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Is it horrible to not want to visit my husbands dying father because he chain smokes around my kids?
Family & Parenting / 8:45 PM - Monday November 22, 2010

Is it horrible to not want to visit my husbands dying father because he chain smokes around my kids?

My husbands father has cancer and is in severe pain. He used to go outside to smoke when we visited but now he can't walk so he smokes indoors. We are supposed to go to their house 5 hours away for Thanksgiving and spend a night there. However, my seven month old daughter has a bad ear infection and my 5 year old daughter just got over one. Even if we get a hotel to sleep in they will be exposed to smoke all day long. He will not even consider not smoking. MY husbands mother has been looking forward to this trip for weeks though and will not be too happy if we don't go. Am I a jerk if I cancel the trip? I just can't see making my girls sick because of his habit. However, I think his family might hate me if I don't. Any opinions? Should I just send my husband by himself to visit? Oh and I should probably mention that his mother pretty much dislikes me anyway so this would probably push her over the edge.

- Asked by Female, 22-25

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Let your in-laws know that you can't tolerate the smoke, and your daughters have health problems. He shouldn't be smoking anyway, and why is your MIL enabling this?

- Response by myrtletyrtle, A Cool Mom, Female, 46-55, Who Cares?

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I'd be strict and say I will not step foot in that house with my children if you are smoking inside. I will visit you without the smoke, but I cannot expose myself and my children to the smoke.

Your children's health is more important than his addiction and smoke can do a whole lot more than people realize to children and others with sensitivities.

- Response by atuin, A Sweet Sarah, Female, 22-25

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I suggest you stay in a hotel. I'm not an expert but I don't think spending a few hours in the house with their grandfather is going to make your daughters sick, and they should get to see their grandmother, too, since they live so far away. If the weather's nice, you can take the children for a walk or to a local playground; invite your mother-in-law to come and get to know her a little better. Also, what does your husband say? Can he talk to his parents about the smoking and ask for cooperation and understanding while you're visiting?

- Response by ellie2day, A Hippie Chick, Female, 56-65

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I would tell her he either doesn't smoke while the kids are there or you aren't coming. Plain and simple. If he wants to choose cigs over seeing his grandkids then he's a shitty grandpa. If you stay in a hotel you are only asking him to refrain from smoking for 2-3 hours and I don't think that's asking for alot. If my grandmother can do it,anyone can.

- Response by misskitty420, A Cool Mom, Female, 29-35, Student

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If Father can still smoke then its possible he can still walk .. If no wheel chair available he can be escorted to outside to still smoke and seated comfortably. The man is dying and he can still smoke in his house.. He has that right and why take away something that he enjoys.
A Compromise should be considered.
As for the children to visit they still can do even for a short visit if need be. Grandpa steps outside and children still enjoy. With all respect hun your issues with Mother in law has nothing to do with the children seeing there Grandparents. What could push her over the edge is that u and kids DONT turn up . Sounds like this is Grandpa's last festive season with his family. Try to reach and compromise and your husbands feelings also..

- Response by berri, A Career Woman, Female, 46-55, New South Wales, Who Cares?

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I had faced such kind of pressure a lot . There is no way except avoid the trip because grnad parents are not going to give a dame to your problems. If they are understanding than you are lucky and you can explain the problem to them and let them come out with solution.

- Response by A Life of the Party, Male, 36-45, New Delhi, Managerial

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What is wrong with leaving your daughters with a friend for the day while You go??

I'm amazed at how unfeeling some responses are on here; to tell a man who is dying of cancer that he has himself to blame/ How cruel is THAT?

Its terrible that he's dying and smoking now is ALL he's got --its a drug and he's not going to get better if he stops now if he's dying! Why am I constantly dumbfounded at such a cruel responses from some people on this site??

Go and visit him, it may be your last time, leave your daughters with a trusted friend or relative. Simple.



- Response by A Player, Female, 36-45

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It would be an unselfish act at Thanksgiving and isn't THAT what Thanksgiving is all about? Being thankful for what you have??

You have got other Thanksgivings--He, has not.

Why not teach your daughters to give---unselfishly?

- Response by A Player, Female, 36-45

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To the chick above-he is the one being selfish when he can't stop smoking for a couple hours while his grandkids visit! It won't kill him to lay off the cigs for 2 or 3 hours. Even my grandma can do that and she smokes like a chimney,has emphysema and just had a heart attack but still smokes so obviously she's very attached to her cigs.

- Response by misskitty420, A Cool Mom, Female, 29-35, Student

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I think you should still make the visit, after all, these are grandparents to your kids ... try to think of it from your kids' point of view. I would guess they like to visit with grandma and grandpa?
However, not only would I insist on staying in a motel rather than a smoke-filled house, I would visit them outside the house. If the owner wants to smoke in his own house, then he should be able to; however, let it be known that his grandchildren will be allowed to visit outside the house, not inside. Just like he has the option to smoke outside, you and your kids have the option to visit outside as well.
If he can't move, then open a window to the outside and he see/communicate with the grandchildren that way.
This way, the grandparents and grandkids still see each other, but it also reinforces the fact to your kids that smoking is a bad thing and they need to keep their distance from it.
It's not the grandparents that are bad, it's the smoking. And sometimes, when people allow bad things to come into their lives, they are restricted in what they can do in life - a great lesson for your kids to learn, I think.

- Response by andrewj5267, A Guy Critical, Male, 36-45, Miami, Teaching

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Such views have been voiced by ignorant parents time and time again on the internet. Your husband's parents have been living around smoke for years and while it might be making them sick in old age, obviously it's not an instant killer. The exhaust that comes out of your car would kill you in a matter of minutes and no one seems to care about that but you could be in a room full of smoke for days and it wouldn't make a difference. You're an idiot if you think your kids will get sick from being around cigarette smoke for a few days. Grab a brain.

- Response by jpeerce, A Guy Critical, Male, 66 or older, Vancouver

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Just Say, Yo, Dad, you're Dropping Dead soon cause of the cigarettes, would you mind just taking your last puffs of those Cancer Sticks outside, and not do it in front of me of my children.....

If Not, why dont you just Drop Dead Now, so we can enjoy this Juicy Bird & Stuffing....Any Good ??

- Response by hedo2nj, A Player, Male, 36-45, Other Profession

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