Feel like I'm being used...

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-06-2011
Feel like I'm being used...
Sat, 09-29-2012 - 5:15pm

Need advice....I am married with three children, and we recently let my mother and step-father move in with us temporarily (for "about a month") they said, until they could get some things straightened out in their own home.  My mother is having health issues, and she said it would be better for her to be in an environment where she felt like she could recover.  She popped this on me (the request) the day that she was being discharged from the hospital, so I didn't really have time to think it over.   My mother and I have never been extremely close, but I thought it was the "right thing to do."  We converted our downstairs office (which we need badly) into a fifth bedroom, and they have been staying in there for two months now.   The reason she wanted a change of environment is because they let my grown sister move in with them a year ago, with her four children and now they don't want to make her leave.  Basically she has taken over their home, so much so, that she felt she did not want to return there upon discharge from the hosptial.   My sister lets her children have the run of the house, and they have destroyed most of her furnishings, leave garbage lying around, and caused some type of damage to their central air conditioning, and that is the major reason that she moved in with me.  My home is clean and cool, and they needed time to repair some things in their own home.     Keep in mind, that my mother and stepfather, while not rich, are not without resources.  They actually have a decent home 2 blocks from the beach, and it's plenty big enough for two people, but not seven.   They just have a big problem with letting some of my siblings take advantage of them, and they repeatedly make bad decisions that have costs them lots of money and grief.  My sister lives there rent free, even though she works, and half the time she is gone...while her eldest daughter watches the three small children, not to mention they are not even in school...even though they are supposed to be.  My mother seems to be "okay" with this.  I am not, but I am told to be quiet, by my mother and leave it alone.  My big problem is that I feel like we (my husband and I) are being used.   Since she and my step-father moved in with us, she stays in her room and never comes out.  Part of the reason she moved in with us (she says) is because she wanted to be able to get out, walk around and get stronger, something she says she couldn't do in her own home, due to my sister's children leaving stuff lying around all the time.  Instead, I never see her.  If she wants something, she calls me from her cell phone, even though she's 50 feet from me in the next room.  When we ask them what their "plan" is...as far as making my sister move out, so they can have their own home back, they avoid us.  This was supposed to be a temporary move, and it has caused a lot of changes in our schedules and lives, but they don't seem to be going anywhere fast.  My husband has difficulty working because he gave up his home office, and we are constantly on a schedule because they don't even eat meals with us; they do everything apart from us...what little that is... so it's a big rotation for everything.  We jump up from the table after dinner as quickly as we can, because we know my stepdad will be wanting to come in and cook a second meal.  They also don't respect our schedules.   They stay up all night and sleep all day, but we have bedtimes, school and work.  (my step-dad only works a couple of days a week)  We have had to go downstairs and tell them to turn their TV down because our daughter was trying to sleep and could hear it all the way upstairs.  We also feel like we have to watch everything we do and say.  I was lying in bed with my husband the other day, and fortunately was covered, but here comes my stepdad at our door and while he knocks briefly..he still walks right in..and  I'm lying there.  They drink all of our coffee, use our supplies, gas, and the like,  and while I would never ask for anything..they sure haven't offered.  I am the primary wage earner for my family, and we don't have an abundance of money lying in the bank, so this is extra for us.  I suppose I would be more okay with this is if I felt like she actually moved in for the reasons she said, and we were actually helping her. and also if I actually saw them making efforts to improve their own home so they could move back in, but they're not doing anything.  They stay in bed, in there room,24 hours a day.  He hasn't bothered to fix the AC in their own home, or make any repairs or cleaning to it. Instead I feel like my sister, once again, has manipulated a situation where it's easy for her.....rent free living...but difficult for everyone else.   It's driving us nuts.  I'm not sure how to handle this.  Advice please. 


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-12-2011
Wed, 10-03-2012 - 1:12am

First off don't worry about when they are going to make your sister move out of their house that is none of your concern or business. Your business is your home. Tell them your husband needs his office back and that they need to leave. You can not be the solution to their problem if they are unwilling to take control of their house and get the sister and her kids out. You are concerned about your mother being taken advantage of by your sister and feel as though she should be more assertive with you sister, but you are doing the same thing as your mother by not taking control of your home. No matter if the sister stays or goes from your mother's home you have to be clear with her that she has to go home, like now. Get your life back!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-22-2004
Tue, 10-09-2012 - 9:16pm

Wuau! I wouldn't`t like to be in that situation. It seems to me that she let your sister took advance of her, and now your sister owns her house. So, she is now taking advantage of you. Nice switch.

How old is you mother? Are her health issues very bad? How capable is stepfather to do things around? Could it be that both of them are depressed?

Not sure what advice to give you. I can see things from their, and your perspective.

Guess my reply would depend on how strong and well you see you mom. But you need to talk. Ask her how long does she think it would take her to feel capable to return to her place. If she complains about your sister, remind her it was her decision to let her in and that you have always been told to shut your mouth.

About not doing things with you, ignore that. Probably they feel more comfortable and in that way, and they want to feel that at least they have some independence.

If your mom can´t stablish a date, you will have to do it, depending on her health, what you perceive and your wisdom.

This topic touches problem in my life. I`m in my 60s and have daughter who is never willing to give me a cup of tea if I´m sick and a lovely son who married a troubled insecure woman, who makes a problem to everything I do, say or don´t do, or don´t say.

I´m a very proud woman  and I don´t want to be a burden to any of my kids, and I know that if I get sick, I´ll be a burden. So I ask God to keep me in good health, or take me with Him in the minute I can be a burden. I rather die in a street or alone in my house than in  any of my kids place.


Good luck!