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MIL living with us

(46 Posts)
sherbetpips Thu 10-Mar-11 12:56:37

To cut a long story short my widowed MIL has been living with us for the past four months due to her house being flooded. My husband is one of 3 siblings however the others do not live in close proximaty to her (one 30 miles the other 300 miles away). So we have her and she is driving me crazy and probably vice versa.
About every 4 weeks I go into meltdown (probably pms) and cant cope with her being there. We clash on childcare of course, I have one 7 year old son. She happily feeds him endless cakes and sweets, picks him up after school (I pay for after school care), spoon feeds him his meals when I am not there like a baby, etc, etc.
I have tried talking to her about the effect that all this is having on him. I understand that she likes to pick him up and he loves it, however when she leaves (if she ever freekin leaves) he will be devastated and will have lost the friendships he has formed at the after school club. The spoon feeding in front of the telly thing has basically led to him freaking out if I try and get him to sit down for a family meal and he is getting a very snotty attitude. I have sat in front of her, removed the spoon and had to shout at her to stop feeding him - even then she ignores me.
In normal circumstances we get on well and I am not prepared to have her stay in some grotty flat that the insurance company will pay for as I dont want her to be lonely. However my family and friends think I am being taken the p@%s out of and should ask her to move out (all along we though this would be 6 weeks max). I am at my wits end - any of you live with your in-laws?

Topcat11 Thu 10-Mar-11 12:57:52

What does your partner think? Could he talk to her?

ashamedandconfused Thu 10-Mar-11 13:00:22

your Dp needs to give her an ultimatum - either she abides by your rules or shes out

that might sound callous but shes way OTT (feeding a 7 yo shock) and it might be her wake up call

mmsmum Thu 10-Mar-11 13:02:04

You don't want her to stay in a rented flat because she will be lonely, but presumably she lives alone anyway? 4 months seems a long time to clean a flood damaged house but I don't have any experience of it. Is your son becoming hyper/overweight? If he is you need to get DH to speak to her as she obviously isn't listening to you, you haven't mentioned DH at all in your op, what does he think? Re. after school care I think you are over reacting, I'm sure your DS will slip back in when he goes back or you could take back permission you gave for her to collect him. The other DC is only 30 mins away, that's not far at all and I don't see why they can't have her for a bit, unless of course they know what she is like and say no!

nailak Thu 10-Mar-11 13:02:20

its only a few weeks, let it go, when shes dead your son will have these memories to treasure forever.

and he will soon make the friendships again!!

LittleMissHissyFit Thu 10-Mar-11 13:14:09

Is she picking him up from school when he has paid for afterschool stuff, or is she picking him up AFTER the afterschool stuff?

That is bonkers. You need to sit her down and explain to her that this is the routine, that as this stay has gone on for so much longer than intended, that it's important for the family routine to get put back to how it was and ought to be.

She can still collect him from afterschool, you need to plan the meals and tell her that you have a no-snack policy.

This is your house, your home and your family, if she is a member of the household, she has to contribute to it by supporting the routine, not undermining it at every chance.

She needs to go and spend a week or so with the other siblings, it's unreasonable for anyone to camp with a family for 4m. Get DH on the case. Don't let him take no for an answer.

I'd hate to think I was causing such stress.

sherbetpips Thu 10-Mar-11 13:32:26

Thanks LittleMiss, thats part of the problem, I would hate for her to think that I am reacting this way, I would be devastated if I thought I was unwelcome in the family home so I am desparately trying not to upset her. When DH asked the BIL to have her for for alternate weekends he said it would not be convenient to have every other weekend taken up by her! The SIL has invited her down south several times but she keeps refusing to go as she is 'needed' here.
mmsmum yes 4 months is a very long time, they found asbestos and it still hasnt been removed. the BIL used to work in insurance so has been handling it personally, therefore causing endless delays as we have no claims handler.
I have outlined our family rules several times but she gives me that 'come off it I have been a mum of four' look and thinks I am being silly.
She is also very untidy which isn't helping as it just gives me more work to do.

anyway thanks for letting me vent!

solooovely Thu 10-Mar-11 13:33:11

You need to be much, much firmer about the rules in your house. Spoon feeding a 7 year old! Is she going a bit . . . well you know?

If you had had to shout at her before though tog et her to stop then I doubt she will ever listen.

What does your DH say?

5Foot5 Thu 10-Mar-11 13:33:33

The picking up from school instead of going to after-school I wouldn't worry about too much - unless you are worried he will lose his place if you don't keep him going. If it does bother you then maybe you can rescind permission for het to pick him up at least on ceryain days of the week.

The feeding snacks and cakes between meals I would get slightly cross at. But I would go ballistic with the spoon feeding. What is the matter with her? How on earth can she consider it at all appropriate to spoon feed a 7 year old?

You do need to get your DH involved here. Sit her down when DS is in bed and have a serious talk.

Can you not also have a word with DHs siblings - at least the ones who only live 30 miles away and see if they can have her for at least the occasional weekend?

fedupofnamechanging Thu 10-Mar-11 13:40:19

I think it's time she moved out! Perhaps the BIL who is dealing with the insurance can have her - might motivate him to pull his finger out.

You are a saint having someone else in your house for 4 months, but I think you need to toughen up a bit. You are worrying about your MIL, but your MIL is not worrying about you. She is undermining you and if I was in your position I'd remind her that you get to set the rules for your child and if she can't respect them, then it's time she went elsewhere.

mmsmum Thu 10-Mar-11 13:40:26

Saying she is 'needed here' would really really get to me, in fact I think I may flip at that! It suggests she thinks you can't cope without her and aren't doing a very job

Maybe BIL could be spoken to, he thinks he's helping but maybe he should let someone else take over and get her house fixed already.

Can you go away for Easter? Or maybe send her away on a 'surprise' holiday since she has been working so hard taking care of your DS hmm She might believe it lol

pommedeterre Thu 10-Mar-11 13:58:19

I would shout say 'No, you're not it's fine why not go?' if she said she was 'needed' in your presence again.
Spoon feeding a 7 year old? Ridiculous.
Ignoring you? Not on.
4 months? You are a saint.
DH needs to get his siblings to pull their weight too and stop being a wimp.

GlitterHo Thu 10-Mar-11 14:02:34

Im amj very sorry op your DP needs to step in here

spoon feeding a seven year old? confused

LionRock Thu 10-Mar-11 14:04:21

I don't know anyone who could put up with this.

I agree with previous suggestions - get your other half involved with temp and long-term solutions (e.g. no spoonfeeding from today, mum and dad make the rules, agree alternative accomodation whether split between the family or elsewhere.) If she does feel lonely living on her own then this extended time with you isn't going to help unless she never moves back (sorry, don't mean to scare you) so it's not really a good enough excuse to avoid what's now clearly an indefinite stay at your home. The fact that she doesn't respoct your authority and is undermining you in front of your child is unforgiveable in my opinion. What message does this send to your son?

StayFrosty Thu 10-Mar-11 14:09:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FabbyChic Thu 10-Mar-11 14:15:05

I would out and out tell her that your child is seven years old and not a baby and not to keep treating him as one. She might have had four children but you bring yours up your way.

I couldn't stand it Im surprised you do.

Tell her to clear up after herself!

I hope she contributes financially.

diddl Thu 10-Mar-11 14:17:48

She´s taking the piss imo.

Maybe your son could miss one after school per week?

How is she managing to pick him up if he is down to go to an after school club?

Can you tell the school to stop habnding him over?

30 miles isn´t far-can´t they come & fetch her?

Are you the only one with a child, is that why she´s with you?

And every other weekend not convenient?-let them tell her that they don´t want her then & that she must move into the place provided.

sherbetpips Thu 17-Mar-11 12:51:52

no progress with the BIL however looks like the asbestos is going next week - after that I am thinking 4-5 weeks tops before we get her out!!! smile
escaping out for wine with the girls tonight....

sherbetpips Tue 17-May-11 13:28:30

okay so it is now May and she is STILL with us. Looks like another 3 weeks or so before we get her out. Both DH and I really starting to lose our wrag every night now. Neeeeeeed to stay callllllmmmmmmm............. She keeps picking fault with the work the decorators are doing and making them do it again. Its not like the bloomin house was perfect when she was in it before!! We are also trying to move house at the moment and her opinions on the houses we are looking at and what we should be looking at are getting very irritating......

Needanewname Tue 17-May-11 13:37:01



(and I am aware I'm shouting!!!)


Flisspaps Tue 17-May-11 13:47:41

DH - not you - needs to say you need to be back in your own home by X date, and that he will make himself available to help her on that date and that date only. Otherwise this could drag on and on.

In fact, if the decorators are in her house, then there is no bloody reason for her not to be there at all.

WhereYouLeftIt Tue 17-May-11 14:10:29

Good God OP, in your shoes the MIL would be under the patio in a rented flat long since! I am in awe at your patience.

As to the picking faults with the decorators and making them do it again - beware! I smell reluctance to move out of your home and back into her own.

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Tue 17-May-11 14:14:45

Holy shit, OP, this is insane. There is no reason she can't live in her house while it's being decorated. Set a date, as Fliss says.

Also, your son is alright with being spoon fed? Really, what?

DorisIsAPinkDragon Tue 17-May-11 14:22:12

I agree set a date tell the decorators tell her, in fect TEL EVERYONE that is the date she will be going no if no buts no maybee's .

You need a new name

I propose SAINTsherbertpips

StayingDavidTennantsGirl Tue 17-May-11 14:23:01

Just one thought - what would happen if you told the school that your MIL is not allowed to pick your ds up from school if he is booked in for after-school club?

And needanewname is right - you are a saint to have put up with this for so long - spoon feeding a 7 year old and ignoring your family rules and routine? I would have blown my top weeks ago.

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