Move or not -how to make a decision

Socialise and chat about other areas of your life
I really didn't know where to post this but as it is not directly related to care I have chosen general chit chat.
At some stage in the future I realise my circumstances will change and I will be sorting probate etc. I feel it is quite important to have some kind of future plan for myself, knowing that one day my care role at home will come to a natural end.
I am notoriously bad at decison making, always being the mediator, seeing things from every side and always very balanced in my approach to things, probably risk adverse.
I've lived here since I was born but I have an enormous list of reasons to want to stay here in the family home, which is equally balanced by a long list of good reasons for moving on to pastures new.
I am tieing myself in knots thinking about it- how on on earth does one make such an important decision?
I've lived here since I was born but I have an enormous list of reasons to want to stay here in the family home, which is equally balanced by a long list of good reasons for moving on to pastures new.
by making the usual 'pros' versus 'cons' list !

It probably wasn't so hard for me as I hadn't lived in the 'family' home since I was 30 ! But before I retired and before I ended up caring for Mum I already knew that I eventually wanted a home with my own garden, the only decision I had to make was where it would be - in the same area with family nearby or down at the coast. Being near the family won out eventually (but for all I see of them I might just have well have upped sticks and moved out of the area altogether :roll: ).

But for you I'd suggest thinking about whether you want the hassle and the expense of maintaining the family home or whether you'd prefer something smaller that would be easier to look after as you get older. Sharing the family home with Dad is one thing, but you could find that living in it on your own a totally different kettle of fish. Either way the advice to wait at least a year after a bereavement before making any major decision is a good one.
Henrietta,

I had a similar dilemma as mum's health deteriorated, and decided, against all friends' advice, to move to her town, where I grew up. At the time, I was having counselling and found it useful to discuss it with a total stranger.

I personally would not have wanted to stay in mum's / my childhood house as there were too many memories. I needed to move forward and create new memories. However, a very personal decision.

What are the facilities like in the area as you get older? Good transport links? Access to hospitals etc? All relevant!
Thank you both for replies- just typed out a reply and lost it so here we go again.
I've done a pros and cons list Susie- as I am viewing it today - equally balanced with pros and cons, at least that is how I am viewing it today :?
I live in a place with fantastic facilities- lovely GP, Excellent hospital a mile away , an abundance of large supermarkets within a few miles, local buses , local trains, beautiful beaches and parks, and a job to continue with-at least for a while if I want.
I would normally agree with the advice not to rush a decison but the house will only be half left to me and so I can't dither, I will really need to know what my plans are, hence I am trying to decide now.
Will your brother let you stay in the house, or will he force a sale, when your dad is no more? (Sadly, any part holder of a property can force a sale, if they so wish - though obviously there is the option on buying out their share, if that is affordable!).

So presumably the first conversation is with your brother???? Would he be likely to change his mind for any reason (eg, if, say, he is happy to let you go on living there, could things change for him and he suddenly wants his half in urgent cash, etc?)

As well as the pros and cons, why not make up a list of scenarios, to see what they might look like:

eg, Scenario 1: I go on living there and .....


eg, Scenario 2: We sell up, I take my half and ...

S2 can have lots of subparts/options, eg, (a) I downsize to a place nearby and stay in the location (b) I move somewhere else complexly (c) I rent somewhere else first and see what I feel like later on (etc etc)

I would in principle recommend having several scenarios worked out re finance, long term implications for yourself, any family implications, plus practical things like 'where will all the furniture go?' etc.

One possible 'holding option' might be to agree with your brother that you are going to do the house up and then let it out on an initial six month rent (you could let it furnished or unfurnished), and then 'see how you feel' about not living there any more (eg, YOU could rent a place nearby - or far away! - for six months.)

One thing I would say - you can, now, go through everything, think everything through, be sure in your mind that you know what you want to do and then, when the time comes, you actually suddenly feel the total opposite!

I do understand the emotional conflict. The longer we live in a house, the more attached we (usually!) become, because it is embedded with more and more memories. I dont' regret leaving the rented flat I was first married in, nor our little terraced house in London, but leaving my 'family house' now would be difficult - even though, ironicaly, I suspect it is what we'd have done had my husband lived! Since he didn't, I feel 'disloy' to him by thinking of selling up. In the end, it will come down to - can I afford to keep it, does my son need the cash it would raise to make his own start in life and then, what is the alternative?

One thing, by the way NEVER NEVER do is 'release equity' with a 'lifetime mortgage' - I heard a bit of Moneybox live on R4 today and it is horrendous!!!!!! Stay clear - it's a total rip off from what I gathered!!!!!
Jenny- I will PM you .
Henrietta

I’m with Susique on this one, you need to do a Pro/Con list. Until you have such lists, written down in black & white NOT free floating in your head, you will be doomed to confusion/prevarication along the lines of Vicky Pollard’s famous catch phrase: Yes but, no but, yes but… ad infinitum. As would anyone in your position, myself included.

Jenny's right about the scenario lists too. But Pro/Con lists need to be a bit more refined than just a list. I've described below the technique I use.

I developed quite a drink problem and went on various courses to learn how to tackle it. I was taught a technique for doing Pro/Con lists on one such course. I still use this technique if I’m facing what feels like an insoluble and/or confusing problem or decision.

It may, or may not, be of help to you (or others) but can be applied to ANY situation to help clarify things, and not just alcohol/drugs problems either. Basically, it helps you to see the woods from those blasted trees getting in the way. That’s the first step to arriving at possible solutions and then a plan for said solution/solutions.

One day on my course we were given two sheets of paper and a pen. We were asked to headline one sheet with ‘Pro’s of Alcohol’, and given 15 minutes to write down 10 good things about alcohol that applied to us individually.
We had to write the first things that came into our head (important that), number them, and leave a good space between each Pro. We were not allowed to confer with one another.

With the second sheet of paper, we had to do the same thing only describing 10 cons of alcohol as they applied to us WITHOUT referring to our first Pro list.

Then we had to read what we’d written on the Pro list and encircle, in pencil, 6 of those ten pros we thought were the most relevant to us. Likewise with the Con list.

So far so easy; then it got harder. We now had to really carefully read and think about our 6 encircled Pro/Con lists and only choose 3 from each list; this time encircling them in black felt tip pen.

I find up to this stage really helps with seeing the wood from the trees by comparing and contrasting the two for general problems, and rarely bother with the next two steps. But I’ll describe them anyway. I’ve started, so I may as well finish.
Next we had to reduce our 3 Pros/Cons to a simple sentence; the shorter the better. Then we had to reduce that sentence to one word only which summed it up for us (that was really difficult as we had to use different words for each sentence; a Rogert’s thesaurus was well thumbed that day!) THEN we had to choose only one of those words that most applied to us individually for both a Pro & Con.

The next two stages only apply in a group setting so are irrelevant, but so what? Next we’d take it in turn to read out our 6 reasons, followed by the 3 main ones, followed by the simple sentences, followed by the single words, followed by the one most important word to us to describe why we liked drinking and why we hated it.
Next a really intense free-for-all discussion took place for the next hour or so. It was pandemonium and a real eye opener and a half.

I’ve used the above technique to great effect for uncertainties in my life which left me metally hopping from one foot to the other (minus the group talking out and discussion stuff of course.)

I recommend giving it a try as you’ve nothing to lose and everything to gain. If it’s useless for you, then no big deal as all you’ve lost is nothing but a bit of time.
For instance, one of the courses I went on was a 12 session ‘Mindfulness’ course. I found it really rubbish and of no use to me personally at all even though I completed the course and gave it my all. But others on the course loved it and it helped change their lives for the better.
No one size EVER fits all people. Just because I didn’t benefit from Mindfulness doesn’t mean others won’t. Likewise, I really benefited from the Intuitive Recovery course, whereas other didn’t.

If you don’t give these things a try, you’ll never know.

P.S.

You said in your post, “I am notoriously bad at decison making, always being the mediator, seeing things from every side and always very balanced in my approach to things, probably risk adverse.”

Sounds like an awful lot of good qualities you possess there; maybe recognise them as such without risking being pushed around. Easier said than done, but if we had a few more balanced mediators kicking around, and recognised and admired them as such, we’d all live in a better, fairer world.
Power to the balanced mediators, and being bad at decision making/risk adverse also means you are no fool rushing in where angels fear to tread… not to be sneezed at.

I could do with a little less sneezing myself, and taking on a few more of your qualities, which you seem to view as not being very good ones.
Keep in mind that every good quality has it’s flip side, and vice versa. It’s learning to know the difference between the two that really matters. One day, I might get there myself… maybe, perhaps, probably, possibly :-???

P.P.S.

Dad has had written into his will that I can remain in the house for up to a year after his death without my brothers having the power to force a sale until that year is up. They can only benefit from its sale after that one year is up, or if I agree before hand to its sale in writing.
I will agree, but dad has sensibly covered my arse via a solicitor so it's all above board and legal. Perhaps you could get your dad to do something similar?
It would buy you some time without outside pressure to complicate things. Dad's reasoning was that as his full time carer, and mum's before hand, I would be most effected by his death and must have time to come to terms with it and make sensible decisions. My brothers agree with him by the way; not that it would have made a blind bit of difference to his decision if they had disagreed.
Hi Sajehar
Many thanks for sharing your technique- not seeing the wood for the trees sums things up beautifully. I have typed out a Pros and cons list and have far more than 6 on either side, although some of them kind of have a common theme such as bills to pay etc. I will print off your method and take it away on my holiday with my Pros and Cons list to think about somewhere quiet.
Thank you for your alternative way at looking at my "undecisiveness". I feel some people assume I will remain here , which indeed I may, but if so I want to feel as though I chose it after careful thought and was not just drifting if that makes sense.
I couldn't get Dad to do the 12 month thing, I would say he probably lacks capacity at a bad time and I wouldn't want to pressure him into anything. He refused to make a will a few years ago when he was more with it so that is what I must deal with.
Hi Henrietta
The thing I pick up from this is that there is no need for an immediate decision right now.
So perhaps look on what you've done so far as research so that when the time does come you can choose what feels right , just updating your research if anything changes in the meanwhile.

When my hubby was facing either a new job, a different job, or taking the money (in what they call 'restructuring') we compiled plan a, plan b etc for the different scenarios. We ended up with plans A through to H! ordered by preference. But even plan H wasn't too bad, we would just have gone a less preferred path. Maybe this is why you are not making a decision, none of the options are bad or terrible, so why not just bide your time with a handful of good options, and choose which when you need too?

Xx
MrsA
Thank you Mrs A- what a wonderfully positive way of viewing things making a choice of good options- I suppose you are quite right really. Maybe I'm not such a positive person as I would like to be.