Co-habitating house guests - how I handled it


#1

I know this contradicts what the apologist suggested, but when my brother-in-law and his then fiance visited our family, I gave them each their own room and asked them to please make my kids believe they slept separately, even if they stayed in one room.

They were very respectful and understanding, and I never “caught” them in one room. They were very discrete and every day they thanked the two kids whose rooms they “occupied” for giving up their rooms. They made both rooms look lived in, and told the kids how comfortable their beds were. It worked out fine.


#2

I'm sorry that you felt pressured to allow them to bring that sin into your home. Prayers that they will respect you more in the future.


#3

Oh, what lengths we go to to deceive others in order that we may remain in sin.:(


#4

I am not impressed with your *nudge, nudge; wink, wink *approach which said, “go ahead and have sex and sin in my house.” You are complicit in their sin.

Your kids, if they are over 7 or 8 years old, are very aware of what goes on in the house, and I think you are naive to believe they wouldn’t know.

Why did you not state that unmarried couples do not share rooms in your house and ask that they repsect you?


#5

They are now married so I don’t have to worry about them bringing THAT sin into my home.

It bugs me that I always allow sinners in my home knowing they could contaminate my otherwise perfectly sinless self and family. You would shiver at the riff-raff I have made feel welcome in my home. A group of Goth kids used to stop by and I’d give them a meal and chit chat with them. Underneath their costumes, they were kids yearning for love and validation. And the pierced, tattooed, multi-colored haired girl from Europe who had no place to go when the dorms closed for the holidays a few years ago? I told my daughter to bring her home, and underneath the girl’s cool and somewhat freaky appearance, she was just a kid missing her family, needing to feel loved. Oh, and how about the 4-year-old I have been watching free of charge every week on my days off since he was born. His sinful unwed young mother earns $9 an hour and struggles to make ends meet. His “father” told his mother to get an abortion - he has never seen the child, might not even know he exists. Want more examples?

Thank you for your prayers. I do have a hard time turning sinners away. It’s good that all of you are masters at only allowing perfect people in your homes.


#6

[quote="1ke, post:4, topic:180207"]

Why did you not state that unmarried couples do not share rooms in your house and ask that they repsect you?

[/quote]

I agree. They could have gotten a hotel. And may I ask .... brother-in-law? Where was DH on this?


#7

Having goth kids in to chat is kind and Christlike.

Letting them shoot herion in the living room is not.

We are called to love and be compassionate to sinners, we are not called to let them sin in our kid's bed.


#8

[quote="1ke, post:4, topic:180207"]
I am not impressed with your *nudge, nudge; wink, wink *approach which said, "go ahead and have sex and sin in my house." You are complicit in their sin.

Your kids, if they are over 7 or 8 years old, are very aware of what goes on in the house, and I think you are naive to believe they wouldn't know.

Why did you not state that unmarried couples do not share rooms in your house and ask that they repsect you?

[/quote]

Seems more like a, if you don't have enough respect to listen to me at least wait until everyone is asleep kind of approach. It's the same thing I faced with my BIL. I can tell him not to stay in the same room with his gf but it isn't as if he will listen and I'm not able to stay awake all hours of the night to chaperon. I just told him not to stay in different rooms and then let him think he was sneaking around quietly.


#9

It is YOUR HOUSE. You most certainly can tell them not to stay in the same room. What kind of disrespectful relatives are they making these days?


#10

None of those things are examples of sins. Goth dress, tatoos, piercings, multi-colored hair, and being 4 years old and poor are not sins and do not bring scandal and possibly mortal sin in which you share a burden into your home.

So what is the point of your post, to say “I thumb my nose at Catholic teaching and I’m d*mn proud of it.” I mean, really, what’s your point? Do you want people to cyber high-five you. Well, you came to the wrong place.


#11

[quote="Annemariels, post:5, topic:180207"]
They are now married so I don't have to worry about them bringing THAT sin into my home.

It bugs me that I always allow sinners in my home knowing they could contaminate my otherwise perfectly sinless self and family. You would shiver at the riff-raff I have made feel welcome in my home. A group of Goth kids used to stop by and I'd give them a meal and chit chat with them. Underneath their costumes, they were kids yearning for love and validation. And the pierced, tattooed, multi-colored haired girl from Europe who had no place to go when the dorms closed for the holidays a few years ago? I told my daughter to bring her home, and underneath the girl's cool and somewhat freaky appearance, she was just a kid missing her family, needing to feel loved. Oh, and how about the 4-year-old I have been watching free of charge every week on my days off since he was born. His sinful unwed young mother earns $9 an hour and struggles to make ends meet. His "father" told his mother to get an abortion - he has never seen the child, might not even know he exists. Want more examples?

Thank you for your prayers. I do have a hard time turning sinners away. It's good that all of you are masters at only allowing perfect people in your homes.

[/quote]

I am not sure where the sin is in wearing goth clothing or being the child of a single mother?

There is a difference between allowing a sinner (all of us) in your home and allowing the sin in your home. For example it is okay to invite a thief into your home, but it is not okay to allow him to steal while he is there. Letting the cohabitating couple in, to stay, was not the problem, it was in allowing the sin itself to come with them.

That is a very touchy situation, and I think if you look at it as an opportunity to show a good example rather than looking at is as being rude by asking them to stay in separate rooms, it might make it easier to tell them.You're doing them a favor! While the whole world is telling them it is okay to cohabitate, who is telling them it is not? Who is giving them that message? Not a lot of people!

I once had a conversation with a friend of mine that illustrates a similar situation. It is 100% true, I kid you not.

She said she wondered when her 14 year old daughter was ready to have sex. "Who decides?" she asked. "I guess her boyfriend does." After I gasped out loud I said, "Everyone in her life is telling her it is okay to have sex. Her boyfriend, her school, her doctor, and now her mother. Who is giving her permission to say no? NO ONE!"

It is a very similar situation. Do your sister a favor, and expect more of her. For her sake AND for yours.


#12

You seem rather nonchalant about your own culpability in light of Church teaching on our obligation towards the sin of others:

1868 Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them:

  • by participating directly and voluntarily in them;

  • by ordering, advising, praising, or approving them;

  • by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so;

  • by protecting evil-doers.


#13

I don’t know if they had sex in my house.(didn’t ask) I don’t even know for sure if they slept together. They were 38 and 44 years old at the time - I did not babysit them through the night.

My kids went to bed much earlier than the adults. Like me, I really don’t think they knew whether or not the couple slept together or had sex in our home. I don’t think they even knew about the birds and the bees at that point. The sleeping arrangements and sexual activity of this couple was not the focus of our visit. I did not feel disrespected at any time during their visit.

My co-habitating houseguests knew full well why I didn’t want my kids exposed to them sleeping in the same room when they were not married. As far as I am concerned, they respected my wishes. I couldn’t shut them out of my home because they might have sex out of wedlock under my roof.

The kids I mentioned in my previous post, as well as a whole lot more who i haven’t mentioned, could very well have stolen from me. Attacked my family. Done who-knows-what sin under my roof without my blessing. And what about the impression and message that young unwed mother might give to my youngest, 13-year-old daughter? I can’t close my door to people who might do things that are against my faith.

Also, I am not “thumbing my nose at Catholic teaching”, nor am I “looking for a cyber high-five”.


#14

No one expects that you would babysit them. The point is, instead of telling them unmarried guests are expected to sleep separately, you told them you didn’t really expect them to and to just make it look like they were. That was wrong.

Can you not see that?

No one asks that of you.

There is a difference between people *transgressing *your request to sleep separately and you actively *inviting *them to sleep together. You had an opportunity to witness to them and instead you suggested the “pretend” to use separate rooms.

Do you really not see a difference?


#15

I do see the difference. You are right. 100% correct. I handled the situation horribly and stand corrected.

Pax,
A.M.


#16

One wonders why you would ask for advice on a Catholic board, then do the opposite... THEN come back and post about how you did the opposite of the authentic Catholic advice you were given to the point of getting sarcastic???


#17

I never asked for advice. I just said what I did in a similar situation, and then admitted that I was wrong in how I handled it. It happened 12 years ago. I was wrong - W-R-O-N-G - wrong.

Perhaps this discussion will help others make a better decision than I did, especially during this season of family gatherings and house guests.


#18

Inviting the mortal sin into your home in such away also invites evil in a spiritual way. Have the house blessed again. They linger around because they were invited.


#19

I will bless the house myself today. Will I still need to have a priest do it?


#20

Right on Anne! Good response. And good for you to take in those who are not sinless. Maybe some day I’ll be in need , and you’ll be there for me… a sinner.


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