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Is it me? MIL question

(47 Posts)
Inapickle123 Thu 24-Oct-13 22:43:23


Don't know if I'm being overly sensitive (28 weeks down and it's clear hormones have kicked in as I just cried like a baby at Educating Yorkshire) but my MIL's attitude seems crazy.

This will be her first grandchild and, while we're super excited, she doesn't really seem to care. She's not one for emotion and tolerates me, though I am the opposite of what she probably hoped for as a DIL but I would have expected some form of excitement or acknowledgement from her. When we see her (which isn't often) I get a quick "how are you?" Then it's on to the 30 minute monologues..

My husband has just informed me that she's planning in booking a holiday for when I'm due to give birth because "she won't be needed anyway".yes, ill have my mum (we are very close and, unfortunately, my husband and his siblings don't have that type if relationship with their mum) but -call me selfish-I would have thought shed want to be there, especially considering how much of a miracle this actually is (we've been "infertile" for years and the pregnancy was a massive shock).

I'm not looking for any help from her, financial or otherwise, I'm just a little miffed that a holiday is even a consideration.

I don't know if I'm being unreasonable. She works hard and deserves time to herself, but the hormonal part of me keeps asking "why then?" "Why not go before or after ?"

Is this a power play? A grab for attention? A way to highlight the fact that this event isn't of importance to her? Or am I being too mean? Maybe she feels left out but she has never once attempted to engage with me about the baby, or anything else. I don't even get birthday cards and its been 10 years!

olgaga Thu 24-Oct-13 23:34:08

You don't say whay your MIL does but if her job is demanding this might be the only time she could book her leave.

She knows you'll be well looked after, and it's true, you don't need her. Your husband doesn't either.

There are lots of doting grannies but having had children of her own she may feel she's done babies

Peniston Thu 24-Oct-13 23:49:27

Honestly, just be thankful that she is going away. Having my (similarly cold and self-absorbed) mother in law descend, and insist on hanging round for days, straight after the births of my babies are, hands down, my worst memories of the early days of motherhood. To have such a draining presence in your home, at a time when you are at your most emotional and vulnerable, mars what should be a magical time. Congratulations on your miracle pregnancy btw!

Weta Thu 24-Oct-13 23:49:56

Obviously I don't know your MIL, so the reasons behind it could be any of the ones you suggest or something else completely, but your post resonated with me in relation to my own mother's experiences as an MIL.

She never had much in common with my SIL but SIL totally took against her while pregnant for reasons similar to what you describe - my mum didn't take enough interest in the pregnancy, wasn't desperately rushing to see the baby etc. 12 years on this has torn our family apart, as SIL has made it hard for my mum to have relationships with those grandchildren and the rest of us have been drawn into the crossfire.

In my mum's case the reasons were nothing sinister at all - just that she is different to SIL's own mum (who is very 'weddings and babies') and is not that into babies but wonderful with slightly older children once she can communicate with them. Not that she hasn't loved her grandchildren as babies too, it's just not such a big focus for her as for some other people.

So your MIL may just not be a babies type of person, and she may even be trying to be sensitive by not intruding in the early days...

who knows? but do bear in mind that the explanation could be different to the reasons you're imagining.

Good luck with working it out!

ems1910 Thu 24-Oct-13 23:51:56

Hmm tough one really. I suppose just let her come around in her own time. Maybe she doesn't want to intrude. Could you invite her along to see the pram you have chosen? Or do some baby clothes shopping together?

Applefallingfromthetree2 Thu 24-Oct-13 23:53:38

Many congratulations!

Have you had a chat with your MIL about what her role might be when you give birth, perhaps some ways of how she could help out and be involved?Perhaps she feels in the way and knows how close you are to your Mum, she could even feel a little sad that she is not needed and that her part in this special event seems less important.

You are giving her a grandchild and it is very likely that despite how she is reacting at the moment she will be besotted with it when it arrives.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Thu 24-Oct-13 23:53:46

You feel you've drawn the short straw. It's your first baby and MIL seems to be keeping her distance. I think it's telling your DH and his siblings aren't especially close to her. If she's not sent you birthday cards maybe this was not wholly unpredictable. Can't guess where this stems from but it wouldn't be surprising if she didn't enjoy a warm living relationship with her own mother.

Oddly sometimes fondness or deep attachment can skip a generation so when your baby arrives she may surprise herself. If not then you'll be spared the interfering dragon mil others sometimes have. As DH is the one who's really missing out try not to let this overshadow your pregnancy.

Luckily you have a close nurturing relationship with your own mum. Focus on the positives, stay civil with MIL and all the best with your miracle baby.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Thu 24-Oct-13 23:55:06

Typo s/b warm loving relationship.

Shellywelly1973 Thu 24-Oct-13 23:57:16

Maybe your mil actually just isn't very interested in your pregnancy. My mil wasn't in the slightest bit interested when I was pregnant with dc1.

As the dc got older she was much more hands on & involved. She ended up being a fantastic grandmother.

Not everyone finds pregnancy & babies interesting!

Good luck...

Thatballwasin Fri 25-Oct-13 00:14:15

I can understand why you're upset but just focus on the fact that your mum will be around and is engaged and interested. It doesn't sound like she's acting out of character, try not to let it upset your time.

Inapickle123 Fri 25-Oct-13 06:29:52

Thanks for the replies-it's comforting to know that I'm not crazy, just a little sensitive! I really want a close relationship with her for the sake of the baby but I have to take my husbands lead on this.

She lives very close to us and we see her maybe once a month. I have to nag husband to phone her to see how she is because, if I didn't, contact would hardly be made. It saddens me that this is a relationship;I speak to my mum at least twice a weeks and see her monthly as she lived quite far away. I always chalked this up to the difference between daughters and sons but, as time goes on, it's clear that it runs deeper.

There has never been any interest of support shown by MIL in our relationship. When we got married, despite trying to include her, she refused and just turned up. True, our wedding wasn't what' she wanted (not religious-very small and casual) and this may have embarrassed her a little (most of the weddings on her side are lavish, expensive affairs which is totally fine, but not for me) but I would have thought that x years down the line, it wouldn't really matter.

You may be right-she's already had 6 children on her own and be "done" with babies but I can tell how upset my husband is that she hasn't really even feigned delight. It just be horrible for him to constantly have the closeness of my relationship with my parents thrust down his throat; how could you not compare them? My parents are beyond excited (they too knew how much it meant to us), have financially supported and make such a big deal of birthdays, Xmas, anytime they see us, that he must feel like shit knowing that his relationship with his mother isn't what everyone else grew up with. It's just so sad.

Believe me, I don't particularly want or need her around but, knowing her, this decision isn't based on the understanding for healthy distance. In my (cynical) opinion, this is a little tantrum-it's not my job to override my husband to include her (if he doesn't call, it's clear he doesn't want to) so this is her way of telling us that we (or me!) have done wrong again. Oh well, can't win!

I just hope that her relationship with our baby is heather. Husbands siblings are, by in large, younger, and I just hope that, when their time comes to have kids, she treats her grand kids the same, irrespective of how she feels about me.

Locketjuice Fri 25-Oct-13 06:39:57

My mil is exactly the same, it's really strange my 2 children are the only GC yet she hasn't come round to see them once (I live 10 mins drive) I always have to go to her and she just isn't interested UNLESS its one of her 'posh' (lots of money, well spoken DOTING GP) asking how they are etc if you looked on her Facebook you would think she has them all the time, but nope she just shares my pictures hmm

They also booked holiday the week I was due and filled every weekend up 4 weeks from due date!

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 25-Oct-13 06:50:21

I think you're just different people. She's not wild about you & you're not wild about her. It happens. Why not take her on face value rather than superimposing your own ideas on how she's supposed to behave and then judging her harshly against them? She seems to be letting you get on with leading your life as you wish without trying to strong-arm you into behaving one way or another. If she was closer & fully involved you'd be saying she was interfering.

shelleywhite Fri 25-Oct-13 06:52:58

I agree with Weta. Some people are actually uncomfortable around babies, and that "gooey" feeling just doesn't make up any part of their personality.

Nothing they have any control over - it's just the way they are made. Try not to take it personally.

Phineyj Fri 25-Oct-13 06:57:45

I agree with Cogito and it's better than someone gushy and over-involved. She might just surprise you later - DC seem to love that aloof slightly sarcastic GP in my experience!

Phineyj Fri 25-Oct-13 06:58:22

Also your thread title is quite telling - it's not about you.

bubalou Fri 25-Oct-13 07:24:09

I know it's easy to say it but I would be glad if my mil was this way - the less I have to see her the better.

I know she's DH's mum and ds's grandmother but she is a mean, calculating, underhanded woman and I would have loved her to leave us alone and not call DH all the bloody time!

notanyanymore Fri 25-Oct-13 07:34:34

You see a lot of threads on here about mil's being banned from visiting for the first 2 weeks, being too pushy etc. Is there any chance she's imagining you'll want some respite between dc being born and people visiting? she might be taking her holiday then to cover that, almost as a distraction?
also, it's one thing knowing a baby on its way, its something else entirely once it actually arrives smile
(I am biased, my MIL was wonderful, if she'd have still been alive when DD3 was born I'd have happily had her in the delivery suite!)

starfishmummy Fri 25-Oct-13 07:42:54

You day that she isn't particularly close to you or your husband anyway. Prwsablu things have been like this for years so why would you expect things to change in a matter of months?

Inapickle123 Fri 25-Oct-13 07:43:02

All fair points. I shall just let her get on with it as she sees fit and see how it goes.


Reprint Fri 25-Oct-13 07:51:12

pickle, please don't read this as a criticism in any way (it truly isn't) but I wonder if you have tried really talking to her about things?
You sound lovely, and your situation does somewhat reflect my DDs experience as her MIL is also a fairly unemotional type who doesn't 'do' babies. Could have been a total breakdown, but DD did manage to salvage a working relationship from it.

You say she has had 6 children - could you use that as a starting point to sit down over a coffee and ask her opinion on some things? about what your DH was like as a tiny, which might come out as a trait in the baby?
And then touch on your hope for her continuing support when LO arrives? actually asking if she will come straight to see you when the plane lands back?

Its only a thought, and may not work, but its worth a shot .....this woman is going to be a granny for a long time. You shouldn't have to take responsibility for 'bringing her around' but sometimes it is worth the effort.

I am a huge believer in being open and honest - with an expectation of understanding the other persons POV. brew & cake are crucial to the process.

TicTacZebra Fri 25-Oct-13 08:08:05

It might all change when the baby is here.

My GPIL (they are basically DPs parents) literally didn't care that I was pregnant. Hardly even mentioned it. I used to think 'what miserable bastards'. But now, they are the most fantastic GPs you could imagine. They love my DC so much and my DC absolutely adore them.

There are so many reasons why your MIL has decided to have a holiday around your due date. I would just give her the benefit of the doubt at the moment.

Also as others have said, be grateful she's not going to be there! Seriously, unwanted visitors are really draining when you've just had a baby.

Ragwort Fri 25-Oct-13 08:08:25

Cogito puts it really well; you are just very different sorts of people, neither of you is wrong, neither is right.

Please don't try and make your MIL into something she is not, she sounds as though she is giving you & your DH plenty of 'space' to get on with your own lives and she has built her own life.

This is a complete contrast to the hundreds of threads you get on here about interfering MILs grin. Yet again, MILs just can't win.

Preciousbane Fri 25-Oct-13 08:22:53

I'm like your MIL and my MIL is like you.

My MIL really tried to push me with family and emotional stuff and is very gushing. It used to drive me up the wall. However after a horrible experience that the poor woman had with her own DD a couple of years ago where I helped her we actually got to know each other properly.

Our relationship is now really good. I had to tell her not to hug me and be gushy. She also now values my hard line practicality.

Do you have any idea what sort of childhood she had? My MIL had a Mother that adored her and they really were best friends. I was raised in an environment that was the opposite and find it hard to express emotion.

I agree your both just different neither of you is wrong in your behaviours.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 25-Oct-13 08:23:06

"let her get on with it as she sees fit "

With respect, that's a very acid way of putting it. The woman can't win at the moment so it's probably better to stop eating yourself up about what she is or isn't doing, stop looking for malicious motivations and take her as you find her.

NeedlesCuties Fri 25-Oct-13 08:46:21

My MIL is the same. My kids are pre-schoolers and if we didn't make the phone calls and arrange visits then I doubt she'd do it.

But when she is here she's overbearing to them... almost like a months worth of attention squeezed into a few hours which I can see makes my kids feel a bit WTF.

She also always arrives to our house with about 5 books for each child (they are close enough in age to share books) and a handful of outfits for each - then looks very put out when she sees that they already have books and enough clothes.

It's almost like in her mind they cease to exist between her visits and I think for her that's true - out of sight out of mind.

OP, I have no real advice for you, but I really do know how you feel. I remember crying during both my pregnancies about how MIL was so distant emotionally.

Try to not get into rows with your DH about it, it really isn't worth that stress on your relationship. She's an adult - would be nice if she was involved, but you can't force her.

Ragwort Fri 25-Oct-13 08:49:27

Genuine question - what makes a 'good' MIL?

I only have one DS & I am absolutely terrified of being thought of as an 'over involved' MIL - now it seems that I could be seen as uninterested and distant if I don't want to see my DIL & grandchildren all the time confused.

What do mumsnetters think is the 'ideal balance'?

Reprint Fri 25-Oct-13 09:03:22

Well I am no arbiter of 'good' or 'bad' ...and hope to God I don't just assume that my own relationships are fine, when in fact the children-in-laws are posting reams about me somewhere .......but I am a massive believer in talking and just being honest.

Blending families is hard! of course DIL's are going to feel closer to their own mums (if those relationships have been solid - I was actually much closer to my MIL) - it takes an effort to include a MIL at the same level of confidence exchanges and as a MIL I think there is a duty to be truly open about things.

I also think that a bit of passivity goes a long long way. Its just as easy to say "what would you like me to do" or "when would you like me to come" as it is to say "I am doing" or "i am coming". Of course we don't have to. But it helps build the relationship.
Equally, we don't have to be right. It pays to keep your mouth shut and listen!!
And the really interesting thing is that the less you do state an emphatic stance - the more likely they are to talk to you, and ask for input.

The hardest thing, I think is that we have to accept that we are no longer the cutting edge generation. Our children are now parents and are where its at! remember how you felt about your own parents & MIL at that stage in your life, before you decide that what level of your input is needed!

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 25-Oct-13 09:08:19

There really isn't an ideal. It fully depends on the two individuals involved and how prepared they are (within reason) to make allowances for each other as people. Anyone having very set ideas on how a MIL or PIL or DIL or SIL should behave is setting themselves up for a big fall and pointless resentment. We pick a partner and we end up thrown together with the rest of their family. We don't choose them, they don't choose us, we're not related to them genetically and we don't have history with them. If we're lucky we all get along like a house on fire, if not, that's life and we manage it as we would with any other random person you have to spend time with - like co-workers.

As I explained to my DM the other day when she was going on yet again about my SIL's various alleged failings, she's not a bad person, she just has a different approach to life to DM.


I would like to comment on something you wrote earlier which is this:-.

"I really want a close relationship with her for the sake of the baby but I have to take my husbands lead on this".

But you are dealing with someone who is emotionally cold and has never made any real effort to engage with you; its not your fault she is like this. I think this is just the latest in a long line of snubs towards her son and by turn you.

I do not think you are at all being overtly sensitive here; it is understandable why you feel hurt.

BTW is your H the eldest of her children, how do his siblings get along with their mother these days?.

Your baby should not be the glue that binds you and she together. I would agree with the second part of your written sentence in that you do have to take your H's lead on this. After all he has known her for a lot longer than you have and he's had a lifetime of her, he knows all too well what she is like and does not engage very often.

I think you are both nice and reasonable; you have come from a family where this type of crap is thankfully unknown so a rebuff like this is very difficult to deal with. I would also stop nagging your H to keep up contact; he does not contact her very often for what he feels are good reasons. She has never been interested in your H her son and by extension yourself (you've never even received a card from her, btw has your H ever tried to take her to task on that matter?. Do you feel that he could really stand up to her if push came to shove?). All you can ultimately do with regards to such a difficult person is to ensure that your own behaviour is above reproach then she cannot pin anything on you.

It may well pass that her own relationship with your child will prove to be difficult to navigate as well given her past behaviours with her son and yourself. Unfortunately that is not beyond the realms of possibility.

mummytime Fri 25-Oct-13 09:40:04

Have you ever watched "Outnumbered"? The scenes where Claire Skinner's character tries to get her husband (Hugh Dennis) to have a conversation with his mother. Some families and relationships work very differently to others.

Maybe she is holding back, because she doesn't want to is terrified of being seen as and interferring MIL? Lots of cases on here are about MIL who are around all the time, and get in the way.

Why don't you just talk to her, tell her you feel disappointed she isn't going to be around when you have the baby. Maybe she didn't think you wanted her? But do listen if she says she just feels uncomfortable around small babies.

I love tiny babies personally, but would happily hand them back at 10 weeks, until probably 4 or so, and actually really enjoy teens. I was fine mothering my own children at all ages (as much as anyone is), but did feel nervous with other peoples children outside my safety zone.

I think it depends very much on their overall personality; if the person is difficult to deal with anyway in terms of being snobby, prickly, self absorbed along the lines of narcissism etc then these types of people are going to be a lot harder to have to deal with. A good rule of thumb here is that if they are too difficult for you to deal with, then they are too difficult for your defenceless and vulnerable child to have much if any contact with. These above types do not also make for being good grandparents.

Women who are anyway "difficult" on all sorts of levels (ranging from these women having a weak bystander of a husband that does not try and protect the offspring from her mad excesses of behaviour, women who completely rule the roost by being the dominant matriarch of the family by using divide and conquer tactics) can too easily make for being difficult MILs as well. This could easily apply to FILs as well.

Someone who listens and fully accepts their son's choice of partner even though the MIL may on some levels have some doubts. Also a need to realise that yes their darling boy has grown up and yes indeed does have a life of his own. He can still love you both but his primary loyalty now or should be to his wife. You are still needed but you must not interfere in their marriage. If a MIL to name but three behaviours sits there all miserable and grumpy, fawns over her son and hangs on his every word, ignores the DIL when the family go over to visit (and yes this does happen to me) this will not endear this person to either her son or his wife.

Cabrinha Fri 25-Oct-13 09:52:19

Stop trying to force something that isn't there.
It'll just make you resentful which isn't fair when she seems not to have done anything wrong.

There may be a generational effect now - I don't know how old she is... but she possibly had her 6 kids without any fanfare.

These days, we're all baby showers, magazines, forums, clubs to join, week by week guides to baby's development, lovely stylish clothes to buy, vanity scans...
We expect lots of attention for being pregnant, but she may be of a generation where less minute by minute attention was applied!

I would just drop your expectations. It is sad for your husband, but it's not worth getting bothered by.

Inertia Fri 25-Oct-13 10:04:09

Perhaps Mil feels a bit awkward and uncomfortable about not having a close relationship with you both, especially as your family are close, and is using the holiday as a bit of an escape clause. That way she can see you and the baby when things are calmer.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 25-Oct-13 10:05:43

BTW... with six kids she's probably anticipating boat-loads of grandchildren in due course. One of my grandmothers had four children around 15 grandchildren and I think upwards of 30 great-grandchildren before she died. She was pretty horrible as it happens, but just the logistics of trying to keep up with this vast brood would have stretched anyone. She never sent cards or presents to any of us but, to be fair, with that number it would have bankrupted her. My other grandmother had just one son, two grandchildren and one great-grandchild. She was massively involved but then she could afford the time etc.

DontMentionThePrunes Fri 25-Oct-13 10:18:24

I've known two MILs in real life to book holidays when the baby's due.

I honestly don't know if somewhere there's a MILnet where some hairy-handed regular poster is encouraging MILs to do this because it's the best thing to show that you don't want to crowd your DIL at a difficult time...

Anyway see it like this: you know now that in future, when you have this baby and more babies, you don't really have your MIL to support you. It has taken me nine years of up-and-down to realise this and I wish I'd saved myself the bother by reading the signals early on.

IME you can't change 'em, you can only smile and nod and make sure you have other, better relationships outside your partner's family.

DontMentionThePrunes Fri 25-Oct-13 10:21:00

BTW in my own experience, no interest in us while I was pregnant turned into great love for a baby and a tailing off when the baby turned out to rush around madly and develop the vocabulary to disagree with her.

I wish I had protected him more, he now can't take in the fact that she doesn't want to be around him much.

Inapickle123 Fri 25-Oct-13 11:11:10

I actually read back my comment there and it does seem rather harsh; wasn't intended to be, it's just really early in the morning and didnt sleep well!

I'm not an overly emotional person-not a hugger, gusher or crier by nature. I just have an open and honest relationship with my folks that we've worked on over years. It's not by any means perfect but I know that, if I needed them, they'd drop everything and do anything they could do to help and it is just a question of trying to strike a balance with her , without stepping on my husband's toes.

I should be grateful she's not overly controlling and take her attitude at face value, rather than trying to find motivation behind it. There's a lot of pre-baby behaviour that leads me to the conclusions about the motivations behind her actions but you're right; we're different people and I should stop expecting her to act differently to the way she's always been.

Here's hoping things change once baby arrives!

Inapickle123 Fri 25-Oct-13 11:19:10

It's just that, knowing how much we wanted a baby and how miserable we were for so long KNOWING it couldn't happen, I know my husband was gutted when her response to miracle baby was "oh, I take it x is happy now she's got what she wanted".
Tad harsh. And yes, I'm flipping delighted!!!

DontMentionThePrunes Fri 25-Oct-13 11:22:19

Listen to her, she is telling you really and truly what she thinks. Don't brush it off or sugar-coat it. She is not on your side.

diddl Fri 25-Oct-13 11:32:22

"oh, I take it x is happy now she's got what she wanted".

That seems very detached.

I'm thinking it's also what your husband wants?

It's possible that they're just not close.

How often does she make contact?

Maybe she is pissed off that your mum will be there & it's a reaction to that.

But if so-talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face!

We were always closer to my mum's mum.

Dad was one of 7 & rightly or wrongly thought that other siblings were preferred & visits weren't that frequent.

That said, I still have lovely memories of them.

googietheegg Fri 25-Oct-13 11:53:51

My mil is the same and tbh it really hurts. I know the truth is that nobody has to be bothered about their grandchildren but it still is a shame. That's what I've come to accept - its a shame. My mil doesn't have anything to do with dd from one month to the next - she may say 'how is dd?' On the weekly call with Dh, but it's just a platitude as she doesn't listen to the answer.

But as she gives dd money for birthday and Christmas I'm not supposed to notice!!

Meerka Fri 25-Oct-13 13:08:21

seems to me that you'd like to replicate the much closer relationship you have with your own mother, with your mother in law. Or replicate the closeness you and your mum have, between your partner and his mum.

She is a different person and it doesnt sound like it can happen. Its a pity, but you can't make her into something she isnt. Mourn that emptiness between them and between your MiL and new baby, if you need to, mourn it then try to come to terms with it and accept it is what it is.

Inapickle123 Fri 25-Oct-13 15:31:10

I don't think it's my place to meddle. I know that husband had a very different childhood experience to me and that he feels he can never really live up to her high expectations. Having said that, she's raised a smart, funny and loyal son so credit where credit is due.

While I would love a closer relationship, its not me I'm really worried about. I had a horrible grandma who made it clear that my mum was a disappointment because she had a girl. She made life very difficult because she clearly favoured my brother and I remember exactly what it felt like; I desperately don't want that for our baby.

The other children are a mixed bag. 5 boys, one girl; very close to her daughter (youngest) and the other boys are nice but detached too. I think there's a lot about his childhood that my husband has buried -as have the other boys-and he deals with it in his own way, which I have to respect.

I think not much can be done. Ill keep trying and encouraging but, ultimately, I can't make her like me. Shame-I'm pretty delightful!

Ill deal with the issues surrounding baby pickle if they arise. Here's hoping these pregnancy hormones are making me worry needlessly.

olgaga Thu 31-Oct-13 00:56:14

I think you're over-thinking this.

Your child's life and upbringing will be nothing like yours for a start. Also some if the happiest people I know are simply not that close to their parents. They love each other but don't live in each other's pockets and there isn't a hint of emotional dependency.

Other people I know are "close" to their parents but in a rather co-dependent and debilitating way.

Distance between parents and adult children can be very positive. Those who don't have that distance often wish their parents' lives had moved on a bit.

She's had lots of children of her own and is finally enjoying some freedom.

When your baby arrives, no matter how longed-for he or she is you'll realise how precious that individual freedom is.

She has waited a long time to get hers back. Let her enjoy it.

curlew Thu 31-Oct-13 01:04:07

She's probably read the MIL threads on Mumsnet and thinks she's doing the right thing.

Which, if she had read a few more, she would have realized she can never, ever do.

malinaa Thu 31-Oct-13 01:56:52

I think it's quite sad she doesn't want to be there, but it seems like this is the type of person she is. You said your husband and his siblings aren't close to her, so she probably acts like this to everyone. Don't take it personally. You should be happy to have your family and the people you love around, let her celebrate in her own way.

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