I’m 70, widowed 2 years ago, and I recently decided it was time to sell my house. I have three children, all grown up and have long since flown out the nest, and the house is too big for me to move through on my own. I want to downsize and find something affordable so I can save some money.
Who knows what the future might hold but I don’t want to find myself in a situation where I have to turn to my children for medical costs, funeral costs or anything else.
However, when I sat my kids down to tell them my decision, they threw what can only be described as a disgusting tantrum.
They claimed I was trying to destroy their childhood memories and the last memories of their father by selling the family home. They asked me to hand over the house to them, that they rent it out and that I could use that money to live.
I said no. I’m ready to move on, home – for me – is just a constant reminder of the husband I lost, and I don’t want any kind of permanent attachment to him anymore.
The children have now told me that they have engaged a lawyer to try to legally prevent me from selling the property. They claim it is their inheritance and that I am trying to keep the money away from them.
The last thing I wanted at this point in my life was to get involved in a horrible family feud. I am absolutely disgusted with their behavior and can’t get over how selfish they are.
Their dad would be mad with them, but at this point I don’t know if the easiest thing to do is just give them what they want so I can live in peace without the threat of a lawsuit at the hands of my kids.
What a despised mother
Dear Jane, I am a 70 year old widow and want to sell my large family home – but my children insist the property is their inheritance and are now suing me to stop me from unloading it
What a terrible thing you’re going through, and it feels as if you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place – doing what you want risks alienating your children and grandchildren forever, and doing what they want not only ignores your needs, but leaves you in a financially precarious position.
And given that keeping a house you no longer want is likely to lead to such dissatisfaction, it seems to me that your relationship with them will change no matter what, if it has not already.
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But you do have options available to you.
First of all, you need to consult a lawyer and possibly a tax attorney so they can examine how you and your children can all achieve what you want.
There seem to be many possible ways you can go down. Whether it’s giving your children the opportunity to buy the house (which I imagine is legally yours), or perhaps (and I don’t know your financial circumstances), you help ‘finance’ the purchase of the house for a monthly stipend that will enable you to live on.
Which doesn’t deal with the emotional trauma of having your kids treat you this way, and how alone you must feel.
There is a part of me that wants to tell you to tell it where to pay it, and yet there will be no profit with that option. She’s 70 now, and all the research shows that we get lonelier as we get older. I can think of nothing worse than falling out with your entire family at this point in your life.
Bring in some experts, look at the options, and bring your kids into those talks and meetings so they can be a part of all of you who are working on this. It doesn’t have to be A or B, there are plenty of creative ways you can find to make you all, if not completely happy, then at least relieved.
I’ve been in a relationship for four years, but his mom doesn’t like me because of who I am. I am a visa holder and not a permanent resident of this country.
He fought a lot for us and argued with his family, and as you can imagine, it didn’t go well. We are both Christian so we prayed a lot as we wanted our families blessing but it proved very difficult to get.
Without the issue our families relationship is great. We take care of each other, we focus on our jobs and studies.
But at times, I felt lonely and frustrated. I understand that I don’t need his family’s approval to define who I am as a person. But I can’t stop myself from thinking about my future and where all of this is headed…. what I want and how to do it.
I’m happy for my boyfriend, but I can’t get him to fight with his family for me.
Things between his mom and me have been looking up for the past year, after we’ve attended a few family events together – but we still don’t talk much or feel like we can communicate properly.
I tried to leave the country and leave the country, but it is difficult for me to leave him.. How can I know how to continue or give up?
I know I have to take care of myself and put my needs first. But I’ve built a home here and I don’t want to leave the friends I’ve made. I feel stuck in limbo and not sure which direction to head, especially without my family here to support me.
Than how do you love myself
Dear how do you love myself,
My heart goes out to you, because there is nothing lonelier than dealing with the feeling of hate when you leave your country of origin and the family you love.
What you don’t say is how your boyfriend feels about his family treating you this way, just that you can’t get him to fight with his family, which leads me to believe that on top of everything else, you feel unsupported by your partner.
Dear Jane Sunday Service
We think our childhoods are difficult, as we overcome the difficulties and imbalances that exist in our families, and we look forward to becoming adults, when we have our own agency and choices, and are no longer struggling, yet these letters show that these difficulties can last a lifetime.
Taking care of ourselves, both emotionally and mentally, may mean making the hardest choices of all, but in the end blood isn’t necessarily thicker than water, and a strong chosen family can be healthier than the ones we’re bound by blood.
This is what I know: Unless your boyfriend is totally supportive of you, telling his family that he chose you and that they should respect not only his choice, but yours, it’s only going to get worse. The fact that it causes you enough pain to write to me—without the two of you marrying, without children—tells me that it is not only his family’s treatment of you that hurts me so much, but it is not. Standing up for you, which contributes to feelings of loneliness and isolation.
I imagine him feeling stuck in the middle, pulled both ways, and unable to satisfy either of the two most important women in his life, yet by not standing firm with his family, he’s showing you your future.
I don’t know that you should necessarily go home if you’ve built a life for yourself, but I do know that unless your boyfriend has chosen you, as in, makes it clear to his family that you are his life partner and that he will not tolerate them treating you with anything but kindness and respect, you will not be This is an easy life for you.
I think the two of you can achieve anything together, but only if he is fully committed to you and standing up for the two of you in his family.
Otherwise, you are looking at more pain and discomfort. Have this conversation with him calmly and lovingly. He needs to support you and make that clear to his family. If he is not able or willing to do so, we both know the answer to your question.
I wish you well and send you a big, supportive hug.