MIL Moving In With Us

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Any advice would be appreciated. We are a couple mid-30s that have been married for just 2 years. Well, we have been fortunate not to have major hurdles, but now I have his mother coming to live with us in our home. She had moved to Cali 10 years ago and moved in with her father, who has now been gone for almost 2 years. She is an able bodied and active woman in her 60s. She works in California and over a year ago, once her dad passed, their house went into foreclosure due to non payments. She has known for over a year. About 10 months ago, she had one of her son's, his wife (who was pregnant) move in with her because they couldn't afford a bigger place with their expected child. This son did not contribute to any of the house chores/expenses (water, electric, food). MIL is the type who always wants to be center of everything and be the "fun" one. Friends or family visit and she lives near Disneyland, so she would pay for EVERYONE to go (we never went because its not our thing). She loves going out to eat, doing day trips, etc. I have noticed her handling finances is very poor. My husband is the oldest out of the 3 sons and she always goes to him with her problems, etc. We live in Arizona. Well now the house has been sold, she cant afford to rent it from the new owners. She has decided moving in with us is what she needs to do as its cheaper to live in Az than Cali. She is bringing her two big dogs with her as well. My husband and I have just started trying for a child and if we don't have one in a year, then look into adoption. When I talked with her about moving in, she told me she was going to put her things in storage in Cali. I told her that would probably be best because the spare bedroom is furnished. She said she wanted to bring her big bed and desk and I told her theres unfortunately no room. The other room is hunting/office/catch all and we are already over maxed with furniture pieces that we have been getting rid of. The bedroom set in there now are one of a kind and a brand new mattress so selling it off is not an option. She said she understands. Fast forward a month later and her move in date has jumped from Nov to Oct 1. She calls my husband and says her boyfriend and her will be bringing a U-Haul with some of her things and the boyfriend will only stay the night then head back to Cali the next day. I asked my husband what things? He says he doesn't know. Both he and her can not give me any definite answer on: is she going to get a new job while here? How long is she thinking of staying? He always tells me, "we will figure it out when she gets here, or don't worry about it." So after being frustrated by no answers and she didn't call me back (I work nights at a hospital) I texted her and asked what all she was bringing that required a UHaul. She said just her bed, desk, clothes and pressure cooker. So I guess we are supposed to put our stuff in storage? I asked how long is she planning on staying? "I have no plan." I informed her that we are planning on having a baby or adopting so I would like to have an idea on what to expect (I am more of a loner/homebody type, she is "lets all have a party at my house just because-gossip queen type") and she said that since she "helped with the downpayment on our home, until we can pay her back, she will need to live with us because the home she wants she cant afford". Now, I understand that a bit, but was under the impression that was a gift/inheritance/payback for my husband. My mother also gave us money for downpayment. When my husband was making very good money, he gave her $20,000+ and a place to stay with his younger brothers in the house he had when she went bankrupt. When I (promise I was polite, but straight to the point) told her I thought that gift was for the above reasons, she said no, she made it clear it was for us to pay her back or for her to move in with us...this was never said to me. If it was, I wouldn't have bought the home. She is a co-signer on our home, I am the main name on the loan. My credit was good and hers was not, so over the years, her credit has been built back due to us making house payments (when economy crashed my hubby lost his home too, hence why hes not on the loan). Our home is too small to have her, all of our animals, and my husband, myself and then a baby. So I feel we are being forced to push off kids. After this conversation, I came out of the bedroom and my husband wanted to know what I was texting to his mom. I read the texts to him. He said his mom called him crying and all upset about "how mean I was to her." I asked if I sounded mean in those texts, he said no, that's not the point. Point is why did I have to contact her and stress her out?" When I tried to talk to him, he was mad and just yelling, saying that she has nowhere to go and why cant I understand that? I told him I understood that, and shes welcome to come here, but I want to know if shes planning a temporary or long term kind of thing. Then he just stopped talking to me and his mother ignored my message of trying to tell her I am sorry if I came off rude, I just want to know what the game plan is and let her know our plans. That was 2 weeks ago. She still wont talk to me (Im ok with that) but its caused a rift in my husband and I. When I try to discuss it with him, he says hes "not picking sides" "not getting involved" "doesn't want to talk about it". Luckily I do work part time, nights and generally 12 hour shifts on the weekends. I am already feeling tension rising more and shes not even here yet. I am trying to figure out ways to be away from home because the longest she has stayed with us is 4 days and I was stressed out by her antics the last 3 visits. A cousin of theirs came into town with her two kids to visit their parent and MIL planned to come stay with us while they were in town and offered to have them stay 2 nights with us, BEFORE speaking to us. When they arrived, she gave them a tour of our home without asking and then later on their visit, when the cousin couldn't find her necklace, MIL brought her into our bedroom to go through my jewelry box and find something to wear. Its things like that the annoyed me. I had rescued a dog that was relatively new on another visit, and told her don't leave the front door open because the dog will run. Two hours later, she comes to the backyard to tell me the dog and another are gone, because she went out the front door "and forgot to shut the door." Luckily the neighbor helped me catch them. The other personality issue is that I like to talk, just not 25/7. She goes on and on and my husband more than once has had to tell her to "just stop". I just don't know if this is me venting, needing advice, etc. I know my husband and I need to talk, I need to find a way for him to listen to me without sounding like I am attacking his mom. I don't want to burn this relationship because my husband is very close to her, but Im just frustrated and feel like since I have an "pause and out plan B" (my mother lives 20 min away and some of my horses are at her ranch and our house, so I go between) and she has spare room (But cannot stand my MIL long term-already thought of that!) that I may just move back in there if it gets too stressful because I feel like I look like the bad person and my husband isn't backing me up. (PS I did learn that she told my husband that I agreed for her to bring her desk and bed and that I told her I would find a place for my things- that I told him was 100% not true AND she has planned a trip to Utah on Oct 8 and wants me to watch her dogs). Advice?

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  1. exscapegoat's Avatar
    It's reasonable to want to know how long she's staying and what her plans are. Before she moves in you and your husband need to talk about boundaries, such as how long she can stay for, house rules, etc.
  2. modfern's Avatar
    Few members read the blogs. Come over to the main forum and post there.
  3. rjalmaza's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by modfern
    Few members read the blogs. Come over to the main forum and post there.
    Boundaries between parents and child living with them should be set before they stay with them.
  4. EvilEvilDIL's Avatar
    You wanting to know some answers and timelines is reasonable. That your DuH is mad at you for asking these questions, is a huge red flag. You should stop trying for a child with your husband (double up on birth control that you control) for now until you know where you stand. I'm sorry you need to be here. Welcome.
  5. BlueBird's Avatar
    It's completely normal to want to know when a guest plans on leaving. Your DH is deflecting on you.He wants to save his mommy, even at your expense. Stop trying for a baby until you both can get into couples counseling.

    Sart setting boundaries now. Text her (include your husband in the chat) how long she has to stay and some ground rules (don't invite guest without asking ,knock before entering, no rearranging furniture). Make it clear that this is still Your house and she needs to respect you as suck. Beggars cannot be choosers.

    She only needs a place to stay because SHE screwed up. You aren't responsible for her mistakes. She's not giving you a plan because she doesn't intend on moving out. She is an adult and she needs to take care of herself. She needs to learn the consequences of her actions: she can be homeless or live in YOUR house under YOUR rules. Don't let her move in until you have a move out date. She can show up at your door, but you don't have to let her in.

    If you do let her move in with you, see if you can stay with your mother for a week or two. Most husbands get tired of their mothers real quick when wifey isn't around to act as a buffer.
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