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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Have you told your wife you will not let him move in and you will divorce her over this?




No, because I feel like it will then become completely nuclear over night. I also don't want to put the brother in the middle of this.

I have definitely pushed back strongly on it when it has been brought up, so she certainly knows my feelings on the matter. But I haven't threatened divorce.

This has come rather quickly and caught me off guard, not sure if counseling is the right move or what.
 

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Your marriage will be stronger if you treat your special needs brother in law with love and compassion. Your wife will see that you are a good man who loves her family as your own. However, it's your life and your choice so do what you feel right. You understand your situation the most. I know with my heart that I will be able to accept my spouse's special needs family member because my DH would do the same for me, but I do not judge others who refuse to do the same.
 

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Your marriage will be stronger if you treat your special needs brother in law with love and compassion. Your wife will see that you are a good man who loves her family as your own.
Doubtable. Otherwise she and her family would not basically decide alone without consulting really him or valueing his opinion.

Realistically his wife will spend more time caring about her brother and get more and more distant towards him, especially if they had problems already. Could also be a move to end the M. If he leaves over that, M is over, if he refuses to let the brother move in, M is over and if the brother stays the M will most likely be over soon because it will exacerbate the situation they are already in. Especially if the status of his BIL is deteriorating.
 

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Doesn't sound like a massive burden to me. He's family, he needs help.

You never turn your back on family even if its somewhat of an inconvenience.

Well a selfish person such as yourself might.

Perhaps you'll be happier living alone after its all over.
 

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Conflict avoidence does you no favours. If you won't be blunt and direct with your wife, you are setting yourself up for resentment and failure.

If you don't want him to move in, have the strength and integrity to own exactly that and tell your wife exactly that.

If you want to take the weak and insipid path, huff and puff without getting to the point, and play covert contract games while pretending you aren't responsible for a mess of you own choosing.


I'm not avoiding conflict, as the situation in question hasn't even happened yet.

The idea I get divorce or start seriously talking about it over something she might attempt in the next several years seems pretty severe without first trying to work something out first.
 

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I'm not avoiding conflict, as the situation in question hasn't even happened yet.

The idea I get divorce or start seriously talking about it over something she might attempt in the next several years seems pretty severe without first trying to work something out first.
What's to work out? You aren't interested in providing for your brother in law.

So put it right out there since the matter has been discussed already and you've been told right to your face to accept it or not, and make it clear that if he moves in you are gone.

It's called "manning up"

Google it
 

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So my wife has a brother with special needs, he currently lives with his parents. He is "high functioning", he held a job, had his own place, was even "married" at one time to another woman with special needs (but it didn't work out), etc

Anyway, out of the blue there's now a serious push to the idea that he will be moving in with us and I need to accept that. Lately he's been coming over quite a bit and spending a lot of time. He's a nice human being, there's no friction or problems, but this is a massive burden to take on.

There was never any discussion about this, and my solution in the future when the parents can no longer care for him is to let him live in a care facility that specializes in this. They have the resources to make this happen. There is also another sibling involved that can also split up the care. My point is, this is not a situation where someone is getting put on the street.

Anyway, our marriage has been having a lot of problems anyway, and this truly will be the last straw if it comes to a head. I'm sure this makes me the worst human being on Earth for not wanting to take care of a special needs individual for the rest of my natural life, but it's simply a non-starter. It's also not fair that oner person gets to make this decision, it's almost like adopting someone with only one parent's permission.

Has anyone else faced a dilemma like this?
What "special needs" does he have?

Does he not work, currently?

Are you or your wife trained in dealing with his types of "special needs?"

If not, then you might need to politely decline this opportunity.

After all, you could be signing up for a "special needs" guest for 30 or 40 years.

And who will fund this? (Seeing that he doesn't work.)

There's altruism and then there's being a damn fool.

And I think you know the difference and the best course of action for you and your wife. :)
 

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Your marriage will be stronger if you treat your special needs brother in law with love and compassion. Your wife will see that you are a good man who loves her family as your own. However, it's your life and your choice so do what you feel right. You understand your situation the most. I know with my heart that I will be able to accept my spouse's special needs family member because my DH would do the same for me, but I do not judge others who refuse to do the same.
I suggest this to start with. It's your wife's brother and I imagine she has spent many years with him and may not even think that's it's ok for him to go to a care facility.

There was a special needs kid in our extended family and his mom just didn't think anyone else could care for him in the way that she did. Her husband and children shared the same opinion. It was an unspoken certainty that her children would care for him when they passed or couldn't do so any longer. I think in their case they would choose the brother over a spouse because of the lifetime investment and commitment the family made.

I don't know what kind of special care your wife's brother needs but she may share similar feelings to my relatives. A compromise approach would be to take him in for some time with the knowledge that ultimately a care facility will need to be identified. Care at these places can vary a lot so it may take awhile to find one. I suggest you talk with your wife and see if she is amenable to that and what kind of timeline would be acceptable.

It will need to happen at some point anyway. I have a friend who has a special needs brother that lived with the parents for years but after the parents died he went to live with his brother. However they he became to old to really care for the brother like he needed (he was in much better health) so eventually they found a place for him to live and he did well. Since it will need to happen at some time it should be planned for sooner than later so that it suits everyone.
 

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It is reasonable to bring this family member in on a temporary basis. It is unreasonable to bring him in permanently. It is especially unreasonable when it does not have your support.
 

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What other issues are you having in your relationship?
 
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If he's high functioning, is there a need for him to live with someone? Is he truly able to live by himself? When he lived on his own, did it not go well? And, why does he need to leave his parents? A little more information please.

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This kind of situation would be a deal breaker for both of us, so we would never consider imposing such a scenario on the other without full discussion and complete agreement. We won't even consider having our kids move back in if they ever want or need to. Instead, we'd do whatever ELSE we could to help them, without disrupting the peace and happiness of our home, and our life together. We rely on our privacy and time alone together to be happy. At most, we can stand having guests for a week or two a year, and while we enjoy such visits, we are also very happy when they leave!

OP, you will probably have to get very clear with your wife at some point, and be willing to do whatever else you can reasonably do to help, short of having him live with you. His presence will also interfere greatly with any attempts you make to work on the problems in your relationship - he will be an excuse for her to avoid focusing on the marriage. I can see that in your circumstances, this could be the last straw.
 

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Doubtable. Otherwise she and her family would not basically decide alone without consulting really him or valueing his opinion.

Realistically his wife will spend more time caring about her brother and get more and more distant towards him, especially if they had problems already. Could also be a move to end the M. If he leaves over that, M is over, if he refuses to let the brother move in, M is over and if the brother stays the M will most likely be over soon because it will exacerbate the situation they are already in. Especially if the status of his BIL is deteriorating.
"Blood is thicker than water." A spouse's heart will never truly belong to you if you do not love him/her enough to love his or her family members as your own. Life is short. There will be a time when we all become very vulnerable and need someone to care for us. Taking care of my spouse's family member is not a burden to me. It would be a blessing to have that opportunity.

They do not discuss about the BIL with him does not necessarily mean they do not value his opinion. His wife probably knows some of her Dh's negative feelings about the situation. When you live with someone long enough, you know his or her point of view on certain topics. It is not easy to bring it up when you already know the outcome. His wife does not really have a choice because her special needs brother needs her.
Realistically his wife will spend more time caring about her brother and get more and more distant towards him, especially if they had problems already
Personally I do not see this as a problem. He can choose to share the responsibilities to take care the special needs BIL. It could become a wonderful connection between the husband and wife who shares a common goal. I would be scared to marry a spouse who is cold towards his own family. If he does not love his own biological family, how could I expect him to be kind to me when I become sick or dying? The OP's wife seems like a responsible person who does not turn her back on her brother.

He can divorce his wife when her special needs brother moves in. It's his choice, but that is not her fault. It does not mean she chose her brother over her husband, it's just because she is a nice and responsible sibling who is not fortunate enough to have a supportive spouse.

Family is very important. I would always love my Dh's family as my own. I talk to my parents in law frequently. I took good care of them when they are sick. I made sure they ate well and took their medications. I know their medications and dosages by heart. They go to the doctor when I agree with them. I begged them to move in with me when they are too old to take care themselves. When my MIL called me, my Dh would tell me "your best friend is calling". I can see the happiness in his eyes. I feel the same way when he respects my parents and take them to doctor appointments when I have to work. Imagine your wife's happiness when you love her brother as your own, you would be her true man. Leaving your wife does not guarantee happiness, you might end up with a terrible woman who cares for nobody but herself. It would be very very sad.

In the end, it's your choice. I hope you do some serious soul searching before making the decision. Good luck with your decision.
 

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He can divorce his wife when her special needs brother moves in. It's his choice, but that is not her fault. It does not mean she chose her brother over her husband, it's just because she is a nice and responsible sibling who is not fortunate enough to have a supportive spouse.

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Actually, I think it DOES mean she chose her brother over her husband.
 
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