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It’s no secret. I am an introvert and don’t like company. In doses.

Husband is a good man. We spent a lot of money doing up our home. Moved into a good suburban place and great for kids too.

 

I had to spend 9 months living at in-laws. Wasn’t happy about this but there wasn’t a choice as we wanted to free up money from previous home to do the refurb. We were living with them, they would visit our house project daily too. I appreciate they cooked, and gave us a roof over our heads but missed our own space. I really struggled with all this.

 

In the process, a house opposite me two doors down comes on the market

 

His younger brother is not short of money; works out of town and lived there but bought the house as a investment initially.

 

Fast forward, we moved. Happy. March..Covid happened..he moved with wife and kids In April opposite as tenant vacated and he was all of a sudden working from home.

 

Was supposed to be temporary as they bought a flat out of town. However; working from home allowed him to make the decision to stay suddenly. Plus she is expecting again.

 

This came as a shock to me.

 

This whole summer, we have had his parents coming over ‘randomnly’ once a week unexpected. They don’t stop at mine as they know I’m not very happy about them just turning up.

 

His siblings have too, turned up often this summer gone as now there are ‘Two’ brothers living close by.

 

The youngest across the road and his wife are welcoming, very family orientated. Always calling the parents over. In one week, there were 3 times they once came! Due to him persisting on them visiting him.

 

Now that he has decided to live here rather than move, due to work allowing him post-Covid to work from home on a flexible basis, he has made the decision to stay.

 

Thankfully at the moment there are restrictions and with winter looking, family is less likely to visit.

 

My in-laws now live alone (previously he lived out of town but visited every fortnight and sued to stay weekends with him with his family)

 

Now that he lives separate (across the road from me)..his parents are more likely to visit.

 

I don’t know how to accept or deal with this. I have had awful anxiety, and sometimes feel like the walls are closing in. I just can’t seem to get away.

 

It’s like my in-laws are forever going to be continuously around. Is that really bad? What should I do?

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Install a house alarm that has a video of the front door. Keep the doors locked. Ask them to call prior to dropping in. If it's an inconvenient time, such as just getting out of the shower, whatever, simply don't answer the door. If they don't know it's rude to just drop by, you have to talk to them about calling first. Just be plain and polite about it.

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Mara.

 

Just to clarify.

 

You spent nine months living with in-laws (your mother and father-in-law?) Or you lived nine months with the brother-in-law who now lives opposite you. This man is your husband's younger brother. His parents" are your parents in-law? Right?

I can imagine you didn't find it easy not having your own space for those nine months, particularly if you are anxiety-prone.

 

You mention:

 

"I have had awful anxiety, and sometimes feel like the walls are closing in. I just can’t seem to get away."

 

Is this anxiety caused solely by the family living across from you and the prospect of them always being there. Or is it that you suffer from anxiety anyhow.

 

You ask what should you do. It's a difficult one.

 

I would suggest seeing a professional about your anxiety. You may feel more in charge of your feelings and how to deal with situations and people.

 

You remark that you spent a lot of money doing up your home, which is in a good location for you and your children.

So I can't say to you "move away".

 

What does your husband have to say about the family situation? Maybe you need to have a sit-down talk with him about how you feel.

 

Just to add that this "attached to family" situation has been ongoing (looking back on your previous threads).

 

Could I add that severe anxiety has nothing to do with being introverted. Truly, as you were many times advised before, please see a professional to address your anxiety issues. Have you perhaps already seen a therapist/mental health professional?

 

You said this(quite a while ago):

 

"im tired of my mind working overtime trying to keep him from his family. im constantly on my toes. i cant relax."

Edited by LaHermes
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There are natural remedies to help with the pangs of anxiety. Change of diet is one of them. Bananas, yogurt, pumpkin seeds or pumpkin butter, turmeric, dark chocolate, fatty fish, chamomile, sleepy time tea, st.johns-wort. Avoid smoking, alcohol, junk food, caffeine.

 

Exercise such as a daily walk during quiet times like early mornings or after dinner. Avoid watching the news, or too much time on the computer.

 

Get a dog. People use dogs to help with anxiety, and other mental health issues.

 

Find other relaxing activities such as gardening, reading a book,baking, etc

 

These are very simple things you can do to help without any real cost, and is Covid safe.

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This from last year when a poster asked about the possibility of renting for those months while your house was being refurbished. You said:

 

"getting a rental is not a option as this would upset our families. it would create tension and make it obvious that 'i' don't want to live with anyone."

 

Yet, you did not stay with your mother/parents (instead of with your husband's family) and said that your mother "did not want you there".

There is much that needs to be addressed, Maara. And as soon as possible.

 

You once said:

 

"i had a difficult childhood, and it wasn't easy for me. my relations with my family are much better now, but i guess the scars are there."

 

All the more reason to start seeing a professional as soon as possible and as often as possible. I note you live in the U.K. Check this out:

 

https://www.bps.org.uk/public/find-psychologist

 

Is there some reason you are reluctant to see a professional? As in "what will people/family say or think".

Edited by LaHermes
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This is nothing to do with his family, who have been amazingly gracious and helpful to you. This is about your lack of mental health and something you need to deal with. Your anxiety and attitudes have nothing to do with being an introvert. I really don't know why you don't aggressively pursue professional mental health help because it cannot be fun to live inside of your head like that all the time, consumed with fear, anxiety, discomfort, and plotting how to get your husband away from family.

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I agree with seeing a therapist. I think your husband needs to address the boundaries here too - and actually, mostly. It's fine that you're not comfortable with them just stopping by.

 

I also have issues with your passivity and seeming sense of entitlement - look, you have the good fortune to have the funds to build a home. To have parents willing to help you save tons of $ by living with them long term. Your brother in law's housing plans are none of your business. Nor are his and his wife's decisions about family planning or how they choose to interact with family. You have no say in this. You only have a say in your own home and who comes and when -to an extent. Your inlaws are the grandparents (not sure if you have kids -or want to?? ) -they are your husband's parents. As a practical matter they probably get to visit your home once in awhile. Talk to your husband but also get the help you need so that the boundaries you suggest are reasonable and not your phobia/panic talking.

 

I am sorry you are having a hard time!

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This is nothing to do with his family, who have been amazingly gracious and helpful to you. This is about your lack of mental health and something you need to deal with. Your anxiety and attitudes have nothing to do with being an introvert. I really don't know why you don't aggressively pursue professional mental health help because it cannot be fun to live inside of your head like that all the time, consumed with fear, anxiety, discomfort, and plotting how to get your husband away from family.

 

I agree with this ^^^ you need to get some help for yourself.

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Agree with all of the above. This is about you, first and foremost OP and the need for you to deal with your social anxiety. As an introvert I can understand the need for alone time, but to blame your social anxiety on being introverted does other introverts a disservice.

 

The more you allow this anxiety to control your life, the more you will wall yourself in.

 

At the end of the day you can choose to struggle with it or you can choose to surrender control and seek some outside help.

 

Edited to add: after reading your other posts here, I can see this has been a long standing issue with you not wanting his family around. Whether you like it or not, he is close to his family and HE wants them around, and if you continue to use your anxiety to try and control him you will destroy your relationship.

 

That all being said... if you simply cannot be happy with a man who wants to see his family all the time, perhaps you should consider that you aren't compatible with this person and that you either need to be single and independent, or to be with someone that isn't close to their family.

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Very sorry to hear this. It sounds incredibly uncomfortable and uneasy. I think I understand what you mean about feeling anxious and then frustrated and it's a cycle that keeps repeating itself because it's not the outcome (peace and quiet) that you're hoping instead to have.

 

I'm wondering if it's possible to change those expectations as the living situation and neighbour situation seems to have changed overall. I'd be upset with people coming over constantly especially unannounced (I value my quiet and peace). There are some evenings I leave my phone in my work bag and don't look for it at all till the next morning. There's nothing worse than being bombarded and I don't think everyone experiences that sense of urgency or dependency that others have on each other. Different people are different or respond differently anyway.

 

Create more boundaries, change your expectations overall. If they're there to stay, you have to somehow catch up with the times and accept that this is your street just as it is anyone else's who chooses to live on it. It is your home too so don't be afraid to create more boundaries and don't shy away from being firm and polite about what you'd want/prefer instead. People won't knock you for having reasonable requests but your in-laws and family will be quick to pick up if you're acting out of sorts or being inappropriate or trying to isolate yourself from them. Hope this helps.

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I've been married for a long time and fortunately (or unfortunately), my in-laws (MIL & FIL mother & father-in-law) and relatives reside locally. Fortunately, we know our boundaries with each other and none of us feel smothered.

 

As with your situation, because you received free room and board from your in-laws, nothing in life is truly free. There is a cost and price to pay such as always feeling beholden to them and much obliged. In other words, you are forever indebted to them.

 

Change the way you think. Long ago, I was anxious because I was uncomfortable with my in-laws. My in-laws have always been monetarily generous with my immediate family because they have very deep pockets. They are extremely affluent. They are the matriarch and patriarch of the clan.

 

What you need to do is practice good diplomacy. Be reasonable with having them at your house for dinner once in a while just to maintain peace and good will. Dinner doesn't have to be fancy nor always homemade either. Do what you can because you owe them a depth of gratitude to house and feed you during your time of need and now it's your turn to habitually reciprocate. They are older than you . Be respectful and it's because of them, you are blessed with a fine husband. They raised him and gave a good husband to you. Feel incredibly blessed, fortunate and thank your lucky stars.

 

Strike a deal with them. Tell them that you will gladly have them at your house once in a while for dinner (or tea and refreshments) as long as they do not arrive at your doorstep unannounced. Ask them for the courtesy of calling or texting you first, schedule your date with them (within reason such as once a month) and see if you can work a compromise with them. Also, defer to your husband and have him make the arrangements. Be a good sport. Don't be a party pooper.

 

Your in-laws are older. You will outlive them. You don't want feelings of remorse and regret when they're dead and gone. Life is too short. Be happy. Feel grateful to them and you will transform your anxiety into gratitude and humility. Be humble. Be very thankful to them.

 

Change the way you think and you will feel secure and become a happier person. I was once you. Practice good diplomacy. That's the advice my mother gave me years ago.

 

Someday, when you're old or older, you will understand how your in-laws feel. They have less time on this Earth than you do. When you and your husband become parents someday, you'll understand even more than you do now. You can have boundaries, reason, compromise, happiness and compassion simultaneously. Work out a happy medium for everyone. Peace and harmony are important.

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You and your spouse have to come to a consensus and take each others feelings in to consideration. I have a feeling you would be more comfortable with set timelines for get-togethers versus the willy-nilly approach. Perhaps say that the first Sunday of the month, or every other month, could be when you host a dinner or pot-luck. Having a set day will perhaps let your mind relax, and will set a routine that you will expect and get used to. Because you do have to make some sacrifices to please your husband and he has to consider your feelings and change up how he'd normally do things if he was single.

 

Of course, you need to be flexible when it comes to birthdays and holidays. You might even want to change it up now and then and do something extra one-on-one with your MIL. Making an effort will show them you want them in your lives, but in a more regimented manner. I know I have my plan for the day, and I wouldn't want people dropping in unexpectedly. It did happen to me now and then with my in-laws until they moved an hour and a half away, and now my mother-in-law passed last March. Take care.

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I have trouble following. You write:

This whole summer, we have had his parents coming over ‘randomnly’ once a week unexpected. They don’t stop at mine as they know I’m not very happy about them just turning up.

 

Who is 'we,' because if they don't stop at yours, what's the issue?

 

Do you believe that it would be better to have strangers you know nothing about living near you rather than people you know are kind and not axe murderers?

 

I'm not being dismissive, I'm just not clear about how often any of these people show up at your home.

 

Can you clarify?

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I have trouble following. You write:

 

 

Who is 'we,' because if they don't stop at yours, what's the issue?

 

Do you believe that it would be better to have strangers you know nothing about living near you rather than people you know are kind and not axe murderers?

 

I'm not being dismissive, I'm just not clear about how often any of these people show up at your home.

 

Can you clarify?

I'd be interested in some clarification myself. I'm an introvert. Introversion has nothing to do with who gathers at whose place across the street. There are no boundaries to set nor any feelings you or your husband need to consider if other grown adults are doing as they please peacefully in their own homes or property.

 

With respect to how much it must suck to live with such anxiety, and assuming I'm inferring the context correctly, this really is a "you" problem I wouldn't take shortcuts in addressing professionally.

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