Laughter is the Best Medicine

Intergenerational Living with Teenagers – Laughing with Mary

Charlotte from Memphis writes, “Dear Mary,
after my husband passed away 3 years ago, my daughter offered to let me move into her
home. Because I don’t drive and have a few health issues that require regular doctor
appointments, I think she thought it was the best idea. I thought it would be nice, as
well. I would have the opportunity to spend more time with my two grandchildren who are
now 15 and 17 and always seem to find a reason not visit with their mother. My concern is
that she’s much too lenient with the children. Neither of them have curfews and they come
and go at all hours with their friends. They are disrespectful to their mother when she
does try to establish some boundaries and their grades aren’t what they should be.
The home often sounds like a war-zone with all the yelling. When I try to talk to my
daughter about it and give her some guidance, she becomes defensive and doesn’t want my
help. I love my daughter and her family but this isn’t how i pictured living the rest
of my life.” Well Charlotte, my advice is: get out of there!
Two adults versus two teenagers? That’s not a fair fight. Teenagers need to be outnumbered
by 5-to-1, at least. And you’re not going to change your daughter or her children, unless
they want to change. No, you may need to find an assisted living facility that you can afford.
Most of them come with no yelling and no teenagers. Or better yet, maybe you could rent a small
apartment of your own and sign up for a caregiver from Home Instead. You might be surprised
how safe and secure a caregiver can make you feel and a Home Instead caregiver hardly ever

2 thoughts on “Intergenerational Living with Teenagers – Laughing with Mary

  1. Watched for my gerontology class. Felt a little misled by the title. Was hoping to laugh a little bit more. But do appreciate the advice to always outnumber teens 5-1

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