AIBU to not be excited by PIL news?(71 Posts)
PIL came up from Yorkshire this weekend. They stayed with SIL who lives near us and moved up here (Northumberland) about 3 years ago when she got married.
We went round for lunch today to SILs and PIL announced they are selling up and moving up here with grandma. SIL and DH are delighted. PIL are delighted. I just feel a bit ....... not delighted.
DH was moving up here temporarily for work when we met. That was 9 years ago and we got married and he stayed here. I am from here but my parents are now dead. We have DS 3 and DD 9m. As I said SIL moved up when she got married and she and BIL (who comes from Durham) have a DD now 8m.
I can understand PIL wanting to be near their children and grandchildren - they are very close to DH and SIL and miss them both. They also adore their grandchildren. I am not sure why I feel a bit apprehensive about it.
I just feel I have been a bit taken over by this family. DH and I had a lovely life before we had children. We did as we liked and had no one else who expected anything of us.
Don't get me wrong, I get on really well with DH's family. I could not ask for nicer in laws. They are kind, funny, don't interfere. I am just not used to being part of a family like this that do lots together. I was an only child. It feels a bit suffocating at times and I have managed that because they live in Yorkshire and we see them about once every month or 6 weeks. I am worrying about how much our lives could become taken over by all of this. AIBU?
Yabu to not sound publicly very excited about it. It’s ok to have your personal doubts and to be careful to still have family time but it is perfectly reasonable of them to move.
I'm opposite. I chose to move near dh's big family when we relocated from abroad. I'm an only child with no close relatives. I love having the support and backup of family.
In my opinion, YAB a bit U. Think about how nice it would be for your kids and DH!
I was very pleased by the news when they told us. I wouldn't want them to think otherwise because it would upset them. I just feel really apprehensive about it.
DH thinks it will all be fine- which is just DH 🙂
And I know you are right about DH and the DC. DS is already excited. He asked tonight if they are living in our house. That would be a bit much 🙂
I don’t blame you, I’d feel the same. That bit of distance keeps things a little more manageable. You’re going to have to have firm words with DH about getting them to phone first & not just turn up and that you don’t intend to start Family Sunday lunch every week or anything. If you’re not really firm, you’ll end up suffocating.
I think you're being unreasonable to expect your in laws to keep their distance from their daughter, son and grandchildren - they are clearly a really close family, and just because you didn't grow up with that, doesn't mean you can't learn to like it now.
Just make sure your DH doesn't give them a house key.......
I live in the same town as my parents, and the thousands of hours of free childcare they have provided has been invaluable. I'm not sure how we'd ever have coped without them.
Plus, they have such a beautiful relationship with my dds - the girls have taught them how to use iPhones and iPads, and my eldest facetimes them once every few days now that she's at uni.
I feel sad for my parents' other grandchildren, my brother's kids, that they lived further away growing up and so haven't had the benefit of such a close relationship with their wonderful grandparents.
When did your own parents die, LuluJakey1?
Could it be that your feelings are stemming from that loss (no matter how long ago) rather than concern about your in-laws moving closer?
Sometimes you can feel trepidation brought about by change, but not fully identify where that trepidation is coming from. There is nothing underlines the lack of close family, quite as much as seeing someone else's close family come together, BUT try to remember that this family are your family too!
It does sound as if you genuinely like them, and that liking is reciprocated ... try to feel happy about the move, and very soon I think you'll find that you don't have to try!
Another thing to remember is that as we age it's good to be near our children. I never want to be a burden to mine, but it would be doubly hard if they had to travel in an emergency or I got into a fix because no one was nearby to keep an eye on me.
DH and I moved 600 miles from my parents for his work. My parents ended up selling and moving near us. As they got older I was so happy they were near by. I was able to keep an eye on them easily and when Dad was terminal it was wonderful that I could be involved with his care and be with them when he died. And it would have been horrible to have been so far away from Mum when she started experiencing dementia!
I've seen first hand what can happen to the elderly when they live an inconvenient distance from their children. It's not pretty!
I think you’re being a little bit precious. I mean this in the nicest possible way, because I know exactly what it’s like to want distance and to want maintain that sense of self. Honestly, I fight with it too (I left my entire family behind in my home country to move to my DH’s country!).
I think maybe the anticipation may be worse than the reality, your PILs sound decent enough. Also, it’s up to you and your DH to set the tone. I wouldn’t ever let it get to the point where your DH has to choose between you and them. But I also see no harm in absenting yourself if they come over or want you all to go over but you just don’t fancy it. If you mean no ill hopefully you’ll be able to convey that, and they will just come to see that your boundaries are different from DH’s and that’s all. It’ll be fine, if your intentions are good and you convey them correctly.
If I were in this position, I would be very happy for my OH and overall positive about the whole thing, but I would also feel niggling apprehensions about some of it. I love my in-laws and it would be lovely for my OH but like you, I had a very different sort of family dynamic and I'd be apprehensive of how much space I might have afterwards. It's not unreasonable to recognise that even if a change is positive, it's likely to have an impact on your lifestyle.
YANBU OP. My PIL's live 5 minutes away. FIL is an angel in human form. MIL is the devil incarnate. I wouldn't be jumping for joy in your shoes either.
PS: I don't think it's a coincidence that my phone just tried to autocorrect MIL to milestone!
YANBU to wonder how this is actually going to play out and have concerns about it. I would have private concerns too. It signals a potential shift in your family dynamic and when things are working well that can make people nervous. But YABU if you show that concern to them (which it sounds like you haven't and don't want to do) and also if you don't acknowledge that those concerns may not come to pass and this could end up being one of the best things that happens to your family.
My dad died before I met DH and my mam died 4 years ago. Southbound you are right about just being used to a different family dynamic.
Annieanon That is exactly the knd of thing that I am apprehensive about- them just turning up regularly or Sunday lunch becoming a weekly event, or DH giving them a key.
As it is, I don't always do everything DH does with them so that probably is a good thing. I think they 'get' me as well and are very understanding of people not all being the same.
It will be quite a wrench for them to move - they are very involved in a number of things down there - their church, several charitis and community groups, all their friends are there. They live in a lovely house and will have to sell it, and grandma's house. She is looking forward to living with them apparently.
They are coming back in a fortnight to look at houses. It could all take ages to happen.
DW and I moved 2 hours drive away from where we both grew up. DW's Mum moved near us. My DF didn't. As they got older my DF was a major worry as he lived alone. My MIL wasn't. In the long term you may be very grateful for this. In the short term, it should be OK as you seem to get on well with your PILs, but I'd lay down some boundaries at the outset about no casual dropping in orsimilar.
And I do think they will build their own circle up here involving themselves in a church and getting involved in things. They are very sociable - much more so than me!
I completely understand how you feel. I really relate to what you've written, being taken over by DP family. It's overwhelming and suffocating. I've always been very independent until I met and married DH. Then I moved to his country (which has a very different culture, where PIL are very interfering and need to know everything- down to the smallest detail-oriented about our lives) DH family all live quite close and we're expected to go there all the time.. it feels like I'm losing my identity. A little (or a lot!) of space from the relatives is always a good thing for you to develop a healthy relationship with your DP. Good luck. Hope it works out for you!
I think that YABU to feel resentful at the prospect of PIL moving to be near their children and grandchildren. Why would they NOT want to be near their family?
You say DH and I had a lovely life before we had children. We did as we liked and had no one else who expected anything of us - but life is changing. It’s not just you and DH anymore; you now have two small children who will benefit from a positive relationship with their grandparents. And who knows, you may benefit from having them nearby too - babysitting etc.
Life will continue to change too - in 10 or 20 years, when PIL are elderly and infirm, you’ve now been saved from weekly (or more) trips down to Yorkshire to see them, solve crises and help them with their shopping etc. Actually, I think they’re being unselfish coming to you.
You get used to it and after a while it becomes nice. I am an only child,moved to live with my DH in his hometown and he has a large family. I struggled at first found it all too busy and hectic and too much politics but now I'm used to it and it's nice for our DC.
You need to talk to your DH or this could become hell for you. Have a chat with him about what you do and don't want. It is easier to set a few rules at the start and then relax them if it going well than it will be to try and impose some boundaries later.
I did this when my DM moved to my street - I set 3 rules for her which she stuck to and it worked quite well.
This is your home too - you are entitled to privacy.
But fingers crossed this will actually be great news in the long run and everyone will benefit - keep an open mind!
Look, you set the boundaries here. Yes, there might be expectations that you will see them every two minutes - but you can manage those and negotiate a compromise. You don't have to just cave in to every demand that is made of you - you can draw some lines. You are entitled to do so, and you should.
I live a long way from my in laws and I wish they were closer. Not because I like them but because they are only manageable in the smallest doses. So I could imagine being able to cope with Sunday lunch in a way that I can't cope with a 3 or 4 day visit. I could also be way more useful to them if I were close by.
I think you are correct and they will very quickly establish themselves into a big new network of church and hobbies. And also correct that it could all take ages.
My top tip is to not get into any routines unless you want to. So don’t get sucked into every Sunday afternoon having tea together etc. Keep contact flexible and that way it stays manageable. Who knows, maybe they will be a godsend in terms of helping out with childcare or gardening etc?
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