To think it is too late and refuse contact (warning: a MIL thread)

(130 Posts)
Bearfrills Sat 04-Jan-14 18:19:41

There's a long history with MIL which I've posted about before. To cut the long story short: DH had a shitty, bordering on neglect, childhood where his sisters were very obviously favoured and he very obviously was not. Throughout our relationship/marriage there have been MIL issues. I can't post them all or this will be miles long. A few stand-outs are her going table to table at our wedding telling everyone what a bitch I am (because we put the buffet table in the 'wrong' place and let FIL, her ex, bring his DP to the wedding), making highly inappropriate comments about our fertility issues and miscarriages (making a to do about 'finally' getting a GC when SIL became pregnant, reminding me on Christmas Day "wouldn't you have been due around about now if you'd kept it?", telling everyone at a birthday party about my 15wk miscarriage and asking them all to talk to me about it so I could 'address my feelings', etc), threatening to kick my head in when I was 14wks pregnant because she was jealous of DB taking DS out for an hour, lots more things I can't even list.

When the DCs came along the relationship got even worse. SIL has DCs the exact same age and gender and MIL favours them greatly, that's her decision and we weren't bothered so long as she spent at least some time with our DCs too as they are also her grandchildren. The reality of it is that she rarely sees them, despite living just down the road (15 minute walk away).

We stopped taking them to her house when she and BIL started making snide comments about then-2yo DS along the lines of "quick, here's DS, hide the toys!" - she has lots of toys at her house but they're specifically for her other GC. Then she would fix the other GC snacks and deliberately exclude DS and DD so they'd have to watch the others eat. She still came to our house to see them, though sporadically. While here she would tell DS all about trips she's taken with the other GC, once she went on and on about how she was taking them to the railway museum. DS excitedly told her "I like trains!" She told him "oh ... Well ... We might take you too ... " but never did despite him asking her several more times. Then she started cancelling visits or saying she was going to visit but not turning up, always because her DP was "ill" yet it would then come back to us that they'd been out with her other GC.

She made plans to come see DS the weekend before his birthday and didn't arrive. I tried ringing, texting and nothing. I was worried something had happened then around 5pm she got in touch to say her DP was really ill and they'd been at the walk-in centre all day. Twenty minutes later she had pictures on Facebook of her day out with the other GC and her very healthy looking DP ...

On DS 4th birthday a few months ago she sent her DP to the house ten minutes after bedtime with a card with £5 in it. On DDs 2nd birthday a few weeks later she arrived at the door all smiles with cards, balloons and a vtech tablet. That's when we decided enough was enough. We told her we couldn't accept the tablet when DS got £5 just three weeks before and that while we already know that she plays favourites between her grandchildren, she will not play favourites with our children, she either treats them equally (or as equally as possible) or not at all.

She massively kicked off, we were ungrateful and spiteful and were depriving DD and so on. Her DP made some really nasty remarks about me being a "grabby bitch". We've never heard from her since and she hasn't returned any attempts to contact her. In November FIL (her ex) asked DH if he would "allow" MIL to have contact with the DCs and offered to pick them up from ours, drop them at MiLs and then return them afterwards. DH pointed out that we have never refused contact, she was the one who stopped contact, he also pointed out that they are children not parcels to be shunted from one house to the other and that we are their parents not FIL - if she wants to see them she needs to contact us. He very much left it in her court, she knows where we live, etc.

Since then there have been two family parties where we were all in attendance and she blanked us and the children. She's made no effort to get in touch and for all FIL claims that she is heartbroken and pining for the children, her behaviour would suggest otherwise.

Now FiL wants to see DH tomorrow, specifically without me or the DCs there, to discuss "access arrangements" for MiL hmm

DH has told me he doesn't want MIL to have any contact with them as its too late, she's had chance after chance and clearly couldn't give two shits about them. FIL thinks its time that we said sorry (!) for cutting her out and that we should let her back in because she's family. He thinks that its me who has decided to cut her out.

AIBU to agree with DH that its too late and we don't want her in our DCs lives?

vj32 Sat 04-Jan-14 18:24:06

I don't think its too late. I do think it should take a lot of effort from her to get back a good relationship. That doesn't involve using her ex as an intermediary. But ultimately its up to your DH.

tripecity Sat 04-Jan-14 18:26:39

no, you are nbu. She sounds like a poisonous trout

ilikebaking Sat 04-Jan-14 18:27:10

She sounds awful. Do not let her back in the childrens lives, they di not need that at all.
The train museum with your son saying "i like trains" has massively upset me.
How truly horrible for you. She does not deserve to see your wonderful babies. If she was bothered she would have womaned uo and come to you to beg to see them. She hasnt. That speaks volumes.

UnicornsNotRiddenByGrownUps Sat 04-Jan-14 18:27:18

I started writing a list of points about what you have said but then realised that it basically boils down to this.

1. Your MiL is a loon.
2. You are in the right.
3. You and your DCs are better off without that kind of crap in your life's'.

Good luck!!

fivegolddeblooms Sat 04-Jan-14 18:27:38

It's up to your DH whether or not he wants a relationship with her.

If I were in your shoes, though, I'd be having nothing more to do with her and neither would my DC.

FTRsGotAShinyNewNN Sat 04-Jan-14 18:29:11

I think you FIL is being very presumptuous and if he and MIL are no longer together it's really non of his business.
You and you DH know the truth and, thankfully, seem to be on the same page about what is and is not appropriate. The two of you need to decide tonight where you stand and if FIL persists then DH needs to repeat that MIL has chosen this path and you have never stopped her seeing the children.
Stand firm, good luck

ENormaSnob Sat 04-Jan-14 18:29:17

Kill her dead.

Couldnt be arsed with all that drama and spitefulness.

RandomMess Sat 04-Jan-14 18:30:23

What everyone above has said!

Why on earth is FIL sticking up for her????????????????????

She's cruel to your children therefore I would have no contact whatsoever. If your dh wants to carry on seeing the cow then he can but don't ever let him take the children. If she is blankin them at parties, I can't imagine how they must feel. sad

NynaevesSister Sat 04-Jan-14 18:31:16

Good grief! Tomorrow your DH should specifically ask why his father believes his mother and not his own son when he says neither if you have refused contact and MiL is welcome anytime she wants to visit provided she treats both equally.

LineRunner Sat 04-Jan-14 18:31:26

Keep her away from your children.

I am serious.

And maybe remind FIL that her crazy, nasty behaviour might perhaps be why they are no longer together. Ask him if he has forgotten what she's like?

LineRunner Sat 04-Jan-14 18:32:20

And tell FIL and MIL to fuck off and stay away.

BillyBanter Sat 04-Jan-14 18:33:03

No of course you shouldn't facilitate access with an abusive GP.

Amy106 Sat 04-Jan-14 18:34:40

You are not unreasonable, not at all. It is up to DH to sort this one out. A grandmother-grandchild relationship can be a truly wonderful thing but certainly not when it's like this. How do your dc feel about their grandmother?

MellowAutumn Sat 04-Jan-14 18:34:45

I do actually think its too late and she is a nasty manipulative bitch who should not be round your children. Children do get favouritism and it can be incredibly damaging to their young ego's even when its subtle - when its blatant and nose rubbing it verges on abuse.

I think it's time to make it clear that you haven't stopped her seeing them up to now and she has chosen to stay away. but due to her behaviour you now actually ARE stopping contact with the kids. They don't need cows like her in their life wrecking their self esteem.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Sat 04-Jan-14 18:35:10

She sounds horrible.

I hate this 'because its family' bollocks that you should automatically forgive. It works both ways. When she can be bothered to treat your DC as family then maybe you could attempt contact, but seeing as she isn't, I wouldn't bother.

minniebar Sat 04-Jan-14 18:36:57

Go no contact and stick to it. It is of absolutely no benefit having this woman in your DCs' lives. Good luck.

I think she has had her chances, your dh is right. This woman will never change and quite frankly do you really want your dc growing up around such a toxic woman where certain children and adults have to compete to be favourites!!

Say good riddance to this now, it will only end in tears.
I believe in chances....but there are only so many you can give and when those chances do not bring lessons or change for the better, you have to realise you did your best but that person will never change to gain their rights in yours/dc lifes.

My dh comes from a toxic family & many awful things have been done & said, but like you i allowed room for change and mil in particular gained many chances, infact more than 3.
But in time i realised what a toxic influence she has on those around her & her constant enablement of fil abuse become clear. I gave her four chances too many, needless to say i learnt my lesson.
Some people cannot change, they cannot be helped, they are beyond reasoning with and in the end you have to make the best decision for your children, and not let guilt get in the way! I stopped contact 1 year & 6 months ago and i don't regret it.
Unlike you at first dh did not agree and tried to push me, but slowly but surely he is coming to terms with the fact his children need to come before the needs of mil.

Lemongrab Sat 04-Jan-14 18:37:32

I really feel for you, your Dh, and of course your DC's.

Your mil is a poisonous, toxic woman and I think that you'd be better off if you cut contact with her (and any other members of your 'family' that enable her horrible behaviour).

For different reasons than you, I have cut contact with my mother and step-father, and my sister and her Dh. Last time my children saw them was Christmas last year, and before that, two visits over a year. I can honestly say cutting all contact was the best thing I could have done for myself, my Dh and our children, and the children have not been negatively effected by lack of contact. Quite the contrary.

Cut contact, ignore any objections, and get on with life with your lovely little family. Good luck smile

diddl Sat 04-Jan-14 18:37:33

"at our wedding telling everyone what a bitch I am "

"reminding me on Christmas Day "wouldn't you have been due around about now if you'd kept it?"

I'm gobsmacked that you ever saw her again after either of those things tbh, let alone subjected your kids to her tbh.

Inertia Sat 04-Jan-14 18:38:40

Yanbu, your children should not be subjected to that and your FIL should keep his nose out.

Anyone who refuses to feed toddlers and lets them go hungry , while making food for others to eat in front of them, is a nasty witch who doesn't deserve contact.

ilovesmurfs Sat 04-Jan-14 18:38:54

Have nothing to do with her and do not let her anywhere near your children.

She sounds vile, your dh is right she has had plenty of chances and blew them all.

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