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Am I being unreasonable by not letting dd in my in-laws' home? *update in post #70*

post #1 of 85
Thread Starter 
My husband seems to think that I'm being cruel and unreasonable, but my thinking is that, unless some serious changes take place, my daughter will never set foot in that house.

My inlaws are hoarders. I'm not using that term loosly. The thing that makes this even worse is that they hoard cats. It's sad and sickening. I've even came close to calling the health department, but if my hubby ever found out, I can see it being the end of our marriage as he's so protective of them. They have 32 cats in a doublewide home. Not all of them are fixed, they have fleas, and don't even get me started on the overwhelming smell as soon as you walk in. Before we had dd, I had to leave my purse in the car to keep it from getting 'marked'. The house is gross and dirty. There are 4 cats that dont get along with the others that are kept in one room with a litter box, 2 more that dont get along in another room with a litter box, and the rest are all in the living room/kitchen/dining room, which, as its a doublewide, isnt a very big space, with 2 more litter boxes. The cats are everywhere.

Dh seems to think I'm overreacting, and I had to fight like crazy to keep us from going there on Christmas. Actually, when we didn't his dad said his feelings were hurt and almost didn't come over. They all think that 'just a little while won't hurt her'. I've been using the 'shes too young' excuse, but I don't know how long it'll be until I have to just put my foot down. Am I the crazy one?
post #2 of 85
No - you are not crazy. That is not unreasonable. If for no other reason than fleas are VERY difficult to get rid of.
post #3 of 85
If you are unreasonable, then I am too. There is no way I'd set foot in a house like that, let alone let my children do so. It's a health hazard.
post #4 of 85
You're being very sensible. 32!?! I don't think the shelter where I got my cat has that many cats at once! At best your daughter would probably end up with a fear of cats if she had to go there.
post #5 of 85
I don't think you're overreacting at all. It's a health hazard!
post #6 of 85
I love cats (I have 3) but couldn't even imagine that many. It is a huge health hazard. I was just watching a episode of some tv show that features hoarders and a couple had 80+ cats in a home (only 40 were still living). It was absolutely disgusting.

There is no way I would allow my children to go to a home like that. I would sit down with my DH and have a very loving non-confrontational talk with him about it. He has to realize that it is not healthy for his parents or for those poor cats.
post #7 of 85
I think youare doing the right thing and protecting your dd. I could xare less about people having their feelings hurt in the situation you described. Further I would very strongly urge you to report the animal situation to animal control (you can do it anonymously if you need to) those conditions as described by you are animal neglect and possibly cruelty. Also most states do not allow more than 4 or up to 7 cats in one residence. I am not trying to be mean to your in laws but is not right that those animals are living in that state (people have a choice at least). Your dh may be so sensitive because he knows that things in general are very wrong over there for lack of a better term and your in laws need serious help. I would never ever at any age let my dd over there until conditions improved greatly.
post #8 of 85
No way are you over reacting, that is such a major health hazzard.
Is there any way you could call the health department without him finding out? Like maybe right after the Electric meter has been read, or a plumber came out or something like that? Then your Dh may not jump to the conclusion that it's you.
post #9 of 85
Maybe not a huge deal, but besides the fleas, exposing her immune system to that many cats at once would be setting her up for major pet allergies down the line.
post #10 of 85
no your not being unreasonable, i wouldn't allow my lo's there either that many cats and litter boxes are deffenately not hygenic.
post #11 of 85
Ok I'm a cat lover. I mean HUGE, love them all, love, love, love! cats. And there is no way in you know what that I'd let my kids in a place like that. I wouldn't go to a place like that. Is there any way to help DH understand that his parents actually have a problem, not that you're not just being mean? Would he listen the pediatrician or a counselor if they told him that many cats indicates an issue? And really, 26 cats to 2 litter boxes? Wowza! This is something that indicates there may be actual legitimate mental issues at play and not only would I not let my children there, I'd really try to make DH see the light to get these people some help.
post #12 of 85
Here is a link to a long list of diseases she could be exposed to.


Ask the pediatrician next time both you and husband are there ... ped will be on your side I think.
post #13 of 85
That many cats that few litter boxes I love cats I have 7 myself 6 outside 1 inside she has her own room due to litter box issues and the kids are not allowed in that room because of the health risks. ie stepping in the poo and pee.

You are definitely not being unreasonable. Breathing in that much amonia is dangerous even to adults.
post #14 of 85
No, you're definitely not being unreasonable. Keep your focus on your dh. Hopefully you can treat this issue with some humor when you discuss it with him, so he doesn't get defensive. But tow the line. You're in the right.
post #15 of 85
you had me at "32 cats"...HAVE MERCY!! There is no way I would go much less force my child to go.
post #16 of 85
I do not think you are being unreasonable at all. I would not take my child into a house like that either. That sounds disgusting and like a health hazard.
post #17 of 85
No I don't think it unreasonable, but I do think you should make a big effort to get your DD to see her grandparents. I know, I know it's their problem why should you have to do the extra work? But really to me family is so incredibly important and you are going to hurt your husband and your in laws feelings when you stay away from their home. Hoarding is like an addiction, and it is very difficult to break. Chances are they had this problem when your husband was growing up and so he is probably defensive of his family. He might even feel your rejection of his parents' home is a rejection of them and by extension, a rejection of him.

Help your inlaws understand that there are just too many pets for you child to be around, but that you want them(the inlaws) around your DD. Plan activities that they can come to, meet them at a park near their home, be proactive about getting time together and you won't have to worry so much about hurt feelings and resentment.
post #18 of 85
Nope, not unreasonable at all! Keep her away! And, for me, they wouldn't be allowed in my house either, because I am deathly allergic to cats. I can't image anything in that house not being covered in cat dander/hair. I'd die if they came over, even if they were showered and in clean clothes.
post #19 of 85
I'd call animal control. That's gotta be illegal, in any jurisdiction!
post #20 of 85
You're not unreasonable. Let your husband know that while you love that he supports his parents and you want to help, your child's health outweights their emotional upset. They are welcome to visit you instead or whatever compromise you can work out - but their home is hazardous.

It is hard to be the person who points out what should be obvious but isn't because of their crazy way of life. But I support you.
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