Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Grandkids - How Close Is Too Close?
Old 03-09-2019, 09:37 AM   #1
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: San Antonio
Posts: 13
Grandkids - How Close Is Too Close?

Our daughter and son-in-law have 3 wonderful children, ages 7 and under. They live about 30 minutes away from us and we generally see them a couple of times a week, and the grandkids will often sleep over. They are very high energy kids and while I love seeing them, they can be both physically and emotionally draining and I must admit that after spending a day or two with us I'm usually glad to see them go so that I can get some peaceful "alone time".

They are currently renting a house and are considering moving and possibly purchasing a home in the next few months. A house recently came on the market that is almost directly across the street from us that they have shown some interest in. I have to admit that the thought of them being that close, where they would likely be at our house daily, sounds overwhelming to me. I am a more private person than DW and prefer to have some boundaries. 15-30 away seems reasonable, across the street, or even on the same block? I don't think so.

I think DW would have no problem with them that close, and in fact might prefer it, so without coming across as a jerk and saying I want a little more distance, it's probably best to stay quiet and hope that they find a place not quite so close.

So, I know everyone is different, and it's all a matter of personal preference, but I'm curious how others would feel about this? How close do your kids/grandkids live to you? What do you consider reasonable? What would you do in my situation?
__________________

popntx is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-09-2019, 09:51 AM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 655
I hear you. Our kids/grandkids are all within 20 minutes. I love my grands, however, I , too, am pooped after spending the days with them. But, they are only little for such a short time, and then they are teenagers off with their friends, and you most likely will not see them as much.
If it were me, I wouldn't say anything and let your DD and SIL purchase their house on their own. If they happen to move across the street and your worst fears come to pass, it would be reasonable to set boundaries with visitation time if you absolutely had too.
Continue to live your retirement as planned, go travel, etc.and enjoy the fact that your kids want to be in your life and be close. Time flies far too quickly
__________________

__________________
Give me a fish, I will eat for a day. Teach me to fish, I will eat for a lifetime.
pacergal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 09:53 AM   #3
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 398
It's important that you set your boundaries before they seriously consider buying the house across the street. What is driving their desire to be so close to you? Is your DW encouraging this without involving you in the discussions? Don't be silent on this.
gwraigty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:01 AM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Souschef's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Santa Paula
Posts: 2,106
I read the OP's post to DW, who is an Earth Mother in thebest possible way. Her comment was short and sweet
"Oh Boy!"
__________________
Retired Jan 2009 Have not looked back.
AA 50/45/5 considering SS and pensions a SP annuity
WR 2% SI 2SS & 2 Pensions
Souschef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:01 AM   #5
Full time employment: Posting here.
ugeauxgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Rural Alabama
Posts: 507
I read an article in one of my I industry (FA) magazines that said that retirees were happier when their kids lived more than 10 miles away. It didn't say why, but I suspect its kids taking advantage of free babysitting. I see it frequently.
__________________
Projected retirement--2020 at age 48
ugeauxgirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:03 AM   #6
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Chuckanut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: West of the Mississippi
Posts: 8,450
I know a couple who moved to be near their two children's families in another state. They found a home that is 45 minutes away from both children's home. They explained that they are near enough to visit frequently, but far enough away that nobody can call and say " I just got invited to play tennis with Jan this morning, can you drop over and watch the kids?"

I love the grands, and I have cared for them 24/7 a few times. It took me 4 hours to get my place in shape so that kid dangerous stuff was put away. I am still trying to find some of it.
__________________
The worst decisions are usually made in times of anger and impatience.
Chuckanut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:10 AM   #7
Moderator
ziggy29's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: North Oregon Coast
Posts: 15,794
Quote:
Originally Posted by ugeauxgirl View Post
I read an article in one of my I industry (FA) magazines that said that retirees were happier when their kids lived more than 10 miles away. It didn't say why, but I suspect its kids taking advantage of free babysitting. I see it frequently.
That was my first thought. Someone may really love their grandkids and enjoy spending time with them, but unless boundaries and expectations are appropriate set and understood, Grandma and Grandpa could become an endless, bottomless, infinite source of child care.
__________________
"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)
ziggy29 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:13 AM   #8
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Rural community
Posts: 58
I would love, love , love if all my kids and grand babies lived next door!
nhcycling is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:16 AM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 135
Did anyone here see the first episode of Everybody Loves Raymond? This same topic comes up. It gives a funny example of how something that seems like a good idea at the time maybe isn't in the long run.
Stormy Kromer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:18 AM   #10
Moderator
Aerides's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 2,523
My sister lives maybe 10-15 mins from our parents. The proximity doesn't so much increase the visits, but for sure it increases the times my parents help out in a pinch. Pick up from school or last minute babysit if the parents get stuck late at work, or can't stay home because a kid is sick or something.

Given your grandkids are 7 and under, that's the sort of thing that will increase. The helping out. Not necessarily intentionally taking advantage, but just natural to ask when family is close and needs arise.

Across the street seems crazy though. For them to even want I mean. I can't either my sister or I ever looking to be that close physically.

However, as someone up thread mentioned though, they'll be teenagers in a flash, and then gone. So if it happens, there is an upside. Also if they are that close, they wouldn't need to sleep over. So, with no buffer zone you might end up with more frequent, but shorter visits?

I'd be more thinking about do you want your DD and SIL living across from you for the next 20+ years.
Aerides is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:35 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 1,534
Both sets of kids/grandkids live within 10 minutes of me. I LOVE it. I am frequently called upon, above and beyond the "regularly scheduled" visits, to assist in some way. I never mind doing so; keep in mind I'm quite active so more than one occasion I am unable to help.

A few months ago DD went to Vegas with her hubby for her 40th birthday while we watched her 2 children. We had them 3 1/2 days. It was great....but frankly also tiring. Have to confess to being relieved when my daughter got home,.
mystang52 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:38 AM   #12
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Ojochal
Posts: 798
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stormy Kromer View Post
Did anyone here see the first episode of Everybody Loves Raymond?
My first thought when reading the OP.
__________________
What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.

John Steinbeck
candrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:42 AM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ivinsfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 3,576
The odds the house across the street will be "the one" aren't very high. But I can see why you are concerned.

I think pacergirl's comments are spot on. We have 4 grandkids 7 and under so I completely get it. Yet the two oldest are starting to "do their own thing" and see us and talk to us when we visit but don't hang on us for every second.

You need to be able to say Sorry, that won't work for us today, if and when your kids ask you for a favor. This discussion is best had with your DW. And the flip side is, if you have pets, or want to do extended travel, you have someone right there is take of things for you. If you have a sudden medical emergency, same thing.

And last but not least maybe as you get older, your present home won't work for you and you will relocate..

We are two plus hours from our Grandkids and I often say to my DH..an hour or less would be perfect. One Spring day a few years ago we were out for a walk and noticed a fixer-upper down the block from our oldest DD. As kind of a joke, I told her that house is a good deal and wouldn't take a lot to fixup maybe we should buy it and relocate.

The look on her face told me everything I needed to know. I laughed and said I was just kidding, so don't panic. I was in no way offended that my DD didn't want us as a neighbor, I get it. Just ask them next time you see them what is it about that house that interests you and listen to what they say. Then respond as you see fit.
ivinsfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:47 AM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,697
My grandchildren live 400 miles away. We try to see them monthly. I would love for them to live closer. I would prefer the same block or two. Don't know if I would want directly across the street. Mine are 10, 4 and 2 and they definitely require energy!
Dreamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 10:49 AM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ivinsfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 3,576
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreamer View Post
My grandchildren live 400 miles away. We try to see them monthly. I would love for them to live closer. I would prefer the same block or two. Don't know if I would want directly across the street. Mine are 10, 4 and 2 and they definitely require energy!
I don't see a lot of difference between across the street and a block or two away.....
ivinsfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 11:23 AM   #16
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Moemg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Sarasota,fl.
Posts: 10,665
I would love my grandchildren closer . They are a plane ride away .My SO's grand kids are 40 minutes away but now that they are teenagers we rarely see them.
Moemg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 11:28 AM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 13,417
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwraigty View Post
It's important that you set your boundaries before they seriously consider buying the house across the street. What is driving their desire to be so close to you? Is your DW encouraging this without involving you in the discussions? Don't be silent on this.
They should know your boundaries ASAP, it wouldn’t be fair to spring them with those boundaries after they’ve fallen in love with a (too close) house. They might be planning on you babysitting (way) more often. But you need to get on the same page with DW first. If you’re passive and just hoping it’ll all work out, you might regret it for many years - you might harm your relationship with the grandkids, kids and DW.

OTOH you might be able to take advantage of their “services” some day too, when you’re older?

[We just learned we may be facing the same issue with some famously lazy, moocher in-laws who are saying they’re going to move to exactly where we plan to retire. Fortunately we’ll have no problem telling him they’re not welcome at our house uninvited (which may be almost newer), including leaving them standing at the door if need be.]
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 45% equity funds / 30% bond funds / 25% cash - radically changed Nov 2018
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 11:37 AM   #18
Full time employment: Posting here.
MissMolly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 819
I'd be torn. I would love to see my little granddaughter every day, but it would also be exhausting unless they were short visits. Normally when I am asked if she can stay with us while my daughter and her husband have a "date night" it is a 24 hour/overnight thing.
__________________
And whatever your labors and aspirations in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.- Desiderata by Max Ehrmann
MissMolly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 12:04 PM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
NYEXPAT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Miraflores,Peru
Posts: 1,659
I will turn 66 this year and have two son's 3 and 13, I wouldn't want it any other way! My YW on the other hand can't wait to leave for work in the morning. Different strokes!
NYEXPAT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2019, 01:46 PM   #20
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,697
Quote:
Originally Posted by ivinsfan View Post
I don't see a lot of difference between across the street and a block or two away.....
When I talk on the phone, I walk from room to room and look out the windows. I would not want anyone to think that I am spying on them. I would also want to be able to leave our house for a walk or to go somewhere without our grandchildren wanting to go with us. I would want this to be our idea and for us to invite them.

We are getting ready to go visit them in about a week or so, and can't wait to see them. It will be exhausting, because they have bought a new home and we will be helping with the kids and moving.
__________________

Dreamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Got small kids? Got small grandkids? cute fuzzy bunny Other topics 5 09-10-2008 09:52 PM
Grandparents, watch out for your grandkids! windsurf Health and Early Retirement 6 07-16-2008 02:44 PM
How many years before grandparents tire of chasing grandkids? skyline Other topics 21 05-12-2007 10:17 AM
Optimal proximity to grandkids Rich_by_the_Bay Life after FIRE 30 01-21-2007 07:43 AM
Impact of Wealth or ER on Children & Grandkids Mountain_Man Other topics 5 02-27-2005 02:48 AM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:15 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.