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My father won't let me leave his house


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Hi, everyone, how have you been?

Well, I am sorry if I keep bothering you with my many questions, but I truly need some help with this one.

 

So, after many people had already suggested me (online and RL), I decided to finally make the step and rent a house to go living by my own. I've saved some money just in case and I have looked for the cheapest and yet best place I could find to finally do it. I am all ready to finally go living by my own even if it is at the same city (because I can't afford to go anywhere else). I have a stable job at the University, it gives me enough money to hang around and I also have another source of income plus some other things I am about to start in order to guarantee even more income for me. I am already 26 and I can take care of myself just fine. I once traveled to Europe for a month, all by myself, and I did well (I mean, I left for a foreign country all by myself and lived by myself, so no deal!) I feel like I have everything under control except for one thing: now my father doesn't want me to leave.

 

He says my decision is stupid; that I should stay at his house until he dies or I get married; he even told me that he felt like I hated him and that he was going to commit suicide since he bothered me so much!

He is very conservative. And I somehow understand he doesn't want me to leave because he may feel lonely. My mother died six years ago and since then, I've been the one to cook for him and serve him, even to the extent of turning away meetings with friends for him. I've tried to do the best I could to keep him happy; my aunts and grandma had also been checking on me and supervising if I've been properly taking care of him. I know I've been wrong to do that; I should have never done something like that because now he depends too much on me, but I can't keep living like this anymore.

A friend once told me that I have to leave him because it is my fault he can't move on and find another person to love. I can't stop feeling guilty about it, but now he won't even let me leave so it is always wrong! I can't keep living like this; it is driving me crazy.

 

Right now I am so stressed, my head spins and my neck hurts so bad I can barely move it. I am so confused right now; I really need to leave and start living my own life, but I don't want him to do something stupid because of my decision. It really feels like no matter what I do, no matter how hard I try to make things right, I always ended up ing up everything... I sometimes wished I was never born.

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Well, your father is trying to control and guilt you. He is isolating your from your friends. After taking care of him for six years, I think you've done your duty. It's time to move out. In a way, your friend is correct. Your father is desperately clinging to his former life. It's time that he moved on too. Tell him it's the best thing for the two of you.

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He can't really stop you.

 

Give him some time. Don't stress over it because keep it in your mindset you will leave no matter what. Have a conversation with him that you will check in time to time and won't be out of his life but he has to let go because he really doesn't have a choice on the matter. Tell him that and proceed with what you had planned. Don't let negative influences try to guilt trip you into doing something you don't want to do. Just have the proper mind set. Tell him what you need to tell him and hopefully he comes around. If he doesn't then just leave anyways, eventually the parent can not win against the child.

 

I left my home when I was 17 years old. They didn't want me to leave, I left because I wanted to attend a certain university. They even tried to bribe me to go to a school that was near home and that they would pay for everything. They also told me if I go to a school that I eventually went to then they will not pay for my tuition.

 

At the end of the day, I went to the school I wanted, I didn't get any money from my parents, I used my partial scholarship and financial aide plus student/bank loans to cover my tuition.

 

Years later I did what I wanted, I am debt free of my student loans and I don't regret the experiences that I had after I left.

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I think you are both at fault here --- he is dependent on you and you have allowed him to be. but do you genuinely enjoy his company and look forward to sitting down for a meal together, or do you "serve" him?

 

I would consider moving out, but also regularly eating meals with dad - like making sunday dinner time for you to go cook for dad or for the two of you to meet somewhere for dinner or even twice a week or so. Maybe learn to genuinely enjoy his company. Losing mom was tough on him and he probably feels he is losing his family if you are not there. I would simply find a place you can afford to rent where you don't need help from him. Is your dad in his 50s or is he elderly? if he's 85 years old - then i would make sure that there are resources lined up if he can't do for himself. But if he is not, then i think its time to go.

 

Honestly, i think you should find a place, gradually move your belongings there when he doesn't notice and then tell him that you are moving closer to school/work - and go. tell him you are grown now and if you don't move, he won't spend time with friends, make friends or meet a woman to love. That you are not moving far away and wll come for dinner every X night. And tell him that you will see him on X day. And be reliable about it.

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Every once in a while in life you need to be a little bit selfish. This is one of those times.

 

You need to move out. It is the natural order of things for children to leave the nest and go have lives of their own. I understand that your father is upset... and I feel for him... but he can’t rely on you forever and it needs to happen.

 

Just as a word of warning... I have a girl friend who is 40 and moved back with her parents a number of years ago after a failed relationship. In that time, her father’s health deteriorated and he is now in a wheelchair. Her mother’s health has also deteriorated and she uses a walker. My friend does have outside help (nurses) coming in to assist... but she still needs to prepare all meals, be around to fix things, etc. She can’t go out for more than a few hours before she has to run home to help. This all happened slowly over time... but it is at the point now where - should she ever decide to move out, her parents would be forced to sell their home and move into a nursing home. Who wants to be the one to force their parents (unwillingly) into a nursing home?? Her life is basically on hold until either the situation gets worse and they willingly agree to go to a home or they die.

 

Unless you live in a culture where this is expected of you - get out now while you can. Your father needs to learn to be self-sufficient (or line up resources as required). This situation gets worse, not better.

 

You have the right to live your life. That doesn’t mean you don’t care or can’t help out here and there... but you also owe it to yourself to live for YOU in addition to others. But you have to love yourself and think of yourself first, here.

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I think you are both at fault here --- he is dependent on you and you have allowed him to be. but do you genuinely enjoy his company and look forward to sitting down for a meal together, or do you "serve" him?

 

First, thank you, everyone, for your answers. To answer some questions, my father is in his 60's and yes, I do serve him. It is not like I can enjoy a meal with him. We never talk at dinner. He sits in front of the TV and waits for me to give him food. He is "machista". He only wants a woman to serve him and listen to him whenever he wants. He orders me around and refuses to let me say anything about the "rules" at his house.

He still has a job, a very tough job he has refused to quit because he says he has to make money for me and my siblings even when I have told him I already make money with my job and that he doesn't have to work that hard anymore. He doesn't let me help him in anything because, of course, he earns so much more than what I do due to his experience.

 

@RedDress: Well, in my country, it is rare for parents to be taken to nursing homes. So if I were to stay, it would be until he would die (or until I get married which is very unprovable since I am not lucky in love).

 

I do agree with all of you. He won't be able to move on or find another woman to love if I don't leave the house. I just don't want to keep being a burden to him, that is all, but also I don't want him to make a stupid decision after I leave... If he were to kill himself because of me, I would not stand it anymore; I would break. A friend of mine committed suicide just a few weeks ago and I'm still having a hard time trying not to blame myself for what happened. Now this strikes. I feel I am going to go crazy! I can't take this anymore... too much pressure...

Edited by HadaraNight
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YOU ARE NOT BEING SELFISH FOR WANTING TO START A LIFE OF YOUR OWN AND MAKE YOUR OWN FAMILY!

 

I am 100% sure he loves you, but he's also selfishly treating you like his stand-in wife. Parents don't understand how irrational and selfish they can be.

 

Picture yourself unmarried, no kids, and living with your dad at 40, after waiting on him hand and foot - is this what you want? No, go live it. He may hate you, stalk you, and blame you, but you need to get out.

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He is treating you like a surrogate wife and it's a very unhealthy dynamic.

 

Please move out. The absence will force him to fill in the void of you being gone with people and interests that are fitting of a 60 year old widow.

 

The longer you stay the more harm it does to you. Your view of men and romantic relationships will be influenced by the unhealthy relationship you have with your father.

 

Expect that he will give you a hard time. But trust he'll settle down and adjust without you.

 

It's abusive for a parent to demand that type of attention from their children.

A parents job is to raise them in a way that they become independent and want to leave. . not keep hold them hostage for their selfish reasons.

 

I am sorry your dad is having a hard time adjusting. But it's a necessary passage and you cannot do it for him.

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Is this normal in your culture? You should move out so your father can reestablish his life and not turn you into a surrogate wife. He has other family and friends who can keep him company and he needs to learn to care for himself and find appropriate companionship.

I am already 26. He says my decision is stupid; that I should stay at his house until he dies or I get married. He is very conservative.
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@tattoobunnie: I know, I know I have to do it. I just don't want him to commit suicide or I won't be able to take all the blame... I don't want to be 40 living with him... I don't...

@reinventmyself: You are right.

 

I am trying to come up with a good excuse to leave home; I'm also looking for options outside of my city. Something like... "I have a job at the capital so I need to move" or "I just found a job/study to undergo at a foreign country so I am leaving for a while (and I stay for longer)".

 

@Wiseman2: In my culture there is a conception parents have: they raise children so that, when they are old, children take care of them "and pay for everything" they've worked to raise them on the first place. There is the conception too that women don't need to leave their parents' house until they marry a man. I am very sure he is trying to force me to stay with him until he dies. He even told one person he was planning on getting sick on purpose so that my siblings and I were forced to take care of him.

My country is one very sexist place, I hate it but it is hard to find a way to leave the country. I've been trying for 3 years to leave with a scholarship, saving up money so that I can pay a study or something to later establish myself somewhere else, because truly, it is very unbearable to live here. My country is El Salvador, in Central America, in fact, one of the "deadliest" countries in the world for a woman... nobody respects a woman here. To men, we are all stupid and are only worthy as long as we serve them.

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My country is one very sexist place, I hate it but it is hard to find a way to leave the country. I've been trying for 3 years to leave with a scholarship, saving up money so that I can pay a study or something to later establish myself somewhere else, because truly, it is very unbearable to live here. My country is El Salvador, in Central America, in fact, one of the "deadliest" countries in the world for a woman... nobody respects a woman here. To men, we are all stupid and are only worthy as long as we serve them.

 

You certainly do have a challenge on your hands. I don't want to minimize it. But because this is your family's values doesn't mean it needs to be yours. You have basic human rights and can choose your own path.

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