Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

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running stitch
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Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby running stitch » Thu May 25, 2023 12:14 pm

We have been asked to have my nephew come and stay with us whilst he does a year at art school in London.

We do have a spare room, so space isn't the issue, but sister and brother-in-law are quite different and they're much more rigid in their rules than I am.

For example I have two late teen/early twenty-something children and their partners stay over and my BIL did make a comment along the lines of "there'll be none of that with our son" and I'm not about to have different sets of rules for my children and theirs. Also although I love my sister she is quite high maintenance and she's making comments about how she can't wait for her "regular trips to London" etc.

I don't see how I can say no, and I'm not sure I'd want to, but I could do with some advice as to how to set boundaries with my sister and her husband and at same time let them know I'm NOT setting boundaries for their son.
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waltzer
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby waltzer » Thu May 25, 2023 1:07 pm

You are very brave. I think that they have put you in quite a tricky position. I have two older teens and I wouldn't relish having a third at all. That said if you do agree I would suggest a meeting to outline how it is going to work and send an email with what you agree afterwards. It will be easier to have something to refer to if you have it written down.  I would also suggest that he goes home for holidays, so that you get to be with your own family. Getting as much as you can sorted upfront will be key.
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Goldhawk
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby Goldhawk » Thu May 25, 2023 5:53 pm

Just say no
Art school will be much more fun living in student accommodation
He can visit you for Sunday lunches and you can host your sister when she visits him
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sid_seal
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby sid_seal » Fri May 26, 2023 9:48 am

Was this discussed with you before your nephew applied?
If not, you should feel no pressure to agree and they shouldn't just have assumed that you'd be happy with the arrangement.
If yes, the situation is trickier - you don't mention their financial situation, but living in London is expensive even in students' halls!
However, I completely agree with the points you and other people made: he should have the experience of living with other students, rather than with Auntie; you cannot be expected to push on him different rules from the ones your own children have; he is most welcome to come over for dinner at any time (I would personally tread carefully on extending the "welcome any time" invite to your sister if you say she's high maintenance...), and you are willing to help him if anything crops up, but you are not prepared to hover over him like a helicopter.
If you decide to go ahead with it, make it VERY clear with your sister that he will live by your rules, not by theirs.

FWIW, I went to uni in the city where my aunt lived. I had an open invite for dinner any time I wished, sometimes I would stay over if it was late, but I am pretty sure it never dawned on my parents to ask her to give me permanent accommodation - nor would have I wanted it, much as I loved my aunt and uncle!
What does your nephew want?
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muddyboots
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby muddyboots » Fri May 26, 2023 1:38 pm

Firstly, they are asking you a HUGE favour and are in no position to set the terms.
If you say yes, then it will hand to be on your terms!

If they are so specific, they can always pack up and move to London to raise their son under their exacting standards.

Do you want to do this? It’s a huge ask and huge responsibility for you.
It will be you worrying when he’s not come home on time or something goes wrong.

It’s a very kind thing to do, it could be a great experience for the cousins together.
However, if you feel this too much, just say so.

Simply say, you’ve given it some thought and careful consideration and it’s not going to be something you will be able to offer.
End of .
Send a text to start the dialogue if you can’t pick up the courage outfight.

If you say yes and don’t want to, you will spend the next year being annoyed or commit to arguing with your sister if you don’t set the record straight about their expectations.

Good luck!
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helenelliot
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby helenelliot » Tue May 30, 2023 11:26 am

I echo the question as to what your nephew would like. Perhaps if he doesn’t know London well he would prefer to stay with his aunt and cousins? It is certainly worth an honest chat about all of this. You shouldn’t be expected to be the disciplinarian in his life, but it could be a valuable opportunity to draw closer to him and build stronger bonds of trust and understanding. We have had young adults come to stay with us belonging to friends who live out of town and it has always been a lovely experience. We would now count them
as friends in their own right.
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ally30_1998
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby ally30_1998 » Tue May 30, 2023 11:31 am

We did this for 5 years on and off with various sets of young people in the family, because being in london there was simply more opportunities here for internships, finding work and so on.  Personally, my attitude is if you have one or two already then a few more doesn't really make a huge amount of difference except in terms of food and showers.
With regard to boundaries for behavior, i think it depends on how old your nephew is.  If he is an adult then absolutely he should have the same boundaries as your kids.  If he is younger and possibly needs more boundaries, then that is up to you and how you feel about policing that, because it can quickly become a pain, especially if they turn out to be at the getting drunk and puking stage.   
Luckily I only had to deal with that with my son and my nephew (and nephew had one chance then the next time he did it i banned him from staying again, similarly stopped allowing sons friends to crash when they were going through this stage.  No problem with their experimentation but I do draw the line at having to regularly  supervise teenagers clearing up sick)
It sounds like he is an adult so of course he should be treated as any adult in your home, but just be in mind that if he has come from a rigid parenting household he is likley to spend at least the first term going slightly mad from having so much freedom and you may have scenes as i describe above to contend with.  Once they have partners they do calm down considerably in my experience.
To be honest I'd be more worried about your sister, she sounds like a potential back seat driver and no one needs that.  I think just lay it out, in a text maybe so no one can claim they didnt know, that you are happy to have him but he will live by your house rules.  Also, are you going to charge for any board?  Is he going to work while he is at college? My point is that if he is getting a grant or earning anything he should pay something to you - even if you just put it in a savings account to pass back when he needs it for a large purchase (i did this with all of them).
All that said, assuming you didnt agree to this before he applied, you can just say no and he can come for sunday lunch as suggested above. 
Good luck whatever you do.   I enjoyed having the younger relatives staying, it was great to see them enjoying London - its a fantastic place if you are young (and reasonanbly solvent).
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happy times ahead
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby happy times ahead » Tue May 30, 2023 4:02 pm

It sounds fine for the nephew, though I can understand your dilemma. Boundaries for the parents haha.

I would be concerned that your own privacy might be slightly compromised with unnecessary info going back about your own children. I wouldn't overthink it but say lets try out a few months and see if it suits both sides. It sounds a financial arrangement predominantly?
I'm sure it would be fine in reality.
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happy times ahead
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby happy times ahead » Tue May 30, 2023 4:03 pm

It sounds fine for the nephew, though I can understand your dilemma. Boundaries for the parents haha.

I would be concerned that your own privacy might be slightly compromised with unnecessary info going back about your own children. I wouldn't overthink it but say lets try out a few months and see if it suits both sides. It sounds a financial arrangement predominantly?
I'm sure it would be fine in reality.
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supergirl
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby supergirl » Mon Jun 05, 2023 11:02 am

Hi. I think it is fantastic. I love cross generations and inter families relationship. So my opinion is completely in minority by the look of it but I think it is rather sad that people are like that worrying about privacy and not wanting to accomodate a nephew - he is the same blood after all. And for me family is everything.

So when I did it i made it very clear what my rules / boundaries were but equally that I wasnt responsible of the child behaviour and therefore would inform of any infringements. You can strike once but not twice that ws clear too.
Then fun for all. My children loved the time with their cousins (i had a few coming) and cousins once removed. I had a great time getting to know them. They were helpful - ish as much as you can expect from late teens but rather better than average. And they had to be very independant as I wasnt prepared to babysit them.
Therefore it was wonderful experience for all. And personally I feel a lot closer to them and I know that in returns it makes for just a better world.

So embrace it and enjoy. This is what keeps us young.
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supergirl
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Re: Been asked to have my nephew live with us whilst he goes to art school, help!

Postby supergirl » Mon Jun 05, 2023 11:07 am

Hi. I think it is fantastic. I love cross generations and inter families relationship. So my opinion is completely in minority by the look of it but I think it is rather sad that people are like that worrying about privacy and not wanting to accomodate a nephew - he is the same blood after all. And for me family is everything.

So when I did it i made it very clear what my rules / boundaries were but equally that I wasnt responsible of the child behaviour and therefore would inform of any infringements. You can strike once but not twice that ws clear too.
Then fun for all. My children loved the time with their cousins (i had a few coming) and cousins once removed. I had a great time getting to know them. They were helpful - ish as much as you can expect from late teens but rather better than average. And they had to be very independant as I wasnt prepared to babysit them.
Therefore it was wonderful experience for all. And personally I feel a lot closer to them and I know that in returns it makes for just a better world.

So embrace it and enjoy. This is what keeps us young.
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