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just been given the guilt trip, how to approach parents?

(8 Posts)
GirlWithTheMouseyHair Fri 05-Aug-11 12:16:08

DH is right now in Santa Monica being interviewed for a job which would mean us moving to California for probably a few years, taking our 3yrold and new baby with us.

We haven't decided whether he'd accept it or not, there are stillmany unknown factors not least how much he'll be paid and what the relocation settlement will be, but they should make a decision quickly so we can start thinking about it seriously.

Obviously our major downpoint would be moving away from family and friends, especially just after having our second child. My parents have been incredibly hands on and brilliant with DS, he stays at theirs regularly so I can work and has a great relationship with them.

I've just had a phone call from my Dad saying "I think you ought to know that your mum is very upset at the prospect of you moving to the states. She's been very tearful over it all. Just thought you needed to know that". I don't know what to say, we're spending the day with them tomorrow and of course it will come up. We're obviously trying to consider everyting and have already said one of the major conditions is DH getting paid enough to we can rent a big enough place with a spare bedroom so family and friends can come for extended stays, and we're able to save enough money for me and the kids to come home twice a year. We know we don't want to emigrate so there will definately be a time limit.

This is recurring theme in our family, if my mum is upset at me or my brother my Dad lays on the guilt trip. He's making it sound like I haven't considered her feelings which of course I have (and in my turn am a bit heartbroken because we are close). I would have been very surprised if she WASN'T upset but now feel like I can't even make an objective choice because they're laying on the guilt.

I don't know whether to just avoid the whole conversation tomorrow - DH is still at interview stage after all, no guarantees of getting the job and no guarantees he'll take it. I'm worried if it gets brought up I won't be sympathetic but will get defensive and bring up the fact that THEY moved to Sri Lanka when I was 2 months old for 3 years and then to Nigeria when my brother was 2 months old for 4 years - my GP were lucky to see us every 18months - 2years!

Ugh, any advice welcomed....

MindtheGappp Fri 05-Aug-11 12:29:05

You've got to do what's right for your family. If you don't accept the job because of emotional blackmail from your parents, you will regret it now and long after their gone. You've flown the nest, your dad gave you away to a new man.

If you go, spin all the advantages to them, and reassure them that it is temporary (even if it might not be). You can keep in touch with Facebook and Skype - set it all up beforehand if they are not computer literate.

What a fantastic, holiday-of-a-lifetime they will be able to have with you!

As far as tomorrow is concerned, be fairly low-key about your DH's chances.

GirlWithTheMouseyHair Fri 05-Aug-11 12:39:45

thanks, it's tough because it's made me feel like they think I wouldn't take their feelings into consideration. It must something all emigrating families consider and go through isn't it?!

MindtheGappp Fri 05-Aug-11 12:43:07

It is, but you have to focus on the next generation. As you said, they did that at your age.

They really shouldn't be trying to hold you back.

I think you should put them out of the equation when making your decisions.

Are they in a position to visit you there, financially and health wise?

GirlWithTheMouseyHair Fri 05-Aug-11 12:46:52

yes, both. Though we want to make sure we have enough money for us to come home and to pay our family's way when they visit us too, and have the space so they can stay comfortably for a decent amount of time.

When DS was born my parents lived in the south of france, they've since moved back because of my dad's work rather than anything else but us being in south london and them in sussex has meant we see them a lot so of course they've become very attached to DS and are really excited about DC2. We used to skype regularly when they were in France

They're in their early 50's, mum works from home, dad travels a lot for work so financially and health wise there are no reasons why they can't come and visit.

empirestateofmind Fri 05-Aug-11 12:59:37

Both of our sets of parents were very supportive of our moving to Asia. I am sure they were gutted but they put a brave face on and talked about the positives.

It sounds like your parents have had plenty of adventures- they can hardly complain when you want to do the same.

Do you think they moved to Sussex because you were in London and they thought you would be staying there?

GirlWithTheMouseyHair Fri 05-Aug-11 13:06:12

No, they'd settled for life in France then the crash happened, my dad needed to work for someone else again (he was running his own business), went for many jobs, most of which were actually London based, then accepted one in Sussex...even then they tried to keep "living" in France but it just wasn't financially viable. They did however rent a flat within walking distance of us when DS was born, and they were amazing life savers throughout.

I am really close to them and I am also upset at the prospect of being on the other side of the world to them, but we've talked about living abroad since before we married (we volunteered in Malawi together before our wedding and nearly stayed to take proper jobs) so this isn;t exactly a bolt out of the blue

kakapo Fri 05-Aug-11 23:48:50

'your dad gave you away to a new man' <splutter> please tell me that is a joke?!

Girlwiththemouseyhair, if it was me, I would try to clear the air with a phone call before seeing them. Just a short breezy one that implied the reaction was way over the top, seeing how your DH isn't even past the interview stage. And then refuse to discuss it further until things are a bit closer.

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