General Question

bernireddick's avatar

Senior family member living with their children.

Asked by bernireddick (19points) June 30th, 2012

My daughter has asked me to move in with her and my Grandson. She lives in New York City and I live in Houston, Texas. I am currently dealing with some medical issues and would love to go back home but I need her to understand what it could be like with a Senior person (I am 65 and retired) living in her household. What and/or where can I get some information for her to read about having a Senior live in her household?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

14 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

Start by talking to her about your personal and specific issues. Generalities about other 65 year olds aren’t very useful.

Certainly you should be very candid about your needs and expectations, her needs and those of her son, the finances (who has how much and how will expenses be allocated) and your relationship with your daughter.

Do you have a straightforward and comfortable way of talking to each other?

Do you already have ways of discussing conflict? Are either of you bringing heavy baggage with you from your earlier relationship as mother and daughter?

Are you familiar with life in NYC (you did talk about going back home)? Even though Houston is a big city, NYC is in a class by itself.

Where is she living? Is there room for everyone? Is her rent stable and or controlled? Does she have friends and a social life? A job or career she likes? How old is your grandson?

If you can work things out, it might be wonderful.

65 is a long way from being over-the-hill.

Let us know. I am older than you and have just spent the last hour lying under a toilet with a wrench and a towel and my phone to my ear (talking to my daughter’s boyfriend in Vancouver, BC while he guided me through a temporary toilet leak repair).

Adagio's avatar

Please don’t misunderstand me but 65 is hardly ancient, I’m in my early 50s but have plenty of friends in their 60s, I don’t see any difference in their mindset from mine, they live very active lives and have totally vital spirits. I guess what I’m trying to say is don’t consider yourself over the hill, you are far far from that.

Adagio's avatar

@gailcalled what a great answer, far more practical than mine : ^)

Ponderer983's avatar

My Mother’s Mother lived with us (My Mom and Dad and me). Ever since they moved in to the house, which was before I was even born. What are you nervous or worried about? The situation was perfectly fine for us. What is it that you think would be an issue?

ZEPHYRA's avatar

@gailcalled BRAVO – you are a source of inspiration and a pleasure to anyone around you!

@bernireddick my dear lady, if I hadn’t read your age, I would have thought “senior” in this case was referring to an 80 year old! If you get along well and can manage to sort out living arrangements, it could be a fantastic idea!!!! You are still young and things will be just fine!

rooeytoo's avatar

I am 67 and would hate living with anyone (other than my husband). I just had company for 2 weeks and while it was nice to see my relatives, I was thrilled when they left and life returned to normal. I wouldn’t do it unless it was an absolute necessity and if it is, then establish the rules before the move is made or you could be worse off than you are on your own.

YARNLADY's avatar

It depends on the level of independence you are used to. Personally, I have lived with other people nearly all my life, and I love it. I am 69 and currently have two grandsons living in my house, and one of their girlfriends.

The only time I have ever had any problem living with other people was the year my son and his current wife lived here. She is the most difficult person I have ever had to deal with.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

It depends on the medical condition. One of my high buddies is moving from San Diego to New England ( home town ) with a short stay in Florida ( a few months with grandson ).
He is recuperating from a cardiac condition. Life changes and health changes, if they are temporary, may not need a move back in with your daughter. Good luck and best wishes.

bkcunningham's avatar

Yes, @gailcalled, leaky pipes are just one issue seniors must learn to deal with. I agree with all the responders. I get the feeling you have some serious health issue and that is your concern. Not that you don’t want to be stuck babysitting when you could be out doing some activity. Communication is the key in this situation.

bernireddick's avatar

Good Morning All, First and foremost, I thank everyone for their feedback, and you are right 65 is not that old. I guess I consider myself old because at this magical age, I don’t really know what to expect. 65 came up on me pretty quick. It seems that I was just 30 two years ago, but I think that I am the problem; I am a very independent and take charge woman. I currently live in a 55+ active community and am the Director of our Theater group, Water Aerobics Trainer, etc., etc. I know that I am concerned that I will lose my independence. My Daughter and I have a great relationship (now that I am in Texas) and I don’t want to lose that. I must take the task and face the facts and be honest with her. I like my freedom and I really don’t want to give it up. By the way, I decided a year old that I didn’t want to stay in NYC and did some investigating into where was the best place for someone my age, personality and most important, my income to live and Houston, Texas was number 2 on the list. I have no family here but am making very good friends. I know that my children are concerned with my health which isn’t too bad and the fact that I knew no one when I came to Texas. Again, thank you so much for all your feedback.

gailcalled's avatar

@bernireddick: From what you wrote just now, you may well be jumping the gun.

You say that your health “isn’t too bad,” and you have (happily, it seems) settled into what sounds like a rich and contented new life.

Why not revisit this question yearly?

JLeslie's avatar

@bernireddick I don’t see any reason for you to move back to NYC and live with your daughter. You say you are making friends and like where you are now. The only negative regarding TX vs had you gone to FL, is the flights are much more expensive, and there is not an easy alternative like an overnight trip on Amtrak (which isn’t bad at all, I have done it from VA on the autotrain). The big plus with the active adult communities, if yours is like many in FL, is they organize activities and many of the places are like living at resorts. Constant vacation. The great thing about NYC is the accomadations for those disabled, and some of the conveniences can be very good. Food delivery from grocery stores and restaurants, tons of public transportation, and a plethora of the arts if you like that sort of thing.

My grandmother moved to NYC in her 70’s from the suburbs and it was great for her. But, she would stay with me in FL usually about 3 weeks in the winter to escape the cold, visit some friends, and be with me. I personally hope to retire to an active adult community in FL (I now live in TN).

As for living with your daughter, whether it be now or in the future, I would assume if she is in NY she is in a smallish apartment, so it can be more cramped than say other parts of the country where people live in larger spaces. I would 100% have my parents or husband’s parents live with us if it were the best solution for everyone, but would never try to force it on my parents or inlaws, it would be am offer. Unless, the demands they pit on me to help them became just too much or unrealistic to help care for them. Still, I would do my best to just move them near me and let them maintain their own home if they preferred.

I have a few friends who have their parents living with them. One set of friends has her mother and his father all in the same house. Neither senior adult lost their independence. They still did everything they wanted, the mom still drove herself everywhere, had her own friends. It definitely can work, but it also can be a difficult situation. Stick to your gut feelings on the matter I think. 65 is very young! You have time to travel, be with friends, relax, take on new interests. I say just visit your daughter twice a year for a few weeks at a time, and they visit you once a year, or all go on a family vacation, and that is plenty.

Is she truly worried about you? Or, does she need your help maybe? Don’t take that the wrong way, I am sure she loves and worries about you, but you mention she has a child, would you living with her be a built in babysitter?

YARNLADY's avatar

My 89 year old Mother In Law went through a very bad time when her mother moved in with her 50 years ago. She says she would rather die than move in with one of her children. She is very well off and lives in an upscale senior home in San Diego.

jca's avatar

@bernireddick: Also, keep in mind that the weather in NYC can be rough in the winters compared to the weather in TX. I’m aware that the weather in TX is hot, which is not for everyone, but in NYC, if there’s an ice storm or snow (which could happen any time between November and April), you could find yourself house-bound for a few days. I know an elderly woman who lives in NYC and she is afraid of breaking a hip or something like that in the winter, so she often doesn’t go out when the weather is bad. That wouldn’t be an issue in TX.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther