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finally lost my temper with the inlaws, mil and gmil related!

(59 Posts)
wickedwithofthenorth Fri 23-Aug-13 02:30:00

My in laws are very strange and toxic people. Have always been able to keep at a distance from them until dd arrived.
They do a lot of talking behind our backs and like to twist and blow things out of all proportion. Tonight I've given them something to really be upset about. I finally lost it and shouted at mil.
I'm normally a very calm and patient person, working with under 3s will do that to you, I've never ever come even remotely close to losing it like I did tonight.
Gmil called less than 10 minutes after dh arrived home from work, and her first words were 'why haven't we seen that baby'. We've not heard from only one other than bil for almost a month but in that time have tried to call, sent texts and emailed recent photos of dd, we've had one text back in that time.
Dh in his own words "can't be bothered with them" and has put off calling them because we can never do anything right so why try. He likes the quiet life and to do things he enjoys.
So for the first time since we've been together he actually tells gmil the truth, not that his listened to, but he tries. She lists our faults and moans about me keeping the baby to myself when they visit, 'she always takes her off to feed or change whenever we get close'.
I make the choice to listen to all of this because gmil is very used to manipulating people to get her own way and I hate it. Dh refuses to let me talk to her and eventually gets her off the phone. I'm furious and shaking with rage at this point, I tell him I'm texting mil to say this is unacceptable and he tells me not to be mean so I agree to call her instead.
Mil tells me she is sorry and she told gmil not to call us, I state that I can't accept that behavior and will not have dd around it. Mil then tells me that she isn't welcome in our home and she feels ill after visiting us, having her round is like a royal visit and dh waits on her hand a foot, she's the one who refuses to take off her coat. Since dd was born I've tried to include and welcome her but the fact of the mater is dh and I do things very differently from her. We're very informal people and live relatively simply (we buy enough to feed our small family of 3, not an army) and unless it's for work we live day to day doing what works for us. We've fallen into an attachment style of parenting and don't play pass the baby for the sake of it.
Mil is going on at us about lack of contact and I snap and tell her dh has recently only spoken to her when handed the ringing phone. She goes onto say they used to be such a close family and dh would never do that. I hand dh the phone and she descends into hysterics despite yelling at me seconds earlier. He gets her to give fil the phone who tells him this is unacceptable and he knows what gmil is like, before ending the call to calm mil down.
I'm well a wear this was the least sensible thing to do, but I'd reached my limit. As explained to dh I felt like I'd be violated and attacked in my own home and that my inner mama bear had been poked and was not happy, I needed to protect and defend my family. I'm not proud of losing my temper that way but I was pushed too far and have ignored similar instances in the past, I couldn't bring myself to do it again.
I am sorry that mil feels the way she does and for her being upset by the things that were said but they needed to be said. Dh is surprisingly alright with what I said, he isn't angry at me but apprentice about what will happen next and if there will be any relationship with his family, particually bil.
I've said I want nothing to do with gmil or mil until they both apologize and do not want dd anywhere near either of them until such a time. If I got an apology I would apologize to mil for how she was made to feel but state that I could only be pushed so far.
Gmil is the one at fault here and mil has received the brunt of my rage, but she is the one who has given a woman who is known to behave this way fuel for her fire, so has to accept some blame to. I know she is feeling just as violated as I do. I have some level of blame too and know things won't ever be the same but I think I'm okay with that and there might be the slightest chance in laws could learn from this, hell will probably freeze over first...
Now just waiting for the fall out and what may or may not happen tomorrow.
Really needed get that out, hope to sleep now.

soundevenfruity Fri 23-Aug-13 02:44:46

It's very sad that arrival of your daughter caused such fights and brought so much stress to all the family.sad

wickedwithofthenorth Fri 23-Aug-13 02:55:57

Stress was there before sadly, but dd gave us a reason to stand up for ourselves and opened up some of dh's old wounds.
I would love it to be diffrent.

InTheFace Fri 23-Aug-13 03:17:43

Don't normally post on these sorts of threads, but this is the first one where it is so shriekingly obvious to me that actually the mil/gmil may have a point.

You are a family of three and only have enough food to feed yourselves?! How antisocial and off putting to anyone coming to your home. You have family beyond the three of you, do you not care that they are fed and watered?

You have fallen into attachment parenting - fine. You don't want to play pass DD - fine. Does this mean you leave DD's GM and GGM not getting a chance to hold her?

By your own admission, your main beef is with GMIL and yet you take it out on MIL?

It sounds like there is backstory to this, so all told it may not be so one-sided. But on the basis of the above, it really does sound like there could be more give from you.

Aside from that, congratulations on the safe arrival of your DD!

MariaLuna Fri 23-Aug-13 03:35:37

You are a family of three and only have enough food to feed yourselves?!

I would say that is normal unless you have people coming over.

Or do you yourself have a drop in cafe where everyone gets fed and watered unannounced?

wickedwithofthenorth Fri 23-Aug-13 04:14:30

We live on a tight budget at the moment, we get enough food for when we invite people over but with in laws have always avoided meal time invites as they are very particular about their food. We always have tea, coffee, cake and buscits. If they would eat a meal either of us cooked I would happily provide, but that really isn't the point.
Mil and gmil spent much of dd early life holding her and we were both happy to allow this until dd was unhappy. Neither of them have been able to let go of the sleepy newborn stage and dd wanted to be upright from an early age and will only tollirate so many people holding her. Since about 6 month merry hell would break loose if she was taken off us by someone, she likes to get used to people before she goes to them. No amount of explination our part has ever communicated this.
There is a whole lot of past from this, dh had a terriable childhood, have posted about mil before, told people I was pregnant when I wasn't, amongst other things. She's very manipultive and knows if she moans to gmil enough she will take action for her.
Dd is now almost 10 months old and a very independent and enegetic little girl. She prefures to wrestle you rather than cuddle.
Main back story is dh was basically left to fend for himself from age 5 when his brother was born, they only ever care about the baby of the family and have made it very clear that dd was meant to be mil's 4th baby.

wickedwithofthenorth Fri 23-Aug-13 04:22:53

And by feed an army I mean enough to suddenly cater to mil, fil, 2 bil, gmil, aunty and cousins when they show up earlier than invited. If one or two showed up at a meal time I'd be able to throw something together as long as it wasn't the end of the week.
Mil and gmil kitchen are always full to the rafters, but with two adults and a small baby we aren't at that stage in life yet.

MissMarplesBloomers Fri 23-Aug-13 04:36:33

TBH I don't blame you at all for losing it.

Your house, your rules. If it works for you & your family then good for you.

Sounds like DH is v supportive so that's good.

Don't feel bad about having a rant, & don't worry about the fallout,if it wasn't that then it would be something else.

wickedwithofthenorth Fri 23-Aug-13 04:41:55

I think we knew this was coming, we've been putting off dd's baptism because of in laws rude and unpredictable behaviour.

MissMarplesBloomers Fri 23-Aug-13 07:42:12

Do you really want these toxic people in your lives wicked?

I know it's a harsh step but maybe you need to minimise contact.

Get a caller display phone so you can only answer if you want to.

Do they live near you?

soundevenfruity Fri 23-Aug-13 08:38:58

Is there anybody in a wider family who can act as a mediator? Normally that would be a husband but by the sound of it he is really struggling. What about BIL? It would be a shame to loose so many people that obviously love your DD though might not in a way you appreciate. It's just that you can't have "controlled explosions" in a family when you break up with some relatives and not others. It normally goes on and causes so much misery all around.

If you have an energetic 10 month old who wants to wrestle and doesn't like being held by strangers you might have a problem at baptism. smile

wickedwithofthenorth Fri 23-Aug-13 09:18:32

Dd loves our vicar and he isn't a stranger, so we shouldn't have too much of a problem.
Mil's sister may be an opption in the future but she has always been reluctant to get too involved, and bil, well his lovely but his very used to defending mil. His tried to help before but no joy.
We are very lucky to have two other grandparents and a big church family who are rather wonderful.

TheOneAndOnlyFell Fri 23-Aug-13 09:52:26

Have always been able to keep at a distance from them until dd arrived.

So you've never wanted to be around them.

Dh in his own words "can't be bothered with them" and has put off calling them because we can never do anything right so why try.

Sounds like he's caught between a rock and a hard place - the rock being them, and the hard place being you.

She lists our faults and moans about me keeping the baby to myself when they visit, 'she always takes her off to feed or change whenever we get close'.

But that's true isn't it ? You've admitted you don't like them holding her. That would be upsetting for them I imagine.

Dh refuses to let me talk to her and eventually gets her off the phone. I'm furious and shaking with rage at this point

That makes you sound a bit nuts to be honest.

I tell him I'm texting mil to say this is unacceptable and he tells me not to be mean so I agree to call her instead.

That makes you sound even more nuts. What on earth has MIL done wrong at this point? If you annoyed me should I phone to shout at your husband?

Mil tells me she is sorry and she told gmil not to call us, I state that I can't accept that behavior and will not have dd around it.

So GMIL phoned because MIL is upset at feeling kept at arm's length from her DS and her GDD, (which she is, by your own admission) and your response to this is to say that if they are going to complain about it then they won't see GDD at all.

Okaaay........

Mil then tells me that she isn't welcome in our home and she feels ill after visiting us,

I'm not surprised really, it sounds like you make them feel extremely unwelcome and uncomfortable

having her round is like a royal visit and dh waits on her hand a foot, she's the one who refuses to take off her coat.

This is very telling. You resent her being there, and any attention she gets from your DH while she's there, and she feels that so acutely that she doesn't take her coat off. It's a shield of protection between you and her, and a way of acknowledging that she isn't going to be there for long.
And how on earth does he manage to 'wait on her hand and foot' when you never invite them to stay long enough to eat a meal and she leaves her coat on? confused

we live relatively simply, we buy enough to feed our small family of 3, not an army

I have family members like this, and they also not coincidentally are the types who get very stressed at the thought of having other people in their house, and are very controlling. They invite people very rarely, and when they do it's out of a sense of duty - they'd really rather not. The result is that everyone feels like they are walking on eggshells and the food on offer always makes you feel like you've turned up unannounced and are bleeding them dry. It's not nice. It gives the impression that they resent you being there. And it's in stark contrast to how things are when they visit us.

We've fallen into an attachment style of parenting and don't play pass the baby for the sake of it.

Hmmm. And she cries every time you hand her over to her Grandma? Maybe you should knock the 'attachment parenting' on the head then. It sounds rubbish. hmm come on, this is about you not your daughter.

I snap and tell her dh has recently only spoken to her when handed the ringing phone.

That was nice of you, to dump him in it with his mother when you were in need of a bit of ammunition. hmm

I've said I want nothing to do with gmil or mil until they both apologize and do not want dd anywhere near either of them until such a time.

FFS. Using your child as a bargaining tool now? So let me get this right - they are upset at lack of contact with the baby, they dare to voice their concerns, you flip your lid and the the result is that they are now not allowed to see the baby until they apologise for expressing their desire to be see the baby. confused Well done, you've got this all sewn up haven't you? And you call the GMIL manipulative?

I needed to protect and defend my family.

Against what, exactly? That makes you sound a bit nuts again. All they want to do is be able to see their DS and their GDD. It's hardly an unreasonable request.

Gmil is the one at fault here and mil has received the brunt of my rage,

er yes......... so why is the bulk of this post all about how she has upset you and how she should apologise?

I know things won't ever be the same but I think I'm okay with that

Of course you are. In fact I imagine you are delighted at the prospect. Job done. DH and DD all to yourself.

Look, I know I am being harsh, and we only have one side of the story here - if you don't like them then you don't like them. That's your prerogative. If you say they are toxic and awful I'll believe you. But there is nothing in this thread that makes me think they've been any more difficult to get along with than you and I think you sound a bit frosty and highly strung and very controlling, to be honest. You all sound as bad as each other. I feel a bit sorry for your DH.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Fri 23-Aug-13 10:06:48

<Applauds theone>

I think that's probably a pretty succinct analysis

I have an 8 month old DS and I admit (I've posted about it), that I can find MIL and SIL annoying. However, at the end of that day they are DH's family and they love DS dearly. Therefore, it's incumbent on me (just as it is with DH and my family) fir me to maintain a good relationship with them

Yes - it sounds like GMIL was pretty cack-handed in how she dealt with things. But you need to look beyond that and try and work out why and how you may have contributed to that. theone's post should help considerably with that

At the end of the day, these people do not sound toxic hate how that word is bandied around here. Just missing them being diagnosed as "narcs" Are you really not goi g to speak to them again for the rest of your life?! I would call MIL and GMIL - invite them round for lunch. Have a nice ( not skimped) lunch ready and say that you hope you can all move on from the situation. No one apologises or starts demanding g apologies. Draw a line in the sand

On a practical level, have some stuff in the freezer that you can use when people drop by unexpectedly. If you don't have room for that, stock up on a loaf bread when you know they are coming and have some eggs/tinned tuna and cheese in. All of these things keep and you can offer them a sandwich at the very least

soundevenfruity Fri 23-Aug-13 10:18:23

Your vicar can be a good sounding board if he's involved in his parishioners' lives. From what you are saying your DH's concerns of losing all of his family through the split are justified. If you think that your parents and church are enough for your daughter (personally, I believe the more people love my child the better) it will definitely not be enough for your DH.

I think it is pretty telling that OPs DH cannot be bothered with them. He after all knows them more than anyone else does.

Who would also tell people that their DIL is pregnant when infact she was not?. Does that not strike you as odd behaviour?.

Not all grandparents are kind and loving by any means.

Feckssake Fri 23-Aug-13 10:26:56

Yup, I'm with theone here. I expect I'm one of the inlaws in your story; I certainly have a sil who rings bells with yourself. We are a very relaxed, hands on family, but we rarely get to see our niece, because the wee thing is only allowed to be held by her parents. Everytime we do get a go, one or the other of them hovers over our shoulder until she cries to be returned. Sound familiar?

It's a strictly tea and biscuits offer whenever we're there, and it's pretty clear it's a big effort. They send us pictures etc of her, but strangely, no invitations to pop over/have a play date etc. The result is that none of the family goes over there much and we're all a bit miffed at missing out on our gorgeous niece.

I say this, not in a harsh way, but from one with experience:it's you that has the issue, not them. Your child would benefit hugely from the extended family experience, but you aren't willing to share. She is not a doll. She is a niece, grandchild, great grandchild as well as a daughter. Let her be part of the family.

Dumpylump Fri 23-Aug-13 10:32:46

theone pretty much has it down from what I can make out.

pooka Fri 23-Aug-13 10:39:13

Sometimes it's hard to maintain a relationship with inlaws simply because they're not your family. However, they are family to your dd and IMO it is important to give a bit to accommodate this. I feel sorry for your dh in this set up because he's stuck in the middle. I also feel sorry for your mil getting the brunt of your over the top reaction to your gmil.

You aren't a bear. Not even a mama bear. Animals react to threats to their children and I don't understand what threat the inlaws wanting contact with your dd poses to her. It's no excuse for being aggressive or full of rage. Personally I think your reaction was disproportionate. Take a deep breath and try and be the bigger person here rather than creating a tiny family unit of 3 to the exclusion of the extended family.

Youhaventseenme Fri 23-Aug-13 10:43:47

The One has nailed, quite frankly you make yourself sound unhinged.

ClaraOswald Fri 23-Aug-13 10:45:05

Why is this the OP's fault?

Did you not read that the IL haven't contacted them despite attempts at contact until the GMIL phoned complaining?

If the OP is an introvert and the IL are extrovert, then OP probably feels that people popping in and out are a pain in the arse. I certainly do. Whereas the IL are probbaly comfortable with people popping in and out all the time.

You are also saying that when a very small baby needs to be fed and changed, it's ok for grandparents/extended family to keep a hold when a parent wants to avoid an escalation of baby crying by dealing with it when the baby starts to show early cues?

pooka Fri 23-Aug-13 10:45:27

I admit to having practically nothing in common with my MIL (barring dh and now the dcs). She can be very annoying and I disagree with her on many many things, child related and just generally. I felt threatened when dd was a baby because she was so desperate to take dd out and kept talking wistfully of the time when I wouldn't be breast feeding and she could whisk her away.

However - she adores the dcs. I was being PFB and once dd went longer between feeds I realised that I was making it all about me rather than chilling out and letting dd and mil form a close bond. I'm glad I did - mil will drop anything if we need her help/time with the dcs. While I'm not anywhere near as close to her as I am to my mother, I like her more as time passes and appreciate the close bond she has with the dcs.

TheOneAndOnlyFell Fri 23-Aug-13 10:57:16

Perhaps they are not happy with her 'attempts' to phone them and occasional texts and photos send online, perhaps they want actual human contact?

I suspect there is more of a backstory here and this month long absence is them giving her the space she says she needs, then waiting, and waiting and waiting for a call or a text to say 'fancy coming round?' or 'can we drop in?' but they just get sent pictures online as a way of the OP fulfilling a duty without actually having to grace them with her presence or tolerate them in her home.

TheOneAndOnlyFell Fri 23-Aug-13 10:58:14

I'd like to know what the relationship is like with the OP's own family.

TheOneAndOnlyFell Fri 23-Aug-13 11:01:02

I am an introvert and don't take kindly to any friends or family trying to live in my pocket, and admittedly I have been lucky in that I have loved my ILs, and they have never lived close enough to pop round enough to irritate me. I understand that we all have different levels of expectation, and you need to be able to reach a cofortable compormise where no-one feels unfairly treated. However, I think this is particular dynamic is about much more than that.

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