your MIL's, and 3 months together could finish off any semblance of a good relationship for the rest of MIL's life, seriously! Better keep things on a workable level than be a martyr and end up with resentment all 'round!
Just reading the title made my blood run cold. My MIL is pretty self-sufficient, but even then, about five days staying with us is quite enough. Three months and one of us probably wouldn't emerge alive...
You just need to tell your DH that it's not reasonable to expect you to be responsible for entertaining her for 90 days. Ask him if he'd be happy to be with her 24/7 for three months (if they don't get on I can't imagine he'd actually be OK with this, whatever he might protest).
If she has other family living in the same street at home I wouldn't feel guilty about sending her back after three weeks, she will have plenty of support and company and will have had a long holiday with you.
DH and I have had to have some very frank conversations about the realities of spending extended time with his parents. It's taken several really miserable holidays and visits for him to accept that spending weeks on end with them just doesn't work. Who says she'd be happy to be away from home for three months? Her past behaviour might suggest she's not happy being there either. I think my PIL actually don't enjoy being away from home for more than a few days which leads to a lot of the 'situations' that arise.
I had my best mate living with me for 3 months once and it really strained our relationship
I'm afraid you will have to simple say to your DH that you do not want his mother there for that long. Do it gently but be honest.
Has he really no idea how you feel already?
My DH is way more patient with old folk than me but wouldn't want to entertain my mother for 3 months. And I don't think any the less of him for it. 3 weeks is enough. A nice amount of time.
What will you do OP?
Oh my life. I love my mil dearly, and actually find her easier to get on with than my own mum, but could not deal with having her staying with us for that long. Particularly if she thought she had a right to be 'entertained' every. Single. Sodding. Day.
My brother once stayed with my sister for two weeks when she was living in Thailand. My sister, normally a very laid back person, later told me that she nearly fell out with him completely because he expected her to organise his days for him. I can't imagine how stressful it would be for three months!
I hope you can make your dh see how bad an idea this is.
I've had this, home and abroad for years! The problem, I find, is that as soon as Christmas and New Year are over I want to make plans,have a clear out, get going on the new year, and if someone is staying its like Narnia with eternal Christmas. I was looking forward to a short, sharp Xmas last year when MIL came to stay and broke her arm, thus being with us until February. I was happy to look after her, but I felt like my life wasn't my own until she'd gone home.
It's always a nice idea, for the person who isn't doing the looking after!
I think you should put it to him that she needs to go while you and she are still wishing she could stay longer rather than wishing she'd gone earlier.
My df used to like us to stay 1-2 weeks (sometimes the whole holiday) with his dm who was on her own. Only thing was she had a tiny 2 bed flat, and when 5 of us descended on her she only really coped with about 3-4 days before she needed her own space. She got cross, we got cross and all was not happy.
We enjoyed going and she enjoyed having us so much more when df realised this and we'd go for 3 days, extending it to 4 if it was going well.
Because I am a complete cow (and benefit from both DM and DMIL being in this country) we have a 3 night rule. Anymore and I start building up fermenting resentments.
3 MONTHS? My DP had my DM staying for a month recently when I was in hospital and it drove him not-so-quietly mad. You get to the point where even someone's BREATHING is irritating. And it just makes you feel like a horrid person because they're old, and they're being helpful, and you love them but...
Don't do it. It's not fair on anyone.
Families work when space and boundaries are respected by everyone. Your DH isn't respecting yours or MIL's.
I agree that you need to make it clear it is not acceptable for him to expect you to play hostess for this long, especially as previous experience would suggest neither you nor MIL would benefit from it.
As previous poster said, I doubt her house or travel insurance will cover for an extended period of 3 months. Could you suggest (as drawn from other posters' experience) that shorter visits are better on the basis of the insurance and that she could have a second future visit instead of one long one, perhaps tying this in with your DD's university holiday trips home to continue the "helping" idea?
You don't sound like a complete cow AT ALL! You are definitely much nicer than I am (admittedly that is not very difficult though). YADNBU!!!!
What if you got a calendar, and made him fill in every single day with what she can do that day: these must be actual viable things, researched....opening times checked, bus routes looked into etc....maybe then he will realise the enormity of being 'company' for a demanding guest.
Agree with some PP.
Tell him it's absolutely fine.
But you will be in the UK with your DD so you hope has enough holidays to take 3 months off to look after his OWN mother!!!
I would try to have a little compassion for an elderly woman in the last years of her life. When would she be able to do this again? ever?
I'd put myself out, and in fact have under similar circumstances and while it was far from convenient am so glad I did. She won't be around forwever.
I would speak to DH tho and tell him that if he wants MIL around for that length of time then he needs to try to be around more or help organise things for her to do.
I live overseas too. Last Christmas I had my parents and MIL for 3 months at the same time Yes it's hard going at times, especially when all I want is to get up and sit with a coffee and a newspaper in the garden, not organise housework (which is my mums priority over everything else first thing in the morning), think about meals for 8 (no dairy, spicy, foreign), outings etc and yes, I was relieved and happy to have the house back when everyone went home. But....this won't be the case for ever. They are all getting on in years and I know that somewhere down the line I'll be in the position where I'd do anything to have them round the table one last time.
One day I will be the MIL and no doubt my kids and their partners will think I'm a major PITA with strange ideas and idiosyncrasies and I'll do my best to be a thoughtful guest.
OP, lay down ground rules. Tell your MIL that while it's great to have her come, you are aware that she has done all the touristy stuff so will be arranging timetables/expat info etc so that she can sort herself out most days. Let her know you have many other commitments you need to carry on with. If she stays home and does nothing then so be it.
I really like my in laws but I found a two week holiday with them tough going towards the end. Three months?!?! Only if you live in Buckingham Palace and can hide in the East Wing.
No. Mine is staying with me currently. For one week. No more than that. My dh is at work so thinks it great. No. Just no.
No no no. Your DH basically wants happy glow of doing a 'good deed' that you actually do for him. It's your home, you have a right to reasonable space and privacy. Don't agree to it.
A few practicalities that may be useful in bolstering your arguments ...
Home insurance: Once your MIL is away from her home for 30 nights, her home/contents insurance is almost certianly not valid.
And who is going to notice if (for example) her pipes freeze and burst, and sort it out for her?
Travel insurance: probably extremely expensive at her age, but also may be hard to find for such a long trip.
Bills: When my parents went on a long post-retirement trip they paid bills over the internet, would your MIL be able to sort that? Also my parents frequently had stops put on their cards and accounts, despite telling the banks in advance about the trip. Could MIL cope with having to sort these things out from overseas? It could mean that UK bills were not paid, debt record, baliffs etc in a worst case.
Also does your MIL take any medication, and would se be able to get a supply near you, of the same thing? UK GPs are unlikely to prescribe a 3 month supply, and if they did could it be imported?
There are definitely was round all these things, but it all needs to be thought out.
I think this only really works if the person is happy to get out & about themselves/is happy to be ignored whilst you get on with your routine/happy to fit in with whatever is going on if invited.
My Dad is like this, fortunately, but having another person there can still be annoying-even if they're not too bad!
Does your MIL know DH is proposing a 3 month visit?
You don;t say that she wants to come for 3 months...
Personally I would just say no - a few weeks over Xmas and new year is plenty. Better to have her shorter periods more regularly. No point everyone being miserable (except your DH it seems)
Kew that occurred to me too. I'd hate to be a guest in someone's home for that long, so there's no reason why MIL would enjoy it.
From her pov 3 months could be too long in terms of unsettling her / her forgetting her routines / falling out of touch with her friends etc........ Could do more harm than good in long term?
YANBU. It's far far too long.
No. Just no. Even imagining my MIL coming for 3 months brings me out in a cold sweat, and I love her!
Your DH is being an arse - he seems very free with your time but not, interestingly, with his own. Given that it's you who'll have to do the bulk of the entertaining, I think you need to make it clear to him that this is not acceptable and unless he wants to take three months off work it's just not happening.
And to the two posters who think OP shoud 'make an old lady happy' - OP is already having MIL to stay over Christmas despite her not being a great houseguest. I know MrRected you say you wish you'd done this for your MIL, but I suspect you're only happy to state this because there's no chance of it actually happening to you. Given that you didn't do it at the time, I think it's a bit bloody rich of you to say that OP is being unreasonable in not doing something that you didn't do either!
I wouldnt mind my MIL staying for 3 months. Im sure many of us are, or will be, MIL ourselves one day & it would be unpleasant to think when you become older, confused or more cantankerous then you should be discarded as some kind of nuisance and your son will go along with this. Life cant be lovely and convenient all the time, can it? She's elderly and soon enough she wont be around for anybody to worry about.
However, I WOULD mind if it was a case of my DH's routine remaining unbroken and undisturbed ie..swanning off to work etc as per usual leaving me to sort her daily needs and social life. If he's going to take some time off to be there to actively play a part in that then its fine. If not then no, it isnt fine.
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My own mum came to stay for 2 months and spent time btw mine and my sister's on other side of town. She was capable of doing solo outings, can speak the language etc
It was still too long.
DH is being unreasonable.
MrRected I think you have been quite unreasonably unpleasant to Sybil, and I think you should apologise for how you expressed yourself.
Is there anything more predictable that in a thread involving criticism of living relatives someone will reply "I wish I had a [relative], mine died and I would tolerate [whatever the thread is about] to have one [day, week, year] with her and you're all insensitive to my loss"? Often with added swearing to show that they care more than anyone else does?
It's an MSE specialism, but it now spread much more widely. Why do people do it? What are they saying: because their [relative] died, no-one should criticise their [relatives]? It's a combination of misdirected de mortuis nil nisi bonum (because the person being criticised isn't dead), emotional exhibitionism and competitive grief.
Everyone is someone's child, and everyone eventually loses their parents. That doesn't make it unacceptable to complain about one's parents.
It is pretty predictable, yes friday.
In contrast though, I wouldn't have my Mum to stay for 3m even if she were alive now. She would have driven me demented within a fortnight.
I did spend nearly 3 months with my mum when DS was a baby. I love my mother dearly and she was only in her late 60's relatively spritely then and she's good company.
We nearly murdered each other at times and I wouldn't do it again by choice.
I rather love my MlL but three months is far too long for any visitor at all. I would even balk at having my beloved sis stay for that long.
I think three weeks is great and the plan works well with her being accompanied by your eldest dc.
Voice of experience here. When we lived in oz, I had my mil stay for 14 weeks.
Dh was away for about half that time on business.
Mil and my relationship has never recovered (she did some pretty nasty things to me in those 14 weeks).
Just say no, for your sanitys sake.
Simply point out to your DH that if he wants his mother to stay for 3 months, then he needs to be making arrangements so that he is the one dealing with her. He doesn't seriously think that it's acceptable to invite her for that length of time, despite your wishes, then bugger off back to work as normal leaving you to deal with it?
Another one who is wondering if the MIL has any idea that a three month stay is being suggested. Is it possible that your SIL needs a break?
MrRected I agree with you and why shouldn't kids put up with their parents for 3 months out of a year it's not asking much. They bore us through childhood and even adulthood and did baby sitting for the grand kids. I think it's incredibly selfish to have zero patience for a short space of timel 3 months for a house full of guests is too much. But 3 months for one person who is close family is not too much.
I would view it this way she's not staying forever let's plan things she can do alone and things we can do together to get through the period with a more positive outlook. Being negative will only make things worse.
if my husband said my father couldn't come and stay with me for such a period there would be arguments. End of the day my parents were there for me before any guy in my life. They have superior status.
Parents who look after their kids will more than often but not always have kids who will lovingly look after them in old age. Call me old fashioned but I'd rather have my kids care for me should I live into old age rather than strangers who don't give a damn about me in a care home.
Btw I do sympathise I know fully how you are feeling I live with my mil but my attitude is she is old and probably won't outlive me so I try and accommodate as much as possible. It's not all rosy but it's not totally depressing either it has it's perks.
All of these posts dotted around the boards where the magnificant husbands have flashes of inspiration to have their own mothers come stay whith them for outrageously long amounts of time. All the while the husband will be carrying on with life as normal while the wife is expected to be bloody entertainer for the MIL.
Bloody does my nut in. NO NO NO to all of these deluded man fools.
No not ops parent but it is her partners and they share a home so she has a right to stay just as ops parents have a right to stay. He should however play more of a role if he wants her staying rather than putting all the responsibility on you.
No not ops parent but it is her partners and they share a home so she has a right to stay just as ops parents have a right to stay.
"Right" is awfully strong. I'd say that if a house is jointly owned, no-one other than the joint owners have a "right" to stay there. The argument that someone has the "right" to invite their parents to stay for three months without the other's consent seems dubious. Yes, I realise that "you can't have your mother to stay" can be an abusive tactic by a controlling abuser: that doesn't appear to be the case here.
If my partner moved their mother in for three months I'd move out, and sort the mess out later. I doubt I'm alone in that, and I don't believe that makes me controlling.
That's the thing, isn't it-what's he willing to do towards his mum staying-not much by the sounds of it!!
actually when you marry your spouse becomes priority.
you two are made one and noone should ever come between the two of you!
"a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife and they shall become one flesh"
all MILs of the brides should be given this verse printed out on the day of their sons get married.
Zing, in this case it's the dh who might've needed to see that verse, not the mil.
Shoot me now before this happens. And I quite like my MIL.
If we're looking for a list of practical reasons, surely her house insurance wouldn't be valid after 30 days ...
As spouses, partners in the relationship and (presumably) co-owners of the home, if the DH has the "right" to insist that his DM stay, OP has the right to veto that as well. You can't just insist that your spouse put up with someone staying in their home for 3 months.
A PP phrased it in such a way that made it really hit home - a quarter of a year. Just because you would be happy to entertain someone in your home that long, doesn't mean everyone else would or even should feel the same.
best print it on the seating cards
Does she actually want to come for three months? She might hate the idea too
See, if I was you OP, I'd say it was find for MIL to stay for 3 months, but you will return with DD1, spend a couple of months (or even just 1) in the UK with her, visiting your family. Really, he knows that won't work because he knows she needs looking after and entertaining, he's not going to do it himself, he's offering you for this job.
Also, unlikely this will happen, my Dad has a heart condition so can only get travel insurance for 6 weeks at a time without spending a huge amount of money (they have a holiday home in france and would love to spend longer times out there, but just can't due to this).
3 weeks is fine, it's a good 'break' for SIL is that's an issue, and a good compromise might be that your DH takes some annual leave when he goes back to the UK for his business trip and then stays with her for a week or 2 without any of you.
(plus if you've convinced her she has to come out with DD1 to look after DD1, will she not question tht suddenly DD1 can go back to the UK on her own?)
Go down the insurance route as mentioned above.
Travel insurance will be a fortune for that time (my friend's DM broke a leg in the US and the cost was £30k because the insurance had run out)
House insurance at home also an issue.
I am unable to have sex with anyone staying (he thinks....). That ought to shorten her visit.
Don't do it. I am in the midst of this, with temporarily resident in-laws. 10 days in and I'm losing the will to live. I am going to have completely lost it by the time we get to three months.
that's probably a good thing. sex with visitors is frowned upon!
put foot down with dh. don't tell her about idea!!!
Call me old fashioned but I'd rather have my kids care for me should I live into old age rather than strangers who don't give a damn about me in a care home.
You have every right to want that but you do not have a right to expect that your children comply. Presumably you did not have children just so that you could have carers in your old age. They have to want to do it. The OP does not want to entertain her MIL for three months. She is not BU.
A quarter of a year, in one go? No. Just no.
The OP is not the mil's kid anyway. The dh is and he won't be looking after his elderly mother - he'll be fucking off to work and expecting the OP to do it!
Just remember, 'no' is a complete sentence.
I am always suspicious of those who say they now regret their actions. Did no one advise them that having MIL to stay for 3 months would be a nice thing to do? Probably, and they ignored them to keep their sanity. All well and good to be reflective and sympathetic after the event and when it is not you.
OP, YANBU. Talk to her about the 3 week visit, ask her if she would like you to arrange things to do, places to go etc. if she does not want to do anything independently then it would be unreasonable to be expected to entertain her for 3 months.
My mother loves us all very much. But the thought of living with any of us for 3 months without her own space would bring her out in a cold sweat!
I would simply refuse. That is too much to ask of you. I was an expat and 3 week visits are plenty long enough even for the most lovely of visitors.
alternatively, you will just have to LTB (I may not be joking )
just book her ticket for jan
or for yourself to return in march when she's gone
don't ask, just do.
I wonder how many women invite their parent(s) to stay for extended periods of time and leave their husbands/partners to look after them for 99% of the time
Is it because the OP doesn't (I gather from the post) work, does her dh think this is just an extension of her sahm/hostess duties? Would be easier minding dcs though than a needing-entertained adult.
My own Mum is the most lovely person in the whole world and I get on with her brilliantly. I only ever invited her to stay for a month max and that was because DH was travelling and I had little babies or was pregnant etc. 3 months of anyone is hard work, especially if you are expected to be a 'host' IYSWIM
Remark to your DP in all innocence how lucky his mother will be to have his company all day, every day for three months.
He will have to take three months off work to look after her.
I don't "get" the husband will have to take time off thing.... when I married my hubby, MIL became part of my family, and I of hers...
If I were at home and we had folk staying, of course I would play hostess - WHOEVER it was....
I would not want to have MIL in my house for 3 months, not because she is "his" family, but because I don't want ANYBODY else in my house for that long...
Just say it is too long... often... to everyone.... especially hubby.... YOU are the only one who can MAKE it NOT happen....
StarDust, as things stand it sounds as though the husband is intending for his life to go on much as normal while the OP does the extra cooking/cleaning/hosting/entertaining/tour-guiding that would be required. Three months is a long time to host anyone and a couple should work as a partnership so it's not too onerous on either one.
my mum stayed for 6 weeks once. I needed the help as I had to have ELSC with DS4.
four kids under 5.5 and school runs and new baby and revovering post op and illnesses and 2 bouts of mastitis......we were ready to kill each other by the end of it.
granted our personalities clash and it wasn't my MIL so I could voice my opinion (which is a double edged sword) but still.
3 months is insane.
3 months is too long.
Since he seems to have no idea of the stress of continuous entertaining, I would insist your DH takes full responsibility for entertaining MIL during the weekends of her stay. Off out good and early and not home until evening. And perhaps some overnight stays... You can recharge your batteries during these days.
While that is probably not likely to happen, he should play a much more active role in the entertaining of your MIL during the visitn.
Stardust - mot people don't feel like though, I really get on with my MIL, but she's my DH's mum, not mine.
Agree that the hardest bit is that the DH will return to work and his life will be just the same, but with his mum around in the evenings/weekends. The OP will have to either leave an elderly woman alone all day (rude) or bring her along with what she normally would do all day (not automatically possible) or put her own life and plans on hold for 3 months, that's before you think about the extra work another adult in the house brings (the extra cleaning, cooking etc).
Not sure how old your younger DC are so it may not be fair for you to go back to the UK with DD1.
I would enquire about volunteering opportunities (maybe at your DC school?), part-time day training courses you could enrol on in your area, or even part-time jobs.
Make it clear to your DH it'll be quite lonely for DMil if he doesn't take time off.
Your are his wife and the mother of his children, not a member of staff expected to take instruction from him.
But why should OP have to get a job so that mil can't stay?
No is a complete sentence - i am surprised dh is even asking, especially if they don't really get on. There's no way I could have anyone - whoever it was - to stay that long.
Besides, if OP were a member of staff, her DH would have to amend her contract. Which would probably include having to pay more for the extra responsibility.
My MIL was a total sweetie, but... three months? aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh
Mistressiggi if the husband is viewing this as an extrntion of sahm 'duties' then he needs to he disabused of that notion quick smart. A sahm is not staff - it is not her husband's place to provide jobs fir her to do during the day. A sahp 'job' is to look after the kids so that the wohp is able to concentrate on work and not have to worry about childcare.
I would go ape shit if my dh tried ti dump this on me.
Do people view their ils as their own family? Maybe I am weird, but I don't. I view them as my husband's family and my dcs grandparents, but responsibility for entertaining them isnt mine.
Yep - his family, my family, became OUR family when we got married..
MIL is not my mum, but she is a part of my family now.... I meet up with her sometimes for coffee - don't need to involve my hubby...
my mum sometimes asks hubby if he'll go round and fix the washing machine or whatever - doesn't need to go through me...
I find it a strange idea that everything has to go through the parent/"child" route, that if I am in town I wouldn't pick up a birthday card or whatever because it is HIS mum's birthday, not mine...
But what we do is talk and agree BETWEEN us on who is staying where for how long.... hubby would not present it as a done deal....
mmmm..... unless it was a short term fix - e.g. I told mum she could come here next week 'cos the boiler bust... a week maybe... a month ... no...
Wonder if OP's husband would be thinking of this if OP worked & wouldn't be at home to entertain his mum.
Wonder if he'd be thinking of it if he was the one at home & on entertainment duty!
It's difficult even if the other person fits in around what's going on.
My Dad would stay for a month a couple of times a year & do "helpful" things like wash up after breakfast-using a bowlful of water!
And I got sick of someone else being at the breakfast table when I'm used to time alone then.
Not unsurmountable, of course, but wearing enough after a month, let alone three!
My MIL has stayed for a month on several occasions, and 3 months twice. Long back story that I won't bore you with but any positives in the relationship between DH and MIL and MIL and me were pretty much destroyed by her behaviour over these periods.
I agree with MadeOfStarDust
That is to say, I thin the line between in-law and parent blurs when you marry.
Wow thanks for all your replies
DH is definitely being an arse.
We've had the conversation- I've said I'm happy for her to come for the holidays but I think she should go back with dd1. I've said I don't think I can be positive and welcoming for that long. I've mentioned home and medical insurance and everything else on this thread, but he waves his hand and says "oh that can be sorted out" I've asked if he has even asked if she wants to come that long and he says she says yes.
The only thing that he has backed down on is that we'll book their flight to return on 10th jan, but MIL's ticket will be open so we can change it so she can stay longer.
There is a college course i want to do, and there is part time module I can do two full days a week from Jan-march. DDs are 12 and 15 so can definitely manage if I do it.
I think I will be doing it.
And I'll say it again, he is an arse. And I'll (and MN) be proved right before Easter- look out for more AIBUs
Well there's one thing to hold onto, FatOwl - if he and she really don't get on that well, he'll probably be gagging for her to go home in January!
In the meantime, college course sounds like a wonderful idea.
We had MiL staying over the summer (well Easter until end of August). She has been ill so some of that time she was in hospital, and the rest of the time she has been recuperating. However, it has completely messed up our relationship - I thought we got on quite well, but something that she said towards the end of her visit made me realise what she really thinks about me and that's it - relationship scuppered. She has moved into a new house a few miles away - I've managed to put off visiting so far but am going to have to go this weekend. Not looking forward to it. The good thing about all of this is that DH was entirely on my side (and very relieved when she moved too).
Looks like you'd better book that course, Owl - and any others you wanted to do! New gym programme, perhaps? AND volunteering with ex-pat thingies; they always take up loads of time, and will be "helpful for MIL to integrate with the community" while you're
kept well away from her doing good deeds
Tend to agree with you about DH.
Ha ha - I would be thinking YANBU if your thread title had been "... for three HOURS".
I do not envy you at all Fatowl.
We also live overseas and last year had visitors almost constantly for 6 months. Mil stayed for 9 weeks and it very nearly finished me off.
I have told Dh that if she ever comes again then I am leaving home.
Is there an expat club with club house. She can go there everyday for activities
He IS being an arse, OP. Was the question of who does what proportion of entertaining asked and answered? I think you need to sort that out, or at least try. If he's evasive I'd state very clearly that you're willing to entertain MIL for x days/mornings/afternoons/etc during her trip and no more.
I'd also hold out for the ticket back to be booked in Jan, and say that after that date you'll consider all your time your own again and will spend it doing the things you usually do with your day.
OP, I don't think you're unreasonable. There is a good reason for MIL not to stay for 3 mths. At her age and getting forgetful, it will be a huge wrench for her to return home after so long and pick up where she left off with her life and look after herself. She may well become dependent on you and DH in 3 mths, institutionalised, which won't help her in the long run.
You say that she gets confused travelling, and that she doesn't want to do anything when she gets there because she's done it before or doesn't like anything else, my worry is that she will just stay at your home all the time and do the same thing day after day, and you and the grandkids will do more and more for her indirectly. So when she gets home to GB she will have to remember all the usual things that she does there and it will throw her completely.
And as her son, DH should be looking after his mother and not expect you to do it all. It's amazing what short memory he has about how long it takes before she and he have a row!
he waves his hand and says "oh that can be sorted out"
By him. Obviously. Have nothing to do with it.
You don't say where you're living, but health insurance for three months for someone over 70 with pre-existing conditions will be expensive. Contents insurance for an absence of more than thirty days may involve changing insurance company, and might have substantial exclusions.
And will she be able to get a visa or entry stamp for long enough? Don't most places limit tourists to 90 days and get very arsey if you overstay?
To the point they won't let you back in, which would be terrible.
Of course, if it all goes well for the full three months, you realise that it'll probably set a precident for future years.
I bet his comments of "she needs the company, it will be nice for her to miss the winter" will come back at this time next year too.
Guests should be agreed between the two of you and if one says no and the other says yes then the no should win out because no one should be imposed upon in their own home.
In your shoes I would not let dh be dismissive of your feelings and if he is then you have to look at where your future lies. If you really dont want this and he insists, then he is a pretty shitty husband.
I would also make absolutely clear that she is his guest, not mine and I would take no responsibility for her.
Well said, Louise!
He's a massive arse.
I'm sure that the school might have some places you could help out between Jan - March
I really don't think the OP ought to 'solve' the problem by finding things to do that take her out of the house. It's her house!
How about you suggest that rather than having her to stay for three months in one go, she comes over to see you two or three times in the year for much shorter breaks. Would that work? Have you got any exciting local festivals or anything near you she'd enjoy?
Are you sure she would even want to stay for three months? It is likely that she would find the situation just as difficult and would be happier going back earlier. Your DH seems to be making the decision on behalf of everyone involved.
Mr Rected and Crucru put the point very well. The tone of some of these posts is very patronising towards this elderly lady
Just tell him 'no' for goodness sake, unless, of course he's prepared to be at home with her for three months! You shouldn't have to reel off lots of reasons why - the fact that you don't want a house guest for three months should enough. Would he be prepared to entertain YOUR mother for three months??? If my DH was this unreasonable I'd bloody divorce him!
Apple - would you want to 'entertain' your MiL everyday for 3 months when she doesn't want to do any of the things that would normally 'entertain' visitors? Particularly if you found her over fussy and stubborn?
Have you actually experienced living with your MiL for any extended period of time, without having had any say in the matter?
Well it sounds as if you have made it clear to DH and he is under no illusions. Difficult enough anyway, if he is away one week in three it doesn't bear thinking about. Most adult women staying under another roof for more than a fortnight start to feel like a 5th wheel or bored or dependent. I bet MIL might have her own opinion.
Has he been got at by his sister?
3 hours is enough with my partners Mum (seriously).
But if you get on with her OK, I imagine 3 weeks is bearable, especially if everyone else is around for extra company.
3 months seems a ridiculous amount of time to have anyone stay. Anything longer than a month would make someone no longer a guest in my book, but a member of the household.
I couldn't handle that at all and I do feel for you.
I am sure she's a lovely lady but all jokes aside, if the nicer members of my partners family were to stay longer than a few weeks my hair would be well and truly pulled out.
Just tell him you can't do it. If he needs reasons, explain you have to do your own thing and don't have the time to entertain someone else.
Wow....your husband waves his hand and you just give in. Frankly, if you behave like a doormat then don't bitch when people walk on you.
Does he wave his hands in the style of Obi Wan Kanobi -" oh that can be sorted out
these are not the droids you are looking for ".
In our house hand- waving does not confer any kind of special over-ruling powers, it must be disappointing for you to find that your husband gets to impose his wishes on you in such a condescending manner.
erm if he is determined she comes for the 3 months, then agree, but then book yourself a flight back to the UK with DD1. Not your problem.
Get this sorted out NOW, before he gets even more entrenched in this insane idea. No. Just NO.
Otherwise, don't come running back here in February moaning that it's all gone tits-up!
OP I do wish you would not give up/give in so easily. Would be worth continuing the argument to avoid 3 difficult months. And the same again next year, probably.
Another point to consider: are you in the southern hemisphere? Reason being that you said your MIL doesn't like the heat. Well if she doesn't like the heat, she'd probably prefer the UK winter to the wherever-you-are summer, wouldn't she? Surely! Just remind him that she doesn't like the heat. A LOT.
And that they don't get on.
Did you try telling him that you would go back to the UK with your DD1 instead of her if she insisted on staying? Because I think that is actually a VERY good plan.
But I see that he has "allowed" you to leave MIL's return date as optional - so I would insist that the earliest he gets to change the date for her return is 3 days before she's due to leave, i.e. 7th Jan. Any deviation from that and you'll be off to the UK instead.
Headless the reason I suggested the OP organise courses and other stuff to do outside the home is both for her benefit. It will also give weight to OPs case that she isn't there simply to do her DHs entertaining for him while life goes on for him as nornal.
He will need to shoulder his share responsibility for entertaining her too.
It's only fair if he imposes this on her.
I think the issues around her home insurance and medical insurance are well worth exploring.
I would insist that DH takes ALL available leave from work during her visit (as he is so insistent that it is no prob having her) - yes that means he isn't around for the rest of the year to go away with you but as he is such a selfish twerp that should please you immensely.
Then for 4-5 weeks of her stay he is entertaining her. I would absolutely insist on this, and if he times it for when DD is leaving for uni you can go to UK for nice extended hols on your own leaving the pair of them to it.
Other posters are loading the guilt by saying that they hope their children will want to spend time with them when they are old, they are being disengenuous, as obviously in this case it is not 'their children' but one child-in-law alone who is taking on the responsibility of entertainment manager.
Why on earth were you having a 'discussion'???
You don't want to do it - the answer to her staying from 3 months is NO!!!
End of conversation.
He's already primed her for a 3 month stay and that is how long she will stay for.
You need to tell him that if she doesn't fly back with DD on 10th Jan then you will be and he can deal with HIS mother all on his own.
Don't back down - NO is NO!!
I think home insurance only runs for about 6 weeks once property is empty. Also MIL broke her hip while on hols, v expensive!
I like the idea of asking DH whether he would prefer his DM or you to fly back to the UK in January.
olgaga, yes, I see what you mean and I don't disagree per se. I just think it would look a bit as though she was finding excuses to stay out of MIL's way.
And on principle, I don't think she should be made to feel as though she can't relax and hang out at home because she has to worry about MIL.
But I do take your point.
Do those courses. Enjoy them and make the most of them. MIL will be at home, so there will be someone there who can get the dinner on, shop for bits, clean, tidy etc. on the days you are at your course. How fantastic that she can facilitate your studying and make life easier for you in that way
Presumably you will have to shut yourself away some evenings to study at home too, so dh can bear the full weight of entertaining her then too.
Hell no. Three hours is enough with mine never mind three months.
No. No no no no no no no.
God I'd go on sabbatical. Get DH to take time off work and look after her. You can head off on a 3 month cruise or something.
Seriously though, it is massively unreasonable to ask this of you.
In effect your H is saying that he cares about whether the company would be good for her, but he doesn't care about whether it would be good for you.
If he insists, make yourself other plans.
Jux is spot on - if you can't avoid the situation, make it work to your advantage.
Go do all those things that you don't do now because someone has to be home for DC/shop/cook/clean..... after all, you have a live-in nanny/cook/help for 3 months, what's not to like?!
And, make sure your husband has 'quality time' with his mum by going out with the DC at least once a week, and leaving them to their own devices.
I have stayed with my mil for months at a time, with dc. She managed by going about her daily business, cooking what she wants, basically having her life and I fitted in.
She was rather controlling about the washing machine but otherwise fine. I took the dc out most days and had a hire car.
If she came to me, I would do the same, apart from control freakery about white goods. Big thing on the wall with what is happening, either tag along or stay home/ do what you want. If you don't like the food, the fridge is over there
My dm stayed once overseas and didnt want to meet my friends, grew angry and upset when I went anyway ( toddler group!) threw a toddler tantrum when the daily mail was delivered late at the club, and clearly wanted to go home. Such a shame really, as the dc and I were looking forward to her coming. She made herself unpleasant and I really have no idea why. I asked her and she said she just wanted to go home.
Here is a suggestion to you OP - can you get your DD to plant the seed in your MILs mind when they are travelling over that she would really really appreciate Granny's help on the way back and that it would be so much easier if Granny came back with her after the Christmas & New Year Celebrations are over?
Could your daughter do that on the flight over? Granny then just has to say to your DH "Well, I had agreed with DGD that I'd be travelling back with her to help her through the airport" - would that work do you think?
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