Issues with mil that's tearing my family apart

(86 Posts)
Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 06:43:51

Hello everyone. I'm new here but looking for some advice on a situation concerning my mil.

Quick bit about me. Mum to 3 wonderful kids. Dp, is dad to youngest and step dad to older 2 aged 8 and 5.

Mil and I always got on well (I thought) until our baby girls birth approached. I heard comments from her about 'her baby' and I have to be the first to visit, or have a picture or hold her. I found it too much but bit my tongue for arguments sake.

When dd was a few weeks old, she complained we didn't visit. I had a csection and a uterine Infection and dp can't drive :/ the first few weeks were hard.

She then was asking at 2-4 weeks old when she could have her overnight. And even got annoyed at dp for taking her out in the pushchair to school one morning because mil 'hasn't done that yet!'

I text albeit a bit rude and put her in her place. Things were ok for a bit but things kicked off again.

She haven't seen any of the kids for 9 weeks. She has told dp she wants nothing to do with me at all, but expects him to take all 3 kids up to see her still.

Dp is trying to please all parties but I'm refusing to let them go up her house without me. Why should I be excluded? Can she not be gracious to be nice for an hour or so?

Out compromise was to offer for her to see the kids at our house. It's not our intention to stop her seeing them, but we don't want the older kids to see me excluded and wonder why. She flatly refuses. Claiming ill guess I won't see them then.

What do we do? It's pulling me and dp apart and I often doubt wether im being reasonable or not.

There is alot more to this story but Ivd kept it simple. For info, this is her first grandchild. She was happy to accept my other kids, but now feel her 'blood' grandchild is more important. I'd like my kids to be treated the same

Please, please help.

AnAirOfHope Sat 06-Apr-13 08:20:33

YANBU

She sounds dysfunctional to me and maybe narc.

Dont panda to her set boundries with your dp that are reasonable and then stick to it.

Your dp needs to tell his mum that HE has these conditions and that its a joint decission and that you are a family.

Get caller id on phone, only let dp talk to her and.come up together with phrases such as “yes we said you can see the children at our home“ “thats your.chose“ and repeat.

Its your dp you need to communicate with. He needs to see you as a family unit and.his mum as unreasonable.

I still think she is making it all about her sad

Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 08:36:40

Thanks everyone. I do appreciate it. I've tried to be basic with the facts to get a clear picture. But, IMO mil just can't share.

She doesn't even let fil (her husband) hold the baby. When we've visited before she just sulks and pouts if anyone dare take the baby off her sad

I know I've done wrong by texting her but I felt pushed around and dp tends not to stand up to her. His 4 other siblings are blanking me or 'giving us space' to sort ourselves out sad it's added weight to dp thinkings it's us not her sad x

Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 08:41:17

I also thinks she finds it hard realising her son has grown up and can make his own choices without her approval. She thinks if she disapproves of me, he will 'fix it' x

ENormaSnob Sat 06-Apr-13 08:46:07

Ffs I wouldn't be pandering to this shit.

Leave her to it.

I wouldn't want my kids anywhere near the poisonous old bitch.

QTPie Sat 06-Apr-13 08:48:22

Hi Joanne

How horrible sad

I think there are two important things here:
- firstly a big, honest talk with your DP: you need to be an honestly united front on this - don't let your MIL drive a wedge in between the pair of you.
- secondly keep that open invitation in place: that she is very welcome to visit.

Try your best (easily said..) not to let it effect you and your family. You cannot change your MIL, you can only get on your lives and survive her behaviour.

DorisIsWaiting Sat 06-Apr-13 08:50:09

Your DP is conditioned by her to see this as normal - it is NOT!

Using the rest of the family as a bullying gang is not plseant either and is designed to make you toe the line.

Do not back down any further you have made a very reasonable offer if she wishes to refuse that it is her choice. She does not get to control your child.

Small note if she does change her mind, don't lket her monopolise the baby again make sure FIL get a look in. Let her sulk and pout and treat her like a sulky toddler ignore ignore ignore.

LovesBeingWokenEveryNight Sat 06-Apr-13 08:57:24

I can imagine its all 'if mums so upset it must be bad' and her not wanting to talk about it. This is why I asked if there was anyone in the family she would listen to. Is their a sibling dh does get on well with, one he can have a drink and discuss it with?

Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 09:02:13

They are all on her side sad I'm the evil cow who dared upset her. They've not had kids so have no idea how it feels to have someone demand you hand over your baby x

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Sat 06-Apr-13 09:24:18

Joanne I'm not saying you're in the wrong at all, but if she's like this with the whole family she won't change. You and your DP have to find a way to make things work for his sake (if he's been controlled by her all his life he'll be really struggling now). He won't even realise how abnormal this is yet.

What does he say about it all? And can you swallow your pride and apologise for the upset caused by the text? You know, by the sounds of it, that you were in the wrong texting her so apologise for that to smooth things over. She will be your life for some years so be the bigger person in this matter. Your DP will thank you for it.

Also, when this is smoothed over and there is much less direct stress you and your DP can work out together how to handle her in the future. Whilst difficult parents are in one of their rages it's all but impossible to think rationally as you're conditioned to pander to them.

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 09:29:23

Hi joanne I'm in a similar situation with my MIL. Mine and DP first dc is due in a couple of weeks and MIL expected behavior was worrying me to death. It started when she assumed she would be at birth then when told other wise stated she would wait in car out side.

She is a bit of a steam roller and all ways on the edge so no one really wants to upset her as the tears flow easily when called on some thing. This isn't her first dgc either, its just completly a control thing. She see her dgc as extensions of her sons/hers self.

Luckily my dh had started standing up to her, when she pulls him to one side to complain, your dh has to as well. MIL won't listen to us horrible dil as they don't respect us.

You have been given some great advice about not bending over backwards but still opening your home to her....(even though, I would like to dead bolt it!)
I'm doing my best to stand my ground on issues with dh support as my sil as endured years of hell of her!

Also all three of your kids are equal, don't let her single baby out. It's all or nothing. Good luck hun x

LovesBeingWokenEveryNight Sat 06-Apr-13 09:31:47

What other members of the family? This is also where you do the invite and if she refuses then at least you can say you tried.

Really though you both have to make the decision to stop letting it affect you.

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 09:32:56

P.s don't apologize for nothing..my sil apologized at Christmas for some thing she didn't even say/do just so she could get through the day as MIL had not spoken to her in 5 months and she was 'visiting' . It sets the tone. X

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Sat 06-Apr-13 09:43:27

She wouldn't be apologising for nothing, she says in the first post she sent a rude text message.

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 09:52:10

I don't see the benefit of it really, MIL as continuously rude through out. I don't think she is/will offer any apologises. Op was marking boundries for her family which is soooo hard to MIL sometime, I know! Back tracking will just undermine that and MIL will all ways expect an apology to open lines of communication again.

Best to draw a line under every thing, say she is all ways welcome, door all ways open ect

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 09:53:04

Crappy phone on bad grammar!!

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Sat 06-Apr-13 10:40:02

I see your point but in my experience people like the OP's MIL will hang their hat on the one thing it's reasonable to be upset about - the rude text - and will use that to smear the OP. Best get that dealt with so she has nothing to back up her position.

Then when this is smoothed over proper boundaries can be drawn rather than the ones thrown up in battle.

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 11:11:31

My MIL will all ways have some thing to hang her hat on! It's my penance for stealing her son!

Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 11:17:00

Thanks everyone.

I really get the whole apology thing in order to give her nothing to moan about but I have apologised. And no, she has never directly apologised, only said sorry we misunderstood when we fell out last time.

I guess I was just looking to see if people thought it was ok for her to push me out. The responses have told me this just isn't on

I think we both need to be adults and accept each other in the others life, but she isn't willing. X

Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 11:19:40

Stealing her son!!!! Lol exactly. I took what was hers!

It's also a way for me to prove to dp that's we've been fair and its her unwillingness to help herself for the kids sake.. He is really struggling with knowing what or who is right x

TheFallenNinja Sat 06-Apr-13 11:25:43

Tell her she gets nothing on her terms or something on your terms.

Take it or leave it.

Joanne279 Sat 06-Apr-13 11:35:16

I'm hoping to show dp these messages to hopefully give him the courage to see her behaviour isn't ok.

Please keep them coming. I'm open to being told I can be wrong. I was told by dp I spent more time at my parents than his. I took this on board and make far more of an effort. She invited me out once. Every other time I went to see her if was because I asked her if j could come. And now this sad

If I'm wrong, so be it, I'll do mh best to fix it. Your comments are so so appreciated x

exoticfruits Sat 06-Apr-13 11:48:18

Generally I stand up for MILs ,as I think they get a poor deal, but in this case she has a problem of her own making.
It is emotional blackmail and the only way to cope with it is not to give in.
I think that I would write a letter with your DP saying that you are both very sorry that things are the way they are, BUT you are a family of 5 people and you intend to remain that way. She is very welcome in your house and you would hope that you would be welcome in hers and able to have a fully functional family relationship. I would go on to say that the present relationship is very dysfunctional and not something that you want to subject any of your children to-that you would like to draw a line under anything that is past and start afresh. However-it is her choice-basically what The FallenNinja says -but not as blunt.
If she doesn't start afresh then you will have to stick to the blunt 'take it or leave it'. Most adults that I know realise that if they want to keep their DS or DD they need to compromise.
(there is also no need for her to have a small baby overnight until they have built up a relationship and you are comfortable with it-and then it seems odd if she has never had the siblings).

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 11:51:15

joanne there is only so much you can do. She isn't your mother or blood relative. I would have loved to have been really close to her like at start but ultimately she thought there was only going to be one dominant female in my dh life and she assumed it would be her.
The best way I deal with it is never bad mouth his mother and say rather " it frustrated me..or I feel bullied when she does ect..." Regardless how much my dh knows his mother uses emotional black mail at the end of day its his mum and he loves/feels sorry for her. He will how ever back me up when push comes to shove. As I would him. Infact I used that as an example once..that I would never let my father talk/treat him in that way.

Tell ur DP ur boundries and leave him to deal with it. U cant fix his mum its down to DP x

exoticfruits Sat 06-Apr-13 11:55:06

It is a problem of over controlling mothers (there are plenty on here!)and DSs, in particular, seem very bad at standing up to them-they then meet a partner who won't put up with it and the problems start!
There was a whole thread about women being 'emotion keepers' and keeping men 'sweet,' but I think this is a very common problem and everyone has kept her sweet-no doubt FIL does the same. Have you tried to talking to FIL about it?
DP must have had problems with her before he met you-he needs to break the pattern. I would show him this thread-he needs to make a stand now.

seriouscakeeater Sat 06-Apr-13 12:19:42

joanne there is only so much you can do. She isn't your mother or blood relative. I would have loved to have been really close to her like at start but ultimately she thought there was only going to be one dominant female in my dh life and she assumed it would be her.
The best way I deal with it is never bad mouth his mother and say rather " it frustrated me..or I feel bullied when she does ect..." Regardless how much my dh knows his mother uses emotional black mail at the end of day its his mum and he loves/feels sorry for her. He will how ever back me up when push comes to shove. As I would him. Infact I used that as an example once..that I would never let my father talk/treat him in that way.

Tell ur DP ur boundries and leave him to deal with it. U cant fix his mum its down to DP x

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now