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Thread: Having parent move in...

  1. #1
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    Having parent move in...

    My Dad is due to move in with me in about a month. He will be staying with me until he can locate suitable housing here. Housing is quite scarce, this could take a year or so to happen.

    His husband passed away this Christmas Day, and the month or so of end-of-life stuff wiped out much of their savings, and left Dad with 1/3 his normal income, so he has sold their small home in CA, and fleeing up here to be among family, as best he can.

    He's 79, and in relatively good health. (By which I mean he survived his own recently-broken hip, and the resulant infection, while also battling cancer...). His docs signed off on him as "good as new" this last week, and gave him his first COVID vaccination - his second shot is due the day before he drives up here.

    He is reducing his possessions to just what fits in his small car, and hitting the road.

    Have any of you had experience having your parent move in with you, for time-indefinite? Any tips/warnings?

    Dad and I get along reasonably well, and have as recently as 7-8 years ago gone on 1-2 month long expeditions into the wilderness by boat or AWD vehicle. I know I can probably survive 2 months in a confined space, so in this house we'll have even better odds, I hope :-)

  2. #2
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    I wish you well on this one.


    I wonder if he will have interest in having his owns complete space? Do you have a lot of stairs in your house?Does he have interest in cooking? A microwave and a toaster oven and a rice cooker takes care of a lot of cooking. You donít have to answer these questions just to some thing Iím thinking Of aloud.
    It might be good for you to to define a time when you will sit down and have a meal together. It might be every evening or every other evening.


    Our close friend moved from St. Louis to New Hampshire to live with his sister. They didnít last.

  3. #3
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    It sounds like a difficult time for him so glad you are helping him get through it. After my mother had a debilitating stroke, she lived with us for a brief period. It was pretty awful but sounds like your father is mentally there and doesn't plan on living with you for the long haul. It might turn out to be a special time.

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    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    I helped my mom take care of my dad for 14 years but we lived next door to them. No experience living with a parent. It sounds like you have a big house which should help.

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    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Discuss boundaries ASAP.

    EG:I need time for prayer and meditation by myself in the mornings; I find it stressful to deal with noise chatter at the time as an example. The sound of TV drives me insane, especially if loud, murder is possible.

    What is your routine, your chair, dishwashing/sanitation preference, etc. Discuss shared space and private spaces.

    When either gets aggravated, have a shared code/symbol to indicate a needed timeout.

    I had a niece visiting for a few days; she continually attempted to organize my day so that she could be busy which I found very stressful. A friend tried to start and direct a group meeting that it was my turn to host and already fully planned. In my house, I expect respect.

    As I think about it, once there is a shared space agreement, the rest is emotional.

    It will take time to sort out. The dependent parent - adult child is new for both.
    As Cicero said, ďGratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.Ē

  6. #6
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    The good thing is, if your dad arrives in a month, most of the winter is over, and once spring comes, you'll have so much more opportunity for space and solitude.

    My MIL lived with us for a couple of months (not indefinitely) to recuperate from hip surgery. It honestly wasn't bad. My more recent excursion into house-sharing has been with my adult son (36 y.o.), who has an apartment but prefers waiting out COVID with us in our tiny house. So I share my office with him--I use it during the day and he sleeps on the couch/bed at night. We have fallen into a workable routine and it also is better than I would have thought.

    But as razz said, boundaries are key. (razz, I agree with you completely on the morning routine--I've had to turn my mudroom into a meditation/exercise space, but it works).

    Another thing that has greatly facilitated our happy coexistence is my husband's workshop--a former shed that the previous owner outfitted with a work counter and lighting, and we added a space heater. My husband goes out there to smoke, and when he's not in it, chances are my son is in there listening to music and writing. It's amazing what a detached 8x10 space can do for familial peace and serenity.

    I also agree with pinkytoe in that after the transition and adjustments, you will probably see this as a special opportunity to spend concentrated time with your dad at his age.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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    I have not had experience with this but it sounds like a wonderful plan, and while it is indefinite, it is not permanent, and gives him time and space to find something, and you time and space to help with that process. Well done for making this happen for him.

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    No experience with this up to now. We did have dh's grandfather live in our then-attached mil apartment decades ago. It was "interesting".

    But lots of good advice here. I wish you both well and hope things work out.
    To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer." Mahatma Gandhi
    Be nice whenever possible. It's always possible. HH Dalai Lama
    In a world where you can be anything - be kind. Unknown

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    Bae, hope it is going well with your dad, and that you guys are enjoying sharing space while he finds a new place.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkytoe View Post
    It sounds like a difficult time for him so glad you are helping him get through it. After my mother had a debilitating stroke, she lived with us for a brief period. It was pretty awful but sounds like your father is mentally there and doesn't plan on living with you for the long haul. It might turn out to be a special time.
    We debated on an addition for 90 year old dad before his fall in 2019. I was spinning on my obligation factor I have, the hell or high water it is my responsibility. It never came to that point as only option was Dad ended up in nursing home sadly for 1 year till his passing in October. Looking back I would have been in nursing home had I have brought dad to my house. The caregiver syndrome is real.

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