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Is this out of line?

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courageous posted 10/4/2013 22:34 PM

Some background: I'm 35 years old. Due to the divorce and being a SAHM at the time of the divorce, the kids and I had to move in with my parents. We have been living with them for 2 years so far.

I'm in a LDR. For thanksgiving I plan on going to see my SO. My parents have decided to go also. We are all taking the same flight. They have met him numerous times and like him a lot. Last time I visited SO I stayed at his house and that is what I plan on doing this time.

Well my parents have a different idea. My mom is insistent that I stay in a hotel with them. She is concerned that we might be tempted to have sex. I have explained that we are not planning on having sex until marriage not that it really matters. My mom's concern is religiously based.

I have a feeling my mom is going to say (after talking to my dad) that as long as I live in their house I need to obey their rules.

Is my mom out of line? If so, how do I deal with this?

What would you do if you were in my situation?

Jrazz posted 10/4/2013 23:04 PM

Gosh that's tricky. I think that they're WAY out of line, but you have to live with them so making peace is part of the package.

The "peace" shouldn't entail them treating you like a truant 16 year old, though.

Why, at your age, are they still trying to control you? It's one thing to lean on our family in hard times, but something is definitely off here. I mean, your "parents have decided to go" with you on a danged FLIGHT to go visit your SO? That seems super excessive. It would be one thing if you and SO invited them....

Mergh. Hopefully people will be along with advice. Not being in your shoes, I'd be tempted to tell them that it's ridiculous for them to accompany you because you're a grown-assed woman.

I get that even if they don't throw you out on the street - they are likely in a position to make living with them unbearable until you drink the Kool-Aid.

I guess the best advice is to make sure that you and SO are on the same page about their involvement and exactly how much the two of you can tolerate as a team. That's what matters here.


fireproof posted 10/5/2013 00:27 AM

Is this the first time your parents are traveling there? If so and it was important to them I would stay at the hotel with them out of respect.

That being said they might be willing to watch the kids and you can spend a few hours at his house.

I would let your SO know the plan so things are understood. If it is a huge issue and you are limited on time with him then I would suggest to your parents that you prefer to visit him alone and maybe next year they can visit for Thanksgiving. It might be too soon etc.

There is something to be said for being your age but I think if something's meant a huge amount to my parents I would listen. This is one vacation - if they started coming to all holidays you may want to sit with them about where your relationship is right now. Otherwise you are just talking about a few days.

Good luck! And I do get your in your 30's but if you are looking long term better to respect their wishes.

cayc posted 10/5/2013 07:08 AM

Despite your age, if you are living at their house, not paying rent and getting supported otherwise (food, utilities, free child care) then this is a battle I wouldn't fight.

This isn't a trip to visit your SO, it's a family vacation for the holidays where your SO happens to live.

Please don't get me wrong, yes, it's going overboard. But is it a battle you want to fight if your parents are supporting you? And you need that support to continue? My take would be no.

[This message edited by cayc at 7:09 AM, October 5th (Saturday)]

courageous posted 10/5/2013 08:36 AM

I forgot to mention that the kids will not be with me during this trip. My parents a re only going to spend time with me and SO 1 day out of 4.

I plan on visiting SO again in December (when the kids are not with me). My parents will not be with me that time but I know that they are going to say I need to stay in a hotel again. The first time I was able to say DO wasn't comfortable with me staying in a hotel by myself for my safety.

The "peace" shouldn't entail them treating you like a truant 16 year old, though.

This is the problem. My mom acts like she doesn't trust my judgement. She has supported me talking classes at church that have helped my self esteem. One of them being called boundaries.

In this class it has taught me that right now she has not only stepped over the line of my healthy boundary but has trampled on it.

In the beginning of my stay here, the divorce process was moving along I was still desperate to stay married to my exwh. I had sex with him a couple of times during drop offs at our martial home. When my mom found out she said if I slept with him again she would kick me out.

I know that I need to respect my parents' wishes but where does the line get drawn to where they are just trying to control me?

This isn't a trip to visit your SO, it's a family vacation for the holidays where your SO happens to live.

I don't feel like it is a family vacation. I paid for my tickets several months before them. They decided they needed to get away and asked about all of us traveling there. I could have said no I didn't want to have them tag along but SO and I talked it over and said they could come.

I'm really having a hard time. I have told my mother that it's not a vacation for me if I have to stay in a hotel room with them (which will also mean I have a curfew). They wake up around 4 am so it will also mean my entire trip I will be not very well rested. I have been without a sanctuary of my own for over 2 years. I have no privacy and I was really looking forward to this trip to relax. Staying with my parents will not be relaxing... It would be stressful.

I have repeatedly told my mom that I'm not having sex with SO and that we won't be until marriage. I even said she could ask SO. The entire issue about staying at his house is that I will not be able to control myself and the temptation will be soooo strong and I will give in. if we wanted to have sex we can have sex any time of the day. It doesn't need to be night time for that to happen. But for some reason nighttime would be too much temptation for me.

I appreciate everyone's input. Please don't think I'm being argumentative. I'm just trying to add some more facets to the issue. If this really is something that is a huge disrespect I will probably give in. My concern is where does the line get drawn for them controlling me?

My brother lived with his girlfriend before they were married. My parents didn't like it but they were silent about it. Then my brother and girlfriend moved into my patents house still not married but about to get married and they stayed in the same room. There has always been different rules for me vs. my brother. They have always been so strict with me. This is why they have no clue about me. I have kept so many secrets about my self because I have always felt their love was conditional to me being a good girl.

They don't know that my exwh raped me and that the class I'm in right now is for sexual abuse. They don't know that the IC I was going to was a rape crisis counselor, they think she's a church counselor.

I told my mom about my anger towards exwh for taking everything away from me (my house, dog, future, MONEY). She said "it's been 2 years, it's time for you to get over it" I haven't processed my emotions for 2 years because I have been taking care of a toddler and infant throughout the divorce.

I'm tired of being told I shouldn't have anger! Oops... This wasn't what the topic was about... Rant over

peacelovetea posted 10/5/2013 08:52 AM

I think you are well within your rights to tell them that you are a grown woman and this is none of their business. They also have the right to say, however, that their house, their rules, and say that if you don't stay in the hotel with them that you will have to move out. I would hope it would not come to that but this is your trip, your decision -- they are moving in on your holiday without your permission and will only be with you one day. Do as you like, but be prepared for the pushback. Particularly since they have been so intrusive in the past, they may well up the ante to make you "change back" as it were. But I think at your age, your sex life is absolutely none of your mother's business.

End of line for me is that IT BOTHERS YOU that they are making rules for you about this. Listen to that voice.

cayc posted 10/5/2013 10:07 AM

You aren''t being argumentative. You''re just providing more texture as to why your parents, particularly your mom, are ignoring your boundaries.

But you didn''t answer re the money thing. If they are financially supporting you, and you can''t do without that financial support, then yes, they have a right to say something. That''s the deal with the devil you made (or were stuck making). It''s clearly a problem now, so if you want the freedom of a true adult, living with your parents and relying on their help financially is getting in the way of that.

I''m sorry. What a frustrating position to be in. (((Courageous)))

[This message edited by cayc at 10:08 AM, October 5th, 2013 (Saturday)]

courageous posted 10/5/2013 10:43 AM

While they are financially supporting I could move out but it would be extremely hard on the kids and ultimately me. I'm hoping by the end of the school year. I NEED my own home and soon.

Ultimately, them controlling me like this damages their relationship with me. I could have lied and gotten a hotel room but not stayed in it. But I choose to be honest and live an authentic life... They don't like it. I don't feel comfortable sleeping in the same room as my father. That is what would happen.

My parents shouldn't sit in judgement of me but they do. When I move out my travel plans will not be their business and if they have an issue with it they can take it up with themselves because I won't be listening.

FaithFool posted 10/5/2013 11:05 AM

They are insisting on you staying in their room? That seems quite bizarre to me.

Why can't you have adjoining rooms, you sleep in your room and visit with SO during the day?

That would be a compromise I could live with.

I would be firm on that, but you have to consider your circumstances.


PurpleRose posted 10/5/2013 13:26 PM

I d not understand why you cannot just say "it's none of your business what I do during my adult time".

I never did subscribe to the rule that says living under someone's roof means they get to dictate your life. Why?? Since when!??

Your boundaries are clearly not being enforced. What do you plan to do? Let them run your life forever?

courageous posted 10/5/2013 17:56 PM

So my SO figured out how much it would cost just in gas and mileage to pick me up and drop for the trip....

It would be a total of 420 miles added to his vehicle. He would have to spend 2 hours a day minimum (assuming there is no traffic on thanksgiving, or black Friday, etc.). In the cost of gas alone he will have to spend over $140 just for me to stay at a hotel...

This doesn't even add to the fact that since this is a LDR every time we see each other we like to spend every waking moment together. However, driving late at night is dangerous specially with drunks out so he would be dropping me off early (like around 9pm). Yay me..(sarcasm here). I don't want to spend all my time with my parents.

They will be waking me up at 4 am when they get up. I would need to shower at SO's house because it's ridiculous to drive 1.5 hours just to shower. So basically SO will spend most of my visit driving without me around just to see me.

Sad in AZ posted 10/5/2013 18:18 PM

Obviously, they are wrecking the trip for you and your SO. But just as obviously, they can do anything they want with regard to your living with them. If you push the issue of where you stay on this trip, they may push back and tell you to get out of their house, which is probably what you should do anyway.

You should probably sit down with them, lay everything (calmly) on the line and let the chips fall where they may, unless you absolutely cannot live on your own. You may be pleasantly surprised, or this may totally ruin your relationship with your parents. On the other hand, if you acquiesse to your parents' demands, it may ruin things with your SO.

Which scenario is most important to you?

StrongerOne posted 10/5/2013 20:00 PM

I do think your parents are out of line, regardless of how much money they are spending on you and your kids. Of course they can make rules for their own house, but they've got no business making rules for you while you are out of the house. None. Really, why are they even talking to you about your sex life and setting rules for it?? That's intrusive and icky. Frankly, I think it is past time for you to move out. Your kids will survive the change. You can make them excited about it, something to look forward to.

Now, on your parents side, I have to say that, really, if you did not want them to come along and did not want to spend time with them, why did you tell them they could? It sounds to me like you have a hard time saying no to them, and that maybe you are having a hard time letting go and being independent?? Maybe that is what's behind not moving out, too?

You can love them, courageous, without living with them, without living *their* life.

[This message edited by StrongerOne at 8:03 PM, October 5th (Saturday)]

PhoenixRisen posted 10/5/2013 20:32 PM


Ultimately, them controlling me like this damages their relationship with me.

I would sit down and have a heart-to- heart with your mom.
Use the catch phrase "I feel_______ when I'm ________" then fill in verbs ("sad/not trusted" or "I can't open up to you/not making my own decisions"). That way she won't feel you are blaming her and get defensive. You are focused on your feelings and the situation. Also give her concrete example (the rape counsellor). The restate your commitment to no sex before marriage and that they can trust you, and if they still insist in you staying in their hotel room, I'd either insist on my own room for "space" or flat out cancel the trip - you may have to forfeit the ticket but that's a cheap price to pay to set this much needed boundary with your parents
Good luck!

NaiveAgain posted 10/5/2013 20:38 PM

Really, why are they even talking to you about your sex life and setting rules for it?? That's intrusive and icky
Really. I get that they get to set the rules while you live with them, but there are terrible boundaries here and this is a toxic situation (and I just went thru this with my SO, who is 29. He is living with his grandma and has to follow her rules, but he decided when it was terribly important to him that he needed to stand up to her and let the chips fall where they may.) That is part of growing up....not letting someone else control your life anymore.

Obviously, no sex while you are in their home, but while you are visiting your SO, that is none of their business. Especially since they kind of invited themselves along to "chaperone."

This doesn't even add to the fact that since this is a LDR every time we see each other we like to spend every waking moment together.
Of course you do! You live with your see enough of them at home. This is YOUR trip that you are taking to see your SO. The purpose of this trip is to spend time with him, not vacation with your parents, who you see at home every single day.....

I think it is out of line; however, they are holding the cards right now because you are living with them and dependent on them. You know them best. Would they kick you out if you decide to stay with your SO? You ultimately have to do what is best for your kids and they need shelter, so even if it is wrong, you may be stuck until you can get on your feet financially.

I'm sorry for your difficult situation!

k94ever posted 10/5/2013 20:55 PM

Courageous.....I'm going to try and be a gentle as possible and I will no doubt fail.

Grow a vagina and establish boundries with your parents.

Good Lord are 35 years old with children. You have survived a rape. You are picking up the pieces of your life and you let your parents treat you like a 16 year old.

This is YOUR life and I can tell you that you will only get this one chance at it. If you had planned on staying at your SO's place during your vacation then do so. You made these plans LONG before your parents decided to sabotage your relationship with your SO (which is what they are doing)so do what you had planned on doing. This is YOUR's and your SO's time together. Don't make him pay for your parent's attempts to run YOUR life.

It sounds like your parents have decided that you are unable to manage your life so they are going to do it for you. Is that what you want? They don't trust you. So they are going to parent you since you (to them) obviously can't take care of yourself.

Grow a vagina. Set boundries. DO NOT spend YOUR vacation with them in their motel room.

Courageous....go and live your life and if it means you have to move out, then so be it. But live YOUR life.



fireproof posted 10/5/2013 21:10 PM

I would either go with your parents or cancel the trip.

I look at it as an opportunity for them to get to know your SO better- assuming you all are long term you all will have another visit to spend the night.

I would weigh how much your parents opinion matters. It is one visit - you could meet him halfway or vice versa. To me it would be more about looking at the long term.

ItsNotUitsMe posted 10/6/2013 06:06 AM

Your relationship with them seems unhealthy in respect to the dynamic of them opening their home to you and then in return putting expectations on you that have nothing to do with your living arrangements. What should be just parents assisting you because they love you unconditionally and want you to succeed and be happy, seems like they have put conditions on it.

It is very controlling of them, to be involved in any decisions that do not affect them, but especially regarding your sex life. Parents can have an opinion and guide us to what THEY felt is the right thing to do according to their own personal beliefs but to conditionally put them on you to act on them is just a total disregard for your feelings. In this particular instance, you have assured them that you are planning to wait until marriage and it is not an issue and that your intentions are to stay at his house so you can have the maximum amount of time together. That should be good enough for them to back off.

Even with your background with them regarding your ex. They were dictating that you couldn't have sex with your husband either. While they were probably right if they saw you struggling to break free of him, but to kick you and kids out because of it? It's very manipulative.

To answer your initial question, yes they are out of line. Deal with it by being honest and respectful to them. Stress again no sex and wanting to spend as much face to face time as possible with SO. Don't leave it open ended. End it by stating that you will be staying at SO's house and visiting with them 1 day as planned.

Further, you mentioned the classes and it sounds like they are helping you recognize boundaries and your self esteem. Have you been to one-on-one counseling? Likely some deep rooted issues with your relationship to your parents that can be directly related to your role in your romantic relationships as an adult. I feel like you would really gain something from it.

[This message edited by ItsNotUitsMe at 6:08 AM, October 6th (Sunday)]

courageous posted 10/7/2013 23:05 PM

Parents can have an opinion and guide us to what THEY felt is the right thing to do according to their own personal beliefs but to conditionally put them on you to act on them is just a total disregard for your feelings.

This exactly is what I learned in one of my classes on boundaries. I think my parents don't like that I'm getting healthy boundaries.

Undefinabl3 posted 10/8/2013 14:59 PM

They will be waking me up at 4 am when they get up. I would need to shower at SO's house because it's ridiculous to drive 1.5 hours just to shower. So basically SO will spend most of my visit driving without me around just to see me.

I am sorry, but it just feels like they are hounding in on you on purpose for whatever reason. They know what they are doing and what kind of strain they are putting on you and your SO.

You have 2 choices at this point.

1. You sit them down and tell them that while you are greatful that they want a vacation and decided on where you were also going, that you made your plans in advance and will not be able to change them. You are a grown woman and will be staying with SO. That you will be meeting up on the one day to enjoy each other's company and return with them.

*now, this could tick them off yes, but the other choice is.

2. You continue to let your parents rule your choices in life. Using fear of getting kicked out to make you submit to their demands like a child (that you no longer are). This is horrible parenting and kind of emotionally abusive.

I find it highly ironic that she supports you going to classes, including one about bounderies, but doesn't respect you enough to allow you to actually KEEP your self esteem or respect your bounderies.

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