(Closed) In-laws want to stay in our apartment after the wedding?

posted 5 years ago in Family
Post # 31
60 posts
Worker bee

cateacherbee:  This is a tough situation. Sorry you have to decide such a sensitive dilemma!

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  Berri.
Post # 32
271 posts
Helper bee


I’m Russian-American so perhaps I understand where you are coming from as well as where your Mother-In-Law is coming from as I’m extremely aware of the culture.

To Russians they consider the house of their son/daughter as their own. You said you would never make yourself “at home” if you were a guest. That’s the thing, they don’t consider themselves “guests”.

They consider themselves extremely close family members, and to Russian people, you are not a guest, you’re family and your family member’s home is basically your home.  So this is why she felt comfortable re-arranging some things and spraying her essential oils. She most likely just feels that her son and daugher-in-law’s house is like their 2nd home. It’s really not accepted to tip-toe around or ask for permission for things in the home of such a close family member.

I know a lot of people are saying to set your boundaries and say NO to them staying there, but you should also be aware that whatever positive opinions she may have formed about you over time, will be torn down once you forbid them from staying at your house after the wedding – regardless if you were justified in doing so. Since they do consider themselves very close people to you and your husband, and that your home is their home, they will certainly not understand why you are setting these boundaries.

So I warn you that there will most likely be a lot of tension and a possible ruined rapport with them.

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  Whiskers0.
Post # 33
4524 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

A thousand times no! We came back from our honeymoon to finds some rearragements of little things on shelves, like pictures and knick-knacks (DH had asked them to check the house while we were gone) and just that pissed me off.

Post # 35
2600 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I was going to say that if you decide to say ‘no,’ that you do it verrrrrry carefully. Because these are your in-laws and they probably consider it a sign of your impending closeness and the fact that you’re family for you to do this for them. I think that if you were to pawn them off on a hotel, you have to do it the right way because it sounds like they’ll be insulted if you don’t. And yes, that can be a purely cultural thing rather than a real, genuine closeness–like, it establishes you are their proper daughter-in-law socially rather than you having an actually close relationship, if that makes sense. I know in my own family, my MOL would feel all cool to brag to her friends that she’s staying in OUR house, rather than a hotel! It’s partly a kind of ‘old-world’ children-care-for-their-parents kind of attitude. 

If you really can’t take it, then I would try your best to come up with some excuse that makes sense for them not to stay with you…like you’re getting it fumigated or the air conditioning is broken or some other excuse and then I think that it’d be smoothed out some if you were very nice and paid for a nice place for them instead and threw in like, a massage or dinner or something. 

Post # 36
326 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

cateacherbee:  Oh hell no. How do you know she won’t go through your drawers or other personal items.

Post # 37
1866 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

cateacherbee:  So I’m not Russian, however I come from a culture that thinks similarly to what Whiskers0 has said about “family ties”. I understand how annoying it would be for someone to spray their oils in your home and rearrange your shelf…but I would still let them stay. I know I’m not at all in the majority on this, but I just think that saying no could be really detramental to your relationship with them. Is it even worth it? They live 3,000 miles away so it’s not like you have to deal with them on a regular or even monthly basis in this sense. If the Russian culture is anything like mine, which it sounds like it is, it is just very much down right disrespectful on many levels to not let inlaws/parents stay in your home. 

Good luck with your decision. I know it’s annoying and not an easy one to make. 

Post # 38
271 posts
Helper bee

cateacherbee:  I’m so glad my response was helpful. I was worried about coming across as too brash.  I think the in-laws most likely feel the connectedness with their son even though he may not be particularly close to them emotionally.

They probably just feel a sense of closeness with him just because he’s their son, a familial tie, and again, want to consider his home their home. I also think the fact that he moved so far away may play up the “closeness” that they want to feel for him when they are visiting.

Of course I don’t know your Fiance or in laws but I am so well versed and pretty much ingrained with the Russian-American mentality that I’m rather confident in the parents’ viewpoint. 

Also, I think your husband should be the one to talk to them. You mentioned that as typical guy fashion he may not articulate himself to them effectively. I think you guys should discuss this together and make a plan for him to be the one to tell his parents not to stay with you.

I honestly don’t think it’s a good idea at all for you to be the one doing it, considering his mother’s prior opinions on “American girls”.  He should look like the “bad guy” here in order to spare your relationship with your mother in law, even though they live far away. 

Of course the best course of action in maintaining a decent relationship with your in laws would be to just let them stay. You’re lucky in the fact that they live 3000 miles away so grinning and bearing it would fortunately not be a regular thing, but even if he is the one to put his foot down with them, you may still look like a bad guy for “influencing”  him. 

If I were you, I would just put up with them for the sake of my relationship with them, and for the sake of FIs relationship with them. Then when they leave count your lucky stars they live 3000 miles away. 

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  Whiskers0.
  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  Whiskers0.
Post # 39
5864 posts
Bee Keeper

Ahh, I’m normally very outspoken but this is one area where I cave. My SO and I are both of Euro background and there’s just no way to tell a family member who asks to stay for a few days ‘no’ without causing hurt feelings- esp as we’ve stayed in their homes & cottages on occasion (albeit usually with them there).  I would ‘MIL-proof’ my home (lol just as you’d baby proof for someone bringing a toddler). Only MIL-proofing your home (I would remove diaries/ journals/ lol sex toys optional/ anything really personal). Seriously, when my mom stayed with me for two weeks (but was alone at times due to our work scheds), I put a small duffel bag of stuff in the trunk of my car. I didn’t overly-fuss over the cleaning because she’ll re-clean anything I clean anyway to ‘help out’- lol she does mean well on this. Is this a hassle when you’re already busy? Yes, but it’s only for a few days and if she rearranges things you can always arrange them back- but hurting her feelings by making her feel unwelcome in her son and her new DIL’s home could cause long lasting damage to your relationship with her.

Post # 40
67 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 2015

I totally and completely understand where you’re coming from on this. First, I wouldn’t feel comfortable with anyone staying in our home when we’re not there. I also feel the need to make sure everything’s clean before the future ILs come to visit, because if it’s not spotless, they feel the need to clean, which drives me absolutely insane! My Fiance tells me it’s just their way of trying to be helpful since they’re staying in our home, but I would find it more helpful if they didn’t clean at all, unless they would want to clean up after themselves (which they do, even though their guests) but I just get rubbed the wrong way when they come over and clean even when it’s not necessary. They also move stuff around in the kitchen, and just leave it where they moved it. I guess their thinking is “well, this is where I keep the mixer, and it’s convenient, so I’ll move it for them.” Just no.

I had to put my foot down and say that they cannot stay with us the week of the wedding. They want to come out and help with things, and they were under the impression they would be staying at our house, because normally they do. I’m not a huge fan of them staying with us, but I do love them and have a pretty decent relationship with them, so I suck it up since they’re usually only in for about 4 days to a week at the most. However, these are always extremely stressful visits (for me, anyway), so my Fiance told them that we would prefer them staying at a hotel the week before the wedding since everything will be so stressful and our place will most likely be a mess from having dresses/favors/centerpieces/etc. strewn about. They understood and appreciated the fact that we let them know how we feel. 

Theyre also in very good financial standings, so we knew the cost of the hotel wouldn’t be a big deal for them, but if it was, we would have offered to pay for their hotel room, or at the very least, help with the cost. If I were you, I would see if either you or your Fiance, or both of you, can have a calm, rational talk with them, letting them know that it will be an extremely stressful and busy time for you and that you’re not comfortable with them staying in your home when you are not around. Assure them its nothing personal (regardless of whether or not it is lol) and if you can afford to, maybe offer to help pay for them to stay elsewhere. You don’t need this added stress along with the stress of the wedding. 

Post # 41
9569 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2016

So, I echo everything others have said… i.e. ahhhh that sounds awful!

You said that you would be OK with your parents staying at your place, can you tell them you already said OK to your parents, so you can’t say yes to them?  As long as they think it’s just a first come first serve sort of issue, they hopefully won’t get offended?

I’d flip if any house guest re-arranged my crap and sprayed essential oils.  I like my things the way they are, thank you.

Post # 43
5864 posts
Bee Keeper

cateacherbee:  “primany caregiver” uh oh. I withdraw my post! Stand your ground, set your boundaries, piss off whoever you piss off in the process….. If Future Mother-In-Law thinks she is going to be the ‘primary caregiver’ to children who aren’t even conceived yet and Future Father-In-Law thinks y’all are going to support them down the road, I can just see her in her future role of Overbearing Grandma Wanting More Say Than You With Your Own Kids & you & hubby working yourself to a frazzle trying to support 3 generations.

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