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How did you move your two families in together?

(10 Posts)
RoyTucker Tue 16-Dec-14 16:24:40

DP and I are ready to move in with each other, we believe our DC would be fine with the idea in theory. We haven't raised it with them yet, and will do so gradually, but we need to decide on the probable details before we talk to them about anything,

The problem is that we would realistically have to move one family into the other's house, rather than start anew. I'm really worried that this will feel wrong to all the children - one set would have to leave their home and go through the upheaval of moving, and the others might feel like their home had been taken over / had guests in it.

Anyone got any advice or tips on what worked or didn't work if you did this please? I think we are going to have to wait, possibly for years, and we will do that if that's what's best for the DC but any thoughts on this would be helpful in case I'm missing out on a solution. Thanks.

lunar1 Tue 16-Dec-14 17:35:37

Is there any way you could do a complete move around of bedrooms in the most suitable house. Decide who would be best where, including you and dp, then get them all decorated and set up. It would cost a bit but nowhere near as much as moving.

Then all the children would be involved in the change. I'd also look at shifting furniture about a bit if anyone has a particular space/chair. That way you could settle into the house again together as a family.

I think it would work in theory if everyone is happy about moving in but I guess it could be hard in the children who live there already. So really I've not been much help!!!

RoyTucker Tue 16-Dec-14 20:38:31

Thanks Lunar. I don't think we could. I've bedrooms but a merge would definitely involve a fair bit of furniture shifting and also putting together the best of our combined possessions rather than one household's stuff remaining intact and the other's being stored. I wonder if that work sufficiently well to make it feel like a merge not a bolt-on?

RoyTucker Tue 16-Dec-14 20:39:15

Could move bedrooms, not could. I've bedrooms.

CalicoBlue Tue 16-Dec-14 22:34:22

When we moved we decided that we needed to move somewhere new. We felt that either of our houses would feel wrong for the family moving in. We have three kids between us.

We made a list of what we needed in a house, ie bedrooms for each child, a play room or kids sitting room, adult sitting room, near to the schools our work etc. Then started looking for a house. We had to compromise, but have been in our new home for 5 years now.

It has not been easy, but I do think it has been easier that it would have if we had moved into one of the existing homes. It would always have been his of my house, now it is ours.

purpleroses Wed 17-Dec-14 08:21:40

Me and my DC moved in to my DP's house, where his DC already lived at weekends. I world always have preferred somewhere new but for practical reasons it did make good sense. One of his DC volunteered to move to a smaller bedroom and another is sharing with my DS.

It has meant a lot of compromises from everyone - my DC have lost the home they had, and his have had to adapt to new people sharing their space, and new house rules and routines. The DSC do still feel very much at home here though, which actually might have been harder to achieve coming part time to a new home. We gave a lot of thought to house rules and routines before we moved in and both tried to make some changes in advance which helped I think. It is going really well now. The kids mostly get alone really well and I think would all say it has been a good thing.
How old are your DC/DSC OP?

RoyTucker Wed 17-Dec-14 16:47:02

Thanks purpleroses, that's incredibly helpful. DC range from 7-15, mine are u-10, DP's over 10 and with him EOW and half the holidays.

Your point about the children who aren't full time resident keeping their home is a good one. We could move either way round but the upheaval for the non-full-time DC could well be more so that's something to consider.

I suspect that DP's youngest might worry about losing out on time with his dad given other children being around (my DC don't see their dad at all) so I would be really careful to try and share out time for DP having time just him and his DC and all of us doing stuff together. Did you have to do this to or did it work differently? Did you have any real issues over different rules? For example I know I'm a bit uptight about all the fizzy drinks DPs kids have (but don't say anything!) and am not sure how I can tell my DC no to this if the other DC are allowed free reign.

Onthedoorstep Wed 17-Dec-14 19:21:34

We moved somewhere new.

In your position I would 'strip off' a lot of my furniture and stuff so that the house feels like there is lots of room for the other family's stuff. Lots of decluttering!

purpleroses Thu 18-Dec-14 10:12:13

That is a similar set up to me - ours were aged 8-15 when we moved in together. DHs house was much bigger than mine so it was the only way we could do it. It also has more bedrooms than other houses of this value, so even if we'd sold both houses we'd not really have been able to get anything with the extra bedroom that we'd have liked.

We did talk through all sorts of house rules in detail in advance - things like what drinks kids can have with each meal, bedtimes, and computer hours. I've had to make some compromises which sometimes means my DCs eat less healthily than I'd like, or spend too long on computers, but DH and his kids have all made compromises too. Making some changes and addressing what are likely to be the hardest rule changes before you even tell the DC that you're moving in together is definitely a good idea, so they don't blame their new step parent for a change they don't like.

Making space for us all to move in and fell at home is something DH has found hard though. He's a natural hoarder of junk and finds it hard to get rid of things. That's probably the thing that's caused more conflict between us than anything else. With hindsight I think I'd have put a bit more pressure on him to really clear stuff out before we moved in, as I get resentful sometimes of having had to pack my entire life into boxes whilst he's still got shed fulls of absolute rubbish things he thinks he might use some day. If you can't have a new house together, a reasonably clear one would be my next best.

MsColouring Thu 18-Dec-14 14:50:04

My dp moved in with me as I owned my house and he was renting so that made sense. My dc are with me nearly full time and his son is with him half the time. It involved my two dc swapping rooms so my dd now has the small room on her own and dss and ds now share the larger room. We spoke to the children beforehand to see how they felt about it. We also had a holiday away first which helped us to see what some of the issues might be and dp and dss had sleepovers so we could get used to being together.

There are things we thought we might need to do like have regular family meetings to discuss things and give our own children some 1:1 time which we haven't felt necessary because everyone gets on. The major challenges were getting used to having 5 of us in a three bedroom house and getting used to dp's interpretation of what housework involves.

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