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Help with 'Sortng Out' before move

(62 Posts)
Marmight Sat 04-Feb-17 10:32:52

I have always had a great relationship with all three daughters who all live hundreds of miles from me - hence the move. I have a large house, full of the accumulations of 36 years which I have gradually been sorting out. My 2 UK resident daughters have not visited me since last March; it's always easier for me to go to them but now I really could do with some help. DD3 works f/t, has 2 small children and is about to move herself so I understand that it's not on for her to help me. DD1 doesn't work, also has 2 young children both at school. Recently she said they would all come for half term and her DH would amuse the boys while we got on with things. She has now announced that they will arrive late on Friday and on Saturday will go on to Inverness, 2 hours further north, to spend the weekend with his sister, returning on the Monday to me. Bearing in mind my SiL doesn't particularly get on with his sister and BiL , they managed to visit them at the October half term for a week, saw them during the summer holidays at their parents' and also saw them during the Christmas hols and also on a few odd occasions throughout last year. I feel very unhappy, not to mention miffed and my nose is severely out of joint. I thought, not unreasonably, she was going to help me unconditionally. I am getting into quite an emotional state about leaving the home I made with late DH for our family and sorting through all the memories is so difficult especially doing it all alone, dealing with lawyers, agents, surveyors, trying to decide what to get rid of, what to put into storage and what to put in my temporary accommodation and heaven knows what else. I think I have coped quite well since DH died. - perhaps too well - but now things are just getting a bit too much and I need a bit of assistance. Do you think I am being unreasonable in my expectations?

Stansgran Sat 04-Feb-17 10:41:54

No I don't at all. But your DD is the filling in the sandwich. And I'm afraid that some times one has to take the top slice of bread off if it gets too much. Your dd has to walk the tightrope between children at half term and her DH at half term. I am trying to reduce the amount of stuff in this house after 40 years and I totally sympathise with you. The thought of moving horrifies me. If I were nearer I would give you a hand. flowers

ninathenana Sat 04-Feb-17 10:53:01

Marmite I too would help if I could.
It's a daunting task to cope with alone. Maybe as you say you have coped so well since your DH that your family don't realise how over whelmed you feel now. Could you explain to your DD and tell her you need her help.
I understand your feelings, I'd feel the same.

kittylester Sat 04-Feb-17 11:09:17

A great big (((hug))) marmight which isn't much help but all I can offer from right down here.

You are not being unreasonable at all. You really could do with some help but I bet you have coped too well since John died and your girls don't realise what it has taken for you to do so.

It is probably an enormous thing in your daughter's mind too. It was her family home and it looks like she is a bit anxious about helping you pack up her history and that of her sisters.

She is perhaps scared of seeing her hitherto strong mum upset when you have been so strong.

I think you have to be open with her and say it's really difficult for you to cope with and suggest she sends Sil off, with the children as planned, and you two try to do the emotional stuff while they are away.

I hope the move goes well and wish I could do more to help.

Christinefrance Sat 04-Feb-17 12:53:12

Marmight, kittylester is exactly right, you have managed so well that your children don't realise how hard this move is for you. To save repetition I think you should go with Kitty 's suggestions.
I wish you well in your new home and life flowers

sunseeker Sat 04-Feb-17 12:58:23

After my recent health scare I have now decided I should move closer to my in laws so I will be going through the pain of sorting out and disposing of some the things we accumulated over 43 years. I don't have children and have always found it hard to ask for help so will probably end up doing it all myself - not something I am looking forward to, so you have my sympathies flowers

kittylester Sat 04-Feb-17 21:00:18

Please let us know how things go, both of you! flowers

cornergran Sat 04-Feb-17 22:00:58

It's an undeniably emotional and stressful thing to do. No, you aren't being unreasonable in wanting help, I think kitty is likely to be spot on about your daughters reactions. It's hard for you all. Yes, do tell your family how hard this is. Just wondering, is there a close friend or perhaps more distant family member who could also offer help? I'm in the South or would be offering my practical support. Take care, wishing you well with the sorting and the move, please let us know how things go for you.

Luckygirl Sat 04-Feb-17 22:46:07

I really can understand how you must be feeling. I do think that the suggestion of asking someone to help you who has no emotional involvement might be one way forward. We have recently cleared our house in preparation for a move, and I have to say that in the end we did become pretty ruthless - that truly is no way we could have taken everything we wanted to.

One thing that we found sweetened the pill was to put things on Freecycle - we met some really nice people doing this and there were those who went away very happy - that was good to see and we were able to know that the things had been appreciated.

It is hard to know why your DD is taking this attitude - as others have said, maybe she feels that she might find it hard.

I do hope you manage to get this difficult job done. flowers

GrandmaKT Sat 04-Feb-17 23:31:21

Just a thought - wouldn't it be possible for your daughter's DH to take the DC up to his sister's on his own - clearing the way for you and your DD to have a good clearing out weekend?

Jane10 Sun 05-Feb-17 07:54:19

I hope your DD sees the light and stays to help you.
On a practical note : when we moved recently we only took what we really wanted, DCs took what they wanted and we got house clearance people to just take the rest. After 30+ years we had accumulated so much 'stuff'. I must say that I've never missed any of it.
We did this when clearing my mother's and MiL's houses too. Its not painless as you have to decide what really matters but it takes care of the boring practicalities and creates local employment. Good luck. You'll be missed locally.

harrigran Sun 05-Feb-17 08:40:24

Oh Marmight, it is so sad when it comes to sorting out the family home but to do it without adequate support is very difficult.
You have been so strong but I think now is the time to put your cards on the table and tell it how it is.

br0adwater Sun 05-Feb-17 09:13:05

Consider the help of a professional declutterer via
There should be one in your area. They charge around £40 ph

ninathenana Sun 05-Feb-17 09:13:40

I said the same ^up there^

Jane10 Sun 05-Feb-17 09:59:33

Sounds like she needs more than just decluttering. Endless trips to the dump or to fussy charity shops just eat up time and energy.

baubles Sun 05-Feb-17 10:18:39

I went to help my mother (not in this country) clear her house in preparation for moving and found it an emotional experience. Although didn't grow up in that house it had been my grandmother's house and I'd been very close to her. I also wasn't prepared for the feeling that I'd lost my connection to my birth country even although I still have a huge family of aunts and cousins there. What I'm trying to say is that sometimes we can be blindsided by unexpected emotions and your daughter may be experiencing very mixed feelings of her own.

Leaving your home of so many years is a huge life event and I think the time has come to stop showing how capable you are and explain to your daughter that you need her help. kitty's idea is a good one I think. Could you suggest that?

Disgruntled Sun 05-Feb-17 10:23:03

Hugs to you Marmight. I'm wondering if your daughter is ducking because she dreads it. When I cleared my Mum's house I found it extremely helpful when friends helped. At first I thought I'd have to make all the decision, so what help could anyone be - but how wrong I was! One friend one day, another another day - they managed to make it almost fun. Good luck. flowers

Fran0251 Sun 05-Feb-17 10:35:30

Marmight, might you be being unreasonable expecting your daughters to mind read? I have recently been looking back over my relationship with my mother and regretting things I did not do, help not offered, but she never hinted or asked and I feel sad. I had young children and was spinning like a top trying to survive, but I would have helped.

I ask mine very rarely and have been helped, but they also are not mind readers and don't understand my/our age group.

Marmight Sun 05-Feb-17 10:45:39

Thanks for all the comments. I don't think she is 'ducking'. Just using the opportunity of visiting her inlaws while in the area when I feel she should be devoting her time here totally to me, which is probably selfish, but I don't ask much of her otherwise! I know the other two would be here if they could, but Sydney is a bit of an ask grin and as I explained before, DD3 is up to her eyes in her own move while holding down a difficult job. I will just get on with it. Photos are a pain as I stop to go through them all (7 large plastic boxes so far .....) and going through John's stuff is something only I can do. I still have all his suits hanging in a wardrobe but have finally faced up to the fact that they have to go. DD3 suggests just keeping one , and I have a box with all his bits and pieces - watch,, ring, fav t shirt etc. to keep. Trouble with me is I become so attached to things, and really in the big scheme, things don't really matter - it's people. It was the anniversary of J's death last week and DD1 never mentions it and rarely talks about him so keeping buttoned up is her way of dealing with her emotions. The others were on the phone to me and DD3 surprised me shock by arriving on the doorstep having flown up from London, just for 24 hours. Aye, they're all different and I love them all. Sorry to go twittering on - back to the boxes ......

radicalnan Sun 05-Feb-17 10:48:39

You can hold your own open day, clear the room nearest the front door or a garage and give people the chance just to come and take stuff, free of charge, you won't get anything from a charity shop and this saves you all those trips and the charity shops being picky as they are.

Gumtree is free to advertise in so pit stuff on there free to collectors, then you won't have to worry about moving stuff..or sell it and make a little money.

I had to clear my dad's house and made so many mistakes, mainly due to trying to fit in with the tip opening hours and policies, charity shops who can be difficult and just exhaustion.

Your could advertise for a helper or go to an agency. It isn't worth putting pressure on family, sometimes when the process begins people start asking for bits they would like and do come along to help. It is tough !!

HellsBells Sun 05-Feb-17 11:35:17

Have started decluttering etc while we are still both fit and active. He who expects nothing is rarely disappointed!

Brigidsdaughter Sun 05-Feb-17 11:36:41

Am I missing something here? 'She's coming back on Monday..' Does she not have the week with you then? If yes, I think that's fine but I'm not clear on whether all you have is an overnight visit

Sugarpufffairy Sun 05-Feb-17 11:46:00

Hi Marmight
I have just google mapped and found that I am 3 hours 17 minutes south of Inverness. I wonder just how far I am from you. I can well understand your wish for help with clearing your house. I am trying to deal witb my own house of 23 years and my family home of 50+ years. My DDs have done nothing to help (however woe betide me if I dont do what they want especially financially). I dont know what I could do to help you but would if I could.
I also get it how you feel about your family passing through on the way to the in laws.

ajanela Sun 05-Feb-17 12:11:00

Yes is she coming back on Monday for the rest of the week? Maybe when she sees the amount you have to do she will re think how she can help. I know SonIL offered to keep the children out of the way but they will still need feeding etc.

Do you live in a area where people pass by? Could you put things near your gate with a notice saying, Free - please take. You might then get offers from neighbours to help take things to the tip or Charity shops.

Lupin Sun 05-Feb-17 12:45:42

My heartfelt sympathies. I had to do this a year ago, and like you so clearly are, was aware of my daughters commitments and hated to ask for help. I too think KittyLester has it spot on.
I wonder - given that your SIL does not get on with his sister and BIL if your daughter feels she has to go on the visit too as a buffer zone. Time for some clear discussion with your daughter I feel. Then you will both know what's really going on.
I hope you get through this difficult task with all the help you need. You will get through it. Everything seems too much at the start, but in the end may be cathartic.