Would you ever live next door to your parents or your in-laws?
For Kim and Kanye it’s not a problem, in fact they moved in with Kris Jenner while their house was being renovated, and Kim didn’t want to leave. Now Kris has purchased the house across the street from the duo, so she can visit the grandkids — and her favorite daughter — whenever she wants.
In Better Things, Pamela Adlon lives next door to her mom, or “Phil,” as she calls her. Good for the grandkids, bad for Pam’s character.
According to parenting site Romper, living next to mom and dad is no good. They do bring up some good points, like will your parents actually let you be the parent?
“After being in the role of parent for so long, they might have a bit of a hard time stepping into the role of grandparent. You know, the stage where you do less disciplining and more shameless spoiling. Now, honestly, I'd be all for that stage. That sounds like fun,” they write.
They can stick their nose in your business easily — and show up randomly. Great.
“When you're further away, your family may not know absolutely everything that happens in your daily life,” they advise. “When you're closer, however, there's a greater chance that they do know what is going on in your daily life. If they do not agree with something you are doing in your schedule or a parenting tactic that you've decided to incorporate into your routine, you're going to hear about it.”
You may not want to hear their advice. And they can actually undo some of your hard parenting.
“It can be hard to establish a routine or some good behavior, only to have it undone after a weekend (or even a quick few hours) at grandma and grandpa’s.”
Living next to the parents is a hot button issue online; on The Bump it inspired a thread arguing for both living next to and getting as far away as you can from the extended fam.
“This topic has caused quite an argument between my husband and I this past weekend. My parents were over visiting and the house next door is for sale. It started off as a joke about them maybe moving there, but now it's more serious…They have been looking to move for some time and they would love to be closer to us. I think them living closer would be awesome, especially when the baby comes. My husband, on the other hand, doesn't like this idea at all. I mean, at all,” wrote one blogger. “He thinks that they will invade our privacy or that we'll be forced to hang out all of the time…He just thinks that our lives might turn into Everybody Loves Raymond and he isn't sold on them living next door.”
Apartment Therapy has even covered the topic for house hunters, advising that although parents can be great babysitters, you may be stuck attending every single family event ever for the remainder of time.
“When you live across the country from elderly relatives, it's easy to go a few years without seeing them, and a few years is serious when they're in their 90s. Living nearby, you're able to visit them regularly, keep the visits short if that works best for everyone involved, observe what they need and what improves their quality of life and perhaps provide some of that, advocate for them, and get to know them better,” Apartment Therapy says, adding that “it seems that, within reason, having extended family nearby means there's always someone around to help.”
But providing constant help can keep a person from taking care of themselves. “Living near family, it seems like it would be very difficult/drama-inducing to refuse a relative's request for help, even if you're convinced they need to take responsibility for themselves and even if you are utterly exhausted/broke/worn thin.”
Plus, “nobody wants to attend every family birthday party, anniversary, Mother's Day brunch, graduation, holiday get-together, and more, but if you live in the same town, you don't seem to have much choice.”
Family therapists advise creating boundaries as your best bet if you do choose to live close to your parents. Making sure your mom or mother-in-law respects how you mother, knows her place, doesn’t barge in, and doesn’t intrude on your relationship are a great start.
The Washington Post advised one reader with a monster-in-law to speak up, but put up with it, too.
“Sometimes you will feel annoyed, suffocated and yanked around. And that’s okay, too. This is the price of having so many people nearby who love you and your child. Just recognize when your stress is building and do what you’ve got to do.”
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