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  #1  
Old Jun 2, '12, 9:08 am
TBenedicta TBenedicta is offline
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Join Date: April 22, 2011
Posts: 81
Religion: Catholic
Default Moving in with my parents-in-law.

Hi all!

Here's a hypothetical for you. Your husband is in medical school full time with a $40k/year tuition. You work full time at a job you do not enjoy, that pays just barely enough, and are also taking on a second job over the summer. Your husband is also taking on two jobs over the summer as part of your mutual goals (a) to pay down your undergraduate student loans in two years time and (b) to avoid taking out additional loans for living expenses. (Most of the medical students you know are forced to take out $30k/year for living expenses/books in addition to the $40k/year tuition. Yikes!) You live very frugally- no cable, one paid-off car, $40/week grocery bill, great deal on rent. The only major expense you carry is those pesky undergraduate student loans, which you wish you hadn't taken out because you aren't actually actively using that college degree and the idea of a $10k private loan doesn't sit well with you. You have no family support because you live 2000 miles away from you and your husband's hometown. You and your husband have wanted children since you married two years ago, but have used NFP to effectively avoid pregnancy because you didn't want to take out loans for living expenses like so many medical student couples do.

Here's where the story takes a real hypothetical turn: say you get pregnant. Despite your NFP success, there were several days in the past month where you knowingly chose spousal unity in spite of the clear chance of getting pregnant. You are in a bind, because your job doesn't pay much to begin with and doesn't offer health insurance; you are not eligible for state medical coverage because of your murky residency status and your husband's student status; your personal health insurance is still through your mother's policy, which is effective only for emergencies in the state you live in, but offers comprehensive and insanely low cost OB/GYN coverage in your home state. You will not be able to keep your job past the birth of your baby, and even if you were able to your salary would be fully eaten up by the cost of child care. (You don't believe in sending your child off to be raised by someone else anyway.)

What would you do? The options are: 1. find a low-paying job anyway, feeling guilty about being away from your child for long hours and paying almost your full salary in childcare costs. Pay out of pocket for prenatal and delivery costs, praying to God that you have a healthy pregnancy and delivery. 2. accept your husband's offer to take out full loans for living expenses, despite your hesitance to take on that much extra debt. Stay home with the baby and feel completely guilty that at graduation your husband will have almost $300k in medical school loans to pay off. Pay out of pocket for medical care. 3. move the 2,000 miles to live with your parents-in-law, who have a spacious house and are lovingly willing to house you and the baby indefinitely.

Option 3 offers certain benefits, some expected and some unexpected: a generous and tight-knit family support system who will help care for mama and baby; a comprehensive health care plan which would pay almost 100% of the cost of prenatal care, delivery, postnatal care, and well baby care; proximity to friends; the ability to continue working and contributing to the cost of living expenses because of a stay-at-home mother-in-law who offers to care for her grandbaby as long and as often as necessary; low cost of living due to sharing a home with family and husband being able to live in a small studio apartment in the interim. Another option opens up as well: the ability for your husband to transfer to a medical school in your home state. Normally medical school transfers are strictly limited unless in the case of "family need", which would be the case in your situation. For option three, if all went well with a school transfer, you and your husband (and baby) would be apart for less than a year. If the transfer doesn't go through, your husband is still eligible to elect for "away rotations" in your home city, which would mean visiting you and baby sporadically during his remaining two school years. The distance would be painful, but the two of you successfully maintained a long distance relationship for three years of undergraduate schooling, so it's something you're a little familiar with. You worry about your husband's ability to handle being away from you and baby while he completes an emotionally and intellectually rigorous program, but are happy that you are providing a more stable financial future for your family. You really hope your husband will be able to transfer to that other medical school, which would put the distance between you at 85 miles instead of 2000 miles. In the instance that your husband gets into that other medical school, he will be able to live with his great-aunt (the same aunt your husband's father stayed with during HIS college years!) rent-free and visit any chance he gets. Living expenses will be reduced from $1900/month to $1200/month, which your salary will be able to handle and then some.

None of these options are, of course, ideal. But what do you think?
  #2  
Old Jun 2, '12, 9:18 am
TheRealJuliane TheRealJuliane is offline
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Join Date: October 11, 2010
Posts: 19,026
Religion: Roman Catholic
Default Re: Moving in with my parents-in-law.

Shoot. I was all for Option 3 until you said your husband would have to be apart from you and the baby!

You could be covered under your IN LAWS' health plan? Really? I didn't know that was possible.

I guess the end result with Option 3 would be similar to a military family where the husband is deployed when the wife is pregnant and having the baby. When would you move to your in-laws' house? I'd try to minimize the time apart if possible.

Any of those scenarios can be done, but none of them are optimum, of course. Life rarely hands us perfect options. So I guess I'd choose Option 3, because it offers the best chance for the baby to start out with lots of loving family around him/her.
  #3  
Old Jun 2, '12, 9:43 am
TBenedicta TBenedicta is offline
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Join Date: April 22, 2011
Posts: 81
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Moving in with my parents-in-law.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRealJuliane View Post
Shoot. I was all for Option 3 until you said your husband would have to be apart from you and the baby!

You could be covered under your IN LAWS' health plan? Really? I didn't know that was possible.

I guess the end result with Option 3 would be similar to a military family where the husband is deployed when the wife is pregnant and having the baby. When would you move to your in-laws' house? I'd try to minimize the time apart if possible.

Any of those scenarios can be done, but none of them are optimum, of course. Life rarely hands us perfect options. So I guess I'd choose Option 3, because it offers the best chance for the baby to start out with lots of loving family around him/her.
With Option 3, I would try to stay here with my husband and work until 20 weeks. My husband would apply for a transfer this coming fall, which if accepted would go into effect the following summer, late May of 2013. All told, we would be 2000 miles apart for four or so months, then if his transfer was accepted he would attend a school an hour and a half away from his parents. His current school offers lectures online, so he would most likely be able to take a week off for the birth of the baby, then head back to school until it came time to move closer to me that summer.
My health insurance is through my own mom's policy (effective until I'm 26 years old) and my husband's is through his dad's policy (also effective until age 26.)
I was thinking of this option similarly to a deployment. The truth is that for my husband's final two years of medical school, he's likely to be so busy with rotations that he'll be unable to spend much time with us anyway. It would be good to be surrounded by family and have the option of seeing my husband when he gets time off. (One and a half hours is drivable if it's not every day!)

The situation is only hypothetical, though. I have a few reasons to think I *could* be pregnant, but won't know for sure until five or six days from now. Despite the complicated nature of having a baby during this juncture, my husband and I would be over the moon to be expecting. If it turns out we aren't pregnant, I guess we plan on sticking with strict adherence to NFP for the next three years. I'll continue with my job- which I honestly just HATE- and we'll attempt to defray educational costs that way until we feel we can reasonably and responsibly have children. But again, I'd be *thrilled* to be expecting right now and wouldn't regret our "moment of weakness" in the least.

  #4  
Old Jun 2, '12, 10:58 am
TheRealJuliane TheRealJuliane is offline
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Join Date: October 11, 2010
Posts: 19,026
Religion: Roman Catholic
Default Re: Moving in with my parents-in-law.

Let us know what happens! I'm excited for you too!

  #5  
Old Jun 9, '12, 7:08 am
FaithBuild18 FaithBuild18 is offline
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Join Date: July 27, 2010
Posts: 500
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Moving in with my parents-in-law.

Option 2 is not all that rare. I know a lot of people in med school and I myself will be attending dental school soon. I'm trying to get a military scholarship to pay for it all, but if I don't I will undoubtedly be $300k in debt upon graduation. This is pretty common. It is also pretty common for doctors to be paying off their student loans until they're 40+ years old, even though they may make $200k+ a year.

Message to all those reading this forum considering a career in medicine: If you're looking for a job that will get you rich, look elsewhere. Doctor's, especially after Obamacare is active, will be increasingly less able to live luxurious lifestyles. Dentistry is slightly different I might add, in that Obamacare does not greatly affect it, and interactions between dentists and insurance companies are somewhat rare. Not to mention they work a lot less hours per week and still pull in similar salaries to doctors. Per hour, many dentists actually make more than doctors, and the best part about it is they're actually capable of having a life outside of work.

Bottom line though, in my opinion, I wouldn't be concerned about having $300k in debt if your husband is going to be a doctor. What I would worry about is two things: 1. Depending on what kind of doctor he is, he may end up working beyond all reasonable human limits. I would be more concerned about your situation from the perspective of family than I would from the perspective of finances. 2. If the economy continues to tank. This is the worst case scenario for people like us who are in massive amounts of debt. This is reason to worry, and this is what concerns me about having loans to pay off. But if the economy is stabilized, banks are stabilized, and civilization in America continues to function, trust me, you will be fine financially when all is said and done, it just may take a decade or so. Medical careers are a major investment, but they certainly can pay off.

If this option doesn't satisfy you, I might suggest a combination of options 2 and 3. If your family is well to do and loving, I'm sure they will be willing to offer whatever support they can to you and your situation. That doesn't necessarily mean you have to move in with them does it? Maybe they can help raise your child while you stay with your husband for certain periods of time? I know of families who, instead of sending their kids to day care, had grandma and grandpa take care of their kids during work hours. Maybe you can think of something similar? Maybe your parents can send you guys resources every once and while? Maybe they can come visit you guys and help out in any way they can? Of course, I don't know how busy they are, or anything like that, but I'm just trying to think of ideas. You will probably have to ask them for help eventually.

It's my opinion that keeping a family together is more important than finances. I might get criticized for this and I expect others to disagree, but I also kind of think it's important for you to stay with your husband no matter what, at least for the first year or so. I'm by no means an expert on raising children, but I would think it's most important for the child to be with mommy and daddy for years 3-18. But those first few years, as long as the child is taken care of and his needs are met, how much of a difference will it make if the mom is holding the bottle versus if grandma is holding the bottle? Again, I could be totally out of line in thinking this. Surely it DOES make a difference, and ideally it should be mommy and daddy all the way through, but life often doesn't go according to plan and we have to find ways to work things out.
  #6  
Old Sep 22, '12, 8:32 pm
johnsheppard johnsheppard is offline
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Join Date: September 2, 2012
Posts: 24
Religion: Roman Catholic
Default Re: Moving in with my parents-in-law.

Option 3, move in with the inlaws. Financially it is a non-brainer.
 

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