Monday, November 23, 2009

Good Ol' Pro/Con List

I am having an internal struggle with myself. It is NOT FUN. It is keeping me awake at night. It is making me grumpy. Remember when I talked about not wanting to live with the in laws? Ever since then, I have been thinking, re-thinking, of that topic. Am I being selfish? Am I being too stubborn to see the bigger picture? Or in other words, should I suck it up, make some rules, and build my own apartment upstairs? I know, I know. Like me, there are those of you screaming NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO on the inside.

But let's just do it. For old times sake. Let's make the good old pros/cons list. Let's start with cons.

Cons

  • I will live next to my SIL. Who is now pregnant.
  • I will live with my in-laws every single day. 24 hours a day.
  • There will be no real privacy. I hate when every one knows that we are fighting. (And when the siblings fight with their respective spouses, they all run to momma's house. Not kidding. Sidnei is the same.) And it is just hard for anything to be private when everything is so open everywhere. And yes, this includes sex.
  • I have to share my husband and deal with the BS that comes from having momma's boy be so "close" to home. And my husband's "guilt" over everything.
  • I am worried that I will be expected to continue cleaning/cooking downstairs (in the MIL's house) and I don't want to do that (My saintly (I use that term loosely) SIL does..every Saturday..all Saturday). I want to clean and cook in my own house and not in their house.
  • I hate the "yard" here. We have these lean-to looking things filled with crap. Old crap. Old pots, pans, an old type writer and lots more. Oh and not to mention the huge pile of gravel (seriously?) with old plastic bottles thrown in it. It is one big eye sore. And I HATE IT. It makes me ornery.
  • There's that whole sharing thing...hey it's a work in progress okay?
  • And to be very real and very honest. I am terrified that I won't be going back to the states..in other words that Sidnei will be denied papers. (A very real possibility. I hate to even say the words out loud. I feel like I'm jinxing myself. In fact it kind of makes me feel like I'm going to have a panic attack, but we'll save that for another day.) And I am going to have to live above in the in laws for a very long time.

Pros

  • RENT FREE!
  • We will be saving money in the long run because we will not have to pay rent. Which means that we will have more disposable income, which means traveling more (a priority for me), and being able to go home more often. And have more of the things we want.
  • I will have a security net of family around me always. I feel completely safe in this neighborhood and in the house.
  • I will have my own space!
  • We will be saving to buy our own place.
  • Ok seriously, right now, this is all I can think of. I KNOW there are more pros. But truly the biggest thing is having more money every month. Money is not easy to come by here (and I realize that people back home are thinking "It's not easy to come by here either!" And so I used to say things like this. Until I moved here, and realized, we truly come from the land of milk and honey) and I worry about money ALL THE TIME. (I know, join the club)

Okay, I will add more pros and cons as I think of them. And you can add some too in the comments if you want! Help me. Do these lists ever really work or just make us more confused? I don't know. But let me say this: Please don't be all snarky in the comments. I am being honest here and I realize my honesty may not have the diplomacy that you all seem to crave, so if you can't be constructive, just wave and keep going! Because I really am struggling. I want to get over myself and just build an apartment and live rent free! But I am worried about my sanity and my ability to cope with not having the privacy that I am used to. And no, I haven't talked to Sidnei yet. That's the goal for tonight. I think.

15 comments:

Betty said...

I think a big PRO or CON will be when you know what Sidinei thinks or says.
But otherwise I think even though your Pro list is shorter than the other, you have to take on the importance of your points. How important is more money to you? Or is privacy MORE important than money? For me, living in a country I don´t like (still after 25 years!!), I can only say, if my hubby is happy here, I can learn to cope. And I think that´s what your goal should be too. If your hubby isn´t happy living alone and having to work harder to "have" money, will you be happy then? Even if you have more privacy?
So talk to S. first, then you need to decide.
I hope that helped.... :)
I completely understand your dilemma and will be thinking of you!

Dari said...

I think something to consider is if being with the in law's is putting a strain on your marriage. If it is, then you should leave. If not and if you are way worried about money, it may be better to stay until you are more stable.

Love you and hope you can get this figured out soon :)

Jaime Wilkins said...

Pray about it. That's all I can say!

Paula said...

I can hear it in your voice and I think if it is okay with Sidinei then you should leave

mrsmouthy said...

Deciding to live with the in-laws isn't a once-and-for-all decision. What if you decide to live there for, say, 6 months and save up enough money for a trip or two. Once you get some traveling behind you, then set your focus on gaining independence. It sounds like it will be hard to have both at the same time, so check one off the list first, then the other.

Anonymous said...

Jelly Springer said...
Ok!!!
Here is what you need.
OPINION!!!:D
If you wanna live in Brazil for a long time, you should have your own place...It might be hard to put in his family's mind that you're not breaking up with them. You'll be just getting your own space to do whatever you guys want,anytime( including sex!).
And then...They'll say:
You guys can do anything you want here!!( may'be his mother will say that!).

*Please!Get those dirty thoughts out of your minds readers!!!!!!

Your answer:I know! I like here, but is different...I wanna have an excuse to go out on sundays. Visit you,would be our sunday plan...And we wanna a place to have you guys over,too!( Honestly, it will be healthier for your mind and spirit).
If you don't have $$$ to move know.
You guys should work harder, make a plan, set a date(next month,next year...???)and move! It will get you guys busy thinking about future and making life less stressful!
Good luck!!!!!!
* you don't need to follow the dialogue, it's just an idea! ;) Try to get someone from his family to agree with you and support the idea of moving out.

Tamara said...

I admire you for trying so hard to do the right thing and support your hubby.

When will you know about S's papers?

macanilha said...

Hey sweetie! I so so so feel for you - I count myself so lucky that my fiance and I can have our own place. It can be SO hard feeling that everyone has their families/friends to run to in a fight and there's just little you alone in Brazil.

Just adding to what other people said I think you should make a long-term plan (with sidnei of course) and then work out what steps you need to take now to get there. So, if for example saving money now could get you a great apartment/flat in 6 months time perhaps its worth holding out. Or perhaps you need to wait until the final decision for Sidnei's papers. Is there any way you can rent furnished apartments round where you live? Could be a good short-term solution with little investment...

Take care,
Julie

Corinne said...

another thing to add to the pro list is the companionship of the in-laws. If you lived on your own, you would be really isolated. Living in close quarters is really convenient and allows for a lot of shared resources. This was a big positive when I lived in the favela. But, I really wanted not just my own space, but more space and the favela was really crowded. I think that you need to think both short term and long term. For now, I think living with the in-laws is probably the best, even if you invest some initial money to build upstairs. However, long term, you need your own space in my opinion. Even if you built something upstairs, you could rent it out in the future. It does not seem that right now would be the best time to get your own place. I think the $ would be better spent on travel (especially a trip back to the US) and saving up.

Just my 2 cents.

Jim said...

While I have found the cultural norm of living so close to be a bit overwhelming we have also been able to negotiate a bit of private time without dirty looks or consequences from Luiz's mother.

That is, Luiz hads been able to convince his mother that just because we don't have lunch with her all the time does not mean we are avoiding her.

I think she gets it. No hard feelings. And more time apart.

Ballerina Girl said...

I agree with Betty here...and the others who focused on what is best for you AND Sidnei. A big point is to remember that it may be a long time.
If you need more money, then know that staying may the best option for now. The trips will help break up the monotony of living next to your inlaws.
Also, security is a huge concern...especially without a strong hold of the language. You inlaws know somewhat how to communicate with you, right? Imagine a time when you need something and are trying to talk with someone that doesn't understand you.
On the other side...privacy is wonderful for marriage, but only if you both want it!
Hope that helps....good luck with you decisions!
BG

Gabriela said...

Hi Steph,

This post was from a couple of weeks now, so I hope you've worked it out in win/win sort of way.

Tough decision. Tough decision. I like my privacy a lot and I know how "close" families here can be. But, if you need money, you need money. So, basically, I'm of no help. Sorry!

Any way, here's the link to my roll recipe-I posted about it a long time agon. Hope they work for you, they ususally do for me and yeast is not my friend.

http://livingsouthoftheborder.blogspot.com/2006/05/freezer-food-friday-butterhorns.html

Have a great day!
Tchau.

Sam said...

I admire your honesty in making those lists. And though I don't know you IRL, I will say that I don't hear a lot coming from the "pro" quarter. The "cons" sound a lot more pressing to me. In fact, my sense is that you really do need some more space and time with Sidnei that is unmediated by his family members. I'm just saying that based on what you wrote, so I hope it isn't over-stepping to say that.

Mrs. Carioca said...

hey Stephanie, I like your new picture! Did you figure out what you're going to do yet?

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