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Dear Wendy

“We can’t compromise on where to live”

Home Forums Get Advice, Give Advice “We can’t compromise on where to live”

This topic contains 6 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by avatar SpaceySteph 1 week, 1 day ago.

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  • #728465 Reply
    Dear Wendy
    Dear Wendy
    Keymaster

    From a LW:

    My boyfriend and I have been together for 8 months, and although it hasn’t been very long, we can both see that we are an excellent fit for one another. We have similar hobbies, interests, values, and priorities. And we’re absolutely crazy about each other!

    But we have one major problem. We both want to live near our families. His family is from Rhode Island and my family lives in Florida. Also, he hates the hot and I hate the cold. We both are okay with living apart from our families for a few years at a time. But when it’s time to settle down and have children (which we both want more than anything), we want to be close to our families so that our children can have the joy of cousins and grandparents and vice-versa.

    We’ve discussed this at length and we can’t seem to come up with a suitable compromise. My original thought would be to live somewhere in the middle (like Virginia or the Carolinas) and alternate visiting our families on holidays. He seemed okay with that for a while but he has since rejected that idea as a lose-lose situation. I asked what it would take to get his father to retire down south, even if we let him live with us eventually, he said his father is set in his ways and would not leave RI. My parents are too, they are so happy in Florida and they hate the cold like me, I don’t think they would ever dream of moving up north. Another idea has been living summer/fall up north and winter/spring down south. We’ve discussed this too, and although some jobs in my career field could have enough flexibility for this, his job could not.

    It’s getting to the point that this is a make or break issue and I’m worried if we don’t come up with a compromise soon that we will not be able to resolve this. We are both at the age where we are not interested in dating someone we will not marry. So that’s where I need some outside help. I’m hoping perhaps that someone outside of the situation can help us come up with a solution where we’d both be at least halfway happy.

    Thanks,
    -Hoping for a Compromise

    #728468 Reply
    Dear Wendy
    Dear Wendy
    Keymaster

    I’m sorry, but it doesn’t sound like there *is* a compromise here that will work. You are both pretty set on living close to your families. Your families live far apart, your families are not interested in moving. You may be a “an excellent fit for each other” in every other way, but this is a pretty major issue in which you are NOT an excellent fit. We see this all the time. It’s similar to a two people not agreeing on whether or not to have kids. That’s just not something you can move past. There are issues on which you really, really have to match or compromise on (whether or not to have kids, whether or not to get married, what religion to raise your kids if you have them, and where to live) and issues where it’s ok to differ a bit (whether or not you both like sports, have the same favorite foods, enjoy the same hobbies, like watching Rachel Maddow before bed). You’d be better off being a less excellent match on other stuff and a better match on the where-to-live issue. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. I’m afraid I don’t see this resolving in a way that leaves both of you satisfied. As painful as it is, you probably need to end the relationship and move on.

    #728511 Reply
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    Northern Star

    This is a deal breaker. I’m sorry. But since you both want your children growing up near cousins and aunts and uncles, yet you haven’t quite connected the dots to realize BOTH SIDES would provide cousins, aunts and uncles—there’s just nothing to be done but break up.

    Move to Florida and then find a man who already lives there.

    #728516 Reply
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    Ron

    Like the others, I’ll confirm what you already know: it’s over and you have to MOA. There is no magic solution any of us can offer. You and your bf have done a good job of exhaustively discussing this and exploring a very wide range of potential compromises, finding any of the compromises to be unworkable. I can’t think of a possible solution you’ve missed. Neither of you wants to continue dating if the marriage and living together option is gone, so the sooner you rip off the band aid and just MOA, the less total pain for each of you.

    #728517 Reply
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    Ron

    I will offer this: regardless of where you/bf end up living, there is no guarantee that the cousins and their parents will continue to live near your parents. Work can require relocation. Also, if you are living and dating outside of FL, there is little guarantee that you will find another bf willing to live near your parents. Even if you find such a guy, no guarantee that he will be able to get or keep a suitable job in FL while your kids are young. You and he went off to college. For the college educated, the job search is national, not local and often you have to move to where the job offers are available. It is hard enough to find a common location for the jobs of both husband and wife, without narrowing the job search down to where your parents live. I won’t say you and bf are wrong, but the world has changed and we no longer live the village life of a century ago. The modern American economy frequently requires mobility and frequent relocations. That’s life.

    #728529 Reply
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    Vathena

    Where are you both currently living? I agree with Ron; being near family to put down roots and have kids is nice, but gainful employment is what makes it all happen. If you can’t find jobs near family, you have to take that into consideration. Once you get married, your commitment to your spouse comes first, and you will need to decide where to live based on what is best for your nuclear family unit. I don’t particularly want to move, but there’s always the possibility that economic necessity would make that decision for us, and we are a family and will do what is best for our family’s security. Wherever my husband and daughter are, that’s home for me. (And not for nothing, but it’s possible for kids to have good family relationships even if they don’t live around the corner from Grandma and Grandpa.)

    I think if you both are already determined to be miserable living anywhere other than Florida/Rhode Island, you should go ahead and break up now.

    #728593 Reply
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    SpaceySteph
    Participant

    It sounds to me like you are willing to live not near your family. You are the one who proposed living in the middle, after all and thought that was viable. So that tells me that you’re ok with not living right near your parents. So if that’s the case, what’s the difference between living in Virginia and living in Rhode Island?
    I mean yeah its not quite as cold in VA, but it does get cold and it does snow. And either way, Florida is a reasonable plane flight away but would be a pretty long drive (not sure which part you’re from… north or south makes a bit of a difference here).

    So say you agree to move to RI, then yeah, it’s cold in the winter but what if part of the compromise is you’ll spend the kids’ winter break in Florida with your family? Then you get a couple weeks of sunshine and family, and your kids have a reliable chance to get to know their cousins, and he gets to live near his family the rest of the time?

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