Husband wants to move. I don't. - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-21-2015, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
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Husband wants to move. I don't.

When I was pregnant with our first child, my husband and I agree to move from Georgia where I had gone to college and he had been in the Army, to Maryland where my family is from. I needed the support of my mother, being a first time mother, and he was able to secure a good job ahead of time, as well as a nice house to rent.

We agreed at that time that in 5 years, we would relocate to Wisconsin, where his family is from.

It's been 8 years and he's ready to go. I'm not.

Up until about a year ago, I was not having an easy time. I had two young children who I stayed at home with, I miscarried my third child, and I struggled with anxiety and depression. I've finally turned my depression around and while anxiety still plagues me, I am dealing with it better. I now have a part time job that I enjoy very much. My husband was promoted at the beginning of the year and he's gotten a very substantial pay raise.

In addition to that, we recently got new neighbors that have kids our age and we get on with them extremely well. The wife has become my confident, something I haven't had in a girlfriend in a long time. My husband also gets on well with the neighbor's husband. We have dinner together at least once a week and our kids are best friends.

I have not been this happy maybe ever. And now my husband wants to uproot us and take us halfway across the country. He plans to go into the same field, but his salary wouldn't be the same and it's very doubtful that I could find a part-time job that I enjoy as much as this one, or that paid as well.

His argument is that his parents are getting older and he doesn't want to miss any more time with them. Hearing that breaks my heart and I do want him to be happy, but I'm fearful that I would slip back into depression. I'd also be missing time with my family, who I am very close with.

I feel like this is a lose/lose situation. One of us will be unhappy, but if I become depressed, this would be hazardous to our family, especially my children. I'm also very worried that overnight our income would drop by at least $20,000. We're at a place where we can finally own a home, but that would not be the case if we were to move to Wisconsin. The only way I can see us maintaining our income level is if I went to work full-time and as our children are still young, and my husband and I both want me to be there for them when they get out of school and the like.

I just don't know what to do.

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-21-2015, 10:52 PM
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

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When I was pregnant with our first child, my husband and I agree to move from Georgia where I had gone to college and he had been in the Army, to Maryland where my family is from. I needed the support of my mother, being a first time mother, and he was able to secure a good job ahead of time, as well as a nice house to rent.

We agreed at that time that in 5 years, we would relocate to Wisconsin, where his family is from.

It's been 8 years and he's ready to go. I'm not.

Up until about a year ago, I was not having an easy time. I had two young children who I stayed at home with, I miscarried my third child, and I struggled with anxiety and depression. I've finally turned my depression around and while anxiety still plagues me, I am dealing with it better. I now have a part time job that I enjoy very much. My husband was promoted at the beginning of the year and he's gotten a very substantial pay raise.

In addition to that, we recently got new neighbors that have kids our age and we get on with them extremely well. The wife has become my confident, something I haven't had in a girlfriend in a long time. My husband also gets on well with the neighbor's husband. We have dinner together at least once a week and our kids are best friends.

I have not been this happy maybe ever. And now my husband wants to uproot us and take us halfway across the country. He plans to go into the same field, but his salary wouldn't be the same and it's very doubtful that I could find a part-time job that I enjoy as much as this one, or that paid as well.

His argument is that his parents are getting older and he doesn't want to miss any more time with them. Hearing that breaks my heart and I do want him to be happy, but I'm fearful that I would slip back into depression. I'd also be missing time with my family, who I am very close with.

I feel like this is a lose/lose situation. One of us will be unhappy, but if I become depressed, this would be hazardous to our family, especially my children. I'm also very worried that overnight our income would drop by at least $20,000. We're at a place where we can finally own a home, but that would not be the case if we were to move to Wisconsin. The only way I can see us maintaining our income level is if I went to work full-time and as our children are still young, and my husband and I both want me to be there for them when they get out of school and the like.

I just don't know what to do.
Hello, I am a marriage and relationship counsellor and i can hear that this is a difficult dilemma. Having moved myself when our family was younger and having lived to regret that decision, i really hear your reasons for staying. Uprooting a young family can seem attractive but it also can be very destabilising. In your case, you have a lot to lose. It sounds like you cannot see any real benefits. It is also difficult for your husband as his parents age but circumstances change and even though you made that earlier agreement, life has now thrown more complexity at you than you could have then imagined. I suggest you go and see a good marriage and family therapist to discuss your concerns and see if there are any compromises which could work better than such a big wrench away from your community and home.
Margie
Melbourne relationship counselling, Melbourne couples counsellor and marriage therapy, VIC PS I offer sessions by Skype if you want to speak further.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-21-2015, 11:56 PM
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Husband wants to move. I don't.

If I were your husband I would not agree to the above therapist as she is clearly biased. It looks like your husband kept his word and you want to renege. Pretty simple. Apparently your happiness is more important than his.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-22-2015, 08:12 PM
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

You had an agreement but conditions have changed in the 8 years since you made that agreement. Some of the concerns you expressed sound more like fear of the unknown. You lose the new friends you have now but that doesn't mean you can't make good new friends. The current jobs go away but that doesn't mean equally rewarding jobs can't be had in your new home.

You will be far away from your family and that will be hard to replace. You didn't mention how you get along with your husband's family.

Moving is always disruptive but need not be debilitating unless it is turned into a self fulfilling prophecy. You know how that goes, something like, "I don't want to do this and I will hate it." And lo and behold you do hate it. Self fulfilling prophecy.

What is driving your husband to make the move now? You mention his parents age. Is he getting pressure from them? Was there some expectation from them of a move closer to them at some point?

Is it certain your husband can't make as much or is that another unknown? In addition, the cost of living may be less so salaries may not be equivalent. One thing to consider discussing with your husband is your concern over finances. perhaps there is a compromise there of not moving until he has a job offer in hand that will not severly impact the family finances.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 10:02 AM
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

I agree with you that you shouldn't move. Your family sounds happy and content where you are at. It's better for you children not to be uprooted and you have to work full time instead of part time. He needs to choose what is best for your family. You can always visit his family.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 10:13 AM
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

Despite previously agreeing to move with him, circumstances have changed and it does seem more beneficial for you and the family to stay where you are. In that case, he may choose to visit his parents, and even if he chooses to use all of his vacation time to do so, that would be reasonable. The family can go, too - and probably should since otherwise his parents won't see you and their grandchildren. Alternatively, his parents could consider moving to your area, but that would no doubt be very disruptive of their lives in ways they don't want. If they are healthy, they can still visit.

Anyway, you do need to have a serious, in-depth discussion about this, and fully explain why it is more beneficial to stay for both you and the kids, and offer what concession and alternatives you can to make it more attractive for him to stay where you are yet still see more of his parents if that is so important to him.

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 10:34 AM
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

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Despite previously agreeing to move with him, circumstances have changed and it does seem more beneficial for you and the family to stay where you are. In that case, he may choose to visit his parents, and even if he chooses to use all of his vacation time to do so, that would be reasonable. The family can go, too - and probably should since otherwise his parents won't see you and their grandchildren. Alternatively, his parents could consider moving to your area, but that would no doubt be very disruptive of their lives in ways they don't want. If they are healthy, they can still visit.

Anyway, you do need to have a serious, in-depth discussion about this, and fully explain why it is more beneficial to stay for both you and the kids, and offer what concession and alternatives you can to make it more attractive for him to stay where you are yet still see more of his parents if that is so important to him.
I recall my mother telling me when I was younger -- and upset that not only did we live in a boring midwestern town, but worse in the sterile white suburbs(oh to be black as a teenager in the'70s). I think my parents were pretty proud of themselves. Look they have what the white man has. You couldn't anywhere without a car. While we were at white schools, our parents chided us "for acting white." Trying to do anything in the black part of town required at least an hour's drive each way. I missed a lot just simply because according to my mother, she couldn't take the time to drive me there.

So when she said to me "when you grow up, you can live where ever the he!! you want", I have taken that very seriously. I'm not sure why she thought the profanity was necessary, but, if she must.....

OP, consider all angles here. Is your husband an only child? Do your in-laws still work? Will they be dependent on your money during their retirement?

My mother kind of hoodwinked her mother into moving from the east coast to the Midwestern town. But what else could my mother do? My father was still working in his medical practice. My mother's brother who only lived a half hour drive from my grandmother was useless. Do people really believe retired parents can demand that their adult children move back to their moribund hometowns, find jobs that will pay just as much as what they were earning so that they can help support them financially. Dream on.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 08:27 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

Thank you. Very good advice from everyone.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 08:30 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

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If I were your husband I would not agree to the above therapist as she is clearly biased. It looks like your husband kept his word and you want to renege. Pretty simple. Apparently your happiness is more important than his.
Actually, it is our family's overall happiness that is my main concern. I'm looking for a way to make all 4 of us happy, instead of 3 happy and one miserable, which is clearly the case now with my husband. I don't want him to be unhappy. If that were the case, I wouldn't have asked for advice, I would have just put my foot down and said I will absolutely not move.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 08:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Husband wants to move. I don't.

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OP, consider all angles here. Is your husband an only child? Do your in-laws still work? Will they be dependent on your money during their retirement?
His parents are set financially. They are in good health but haven't retired yet, but can do so when they want. He has a younger brother he is very close with and two much older siblings. When we visit we don't see much of the older siblings. They seem to be very busy with their own kids, so we might see them once or twice when taking a 2 week trip there. BTW, we do use all of our vacation time to go there and so far have been lucky enough to have visits between two and three weeks.

What really sparked something with me about your comment is that his parents will eventually retire. I keep thinking I can convince them to move here, but in reality, if they retire, they could come to visit for a length of time. Months even. Something to think a lot about. Thanks.

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