Anyone else live with parents long-term just for convenience? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 08-03-2012, 01:12 PM - Thread Starter
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I wasn't sure where to post this.


DH, baby girl and I have been living with my parents for 5 years. We first moved in after we were married since we had just moved to the area and were looking for work. I had no idea we would still be here after all this time. DH works full time, I recently stopped working when baby girl came and I plan to work just a few hours a week from home. We get along really well, of course we have arguments and there are some things that drive me nuts, but it has been a good situation for us all. We pay rent, so we're also helping out my parents with their finances. They absolutely love being close by to babysit and see our baby every evening. They both work so I usually have most of the day by myself with baby girl so it's not like they are always around.


I'm torn about whether this is weird and should we really be doing more to look for our own place? Sometimes I'm embarrassed to admit to new friends that we live with my parents. We don't have any debt. We have a lot of savings and we pay rent, so we're not freeloading. It's just more convenient. We only need to have 1 car, since I can borrow a parent's car or just go to the store with them if I can't use DH's car. I like being really frugal, so when I see the amount we pay in rent, which is smaller than anything we'd pay anywhere because of additional expenses, I just can't stomach buying a house or getting a really small apartment, which is what we'd have to do for the same amount.


Things that annoy me are that they have way too much stuff! They are basically pack rats and I dream of the day when I can organize my own kitchen. I also eat very healthfully and they always buy so much food that the whole kitchen is packed with stuff I won't eat. Also, whenever I make dinner, I have to make a huge dinner, I can't ever just cook for us two. These are such dumb things to be annoyed about, but I'm sometimes almost sad when I think about others who have their own kitchens and only need to buy food for 2 people. So dumb, just wondering if anyone else does this. I don't know ANYONE who lives with their parents, so I feel strange about it sometimes.


My parents are wonderful grandparents so I think it will only benefit our baby to be around them, so I'm happy about that aspect. Does anyone have any experience with living with parents for a long time, like with kids growing up, etc? I don't know how long we'll keep doing it.

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#2 of 12 Old 08-04-2012, 02:57 AM
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That seems like a great set-up for all involved. People do this all over the world, as long as there are boundaries and no one is taking advantage of anyone else I think it's awesome.


We sort of do this from time-to-time. We live overseas and have ended up staying at my parents for between two months and five month stretches at times over the past eight years or so. They have an extra car that I contributed $3,000 for about five years ago, and they loan it to me and my sisters when we stay. That $3,000 has more than paid for itself in not needing to rent a car, and they pay for all the maintenance as they use it also and let my sisters use it as well.


For short visits, I buy all the food. The last stay was actually seven months, so I paid $400/ month in rent and bought the food (but I add 5-6 people to the household so I rightfully should pay more). My parents don't actually babysit, and I don't expect them too as they never had such a large brood themselves and it seems like a lot to ask of them now, but they do enjoy playing with the kids.


The in-laws on the other hand just stayed with us for two months, and it was trying. It was meant to be a trial-run, and we all agree that it didn't work out. Not something I want to do long-term as the "who is the mama/papa" drama continued the entire time and they just could not respect our wishes.


Long-answer-short, if you all enjoy it and are benefiting financially you should feel no shame. You may want to ask your parents if you actually are paying enough to off-set the cost your growing family brings--if nothing else to keep the communication open about finances and make sure they are silently annoyed about something, and not secretly funding your family in a way they aren't comfortable with, but can't think of a way to nicely bring up.


Best of luck to you and yours

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#3 of 12 Old 08-04-2012, 02:49 PM
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My hubby and I currently live with my parents and have done for 9 years.  We jointly own the house with them and pay half of the mortgage and bills.  We have our own sitting room and bedroom and share the kitchen and bathroom with them.  When we first moved in I made it very clear that we wanted to have as much autonomy as possible so we have a seperate fridge for our food and cook our own meals.  Is this something you could discuss with your parents?  Maybe they would be open to it.


We first moved in with them in order to save to get married.  After that my parents suggested that we remortgage and change things around in order to give us more of our own space and get us started on the property ladder (the area where we live is very expensive to buy in).  For the most part this has worked out really well. 


For me it was not an unusual move.  My maternal grandparents moved in with us when I was 5 and lived until I was 24.  I cannot even begin to tell you how much my relationship with my grandparents meant to me, how much I learnt from them both and how much I cherish the memories I have of them.  I would never discourage anyone from having a multi-generational household as long as it is working for all parties concerned, which -from what you're saying - it is.

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#4 of 12 Old 08-05-2012, 04:12 PM
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my mom actually moved in with us when i got pregnant so she could watch the baby while i was at work and yes it can be trying but its just such a great situation for all involved.  honestly i hope i can work out a shared living arrangement when my kids are older and having grandbabies.  but really it shouldnt matter who owns the house.  its really just a more  historically natural way to live.

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#5 of 12 Old 08-05-2012, 11:20 PM
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We have seriously thought about doing this.  My concern is are my parents truly happy with the idea or are they saying it's okay because they will do anything to help out.  I think Mothering did an article once and it talked about how three different families did it.  It was really cool, one of my favorites.

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#6 of 12 Old 08-06-2012, 12:05 AM
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My DP and I talk about this frequently, but more about older parents moving in with us.  I hope that we can make it work.  I would love to have a multi-generational home.  As it is now, we all live pretty far from each other and love where we are (for example, we live in the desert, my mama lives near Seattle, and my dad lives in St. Louis... sooooooo different!).  The rest of my family is really close (geographically), like on the same acreage!  My grandma cared for my great-grandma, and my great-grandma told stories to my niece and nephews... I hope to regain that closeness for me and my small family!


We have some friends who successfully live with her parents, going on 4 years now.  I don't know about their finances.  But I know they do "date nights" a couple of nights a week.  This rarely means going out.  They usually set up dinner outside on the patio after their boy is asleep, but it is just the two of them and her parents give them privacy and cook their own meal.  Maybe you could let your folks know that you two need some 'you two' time.  See what they think.  Maybe they volunteer to watch the babe so you could go out or just pretend to...  I think everyone is right, you just have to open up the conversation.  Let your needs/desires be known and make sure theirs are being met as well.


Maybe this helps!  Good luck and stick with it!  I t sounds like the pros outweigh the cons by far!

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#7 of 12 Old 08-09-2012, 09:09 AM
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If the OP and family stay together for many years, the needs/caregiving/financial situation is likely to change, and the balance will shift. My mom has helped me out, on and off, for many years (mainly financially, but babysitting occasionally as well). Now that she is older, we will be moving back in together, and I will be providing the care she needs. I am happy for the opportunity to repay her in this way.

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#8 of 12 Old 08-10-2012, 02:08 AM
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If you ever need to tell people and feel self-conscious about the fact, just say "My parents live with us." instead of "We live with my parents." :) It's the same thing really but give totally different impressions.  Try it and you'll see it differently.

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#9 of 12 Old 08-11-2012, 03:20 AM
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We lived with my in-laws for just under a year, and while there were times I absolutely hated it, I look back and realize it wasn't that bad either. We moved into a family owned condo, so we get a break with rent and stuff, which is nice, but it was also really nice having a solid family unit and them being around if needed, but also we kept to ourselves as well. 

I've played around with the idea of moving when they do, perhaps a house on their land, but not quite sure, plus DH isn't 100% on board being that close to his dad and step-mom again lol.

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#10 of 12 Old 08-14-2012, 05:40 AM
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I actually think this sounds kind of awesome! I live 3.5 hours away from my parents, and it sucks! When I visit them it's usually for like a week at a time, lol (sometimes longer!), and it's soo nice to have some help with my little guy, and I'm happy to help my mom out with random cleaning projects, dinner, etc. All my sibs (4 of them) still live there, so it would be just TOO crowded with my little family there, too! (two bros in high school, two older sisters who are out of high school but still living at home to save money, one's in college.) It'd be sweet to be able to stay with them, if even for a few months, we could save money/get some student loan debt paid down faster if our rent was, say, $200 a month compared to the $850 we pay now!

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#11 of 12 Old 08-14-2012, 05:48 AM
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I grew up this way with a grandma at home. Other grandma and grandpa were at my aunt's. We don't currently live in the same house with parents, but we rent from my mom & live 2 blocks away with my sister a few blocks in the other direction. It works well this way, but not sure about how things would go if we were in the same house.

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#12 of 12 Old 08-14-2012, 07:01 AM
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I am living with DBF's dad at the moment ever since we found out I was pregnant.  At the time, there was me, DBF, DBF's dad, DS, DBF's teenage niece who is under DBF's dad's guardianship, and the niece's mom (who was somewhat troubled). It is still all of us except for his niece's mom. I really don't mind living here but... I understand about the whole packrat thing. DBF's dad is a hoarder and freaks out whenever I ever "touch" his items or his late wife's items (the cabinet hasn't been cleaned out in over 10 years since his wife has been gone.) He freaks out if I clean because I usually change the setup of things. According to DBF, his dad hates change with the house. shrug.gif There are things all over the place and they never clean. I am the only one who cleans with sometimes the help of DS. And it has been a mess since before I moved in. The Kitchen and the bathrooms are the worst! The only shower that we use has black mold on the edges. Not very hygenic but what can I do... The kitchen has stuff everywhere. I have to make space before I can make something for dinner for the family. I clean the tables off and then the next day it is taken over with food, crumbs, empty boxes,...ugh very frustrating. I am very OCD. I can't leave messes be like that. BUT besides that annoyance, it is convenient for us to live here. I like the somewhat crazy, closeknit family feel. lol.

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