But may I urge you to say yes?
|Tyler and Bonnie|
Here are five benefits we came away with that I didn't anticipate at the onset of this living arrangement.
1. We grew closer to one another. I didn't see this coming, but it became a joy to work together in the kitchen or sit around and watch TV together. We truly enjoyed one another's company and that has benefited our relationships.
2. We got to witness up close and personal our son as a husband. It was awesome to see this "kid" as a thoughtful husband. He was kind, gentle, funny, loving, helpful, understanding. I'd only had glimpses of him in this role before, but living with them immersed me in the wonder of it every day. It was spectacular. And it was just as fabulous seeing how equally wonderful his wife was to him.
3. We learned to work cooperatively. We tried to stay out of each others' way in the kitchen or when doing laundry. We parked our cars so the other could get out when they needed to. We let each others' dogs out or fed them when the other couldn't. We were glad to help each other, and didn't do it begrudgingly.
4. We loved our daughter-in-law in a deeper way. Don't get me wrong, we loved her before. But there's something about living with someone that brings you close. You get to see each other at your best and worse, and have the opportunity to support and love each other through life's ups and downs. I am much closer to my son's wife now than I ever could have been had she not lived with us. She feels more like my own daughter now.
5. You appreciate each other all the more when they move out. Obviously, living together isn't an ideal situation, no matter how great it can be. When the kids moved out, they were thrilled to have their own space again and so were we. We were so happy for them and they were so grateful to us. You count the blessings of living together, and then count the ones of living apart. I miss the close time we had and am so happy when they drop in to say hello.
Living with your grown kids can be challenging. I offered tips on how to do it successfully in a previous post "11 Tips for Sharing Your Home With Married Children." I'm blessed with kids I love and enjoy. They're thoughtful and respectful, so we chose to let them live in our home for a while. I realize not all family situations are like that. Naturally, every parent needs to decide what's best for them and their kids. But if you have a good relationship with your kids already, I encourage you to let them move in if they need to for a time. Set a time limit on how long they can stay if needed. But don't let fear cause you to say no. You may miss out on a huge blessing.