Living with parents after getting married – how messy can it be? Read this mom’s story and see if you can relate.
What can you read in this article?
The setup before getting married
3 truths about living with your parents after getting married
The struggles of asserting yourself to the grandparents
Being a wife and a mom at the same time is already difficult, what more if you add being a daughter?
We all hear different stories of extended families in a household due to various reasons. Some because they started building a family at a young age that they don’t have enough money yet to rent their own place.
There are some who can’t leave because their parents are too old already and they don’t have anyone else to take care of them, but there are also some who needed their parents to stay with them so they can have someone to help them in taking care of the kids while they work.
Sure, they do get some benefits out of it, like fewer expenses and more time to do other activities, but it can also get really messy sometimes – well, most of the time, actually. How did I know? Let me tell you my story.
An unconventional setup
Image from iStock
I’m Sarrah, 31, an only child, happily married for 3 years now, mom of a bubbly 2-year old daughter, and my parents live with us, primarily because they don’t have anywhere else to go to.
I grew up in a small town in Albay and my family has been renting a house my whole life, so after a couple of years of working in Manila, I decided it will be better if I just bring them here so we could just all live together and we don’t have to pay a separate house rent anymore.
It was the most ideal thing to do, at least at that time, and our setup was good. We don’t miss and worry about each other anymore and we can finally be together on special occasions. It was absolutely perfect! Until I got married.
There was no way my parents could afford the monthly house rent and the electric bill if I leave them. My mother had a small sari-sari store at home but it’s only enough to cover their daily expenses.
Maybe if I was more financially capable, there would be no problem. I’d continue to support them while also helping my husband in our monthly expenses. But I wasn’t, plus we also had a baby on the way.
Going back to the province was also not an option for them because that would also require a bit amount of money so they could start again, which, unfortunately, I didn’t have and still doesn’t have.
So naturally, we chose the easier way that would spare us some money – living together on one roof.
3 Truths about living with your parents after getting married
As much as I love my parents, being a daughter and being a mom all the time has its ups and downs. Here are 3 things I’ve learned about living together with your parents after getting married.
1. Grandparents will always have something to say about how you raise your kids.
They just couldn’t help it. I remember how my mom used to react and comment whenever my husband throws our daughter in the air when they play. Miracle our baby was only about a year old then. Every time, my husband would feel bad and just stop playing with our baby.
Until one day, I decided I couldn’t take it anymore. I told my mom to just let my husband play and take care of our baby in whatever way he prefers because he’s the father so he knows what he’s doing, and if there’s anyone who needs to talk to him when things go wrong, let it be me.
Image from iStock
I would still notice her cringe every now and then when my husband would do some rough play with Miracle, but at least she doesn’t comment anymore.
To add to that, there’s also my father’s endless reminder about Miracle climbing the tables or anything high as if we’re not responsible enough to look after her.
Don’t get me wrong, I understand they’re just concerned and there’s nothing wrong about that, but sometimes, I couldn’t help but feel that we’re being robbed of the opportunity to commit mistakes and grow as new parents.
2. There can only be one king and queen in a castle.
If there’s one thing I appreciate and thankful about my parents, it’s that they let me and my husband be the final decision-makers in the house.
Although most of the time, they don’t agree with us so they would give their opinion and sometimes even push them to our throats, but at the end of the day, they would just respect our decision and keep their thoughts to themselves.
One time my father wanted to bring a neighbor in our unit to have some drinks, I told him it was fine without consulting my husband.
Image from Shutterstock
When my husband learned about it, apparently, he wasn’t okay with it because he has shift at work (he works from home) and was afraid of the noise they might cause while drinking.
He works in a contact center so it’s important that there’s not a single noise in the living room. I didn’t know what to do because I already gave my go signal, but I also didn’t want to make my husband feel bypassed.
In the end, I decided to just tell my mom instead and locked myself in our room before my father and his friend arrive because I was so ashamed and didn’t want to see my father’s reaction. They ended up drinking someplace else. The next day, me and my mom just laughed about it.
3. Whether you like it or not, everybody has to adjust.
I guess this is the hardest thing about living with your parents or in-laws or just other people in general. You can’t expect them to do all the adjustments.
At some point, you also have to adjust. You have to match your behavior to the personality of the person you live with.
There was this instance when my mom and my husband had a huge fight because my mom got offended by my husband’s joke. It wasn’t the first time, so I guess my mom got fed up and decided not to talk to my husband for a few weeks even though he already apologized multiple times.
Image from Shutterstock
He felt really bad that my mom wouldn’t talk to him, so I told him to just give her some time and reminded him to be sensitive moving forward, because, at the end of the day, it’s still my mother we were talking about. That’s when he started to be more considerate of my mom’s feelings when joking around.
Overall, if I set aside these challenges, I’m still thankful that my parents are there, especially that both me and my husband are working. I could have some time for myself from time to time and get enough sleep or just watch Netflix.
Hubby and I could go on a date and not worry about who will take care of our daughter especially now that we can’t bring her outside due to the pandemic.
It’s true that living with parents or in-laws is not the most ideal setup and definitely not advisable, but if you have to, just remember to set boundaries and always be patient and calm. No conflict cannot be solved by peaceful conversation.