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Need Advise To Adjust To Joint Family From Nuclear Setup

Discussion in 'Married Life' started by traveldream, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. traveldream

    traveldream New IL'ite

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    Thanks for ur reply @ashneys .
    Yes the need for additional help is actually a no brainer and I am going to get a helper for some additional chores other cooking until I can find a suitable cook.
    I am very clear about my meal times or kids schedule for it makes it tough if we don't follow a schedule and it did lead to some comments , but I generally ignore any comments for things which are not in my control.
    My DH however is affected and though I am not sensitive that way ... I do feel guilty for my DH's emotional stress and my DH helps as much as he can from making coffees, to occasional breakfast / meals. But he has to told / asked if he can do so and so everytime (when he has time ).
     
  2. traveldream

    traveldream New IL'ite

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    thanks for ur reply @MalStrom .. the word martyred struck a chord with me.. I do think sometime I put up my hand far too frequently in the past accepting responsibilities ... even before my DH sometimes and it has led to a lot of expectations and I feel somewhat guilty that I am now resenting a few things which landed on my head bcoz of past conditioning.
    Will talk to DH...to see where we can start doing things which will be easier for us to manage in the long run... wish there is a Dummies edition on how to solve such conundrums. We are on the same page that I need additional help even if its going to be pretty expensive and not a planned expense.
    Also as a family IL's , BIL we don't discuss any financial aspects of anything... everyone manages their own stuff and we don't ask or answer anyone nor do they.
     
  3. traveldream

    traveldream New IL'ite

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    Thanks for the suggestions @yellowmango will try to follow ... Both my IL's are diabetic so I do have to follow a specific diet like Idli's , broken wheat basically a diabetic meal. I do try to make spl stuff for the kids on the weekends only for its not possible during the morning rush on school days but it has to be additional to the regular stuff.

    Your superwoman comment is very true. I didn't aim to be one but having to please both IL's and kids seems to be job like superwoman and I feel sometimes I am not doing justice to kids for I can tell kids directly that its not possible to do some things and can't say no to IL's for they are dependent on us.
     
  4. traveldream

    traveldream New IL'ite

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    Thanks @Rihana .. u r absolutely right when u say its the problem the 2 sons hv to solve..... unfortunately both my DH and BIL cannot communicate clearly or openly. None of the members in my family can state clearly what they have in mind. This will drive me nuts for I can't guess what my co-sis / BIL - IL's are thinking. But to be fair, I usually get along well with my co sis and we have a decent line of communication between us which is not the case with the 2 brothers. So things usually get routed between the DIL's of the family and sometimes I feel this is my BIL's preference for I am out spoken and he hates being in any confrontational conversation and is very unapproachable even to my DH.
    My FIL and I do have it out occasionally but I am very polite always and to make it clear we as a family IL's and BIL / co-sis have never had a confrontation bcoz we usually avoid having the difficult conversations.
    So I am unsure if we can suddenly change the pattern of conditioning from the past 15 years and acknowledge that we are entering new territory now which needs different paths than the ones we have trodden before.

    The running away to hide comment is one I frequently make to my DH when frustrated. I already work from home for about 20hrs a week ...but had to cut down my hours last time my IL's were here for I couldn't find enough time... but I am determined to not slide back into the same patterns of their last visit and end up with the same feeling of frustration.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2020
  5. traveldream

    traveldream New IL'ite

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    Thanks for the reply @radv . I have a pretty good equation with DH and unfortunately whether its my parent's or his I am the one dealing with it.
    My DH is a very understanding and adjusting guy but he does hv his faults (for that matter so do I ) and it very difficult to change ones basic nature.
     
  6. startinganew

    startinganew Gold IL'ite

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    Really good points from others. Two points that occur to me.

    1. Ideally for every meal - MIL/FIL pitch in to help you.

    How are their health levels? In a joint family everyone should pitch in to keep the household running - so please don't feel guilty about enlisting everyone's help.

    Gradually, with a few initial hesitations or maybe even downright no, could you convince MIL to help with some cooking. It's great that you have a part-time job. Perhaps you can head out of the home where you can focus without distractions to get this done. Politely request MIL to help make rasam 1 or 2 days a week as you head out for your few hours each day? Show her how to do it - if utensils, operating stove, spices location etc are all different from what she is used to. Start small and then share more responsibility on a regular basis to everyone at home. It does feel like you are over-burdened and this may not progress well otherwise.

    2. Could you please say no to co-sis now and say you have something important at work for you or school for the kids and won't be able to manage? Do convey it to her that you want to do a 6 month - 6 month split. Doing 7 months and then 3 months and then expecting you continue care-giving isn't sustainable. You have to say no now - else it will be assumed by all parties that you can manage this alright.
     
    sindmani likes this.
  7. nakshatra1

    nakshatra1 Platinum IL'ite

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  8. SinghManisha

    SinghManisha Platinum IL'ite

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    I read this quote somewhere “ Love yourself enough to set boundaries . Your time and energy are precious. You get to choose how you use it . ”

    Saying NO will solve most of your problems.
     
    Amica and Rihana like this.
  9. traveldream

    traveldream New IL'ite

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    An update:

    I thought abt all the suggestions given and realized that I have to only say yes to things that are feasible for me without putting on a lot of stress with worries about what others will think , feel , etc.

    I decided to let my DH deal with his family... though I will be supporting him in whatever the outcome , I have decided to detach myself so I am not responsible for all the interactions with his family.

    We had a talk and DH said he will talk to his brother. However, as expected his brother was not clear in setting terms on how things can be done in future, but rather gave some generic statements like I don't have any problems if IL's stay with him always and offered no concrete steps on how to handle when his wife is traveling (she is going to the US for a couple of weeks - family vacation with sibling and cousins).

    For once IL's are here , it will be atleast 6 months or so before they will consider moving. We haven't taken any vacation including going to my parent's place for the last year and since kids vacations will be in April / May only... so my DH also spoke to FIL who lost his temper with my DH saying how he is not inviting him to come stay with us ( even though its 3 months only since he went there) when my DH knows that SIL is going to be traveling and how my BIL is taking care with so much difficulty (my COsis is working currently and outside the house and my BIL has more flexible WFH) . My DH was dumbfounded that he was being spoken to in such a tone. DH doesn't have too many WFH days and when they were here I was the primary caretaker being SAHM . BTW IL's don't have a great opinion abt cosis but they feel my BIL is the most caring and loving son. MY cosis , though upset with their remarks or opinions usually does what she wants without getting into an argument with them.

    So he basically just ended the discussion in between without reaching any conclusion. Since my FIL's scoldings were like you guys are making us shuttle back and forth when we are struggling with health issues. So, DH is very much conflicted and feeling guilty both towards me and his parents.
    DH said will try talking to them later when they are calmer but I am not sure how that will change the outcome... in any case I have decided to stay calm and face things as and when they happen.

    I do feel bad for my IL's, though they are facing health issues they are not debilitating in anyway but they decided that they don't want to stay alone anymore. But I do get that they are feeling insecure and for a person like my FIL who is controlling ...a change in role is not acceptable and they are not taking it well.

    Just a vent... was feeling a bit down and I don't like to share my personal issues with my family and DH himself is feeling down bcoz of the above discussions. So thought of sharing here. Thanks.
     
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  10. Rihana

    Rihana Finest Post Winner

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    That is theory/philosophy and neither here nor there. The tangibles are how your in-laws' stay gets distributed between the brothers, how many coffee's and types of food you cook, your vacations etc.

    Not to make you feel worse when you are already feeling a big down, traveldream, but fifteen plus years into marriage is old enough to learn or realize one thing: when there is a situation that needs planning, organization and others are content with muddling their way through it, the ones who say "we need to talk, we need to discuss, we have to plan" are cast as the trouble-makers or boat-rockers. Types like your BIL (generic "yes we need to talk" but no actual decisions when talking) and your co-sis (gets upset but goes about her way without getting into an argument) have it easy.

    You can wait for other people's schedule to finalize and for them to see that in fairness you haven't been to your parents' place etc... or you can make plans to visit your parents place just you and the kids, fix the dates and announce it as a given. After some resistance, your plan will be taken as a given and other things fall into place around it.

    Your husband's guilt and feelings of conflict are signs of a person who cares. But that caring won't help you much. It is still the beginning stages of possibly many years of "who will take care of in-laws when." Set the tone. Put yourself first. Your co-sister has it figured out. She doesn't have a patent on her approach. Follow it. Present some of your plans as a given and some parts of your daily-life as not-neogtiable while being fair and supporting your husband. If the brothers are unable to discuss it, and FIL is getting angry, you take care of yourself first.
     
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