How do I convince my boyfriend to move to a town closer to my parents?

Dear Liz,
How do I convince my boyfriend to move to a town closer to where my parents live? We both work odd hours and frequently find ourselves getting stuck at work, and need help getting the kids from daycare. We currently live together on his days off, but when he’s working I find myself staying at my parents’ house because I have the help I need with our children. I have asked him to move from our current home, which is over an hour away from my family and in a town that we have no ties to, to a town only 20 minutes from my family and still close to work for him. It would give me the help I need with the kids and also allow us to finally live under one roof as a family. But, he is refusing to move. He “loves” it where his current house is. That’s the only reason I ever get. HELP.
– Mom needs help

Dear Mom Needs Help,

Oh, man, that’s a tough one. My husband and I go back and forth about whether or not to move all the time, but we’ve been firmly planted in the same spot for a decade so I think our roots have been laid.

There might be a few options here, let’s walk through some now…

  • Try to appeal to his wallet by laying out a reasonable argument for how much money you can save by moving. If you live close to your family and they are willing to help with childcare then you could save a significant amount of money.
  • Consider changing your job in order to stay where you are (I know, I know, that’s not what you asked). If it turns out that this is impossible to do then at least you’ve exhausted that option and you can point to it as another reason why moving makes the most sense.
  • Ask yourself if this is a deal breaker for you. Can you live in your current situation and be happy? Or do you see this as a point in your relationship has become an impasse?
  • Move anyway. What if your boyfriend can agree to give it a trial period of three or six months? Maybe then he will see all the ways in which saving money and time can be a huge win for your family.
  • Maybe get a different perspective on this. He says he loves it in your current house, but has he given you a reason why? Maybe explore that a little bit more…in front of a third person like a couples therapist or a trusted friend.
  • Is it possible he doesn’t like your parents? It’s worth thinking about. I wouldn’t want to live near some of my relatives for all the gold in Spain, maybe he’s in the same boat?
  • If this is truly about childcare, can you create a support system of other moms? Maybe find one or two who you trust and have them help out with the kids in exchange for your help when you’re not working. The nice part of this strategy is that you and your kids end up with some new friends.

Good luck!

~ Liz

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