So, my parents are selling the house I grew up in...

And the realtor's posted the virtual tour with music and everything. And it's making me cry.

My dad just retired in March, and they'll be moving a few thousand miles away by July. Which I am not okay with, in any way whatsoever. I know they need to, my mom can't handle the climate at all anymore with her health issues, and they've always loved the west coast, visiting almost yearly, and for weeks at a time before we were born and now that we're adults.

So, the online tour is up and the music is orchestral and I think it's melancholic. It's probably just calming and happy, but it's reallt bittersweet to me. The house looks nothing like home. Nothing on the shelves or the walls, the rugs and furniture are mostly put away, the kitchen's empty... everything that makes it home is not there. But it's still home, and was for me for 27 years. We moved in in '84, a little over a year after we were born, so it's been home a long, long time. And I see my life in every little corner of those pictures.

How have you guys dealt with it? The selling of home, or your family leaving? I'm a grown woman and all I want to do is curl up in my mom's lap and cry and beg them not to go. I'm applying for work as much as I can out there, but it may be a long time, if ever, that I could be there.

... Is it weird of me to want to follow my parents and still be close to them at 30 years old? I've got my own home and life here, and a great job (even if I don't enjoy it much), but I just can't bear the thought of being far away from them. How do I deal with this? There's been a few deaths in the family in the last year and a lot of changes, and I just feel like a lost little girl again. I'm afraid I'm close to a meltdown.

My family moved out of our first house about 10 years ago now, and now I'm about to graduate from college and I've been living 100 miles from home for the last 4 years (excluding summers and Christmas holidays). I'm about to start an internship and a new job here, so it seems I'm going to be at least 100 miles from my parents for quite a while now. I didn't really see selling the old house as a big deal, and the new one I'm only really attached to because that's where my parents are. If they moved again, I don't think I'd miss that place that terribly much. I'm more nostalgic for situations, not places. It's not the place that's significant to me, it's the memory.

The most difficult separation I ever had from them was when I went and worked at Disney World for 8 months. I was 1100 miles away from them the whole time except 5 days about halfway through when they came down to visit me. I did cry a bit when they first left, and I teared up when they left the second time, and there were times when I wanted to be with them. But after a while I just found other things I wanted to do. I had to work, shop, and do regular life things. And ever since it's been pretty easy. I talk to them on the phone about once a week, but otherwise I just sort of do my own thing. I have a boyfriend, and I'd like to get married at some point and move in with whoever he is. I guess that's why I don't spend a lot of time looking back--I'm dealing with all the shit that's in front of me.

I'll admit I haven't heard of parental attachment quite as strong as yours, but I guess it makes sense. I guess I've gotten my feet wet in this before, and given there is literally NOTHING where my parents live I knew for a long time I'd be living at least 100 miles from them. My best advice is to just carry on. Pick up a hobby, keep yourself busy. In fact, I think it might be good for you to stick where you are for a while. Don't chase after them, stick it out where you are, at least until you're comfortable with the fact that they're gone. I dealt with a lot of shit as an 18-year-old alone in Florida, and while it was tough at times I think it was very good for me.

You have your own life to live. Like it or not, your parents are going to be gone someday, and you'll have to carry on without them. You can't constantly re-arrange and orient your life to stick with them. That isn't why they raised you, and that shouldn't be what they expect from you. Love them and keep contact, but live your own life. I've heard of people who move near their parents when their parents are getting elderly, but that doesn't seem to be the case with you. And when people do that, they do it so they can take care of their parents, not the other way around. I think this separation will be good for you.

It's not a bad thing to want to be around your parents or to miss where you came from, but when you're willing to uproot your life just to keep hold of the past, then that isn't good or healthy in any way. And remember you aren't losing anything. Memories don't live in houses, they live in you and the people who also hold those memories.

I'm somewhat dealing with the situation you're having right now. At the moment my parent's are trying to sell their house (I still live with them and will move with them) which is my family home, i've lived here all my life and they've lived here for the vast majority of their marriage... and its hard. We are already packing stuff up and i'm finding old stuff in the attic which I used to own which makes me very nostalgic and incredibly sad. It's possible we might be moving next month.

I guess you just gotta try and deal with it I suppose. There isn't anything you can do. Not much advice on other stuff I can give unfortunately.

I just moved out of my second childhood home (been there since 2001) and it was bittersweet, but I didn't think too much of it. Honestly, I think watching that virtual tour is making you more upset about your parents moving away than it is about the house itself. I haven't been separated from my parents like that yet (besides 4-years of college 4 hours away from home), but I can imagine I'd react in a similar manner. You still have your sister there with you and though they will be a good distance away, you can always visit your parents. A short term solution for what you're feeling... well, I know what I would do if I were you. I'd go out and get some ice cream with your sister and talk about nostalgic childhood stuff. Yes, it may hurt, but I've always found doing that feels more sweet than bitter.

 

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