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Toxic MIL (part 2!)

(15 Posts)
MommyBird Wed 16-Oct-13 10:01:13

Posted a few weeks ago.
I was given some fabulous advice from some ladies about my toxic mil and need abit more! smile
just a quick one, although it might turn into an essay

I needed to text my mom, my battery had died so i lent DH, a text had come through from her that afternoon that he didn't mention to me.
Something like "I know you want nothing to do with me, or talk to me, but how are dd1+dd2'

He didn't reply.
So, i am right in thinking she (once again) has turned herself into the victim. There was no need to say the first but she said it anyway to guilt him..she could of just asked how the girls was?
Keep on ignoring?

Also. He keeps mentioning christmas..and about presents..im assuming he thinks this will of all calmed down by then. It won't have, untill she says sorry never going to happen.

Im thinking of having a chat with him just to let him know whats going on in my head.
Ive had no headaches which im now quessing was through stress.
Im alot calmer and less anxious. I feel fabulous.
I just really don't want to back track when we have made so much progress.

LookingThroughTheFog Wed 16-Oct-13 13:11:25

I think that it's pretty much up to him whether or not to ignore the text that went to him. He seems comfortable with that decision, and so do you, so I sort of see no need to rock the boat.

I'm a bit confused about the Christmas Present thing. Do you mean, Tommy would like a train set - how about we ask Mum for that? In which case I'd suggest that if you're going with no contact, it might be wise to assume nothing from in laws.

If you mean 'what shall we buy Mum?' then I think that needs to be a conversation about what you're comfortable with. Generic, £5 stocking stuffer and card? Nothing at all?

I would ask why you had any need to text your mother at all. Radio silence from you is necessary as further contact from you will just give her an "in" so you need to keep on ignoring her. No contact is just that.

If she is too toxic or difficult for you to deal with she is certainly too difficult for your children to have to deal with as well and they won't thank you ultimately for exposing them to such a person. Not all grandparents are kind and loving and toxic parents do make for being toxic grandparents as well. Such people are not good grandparents. Your mother could use your children to further get back at you for being such an "errant" offspring in her eyes.

DH has likely come from an emotionally healthy family where fortunately this type of familial dysfunction is unknown. I would further talk to DH again and hand him also a copy of Toxic Inlaws written by Susan Forward.

Andro Wed 16-Oct-13 13:59:25

AttilaTheMeerkat - I'm reading this as OP's MIL is toxic, not OP's mum.

Apologies Mommybird for my error regarding the relative.

Counsel overall is the same, no contact with this person. Your DHs mother is trying to get back at her son by mentioning the children and thus using them as weapons in her arsenal. He should have told you about this text although I can see why he did not. It was not the right decision on his part though to my mind.

He needs to continue to ignore her even though she will likely continue to push the boundaries.

MommyBird Wed 16-Oct-13 16:03:26

Thank you, just needed to hear that reallysmile

Regarding Christmas presents, he was just saying what was bought last year for our parents and how we allways try and spend a little bit more on them.
I'm not sure if he was trying to mention his parents then lead on with..'what are we doing about mil'
Probley was just looking into it abit much.

We have already agreed if she accepts what's happened and says sorry we will give her, her last chance. If i'm being honest, i really hoped thought this would of been solved by now and we wouldn't have to worry about Christmas.

She is well off, so im now thinking she will use it to guilt us as Christmas is coming. I'm expecting nothing from her untill Christmas, then a mass of expensive toys for our girls and we won't accept them. It changes nothing.

oldgrandmama Wed 16-Oct-13 16:10:59

Can;t really offer any advice - it's all so sad that ILs can cause so much misery. I absolutely adore my DIL and SIL. Wish I was your MIL, MommyBird.

Hi Mommybird,

re your comment:-
"We have already agreed if she accepts what's happened and says sorry we will give her, her last chance. If i'm being honest, i really hoped thought this would of been solved by now and we wouldn't have to worry about Christmas".

Re Christmas continue to ignore her and make your own traditions. Gifts are indeed used by such people as a further means of obligating the recipients. If she does send anything do not indeed accept them.

You are likely to be yourself from a family where this type of dysfunction is thankfully unknown. Unfortunately you are dealing with a person who is totally unreasonable and not amenable to any reasoned argument from yourselves.

She does not deserve any more chances, doing so gives her a further opportunity to walk all over you and your H her son yet again. This is also not solvable either because she at heart is inherently unreasonable. It is not your fault as a couple that she is like this. Her own family did that lot of damage to her in her own childhood, what if anything do you know about her childhood?.

Unfortunately such toxic people like your MIL never apologise nor accept any responsibility for their actions.

MommyBird Wed 16-Oct-13 16:37:41

Grandmama - That is very sweet thanks smile
When I imagined getting Married when I was younger, I never in a million years thought I would get a lunatic for a MIL. Where is the sweet lady who I was supposed to go shopping with and have bbq's and drink wine with?!

I know she has brothers (who she doesn't talk too, shock huh?) and a sister who died when she was roughly 14/15. That's all I know. We have never really been close. She called me a slag when me and DH first together, you can imagine the relationship we had before dd1 came along.

I do think she has had enough chances, im thinking is one more going to hurt? Atleast we can say, thats it now. f off!

I just wish she was normal.

Hi Mommybird,

re your comment:-
"I do think she has had enough chances, im thinking is one more going to hurt? Atleast we can say, thats it now. f off!"

It will hurt you and your own family if you give her another chance. These people are masters of come closer so I can hurt you again.

You're also contradicting yourself by stating that she's had enough chances but you're thinking of giving her another chance. She is not and will never be reasonable!!. Such thinking just delays your own recovery from her even longer. I reiterate that these people too do not and never do play by the "normal" rules governing familial relations!. "Usual" ways of dealing with them therefore do not work.

Just say that's it now, no more and save yourselves further pain.

MommyBird Wed 16-Oct-13 16:54:29

I know you're right sad and it hurts. I have wanted to be proven wrong so many times by her and its never happened. I know she will never say sorry so there's no point in me worrying about 'her last chance' as it will never happen.
She will never change.

A part of me wants her to change and the other half has had enough of her and wants to cut her out completley.

MommyBird Wed 16-Oct-13 16:55:48

I know you're right sad and it hurts. I have wanted to be proven wrong so many times by her and its never happened. I know she will never say sorry so there's no point in me worrying about 'her last chance' as it will never happen.
She will never change.

A part of me wants her to change and the other half has had enough of her and wants to cut her out completley.

Meerka Wed 16-Oct-13 17:05:09

First off, you said you were thinking of having a chat with him to let him know what's going on in yoru head. I think you definitely need to do that. You also need to ask him to tell you if there is any further contact with her because you absolutely need a united front.

Regarding the grandchildren:

This really is difficult. A toxic person is very dangerous, including to your small children. On the other hand .. ye, it is a pity to have no contact at all.

But it may be necessary. Toxic people are indeed poisonous including to your children.

So that's option 1. No contact at all.

Option 2. very very limited contact. Possible a text back from your husband "they are well" and but then keep very cool, don't get drawn into convo (no need to say more than they are well). Allow text contact once a month or something. But at the first sign of manipulation or trying to draw you back in, cut all contact dead. "I know you want nothing to do with me, or talk to me," could well count as that manipulation or you may feel that you can overlook it. You know her best. Go with your gut instinct - and discuss it with your husband every decision.

Regarding christmas, count on nothing (if you cut her out of your lives, you can't expect anything from her!). If she deluges you with gifts, then that's clear manipulation and yeah, rejecting them is best. If she manages small, appropriate gifts that may be a reasonable sign. Maybe a thank you letter would be appropriate from your children. Def avoid a phone call. Regarding giving them gifts, I would think not.

The danger with even very limited contact is that she will probably try to draw you back in. She may fake reasonable for a while, but it's highly likely the games will begin before long. Not impossible that she will become better, but highly unlikely indeed. (speaking from experience; after 5 years No Contact initiated by me, the extraordinarily abusive family member in my own family apologised and always trod extremely carefully around me, becuase she did want the very limited contact I allowed after the apology. I think I was the only person she didnt try to manipulate because she knew I would walk away. Even so had we been closer, she'd have tried to get me under her thumb again becuase she simply could not help herself).

Option 3 - resume contact. Noooooo! smile

How will your husband react when he realises that this is a final decision on your part? How will you handle it together?

I would not consider any further contact as 'one last chance' becuase that reads a bit as implying that there's a risk things might go back to the way they were. If there is a future relationship possible, it has to be from a totally new basis - one where, in dealing with her, you call the shots and are in control. In the past she's clearly browbeated you and giving you the runaround, headaches, and grief with husband. If, if there is to be any further contact, it's got to be on your terms.

In your shoes I don't know if I would reply to the text or not. Possibly not, actually. It seems too soon for her to have texted. Give it 6 or 12 months and then extremely limited contact, perhaps. S'pose that's Option 4 =)

MommyBird Wed 16-Oct-13 17:30:12

This is why I love MN. thanks
I allways feel alot stronger and feel i'm doing the right thing.

I'm going to have a chat with him tonight. I can see why he didn't mention the text, i'm abit of a stresser. It would of played on my mind and I'd of ended up in a rage at MIL.

I'm going to say i'm not willing to give her 'the last chance' but to see what she does if contact is cut. She has taken no responserbility and maybe it's too late now..if she decides to show any normality then maybe limited contact.
Nothing will happen at Christmas. If any texts come in regarding bringing the girls any presents we can say what with everythings that gone on we can't accept them. I hope they don't end up in our porch!

sofurcough Thu 17-Oct-13 14:44:41

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